CCI Policy on the Appointment of Graduate Student Instructors

The GSI Teaching Request Form should be used for requests to appoint Graduate Student Instructors (GSI) for undergraduate courses only. If there are questions regarding GSI's for graduate courses, please contact Graduate Council.

 

 

GSI Teaching Appointment Policy and Criteria

“Graduate student instructor” (GSI) refers to a graduate student having primary responsibility for the teaching of a course, either a Teaching Fellow or Associate In, not a Teaching Assistant.

The principles outlined below are designed to permit flexibility in staffing courses and to provide teaching opportunities for graduate students, a valuable component of professional development. However, CCI believes that good educational policy requires that Senate faculty regularly teach in the core of each major program. Regular involvement of Senate faculty in the undergraduate curriculum contributes to excellence and continuity, and ensures that Senate faculty have the first-hand knowledge needed to exercise effective curricular oversight. In addition, excessive use of graduate instructors limits faculty interaction with majors and prospective majors, making it difficult for students to get faculty guidance and appropriate letters of reference, and limits the opportunities of students to interact with established scholars.

Per Systemwide Senate Regulation, SR 750 and per APM 410 and CAPM 700.411, there are 5 CCI criteria for approval of graduate student instructor appointments as follows:

 

For Associate In Ph.D. Students

  1. A master’s degree or equivalent training
  2. At least one year of college teaching experience, either as an instructor or a teaching assistant

For Associate in MFA Students

  1. Should be in their second to last or last quarter.
  2. 1 year of teaching or equivalent training to instruct lower division courses

For Teaching Fellow

  1. Advancement to candidacy for the doctorate.
  2. At least two years of college teaching experience, either as an instructor or a teaching assistant

For both Associate In and Teaching Fellow

    3. Teaching is judged to be very good or better based on evaluations from the three most recent teaching quarters
    4. Course sponsoring unit attests to the student’s competence to teach the course in terms of both subject knowledge and teaching ability.
    5. Designated Faculty Mentor has signed the oversight and mentoring agreement. 

Per APM 410 Teaching Fellows must have at least two years of college teaching experience, either as an instructor or a teaching assistant.

Per CAPM 700.411, Associate Instructors must have at least one year of college teaching experience, either as an instructor or a teaching assistant.

 

CCI Online Form and Approval Process

The online GSI Teaching Request Form is now live!

An outline of the complete form can be found here to review all questions asked in the online form.

Starting in January 2019, CCI will begin using the new online form to capture approvals in an online workflow that sends form submissions to authorizers within the departments and divisions before requests reach CCI for review. This will allow departments to submit their requests in the online form without first having to collect the required authorizations from the Department Chair, Divisional Dean, and Graduate Divisional Dean. The following resources provide detailed instructions for how to use the new online workflow:

The online workflow will send each request to the appropriate departmental, and then divisional, authorizer for review and approval. The workflow will also provide opportunity for Divisional Coordinators to review each request before it reaches the Divisional Dean for authorization.

Incomplete forms will be returned to the requester.

 

CCI Review of GSI Teaching Requests

Once all authorizations are captured in the online workflow, CCI will review each teaching request and provide a final decision via email to the requester (Course Sponsoring Unit Head), and will CC the following individuals:

  • Department Chair
  • Divisional Coordinator
  • Faculty Mentor

This email notification will serve as CCI’s official notification of the decision.

Generally, CCI will review a GSI teaching request and return a response within 2-3 weeks. If you have a time-sensitive request, please follow up a form submission with a email to CCI Analyst Kiyana Modes at kmodes@ucsc.edu, describing the urgency of the request, and CCI will work to expedite a response to the department.

 

CCI Deadline for Submitting Requests

The CCI deadline for submission of requests is the end of the 4th week of the quarter prior to the quarter in which the course is to be taught, for example, the 4th week of spring quarter for a course to be offered in fall.

For Summer Session, the deadline is the end of January.

Course-sponsoring units should bear in mind that CCI approval is not automatic. It is strongly suggested sponsoring units have an alternate plan in mind for mounting the relevant course if needed.

 

Blanket Approval

Blanket approval for the GSI teaching assignment is provided by CCI in the following cases:

For Lower Division Courses

If all 5 CCI criteria for either Associate In or Teaching Fellow have been met, CCI gives blanket approval, and it is the responsibility of the divisional dean and the department to ensure that the five criteria are met.

For Upper Division Courses

If CCI has previously approved this student to teach the upper-division course in question (not a different course) and all 5 CCI criteria has been met (conditions 4 and 5 are mandatory), CCI gives blanket approval, and it is the responsibility of the divisional dean and the department to ensure that the five criteria are met.

GSI teaching requests that meet the criteria for CCI blanket approval will still go through the new workflow to capture the approval of the department chairs and divisional deans.