Teacher's assistant training differs depending on level of education, the type of assistance provided, and the area in which the assistant is working. In some cases, no training is required at all, but assistants may learn how to perform certain tasks like grading papers on the job. Special training to deal with unique situations or students may be required in some areas, but this is somewhat rare. Students in both high school and college often serve as teacher's assistants without any training, although passing a particular class is sometimes a form of teacher's assistant training in these cases.
One of the most common types of teacher's assistant training involves achieving a certain level of experience and education, which is the case for graduate students who work as teaching assistants. Some training may be provided prior to assisting with a specific class, but graduate students usually simply follow directions and use their knowledge of the subject to assist with teaching. Sometimes, an undergraduate student might assist with a class in a certain capacity, such as grading papers or overseeing a laboratory. In cases such as these, the student usually assists only in classes within his or her major that he or she has already completed.
Another common type of teacher's assistant training occurs when a specific teacher instructs an assistant in the way a class is run. In this case, training may include information about how tests are graded, rules for students, or even which activities need to be completed. Teacher's assistant training is usually not lengthy, nor does it typically require special certification or education.
Adult teacher's assistants who work with younger students are sometimes hired solely to work in this capacity, and these adults may receive special training relating to the school at which they work. This may include school-wide policies, safety training, or other general information. Teacher's assistants of this sort may have a type of certification related to teaching, but this is usually not required for the job. A qualified teacher will usually not work as an assistant except in special circumstances.
When students in high school work as teacher's assistants, the job duties are typically so simple that very little training is required. Students might grade papers, clean, or take attendance, but the job is almost always a combination of light office work and free time. Most students who work in this capacity are unpaid, but they may obtain credit for assisting the teacher. Training for obtaining this type of position as a student differs by school, but completing the class in question prior to applying is usually important.