Information for UTAs

Why work as a UTA?

The Department of Bioengineering offers the opportunity for undergraduate students to get involved in teaching undergraduate students. Working as an Undergraduate Teaching Assistant (UTA) provides undergraduate students with an opportunity to broaden their experience in the Department and Imperial College, and develop further skills, such as basic teaching skills, skills of conveying technical concepts, task management skills and communication skills.

Undergraduate Teaching Assistants (UTAs) primarily assist and supervised by academic staff or lab leaders or graduate teaching assistants in the delivery of defined teaching material to undergraduates of lower years themselves in a variety of learning environments.

Opportunities include supporting lab demonstrations and practicals and learning how to convey and teach complex technical concepts. Furthermore, students may find that acting as a UTA helps improve their own technical abilities (both theoretical and practical), provides an opportunity to gain communication and task management experience, and broadens their knowledge base.

Students in a laboratory

Departmental requirements

Student and lecturerFirst and foremost, UTA activities should not have a negative impact on or impede a student’s own studies. UTAs can only support one activity/module per term.

They must have obtained a result of 70% or better in the actual module that is supported and their degree level must be at 2:1 level or better. Occasionally, UTAs may be asked to attend an initial interview with the Module Leader or Director of Course Operations.

UTAs can only teach undergraduates of years junior to themselves.

Available opportunities

UTAs can work supporting lab demonstrations and practicals.

Autumn termSpring term

BE1-HMATHS 1 Mathematics labs
BE1-HVAW Waves and vibrations labs
BE2-HPROGR2 Programming 2 labs
BE2-HSCL Signals and Control labs
BE3-HMIB Modelling in Biology labs


BE1-HDLP Digital Logic and programming
BE1-HEEL Electrical engineering labs
BE1-HWLS Wet labs in June
BE2-HSDM Solids practicals
BE3-HIPR Image processing computer labs

Summary of the table's contents

Key responsibilities

UTAs are expected to attend briefings and follow guidance from the course leader in preparation for the teaching sessions. This may include proactively initiating interaction with the course leader.

UTAs are expected to prepare for any teaching by acquainting themselves with the core reading and ensuring they have the ability to contextualise and/or summarise the material.

UTAs may be asked to complete one of more types of support, under the supervision with the relevant course leader, such as providing feedback to taught students on their performance, progress and/or coursework, and supporting activities during lab demonstrations and practical sessions.

UTA testimonials and awards

Electronics lab "He gave me some really helpful tips on thinking about how to design a circuit. He genuinely seemed to enjoy helping us.”

“He is open to students’ suggestions and listens to their ideas. He will then build upon those ideas and try to improve on them or help the student work out the answer themselves rather than enforcing his own opinion.”

UTA Awards 

Every year after the end of Spring term, the students vote for their UTA of the Year. 

  • Departmental UTA of the Year 2018 was Y3 MEng Federico Sanna.