Reader Support

Visual Overview of ASE Positions (TA/Reader/UGIA)

A Reader assists a course instructor by grading homework, papers, or exams and may also hold office hours each week to answer students' questions about their assignments and grades. Readers should not be asked to attend lecture or conduct a discussion section. However, if the Reader does not have extensive knowledge of the material, the Reader can be asked to attend lectures in order to acquire knowledge related to course content. Duties will be inclusive of a combination of the following responsibilities, depending on instructor's instructional needs.

  • Throughout the quarter, Reader should meet with instructor on a regular basis (e.g., weekly) to ensure ongoing communication and should cover logistics as well as allow the instructor to discuss the philosophy of the course and details of how the course will be structured. It also lets Readers give the course instructor feedback concerning the course.
  • Attend all instructional meetings.
  • Hold review sessions.
  • Attend all course exams.
  • Proctor examinations, and scribing.
  • Grade homework and exams.
  • Maintain and submit student course records (grades).
  • Hold office hours – periodically to discuss graded material (as needed, determined by the instructor). To schedule office hours please email and the staff will do its best to accommodate your day/time preferences.

Note: Reader course responsibilities begin at the start of the academic quarter and continue until the final grades have been turned in, which is usually the Tuesday following the end of the final exam period.

Eligiblity Per Graduate Division: For the academic year employment at 25-50% time, a student must be registered full-time (12 units or more). A student enrolled in less than 12 units, with departmental approval, is eligible for a maximum of 25% time employment. ( - Refer to section: Graduate Student - ASE Minimum Qualifications)

Teaching+Learning Commons Instructional Support for TAs and IAs


HWSPH TA/READER SURVEY (New form coming soon...)

The HWSPH TA/READER Survey will be kept confidential and internal within the department; they will not be shared with the supervising faculty. The surveys will be de-identified and then reviewed by the Course Oversight Committee to improve the TA/Reader program. Please consider sharing with your faculty supervisor a few areas of improvement during an in-person meeting to promote personal and professional growth.

Additional Resources

Serve as a Bridge between Faculty and Students

Students are sometimes uneasy about speaking directly to the instructor when they are critical of course instruction or content. If a student voices concerns or criticism of the course to you, and you believe this criticism is valid and could lead to course improvements, we encourage you to politely share the student’s criticism with the instructor. In doing so, please make sure that you protect the student's anonymity.

Identifying Academic Dishonesty

At the beginning of the quarter, the instructor should provide you with their policies regarding cheating, plagiarism, and other forms of academic dishonesty. If they do not do this, please ask them for their policies.  You can find a variety of information about academic integrity at UC San Diego on the Academic Integrity Office’s website, including tips of how to prevent cheating on assignments or during exams.

If you suspect a student of cheating:

  • DO notify the course instructor as soon as you possibly can and let them deal with the problem.
  • DO NOT confront the student (either publically or privately) and accuse him or her of cheating.
  • DO keep any physical evidence (the exam paper, the paper on which you suspect plagiarism,etc.) that supports your belief that a student was cheating.
  • Give the physical evidence to the instructor, who can forward it to the appropriate office.
  • DO write a brief, factual account of the incident and keep it handy.  You may be called upon to describe your version of the incident in a formal review of the incident, and memory can be unreliable.

Discrimination and Sexual Harrassment

Discriminating against any student on political grounds or for reasons of race, religion, gender, sexual orientation, or ethnic origin, or for any other arbitrary or personal reason is strictly prohibited.

Sexual harassment is a specific type of discrimination that is illegal under federal and state law and under UC San Diego policy.  It is defined as unwelcome conduct of a sexual nature that is so severe or pervasive that it creates a hostile environment for a reasonable person.  Determining whether particular conduct constitutes sexual harassment depends on the specific features of the situation.  Sexual harassment may occur between persons who have different amounts of power or between peers.  Although the stereotype is generally of a male harassing a female, females can harass a male, or a male or female can harass a person of the same gender.  Harassment based on sexual orientation, gender identity discrimination, and gender stereotyping is also prohibited.

Campus Resources

If you or someone you know has a question about sexual harassment, please contact the Office for the Prevention of Harassment and Discrimination (OPHD).  You can leave a confidential voicemail at (858) 534-8298, email OPHD at or visit at 201 University Center on the main campus at the corner of Gilman and Myers.  OPHD office hours are Monday through Friday 8:00 am to 4:30 pm.

Ethical Principles and Behavior

Appendix V, Part II, of the University of California Manual of Academic Senate ( describes faculty responsibilities, ethical principles, and types of unacceptable behavior.

