March 24, 2016
Hours and Hours of Office Hours
I am a TA for a graduate level class this quarter, and my professor is asking me to hold 4 hours of Office Hours. I feel this is too much. I had TA’d the same class last quarter, and I had five hours of Office Hours, way more than any other grad class in my department. It was incredibly stressful, and I grew to hate the work because of the long hours. I was hoping that this quarter I can have office hours similar what others in my department hold. How do I tell my professor? I want a good recommendation letter from him eventually and don’t want to piss him off, but there simply doesn’t seem to be an indirect way to tell him what I want to say. —Anonymous
This is exactly the type of situation to take to the Office of the Ombud. They specialize in handling conflicts with others at UW and will help you approach your professor with your concerns. Additionally, you can consult the Center for Teaching and Learning for tips on how to manage office hours and handle the stress that comes with teaching.