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Teaching Fellows – Harvard Graduate Students

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MCB Course Guide for Student Workers


Neuro 80 (MCB 80) – NEUROBIOLOGY OF BEHAVIOR

Course Description

Neuro/MCB 80 aims to provide an in-depth introduction into the fundamentals of the brain and neuroscience. The teaching staff, lead by Professor Jeff Lichtman, aims to provide a biologically inspired conceptual framework for thinking about how the brain works. The course begins by taking a close look at the nuts and bolts of neurons and signaling and then moves on to explore a few networks including sensory systems and motor systems before finishing with neurodevelopment, and “higher” cognitive topics.

We will be largely keeping the structure of the course and applying what we have learned the past several years. This year the course will be a hybrid or partially “flipped” format. Students will be responsible to watch 2 asynchronous lectures (or lecture equivalents) each week online. Then throughout the semester, Tuesday in class “lectures” will feature demonstrations, guest lectures and activities that apply the concepts discussed in the video lectures. Thursdays in class “lectures” will be a review workshop and an opportunity for the students to ask questions to the course leaders. The weekly discussion sections will be lead by you the TF, where students  will discuss the material, work in small groups, practice problems, and try small neuroscience labs and demos.

There are no pre-requisites for the class and it is the foundational course for students who plan to concentrate in Neuroscience.

Expectations

  • Watch/review video lectures and understand the material
  • Prepare and lead a weekly 75 min discussion section (in person) on either Thursdays or Fridays for ~16 students
  • Grade assignments for those ~16 students including weekly problem sets
  • Prepare for and attend weekly staff meetings: Tuesdays, 9-10:15 am
  • Hold weekly or biweekly office hours
  • Answer emails, help monitor the online chat boards/answer student questions
  • Help prepare exam questions, monitor/check Canvas
  • Help with the Neuroscience Activity Fair: Tuesday, September 12th
  • Proctor Exams – Midterm 10/17 10:30-11:45, Final TBA
  • Optional: Attend in person guest lectures and review sessions T, Th 10:30-11:45
  • There will be 1 training session in August: tentatively 8/3 9-3pm
  • Class runs 9/5 – 12/5. Final will be held during exam period: 12/11-12/20

Total commitment ~10-15 hrs/week

To Apply or for questions 

Contact Neuroscience Curriculum and Pedagogy Manager: Katie (Kathleen) Quast (kquast@fas.harvard.edu)

Compensation (2023): Senior rate: $12,770; Junior rate (G2s): $11,380

 


Life Sciences 1a: An Integrated Introduction to the Life Sciences: Chemistry, Molecular Biology, and Cell Biology

Total time commitment is 0.4 FTE

Compensation:

Junior rate: $11,380 ($2,276/month)

Senior rate (G3 or above): $12,770 ($2,554/month)

Course description:

Life Sciences 1a is a fall-semester survey course that integrates general chemistry, organic chemistry, cell biology, and molecular biology at the introductory level. The course is large (typically about 300 students), with the majority of students being freshmen. The focus is on the fundamental features of living systems, with topics including intermolecular interactions, thermodynamics, acidity, (first-order) kinetics, the central dogma, cell signaling, enzyme catalysis, and transport across membranes. These concepts are then applied to consider drug design and discovery.

All classes are held in person in the Science Center (Harvard Cambridge Campus)

Dates: 

  • Lectures: 09/05/2023 – 12/05/2023 (Tue & Thu, 1.30pm)
  • Section: 09/13/2023 – 12/08/2023 (Wed, Thu or Fri, varying times)

Responsibilities:

  • Attend lectures
  • Attend staff meetings (1 hour/week)
  • Prepare and lead one discussion & laboratory section (~3 hours) per week (12 sections/semester; size: ~12-16 students)
  • Grade and return assignments (i.e. problem sets, lab assignments)
  • Hold office hours (1 hour/week/section)
  • Fulfill one exam duty for every midterm and final (i.e. proctoring, pre-running assessments, or staff help rooms)
  • Be available by email to answer student questions throughout the semester
  • Attend two days of TF training in August (dates TBD, 9-5pm)

To apply:

Please email lsci1a@fas.harvard.edu and include your CV. We will be conducting interviews and hiring primarily in the months of May and June. Final hiring is contingent on student enrollment.


Now Hiring Teaching Fellows/Teaching Assistants! Spring 2024

Life Sciences 1b: An Integrated Introduction to Genetics, Genomics, and Evolution

Topics: Mendelian genetics, epigenetics, quantitative genetics, and population genetics

Time commitment: 0.4 FTE

Compensation:

$11,380 ($2,276/month); For G3 and above: $12,770 ($2,554/month)

Course Description:

Life Sciences 1b is a spring-semester course that integrates molecular biology, genetics, genomics
and evolution. The course is a large, introductory course where many enrolled students are firstyear
undergraduates. This course takes an integrated approach, showing how genetics and
evolution are intimately related, together explaining the patterns of genetic variation we see in
nature, and how genomics can be used to analyze variation. The focus of this course is on the
fundamental features of Mendelian genetics, epigenetics, quantitative genetics, and population
genetics.

Teaching Fellow Responsibilities:

● Dates: End of January – beginning of May 2024
● Lead a combined teaching section & lab – 3hr/week
● Attend weekly staff meetings – 1hr/week
● Attend lectures (located in the Science Center, Harvard Cambridge Campus)
● Hold office hours – 1hr/week (in person or remote)
● Grade lab assignments and problem sets (exams are graded by external graders)
● Sign up for additional duties during exams (proctoring, extra office hours, etc.)

For questions/to apply, email lsci1b@fas.harvard.edu
To apply, please include your CV to schedule an interview.
*Hiring is on a rolling basis. Final hiring contingent on student enrollment.


TF needed for teaching MCB 68 – Cell biology through the microscope – this spring of 2024. 

We are seeking a TF for this spring to help teach MCB 68 – “Cell biology through the microscope).  This is a discovery-based course where students are 1) trained to use portable microscopes then 2) set free to explore and document their findings on their own, and then 3) given more advanced biological samples to image at the HCBI.

The material we teach in the classroom is a combination of the history of cell biology (taught by Ethan Garner) and optics (taught by Jeff Lichtman), explaining how each advance opened new discoveries. Class is on Tuesdays and Thursdays, 1:30- 2:45 pm, in the Northwest building.

The duties of TFs are to teach students only 4 labs – the first few weeks of the semester, then be available to help students with microscopy and preparing their samples for the remaining weeks of the course.  This class has no midterm or final to be written or graded, the only grading required is to grade biweekly quizzes, a duty that rotates between the 3 TFs

If you are interested, please reach out to Ethan Garner (egarner@g.harvard.edu). 

This is an incredibly fun class to teach and be a TF in, and if you want reports from those with first-hand experience, reach out to Johnathan Perr (jperr@g.harvard.edu) or Cait Moffatt (cmoffatt@g.harvard.edu).