Sessional teachers play a critical role in helping students achieve the desired learning outcomes of their University courses. It is sessional teachers who do most to create an environment that encourages learning. For many students, particularly undergraduates, sessional teachers are the personal face of the University.

This page has been written to help academic staff settle into their role as supervisors of sessional staff.

Sessional Teachers can be tutors, casual lecturers, demonstrators, clinical tutors, or people from the professions or industry. Casual academic staff are responsible to the Head of School and are assigned responsibilities by the Head. Direct day-to-day duties are usually assigned by the Topic Coordinator.


In these three videos, UNSW teachers talk about their backgrounds and their perceptions of teaching.

Video series - Self-awareness

Note: In Australia, we use the word "assessment" to refer to the measurement of student attainment in a course and "evaluation" to refer to the review and measurement of the effectiveness of our teaching. US literature often uses "evaluation" to refer to the measurement of student performance.

Formal evaluation

Much of what you achieve in your classes from week to week is invisible at Faculty, School and program level. Student grades provide some data, but only you and your students know how the learning is proceeding. Some activities may work as planned; others may be less, or more, successful than you anticipated.

It depends on your position how involved you are in setting and marking assessment tasks. Here are few basic suggestions that can make the task of marking more manageable for you, and fairer for your students.

Assessment activities, and the provision of feedback on formative assessment undertaken during the semester, are important parts of a cycle that helps students develop their knowledge and prepare for future learning activities at UNSW and beyond.

Video series - Stressful Situations

In these videos, teachers talk about dealing with difficult students, or students having problems in class or in a course.