An Evidence-Based Approach to Developing Faculty-Wide Training for Graduate Teaching Assistants


  • Jenny Slaughter University of Manchester, United Kingdom
  • Thomas Rodgers University of Manchester, United Kingdom
  • Claudia Henninger University of Manchester, United Kingdom


Graduate Teaching Assistant (GTA), GTA Training, Higher Education, STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics), UKPSF (United Kingdom Professional Standards Framework)


In 2000, Sharpe proposed a framework for graduate teaching assistant (GTA) training based on three key principles: departmental training, faculty training, and accreditation. Sharpe’s paper culminated in a call for Higher Education (HE) institutes to adopt this framework. Whilst the principles of Sharpe’s work remain relevant, the shape and structure of HE and accrediting bodies has changed due to the increasingly competitive market environment. Herein we provide an updated framework for GTA training based around implementation at a large English Russell Group University. We identify seven key elements for effective GTA training based on literature. We then demonstrate how this framework and the key elements can be implemented in practice, using GTA role descriptors and input from staff in Departments and Faculty. We demonstrate how the framework is applicable on a broad subject basis and how training is now supporting the 950 GTAs annually who work across the nine Schools within the Faculty of Science and Engineering, at the University of Manchester. The developed modular training sessions are mapped out and are benchmarked against both the Vitae Researcher Development Framework and the UK Professional Standards Framework allowing postgraduate students to apply for HEA accreditation through Advance HE (after suitable practice). Finally, the report discusses the benefits of implementation as well as lessons for future action, providing a set of key principles for others who want to develop their existing GTA training provision or set up a new training programme.


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How to Cite

An Evidence-Based Approach to Developing Faculty-Wide Training for Graduate Teaching Assistants. (2023). Journal of University Teaching and Learning Practice, 20(4).