Columbia Computer Science Instructional Assistant Page

Thank you for your interest in an Instructional Assistant position. Please refer to FAQ for answers to frequently asked questions.


Announcements (For Spring 2017)

Last updated: 01/20/2017


TA/CA Required: COMS W4112 - Database System Implementation

TA/CA applicants should have successfully completed this course or a similar one (on DBMS deep technical implementation issues, not just SQL) with a good grade. Please list this as a preferred choice on your MICE application if you are interested, as well as the semester you took 4112 and your grade.

Contact Alexandros Biliris for more information.


TA/CA Required: COMS W4824 - Computer Architecture

TA/CA applicants should have successfully completed this class or a similar covering processor architecture with a good grade. Please list this as a preferred choice on your MICE application if you are interested.

Contact Martha Kim for more information.


TA/CA Required: COMS W6998-8 - Intro to Project Management

Experience with Agile/Scrum and project management in general is a plus.

Contact Tristan Boutros for more information.


TA/CA Required: COMS W4721 - Machine Learning for Data Science

The applicant should ideally have taken a machine learning class at Columbia already and done well in it. Please list this as a preferred choice on your MICE application if you are interested.

Contact John Paisley for more information.


TA/CA Required: COMS W6998-5 - Cloud Computing and Big Data

Applicants need to have background in Hadoop and Spark.

Contact Sambit Sahu for more information.


TA/CA Required: COMS W4995-1 - Topics in Financial Computing

TA/CA applicants should have successfully completed this course or a similar one with a good grade. Please list this as a preferred choice on your MICE application if you are interested.

Contact Eren Kursun for more information.


TA/CA Required: DSI Capstone course

Applicants need to have completed a Machine Learning course with at least A, and have strong computer systems/software engineering skills (e.g., through relevant coursework and/or internships). Knowledge in advanced ML and/or NLP and/or Deep Learning (with at least A grades) is preferred.

This position is not part of the CS department IA assignment process, and is, instead, handled through DSI. Please contact Smaranda Muresan if you are interested.



Eligibility

The Computer Science Department requires that you:

  1. Are a currently registered student at Columbia University
  2. Are in good academic and conduct standing with the University (For more information, refer to Columbia Engineering Policy on Conduct and Discipline and Columbia University Policies and Regulations)

Please note that by submitting your IA application, you grant permission to the Computer Science Department to inquire about your disciplinary and conduct history and also grant permission to the Graduate Student Affairs Office/the Office of Judicial Affairs to release relevant information.

Application Process

You apply for an Instructional Assistant position using the Computer Science Department’s MICE system. If you do not have a MICE account, please email advising@cs.columbia.edu. Please go to the Instructional Assistant menu and select “Instructional Assistant Application” to start the application process.

If you are selected to be an Instructional Assistant, you will receive an email from the MICE system. Please note that while most of the Instructional Assistant assignments are completed by the first week of classes, the selection process may continue until 2 to 3 weeks into the semester.

Anyone can apply, but all else being equal, we will give priority to students (grads and undergrads from CC, SEAS, GS, Barnard) who are majoring in CS or CE, over students from other departments.

Appointment Process

You will be notified by email when you are selected for an Instructional Assistant position. Once you accept the appointment, below are the forms you will have to fill out, depending of your hire/rehire status:

  1. CA/CA FELLOW/TAIII NEW HIRE
    1. If you are a new hire and never worked at the university before, you must complete an I-9 regardless of citizenship or visa status before the start of classes or within 3 days of accepting the position in MICE. The official start date to provide the I-9 Processing Center is the date you complete your I-9 form or the beginning of the month (Sept 1st or January 1st). You cannot start working without completing the I-9 process.
    2. Below please find the full employment packet - please read the instructions carefully and come by the CS admin office asap if you do not have a Social Security Number
    3. Employment Packets: (PRINT SINGLE SIDED ONLY)
      1. CA
      2. CA Fellow
      3. TAIII
      4. Payroll Casual Calendar - Spring 2017 (for CA and CA Fellows ONLY)
  2. CA/CA FELLOW/TAIII REHIRE
    1. If you have previously worked in the Computer Science Department as a CA or CA Fellow please click here for reactivation forms
    2. If you were previously a TA III no additional paperwork is necessary unless your I-20 has expired. If your I-20 has expired, take your updated I-20, I-94, visa and passport to the I-9 Processing Center to update your I-9. Bring the updated I-9, I-20, I-94, visa and passport to Teresa Wells (tw2418@columbia.edu) so your personnel record can be updated. You cannot be placed on payroll without completing this process.

    Failure to complete the I-9 process within 3 days of accepting the position in MICE will result in a forfeiture of the position and pay. Submission of employment paperwork is required before you begin your work.

    PAPERWORK PROCESS : Teresa Wells and Chantal Kadhi Smith will be assisting with collecting and guiding you through the hiring process. Below are the steps:

    1. Access and fill out the appropriate employment package - (PRINT SINGLE SIDED ONLY)
    2. Sign up to meet for 30 mins with either Chantal or Teresa - the sign up sheets are available at CS Admin Office in front of Room 451
    3. When you meet with Chantal/Teresa, make sure you have your I-9 and your SSN receipt - if needed and also bring all your documentation (Passport, Visa, I-94, I-20 and all other employment forms)
  3. GRA's who also TA

    Students completing PhD teaching requirements do not have to complete any paperwork but are required to accept the position in MICE. All currently funded GRAs who will be paid for TA duties as add-comp must accept the position in MICE and complete the Add Comp Authorization form click here. Upon completion you must forward the form, via email attachment, it to your faculty advisor for electronic approval. The completed form with your faculty's approval must then be emailed to the Department Chair for approval. Please copy Maria Joanta (maria.joanta@columbia.edu) on all Add Comp approval requests emails sent to faculty.

Responsibilities

There are three different types of Instructional Assistant positions: Teaching Assistant, TAIII, and Course Assistant.

Teaching Assistants are mostly doctoral students. For a few first- and second-year undergraduate courses with large enrollments, high-achieving undergraduate students who have performed well in these courses may serve as Teaching Assistants (TAIII) for several semesters. Primary responsibilities include:

Course Assistants are high-achieving MS and advanced UG students who have performed well in the course or a course with similar content. Primary responsibilities are:

Course Assistants do not hold recitation sections or to give lectures. Specific duties may vary based on class and instructor requirements. Course Assistants are assigned as CAs for one or at most two semesters.

Code of Conduct

As an Instructional Assistant, you play a valuable and integral role in shaping the ethical direction of our students. You are ambassadors and role models. As such, the following four principles must be adhered to: respect, trustworthiness, fairness, and responsibility. An Instructional Assistant treats others with respect: An Instructional Assistant acts in a trustworthy manner: An Instructional Assistant treats students fairly: An Instructional Assistant acts in a responsible manner:

Questions?

If you have any questions please contact me at iachair@cs.columbia.edu and the IA coordinators at iacoord@cs.columbia.edu