Teaching in English for International Teaching Assistants (ITAs)

The Graduate School works with the Global Gateway Program to evaluate and offer instruction to International Teaching Assistants and Teachers of Record at Baylor University. International students are evaluated based on their TOEFL scores, and those lacking sufficient language skills will be required to participate  in the GBL Teaching in English Class for International Teaching Assistants before entering the classroom. 

Our objective is to establish guidelines, testing standards, and course curriculum to adequately prepare international graduate students for the classroom. 

I. Initial Assessment Standards

International students who have received a score of 25 or above on the speaking component of TOEFL iBT (internet-based Test Of English as a Foreign Language) or a 7.5 on the speaking component of IELTS (International English Language Testing System) will be accepted to teach as an ITA.

Those who score below 25 on TOEFL or 7.5 on IELTS can participate in Baylor’s institutional ITA interview and teaching assessment offered at the beginning of each semester. If they receive a passing score on this assessment, they will be certified to be an ITA at Baylor. However, if they do not successfully complete this assessment, they will be enrolled in the new two-hour credit course, GBL 52XX Teaching in English for ITAs. Upon successful completion of this course with a grade of B- (80%) or higher, students will be certified to be an ITA at Baylor. Students who receive a grade of C+ (79%) or lower will not be certified to serve as an ITA but will be encouraged to take the course again.

II. Baylor’s Institutional International Teaching Assistant (ITA) Interview and Assessment Process

Global Gateway Program (GGP) Faculty in cooperation with the Graduate School will administer an oral English assessment to all graduate students desiring to achieve ITA status whose TOEFL speaking scores are less than 25 or IELTS speaking scores are less than 7.5. Components of the assessment include:

  • read a one-page text aloud from a textbook in their field of expertise
  • present a 10 to 15-minute lesson using material for the class they desire to teach
  • personal interview by two native speakers, including at least one GGP faculty


III. ITA Course Description

Teaching in English for International Teaching Assistants (ITAs) is a two-hour credit course focused on the classroom presentation and pronunciation skills necessary for ITAs to be successful in an American university classroom. Priority is given to international graduate students who are seeking teaching assistant positions and who have speaking scores lower than 25 on the TOEFL or 7.5 on the IELTS. Other international graduate students may be enrolled based on availability.  

IV. Orientation and Training for ITAs

At the beginning of each semester, all new ITAs will be required to attend a two-day orientation and training session. This session will be jointly led by Global Gateway Faculty and representatives of the Graduate School. Topics discussed will include: American classroom atmosphere, classroom management, using visual aids effectively, using Canvas and other online components, requirements for syllabi and reporting of grades, academic support available to students, and how to work with faculty and staff in an American university (what you can and cannot expect).


V. Implementation Schedule

Fall 2020: Participation in the institutional interview and assessment process will be voluntary as will be enrollment in the GBL 5201 Teaching in English for ITAs class.

Fall 2021: All students who wish to be considered for International Teaching Assistant positions and do not meet the minimum criteria must participate in the institutional interview and assessment process. Those who do not successfully pass the assessment will be required to take the new GBL 5201 Teaching in English for ITAs class.


Baylor Graduate School

Baylor Graduate School
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