GUIA Sessions

Sessions Offered

The Graduate/Undergraduate Instructor Academy (GUIA) is designed to assist graduate adjunct instructors, instructional assistants, graduate assistants, lab instructors, teaching assistants, tutors, mentors, supplemental instructors, and more with instructional training and resources for the betterment of student success.

Every fall and spring, students, faculty, and staff can expect a variety of sessions to be available for undergraduate and graduate professional development to aid in navigating the legal, professional, and pedagogical obligations necessary to be a successful student instructor. Below is a preview of the types of sessions one can expect at each GUIA. Please note: sessions change and adapt each semester to meet the particular needs of our student instructors. If you have an idea for a future session you would like to see included, please email for more information.

  • FERPA (Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act)


    A brief overview of the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (FERPA) will be presented. Participants will analyze case studies, discuss examples, and share best practices for a university setting. Students will be encouraged to ask questions and discuss the practical application of this federal law.


    • Review FERPA
    • Analyze its application and use within a university setting
    • Engage in a discussion of practical applications to fulfill legal and professional obligations
  • Title IX


    Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 is a federal law that prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex in educational institutions and includes sexual harassment and sexual assault. This session will cover topics such as: What is Title IX? Defining sexual harassment/sexual misconduct, how and where to report issues related to Title IX, Statistics on sexual violence, the university’s responsibilities, and what happens after you report a Title IX issue?


    • Students participating in this session will evaluate case studies.
  • College Reading & Learning Association Trainings


    CRLA (College Reading and Learning Association) is a group of student-oriented professionals active in the fields of reading, learning assistance, developmental education, tutoring, and peer educating at the college/adult level. CRLA is inherently robust in membership and department membership (e.g. Academic Success Center, First-Year Experience, First-Generation Center). CRLA’s most vital function and overall purpose is to provide a forum for the interchange of ideas, methods, and information to improve student learning and to facilitate the professional growth of its educators.


    Sam Houston State University is certified through CRLA's International Tutor Training Program Certification (ITTPC) and International Peer Educator Training Program Certification (IPTPC). The certification is designed to provide training sessions to satisfy the requirements for:

    • Level 1 training: role definition and responsibilities, techniques, and communication skills.
    • Level 2 training: cultural awareness, assessing student behaviors, and brain dominance learning
    • Level 3 training: role of learning centers in higher education, group management skills, and self-regulated learning

    Session Examples

    Members from respective CRLA departments determine session alignment with the GUIA committee. Session offerings are subject to change each semester to meet certification needs. Please find examples of previous CRLA offerings hosted at GUIA: 

    • Tips for Active Listening 
    • Building Rapport and Relationships
    • Developing Successful Habits 
    • Constructive Criticism 
    • Difficult Conversations 
    • Learning Loss
    • Trauma Informed Tutoring 
    • Cultivating your Wellness 
    • Nurturing Success for All
  • Blackboard Topics


    This session will relay introductory tips and tricks for the use of the BB Grade Center and communication features. This session is intended for first time TAs, lab instructors, and folks assisting instruction. Additional sessions are for participants that have entered grades for students and will be using BlackBoard learning management system as an instructor, teaching assistant, or leading a fully online course/lab. Participants can ask questions and guide the discussion. This session will be more informal.


    • Establish due dates and use date management tools
    • Review with students how to use To Do module notifications and the BB Calendar
    • Illustrate how students can use their My Grades page
    • Recall the advantages of using inline grading for discussions and other BB Tools
    • identify ways to modify 'views' to increase productivity (locking, hiding, adding columns)
    • Blogs, Wikis, Discussion boards, Journals
    • Creating release, closing, and due dates
    • Insertion of videos, images, and hyperlinks
    • Tests building, Grade Center
  • Classroom Management Round-table


    The purpose of this session is to provide instructors with group and individual behavior management and instructional procedures that can be used in a variety of classroom settings including face to face, online, and lab activities. Participants will gain knowledge and skill in setting and managing the emotional tone of a classroom, managing the psycho-social atmosphere of the classroom and individual students, and managing motivation of students to succeed in learning academic content.

  • Centered on Servingness


    Participants will explore the meaning of servingness, reflect on the needs of the campus community, and develop strategies to enhance their contributions toward the institution's mission.


    • Servingness Starts Here: In today's dynamic educational landscape, fostering a culture of servingness is vital to the success and well-being of both individuals and the institution. This interactive workshop is designed for campus members who are committed to understanding and embodying the concept of servingness.
    • Beyond Boundaries - Navigating our Landscape: Together, attendees will explore the question: Who is a part of our community, where do they come from, and how can we collectively cultivate a more all-encompassing campus community?
    • Learning Across Latitudes: Through interactive sessions and reflective discussions, attendees will gain the knowledge and skills needed to create a supportive environment that ensures success for faculty, staff, and students.
    • Learning Across Latitudes: Attendees will gain a deeper understanding of the impact of their practices on the overall campus climate and learn how to realign strategies for best practices.

Past Conference Themes:

  • An Ethic of Care
  • Mindset Matters
  • Helping Students Visualize a Pathway
  • Dissecting Scholarly Articles
  • Developing Good Academic Habits
  • Level Up your Knowledge 
  • Adventure Awaits 
  • Sowing Seeds of Success