Lead TA Program

Resources for TAs

Last year, Lead TAs developed an incredibly rich bank of practical resources that you may find useful in your work as a TA at Western.  These resources contain information about every stage of the TA journey at Western and include handouts, online modules, websites, and TA handbooks. 

Access our list of discipline-specific resources

Program Goals

The Lead TA program is a new initiative on campus to facilitate the professional development of teaching assistants at a discipline-specific level.

The program, which is in its second year now, will position Lead TAs in 10 departments across campus where they will identify departmental TA training needs, facilitate workshops, develop teaching resources, and offer peer feedback to colleagues through classroom observations. A full list of departments participating in the Lead TA Program for the 2014-15 academic year can be found below.

This initiative to improve the teaching effectiveness of TAs at a departmental level complements the general, interdisciplinary TA training offered by the Teaching Support Centre.  In order to support the Lead TAs in their own professional development during the year, the TSC will provide ongoing training and resources to the group on facilitation, peer mentoring and teaching excellence.  The Lead TA pilot program is a result of collaboration between the School of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies, the Faculties, the GTA Union and the Teaching Support Centre.  If you would like to learn more about the program, please contact Lead TA Coordinator Aisha Haque at the TSC.

Lead TAs 2016 - 2017

Anatomy and Cell Biology

Oleksiy Zaika ozaika@uwo.ca

I joined the Lead TA team this year in hopes of bringing some of the wonderful teaching guidance that I have benefited from at the TSC to my department. I really love the passion that drives many of us TAs, and hope to break through many barriers that stand in the way of conveying that passion to our audience. My current research involves measuring endovascular simulation training in cerebral angiography in hopes of establishing the foundation towards its inclusion in conventional clinical training. In my spare time I like to cycle, brew beer in my basement and read about tech things much longer into the night than I should be. I love to talk about all these academic and personal interests so give me a shout if you have any ideas or just want to chat!

Civil and Environmental Engineering

Tarek Rashwan trashwan@uwo.ca

Tarek is a PhD student in Civil and Environmental Engineering at Western and is excited to be involved in the 2016-2017 Lead TA Program! During various TA roles while completing his MESc at Western, Tarek developed an interest in supporting effective teaching skills and professional development amongst his peers, and hopes to build on previous Lead TA work in his department. Tarek is also an avid cycle tourist and interested in all things music related. Ask him about it!

English and Writing Studies

David Huebert dhuebert@uwo.ca

David Huebert is a doctoral candidate in Western's Department of English and Writing Studies. David has been a TA at King's College, Ryerson University, and Western, where he has taught semiotics, the history of science, children's literature, leadership, American literature, and more. David's research focuses on the development of human species self-identity in American literature after Darwin, and his teaching interests include environmentalist pedagogy and teaching with technology.


Zak Bronson zbronson@uwo.ca

Zak Bronson is a PhD candidate in the Media Studies department at Western University. His primary research interests include film and literary genre, technology, and posthumanism. His dissertation examines representations of ecology in dystopian and apocalyptic narratives. Having been a Teaching Assistant in the Media Studies department for the past four years, he is excited to work as Lead TA for the upcoming school year.

Health Sciences

Cortney Hanna channa27@uwo.ca

I’m a third year PhD student in the Health and Rehabilitation Sciences program. My research project involves creating and evaluating a pre-university online course for its usefulness in easing the transition of future university students. I have also added to my e-learning portfolio by putting together interactive statistics online modules, as well as hosted workshops on various e-learning techniques, activities, and technologies to instructors from the elementary to post-secondary levels. In my spare time I enjoy biking, binging on Netflix series, and travelling!

Modern Languages and Literatures

Adriana Soto-Corominas asotocor@uwo.ca

Adriana Soto-Corominas is currently pursuing her PhD in Hispanic Linguistics at Western University. Her main area of interest is language acquisition in bilingual contexts. She has been a TA at Western for three years, where she has taught Spanish language, and culture - both in the classroom and in experiential learning courses. She is very excited about this unique opportunity to improve the teaching and learning experience of the students in the Modern Languages and Literatures department.


Mary Blake Bonn mbonn2@uwo.ca

Mary Blake is a doctoral candidate in music theory here at Western. She also holds an MA in music theory from Western, as well as a BMus from Université de Moncton in New Brunswick. Mary Blake is active with SOGS and PSAC Local 610, and is the founder of the London chapter of Citizens’ Climate Lobby. She has performed with several vocal groups at Western, and as the violinist for Mariachi Cielo Rojo. She has had the pleasure of holding TA positions in general integrated musicianship, music history, and music theory, and is delighted to serve the music faculty as Lead TA in the 2016–17 school year.

Physics and Astronomy

Carolyn Cadogan ccadogan@uwo.ca

I am a PhD student in the department of Physics and Astronomy and a graduate student of Interface Science Western. I have attended several workshops at the Teaching Support Center. I have held numerous teaching positions both in and outside of my home department including the position of the Learning Development Graduate Fellowship for the Faculty of Science. During my time at Western, I have also attended several conferences and have won awards for both my research and presentation skills. I am very excited to be a Lead TA and very much look forward to the coming academic year.