Teaching Assistant Opportunities

The Department of Comparative Literatures seeks Teaching Assistants in Spring to fill any vacancies for the following year. Please check Handshake for any open TA or Reader positions. https://ucdavis.joinhandshake.com/. For more information on student employment, please visit UCD's Internship and Career Center.  Students are expected to apply through Handshake.

Pedagogy in Comparative Literature

Graduate Students in Comparative Literature typically serve as Teaching Assistants (TAs) for COM 5, 6, and/or 7 during their first two years teaching in Comparative Literature (or one if they enter with a relevant Master’s degree). During fall quarter of the first year in which they TA, they are required to take the following pedagogy course:

  • COM 392. Required for first-time TAs in COM 5, 6, and/or 7, or 10.  Offered annually in Fall only. This is a practicum in the teaching of writing in literature courses. It may be offered as UWP 392.

Upon obtaining sufficient experience and training in COM 5-7, graduate students are typically offered Associate Instructor (AI) positions, teaching COM 1, 2, 3, and/or 4 in their third year in the PhD program. Because COM 1-4 satisfies a portion of the University Writing Requirement, it is necessary for graduate student instructors to possess native or near-native fluency in English in order to teach COM 1, 2, 3, or 4. Typically students begin with COM 3. Students whose native language is not English usually will serve as TAs for COM 10 after one or two years in the PhD program.

The first year that students teach in COM 1-4, they are required to take a course in how to teach analytical writing; COM 390 (or equivalent UWP 390 or ENL 393, as judged by the COM Graduate Teaching Supervisor):  This course is offered annually. This course focuses on the content of these courses, that is, how to teach the literary works required in these courses and on analytical writing.

Each and every quarter that students are employed as TAs or AIs they are eligible to enroll in 4 units of COM 396.  These units help students maintain full-time status, but do not require additional class time.

All professional courses (300-level) do not count toward the required units for the Comparative Literature Ph.D.


Each Fall the department of Comparative Literature holds a mandatory orientation for its graduate students, Teaching Assistants, and Associate Instructors. This orientation is separate from the Center for Educational Effectiveness (CEE) orientation (required for TAs teaching for the first time at UC Davis).