It is the job of course Instructors and Readers:

  • to encourage the free pursuit of learning in their students 
  • to hold before them the best scholarly standards of their discipline
  • to demonstrate respect for all students as individuals
  • to adhere to their proper role as intellectual guide and counselor 
  • to make every reasonable effort to foster academic integrity
  • to respect the confidential nature of the relationship between instructor/Reader and student 
  • to avoid any exploitation of students for the instructor/Reader's private advantage
  • to protect their academic freedom

Because of the power Readers hold over students in relation to their grades, Readers should note the following:

  • Readers cannot be paid by their students for out-of-class tutoring, because such students could receive preferential treatment by the Reader. Even if a Reader in that situation made a great effort to avoid favoritism, the appearance of favoritism could still remain.
  • Readers must avoid romantic involvement with students in their class.  Such involvement makes objective evaluation difficult and may also raise questions of a "hostile environment" for the student or sexual harassment. If you are already in a relationship with a student who plans to take the course you will be a Reader for, please notify the course instructor of the situation so that together you can work out appropriate measures.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

How can I get help if I need it in a hurry?

If there is a crisis (medical, personal, etc.) in the classroom and you need emergency aid RIGHT AWAY, phone 911 from an on-campus phone.  Alternatively you can phone 4-HELP from an on-campus phone or 858-534-4357 (same number) from your cell phone.  If no phone is available in your classroom, phone 911 using your cell phone.

How do I reserve a room for a review session?

Please see Reserving Rooms for Review Sessions under Instructional Support for additional information.

How do I obtain a copy of the textbook (and/or supplements) for the course?

Please contact the instructor to find out how you can get access to the textbook.   You can use the book ONLY during the quarter when you are a Reader in the course.  Please note: we ask that you do NOT write or highlight in the book(s) as they are needed for future use.  If you fail to return the book you will be charged 50% of the cost of a new book, up to $50 per book or supplement. 

Where do I get whiteboard markers?

Please consult your course instructor, who should have a supply of dry erase markers.

Where can I learn how to use TritonEd for posting materials and grades?

Please consult the course instructor, who must grant access for you.  Ted holds frequent training sessions, which can be scheduled through their website:

What do I do if a student contacts me about receiving an incomplete?

If a student contacts you during finals week about receiving an Incomplete please refer them to the professor in the course.  The Academic Senate has stringent rules regarding the grade of Incomplete, and the professor is the first person who will need to approve the request.  Incompletes must be filed by the end of finals week.

What do I do if a student needs assistance with exams?

It depends on the nature of the assistance required.  Please refer the student to the professor who will need to arrange for permitted assistance with exams. 

What should I do if I have a student with emotional problems?

Please do NOT try to serve as a therapist for any of your students. It can make matters worse for a student in distress, and it is recommended that the student seek assistance from a qualified professional.  Instead, please DO refer the student to CAPS (Counseling and Psychological Services).  A staff of qualified psychologists and counselors provide assistance to students who may be experiencing academic, emotional, personal, marital, family, or vocational problems.  All services, except for specialized testing, are available to students at no charge.  Confidentiality is guaranteed.  The Central Office is located in Room 190 Galbraith Hall.  For information and appointments, call 858-534-3755.  (To learn more about this topic, come to the "Students in Crisis" mid-quarter workshop.

What should I do if I have a student with academic problems?

You can try referring the student to OASIS, 858-534-3760.  OASIS offers a variety of services intended to help students in their course work.  In addition, the individual colleges offer workshops or other assistance with general problems such as text anxiety. 

Can I use e-mail to communicate with the students participating in the course I am a Reader for?

We encourage you to communicate with the students via e-mail.  University policy dictates all course-work related e-mails must be sent to students using their official UCSD email address (  If sending an e-mail to more than one student, make sure to “bcc” all recipients to protect the students’ privacy.  In addition, your professor can use TritonLink or TritonED to make e-mail announcements to the whole class.  However, grades are confidential so they must be handled specially. 

Who do I talk to if I am a paid Reader and my pay check doesn't arrive?

JDP students should check with Carrie Goldsmith (  MPH students should check with Rosemarie Subala ( 

Do I receive UC San Diego Health Insurance?

All Readers with appointments of 25% or more receive UCSD’s Student Health Insurance Plan, also known as UC SHIP. UC SHIP includes medical, dental and vision insurance.

If I’m a GSR, can I still be a Reader?

If you’d like to be both a GSR and a Reader, you can be a Reader with a 25% appointment (10 hrs/week) *if* the faculty member funding your GSR appointment is willing to reduce your GSR appointment to 24.99% (10 hrs/week). Please note: Reader and GSR pay rates are different, so you will want to review these rates before making a decision.

Where do I go if I am exposed to or witness sexual harassment?

The Office for the Prevention of Harassment and Discrimination (OPHD) provides education about sexual harassment and gender discrimination, and they participate in the resolution these cases. Every member of the UC San Diego community should understand that UC San Diego will not tolerate sexual harassment; such behavior is prohibited both by law and by University policy. UC San Diego policy also addresses conflicts of interest arising from consensual relationships.  You or your students may obtain advice about related rights and responsibilities without filing a formal complaint.  The OPHD office is located at 201 University Center.  Call (858) 534-8298 or email

First-time Readers are required the complete the online education program, Preventing Sexual Harassment, and to turn in a certificate of completion available at:   

Is there anywhere to report incidents of hate speech or behavior, or similar events?

Yes!  The UC San Diego Principles of Community forbid derogatory speech or overt bullying of people based on identifying them with any particular group or community.  If you hear or observe this kind of behavior, please go to  Your report will be taken seriously and the situation will be investigated.