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Instructional Apprenticeship (IA)

An IA (Instructional Assistant) is an undergraduate student that serves as an assistant to a faculty member. Duties as an IA: teaching, leading discussions, grading, formulating exam questions, attend meetings and lectures, and holding office hours.

Being an IA is a great way to get to know professors in the department better and to meet and encourage other people in your major. The experience you gain is invaluable for graduate school, and looks great on your resume if you're heading into the job market, too.

Check out these great benefits:

  • Grade homework, instead of do homework
  • Be on a first-name basis with your favorite professor (this is great for letters of recommendation)
  • Become a role model for other Cog Sci majors
  • Really LEARN all the course material
  • Get 4 units of COGS 195 elective credit

To qualify, you need:

  • Upper-division standing (at least 90 units)
  • Minimum 3.0 overall GPA
  • Previously taken the course and received an "A-"


  • Students may not assist in more than one course per quarter at UC San Diego
  • Students may assist twice as an IA (in different courses), but only one COGS 19x course (including COGS 195, 197, 198, 199) can be applied toward a general upper division elective for Cognitive Science majors.

Fall 2024 IA Applications

If you are interested, please complete the application through the Academic Student Employment System and select your most preferred course from the courses available. If a course is not available or if not selected, the IA positions may have been filled.

The Department will invite applications for IA positions, generally beginning Week 1 of the previous quarter. IA applications will be due at the end of Week 7 of the prior quarter.

Note: This IA processing timeline is subject to change.

After accepting a proposed IA assignment, applications need to be routed through multiple stages of approval. Accepted assignments will continue to be processed for finalization unless the applicant is otherwise notified by the department or the IA system. Final approval does not occur until close to the first week of the quarter.

Please note, notifications will not be sent at each level of approval. Lastly, our undergraduate advisor will provide information on enrolling in COGS 195 after final approval.

Contact for more information.