Become a Teaching Assistant

You’ll gain valuable leadership skills and advance your professional development when you become a chemistry teaching assistant at WSU. The experience of teaching a laboratory section and providing learning guidance for a group are transferable skills you can apply to any career path and can be advantageous when applying to professional schools. And it’s a paid position, too.

Most TAs are hired over the summer for fall semester.

Job Description

General chemistry undergraduate teaching assistants are assigned one laboratory course section that consists of approximately 24 students enrolled in Chemistry 101, 102, 105, or 106. Highly qualified undergraduate TAs may be considered for Chemistry 345.

Duties include:

  • prepare and facilitate the 50-minute pre-lab tutorial
  • supervise one two- or three-hour laboratory period each week
  • grade laboratory reports for all students enrolled in your section
  • enforce all safety regulations
  • attend the course lecture
  • attend weekly TA meetings (Mondays 5:00–6:00 p.m.)
  • hold one 50-minute office hour period each week
  • proctor three hour-long midterm exams and one three-hour final exam
  • assist in proctoring weekly quizzes
  • keep records of student grades and update the online gradebook for the students enrolled in your section(s)
  • provide feedback and assistance to the course instructor as requested

How to apply:

Complete the online application no later than July 31 for the following fall semester.

Applicants will receive information about the TA training program and a copy of the TA training handbook.

Offers are extended in early August. Preference is given to individuals who complete TA training


Email Ryan Rice, WSU general chemistry lab supervisor

Watch TA Training on YouTube

Minimum qualifications:

  • Successfully completed the 105/106 general chemistry sequence and one additional year of chemistry courses
  • Completed 60 college credits (junior standing)
  • Have a GPA of at least 3.2 for juniors, and 3.0 for seniors.

Equivalent course work at a transfer institution will be considered by individual interview.

Additional information

All first-time TAs must attend training in August the week before classes begin.

All TAs must attend the mandatory meeting the Friday before the semester begins. 

All TAs are expected to remain on campus for a meeting with course instructors to assist in assigning grades in the two days following the final exam. 

Teaching assistants are provided the course textbook, laboratory manual, goggles, lab coat, gradebook, and whenever possible, desk space in Fulmer Hall. Work study funding is accepted but is not necessary.

A TA is assigned to one of the four general chemistry courses based on the courses appearing on their transcript, area of strength demonstrated by the TA Advisory Exam, and course schedule.  Preference will be given to TAs who have taken general chemistry at Washington State University, successfully served as a teaching assistant during the previous semester, and/or completed all parts of Chemistry 555 (Teaching Undergraduate Chemistry).