Teaching is an essential element of the education and training experience of PhD students at the university. The Graduate School (TGS) requires that all PhD students serve in some instructional capacity for at least one academic quarter during their graduate education at Northwestern.

  • Academic programs may define the teaching responsibilities of their PhD students independently. This teaching experience should provide PhD students with an opportunity for direct contact with and to contribute to the assessment and evaluation of students.
  • PhD students should have the opportunity to assist in course planning; however, TGS recognizes that this type of opportunity may not be practical in all instances.
  • To ensure work-load equity both within and among programs, the type of teaching responsibilities required by programs should be approved in advance by the dean's office of the relevant school.
  • No graduate student enrolled in a TGS program should be the instructor of record for any other graduate student enrolled in a TGS program. In rare cases where graduate students are involved in the instruction of other graduate students in credit-bearing courses, peer to peer assessment must be done under close faculty supervision and faculty must take full responsibility for the final assessment of the enrolled students. (This pertains to Master's and PhD students teaching students in their own as well as other programs.)
  • The teaching requirement is unrelated to a student's source of funding.