Lecturer (SA): Minimum Qualifications, Course Assignments, Supervision, Evaluation
This document provides guidance to departments concerning the hiring of graduate students as graduate assistants with the title "Lecturer (SA)."
Graduate students hired to serve as lecturers will always be hired with the title “Lecturer (SA),” which indicates that they are in a student-assistant category
Many departments seek to employ graduate students as short-term instructional staff both to provide important professional development for the graduate student and to deliver an effective instructional program. The Lecturer (SA) title is exempt from the campus minimum qualifications policy (Policy on Minimum Qualifications for Instructional Staff
) since it is assumed that the graduate student is working under the direct supervision of a faculty member or instructional academic staff member. In appointing Lecturer (SA)s, the College needs to consider both the appropriateness of the appointment and the supervision being provided.
In reviewing STS requests for Lecturer (SA) appointments (see L&S Short-Term Staffing Request Process
), we will first review whether the course being proposed carries the graduate course attribute (see HLC FAQ: 3. Minimum Graduate Course Work (50%) Requirement FAQ's
). If the course does not carry this attribute, is numbered below 700, and it is clear that the student selected to teach the course has completed academic course work that puts her/him at least at the level of a Master’s degree, there is generally no complication in making the Lecturer (SA) appointment.
If the course does carry the graduate course attribute, however, we look carefully at potential Lecturer (SA) appointments in such courses. We consider factors such as the following:
- The course to be taught may be taken by Master’s level students, but the proposed Lecturer (SA) already has substantial work in the discipline beyond the Master’s level (e.g., has completed all coursework and is completing a dissertation in the area);
- The course is one in which the graduate students from other fields enroll to supplement their core studies, but the instruction is not a core part of the advanced graduate curriculum in the instructor's discipline (e.g. foreign language instruction for a graduate student preparing to conduct fieldwork abroad; broad level introductory statistics or research methods in a field that uses statistical methods); or,
- The graduate student who would be employed as the instructor is considered qualified under the terms of the the campus-wide Policy on Minimum Qualifications for Instructional Staff (e.g. a student with an MSW teaching a course for MSW students).
Supervision: We expect a member of the faculty or instructional academic staff member to actively supervise all Lecturer SAs. In cases where the class may contain graduate students who may be considered peers of the Lecturer (SA), the College may further request that the supervisor evaluate the graduate students enrolled in the class, and/or provide additional instruction, and/or provide additional mentoring and assistance to the Lecturer (SA). These situations will be reviewed on a case by case basis and require approval by the Academic Associate Dean.