From Theory to Practice: Teaching Assistants’ Role in Multi-Campus Education
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Teaching Assistants (TAs) are an indispensable part of higher education. TAs have two identities simultaneously: those of a student and of a teacher. However, the role of TAs’ may not be clearly defined, resulting in a role ambiguity. In this study, we have researched the TAs’ role in multi-campus education. Data for this research was collected through interviews with eight TAs at a Scandinavian multi-campus university who took a multi-campus TA role for the first time. This paper summarizes these TAs’ work tasks in multi-campus courses. Their tasks included setting up technology, dealing with technical problems, and communicating with other TAs in the course. Our study suggests that TAs’ challenges may be reduced if technical staff is caring for ICT equipment and technical problems, if direct interaction is provided between teacher and students, and if local teaching staff is involved in the activities at the remote campus.