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Keywords:

  • foreign language teaching assistants;
  • language program coordination;
  • preservice teacher education;
  • professional development;
  • training;
  • Relevant to all languages

Abstract: This article describes an apprenticeship model that was developed and implemented across several language areas within one department at a large Canadian university. The apprenticeship provides two semesters of training for graduate foreign language teaching assistants before they are put in charge of their own classes. The purpose of this study was to investigate the benefits of the program and point out areas for improvement. Based on questionnaires distributed to apprentices and mentoring instructors who participated in this program from 2003 to 2006, results indicate that the apprenticeship program is very successful in training incoming graduate students to become competent foreign language instructors. Mentoring instructors also benefited from working with apprentices.