Physics Learning Assistant Application, Fall 2012

Thank you for your interest in being a Physics Learning Assistant. Learning Assistants will work with faculty who are teaching PHYS1430 (Mechanics) by facilitating student learning in the classroom. LAs will also attend preparation sessions each week, and will be required to enroll in a physics course, PHYS4320 (Special Topics: Physics Pedagogy), taught by Dr. Eleanor Close. LAs commit between 5 and 10 hours a week to preparation and work in the classroom, with the option of more hours for grading and staffing homework help-sessions. LAs are paid at a rate of $10.00 per hour, and upon completion of all of their obligations will also receive a $300 stipend. Learning Assistants are different from Laboratory Instructors, because LAs assist faculty in the classroom. Students from any major are welcome to apply to be Learning Assistants. Applicants who are interested in the philosophy behind the Learning Assistant model can visit the page at

Colorado Learning Assistant Program

The deadline for application to the program is April 25 at 5:00 PM. Decisions regarding employment will be made by May 9.

* 1. Name

* 2. What do you think are some specific characteristics of “good” and “bad” interactions between students and instructors? Please be as specific as possible.

* 3. Please explain your view of the purpose(s) of physics instruction. Of course, the obvious purpose is for students to “learn physics.” What particular aspects of learning physics do you think are especially important and why are they important?

* 4. Please explain why you would like to serve as a Physics Learning Assistant. How do you expect you might benefit, and what do you think you might contribute?

* 5. Learning Assistants are expected to attend preparation sessions each Friday from 12:00 PM - 1:30 PM, and must enroll in PHYS4320 that meets Monday from 5:00 PM to 7:00 PM. We understand that students’ schedules may change before school starts in August. If you know will not be available for any of these sessions, please apply again in November for Spring 2013. Or, you can apply to be a physics Lab Instructor.

* 6. In which sections of PHYS1430 do you expect you would be able to work? (Check all that apply)

* 7. How many hours per week do you think you will be available to work?

* 8. What is your major or majors?

* 9. What is your expected graduation date?

* 10. What is your current Texas State GPA?

* 11. Please indicate the grade you earned in each of these classes.

  A B C D F W I have not taken this class Other
Physics 1430 (Mechanics)
Physics 2425 (Electricity and Magnetism)
Physics 2435 (Waves and Heat)
Math 2471 (Calculus I)
Math 2472 (Calculus II)
Math 3373 (Calculus III)

* 12. Please comment briefly on the grades you entered above. In particular, if you checked "Other" for any of the classes listed, please explain. You can comment on trends (e.g., if your grades are getting better or worse) or anomalies (e.g., if one grade stands out as especially low or high), or anything else that you think needs to be explained. If you would like to mention grades in classes not listed above, you may do that here as well.

* 13. What ideas do you have for a career for yourself? Give at least two practical ideas (as in, branch manager at a bank, or high school band director) and at least one fantasy idea (as in, circus clown or news anchor). What is a fantasy for one person might be practical for another. Please explain.

Thank you for applying to the Physics Learning Assistant program. You will hear something from us by May 9.