Tutor Apprenticeship in Data Science 🧑‍🏫

DSC 95, Spring 2024 at UC San Diego

Class: Wednesdays, 2-2:50PM, Warren Lecture Hall 2207

Table of contents

  1. Schedule
  2. About
  3. People
  4. Requirements
  5. Useful Information
  6. Acknowledgements


Note: This is a discussion-heavy course, and it’s hard to predict how long some discussions may take. As such, the schedule below is likely to change quite a bit throughout the quarter.

Deadlines will appear with a ✅, and all deadlines are subject to change.

WeekClassAction Items
April 3rd
Introduction, Responsibilities, Imposter Syndrome Read:
  • So You Think You Can TA by John Kohler. This guide was written with TAs who run discussion sections in mind, but many of the tips (e.g. following up with students when you don't know something, bending down or sitting in a chair to maintain eye-level contact with them) are relevant in office hours too.
  • The Tao of TALC. This guide describes how to effectively run large-scale office hours that are not unlike our DSC office hours, especially when things get busy. Not everything will directly apply, especially in more theoretical courses, but it's still useful to read.

Complete the Welcome Survey by ✅ Tuesday, April 9th.
April 10th
Professionalism and Office HoursWatch Learning Styles Don't Exist.

Find an experienced tutor in the class you are tutoring for and “shadow” them (i.e. follow them around and observe them) during their office hours for at least 30 minutes. Preferably choose a time that will be busier, e.g. the day that homework is due. Then, answer reflection questions on Gradescope by ✅ Tuesday, April 16th.

Submit at least one question at this Google Form for the experienced tutor panel discussion next week by ✅ Tuesday, April 16th. Feel free to ask more than one by submitting the form multiple times.
April 17th
Experienced Tutor Panel
Featuring Benjamin Chen, Muchan Li, Harshi Saha, Anastasiya Markova, and Jessica Song
April 24th
Final Project Brainstorming, Productivity Tips, GradingNew: Read the three readings and complete the sample grading assignment here by ✅ Tuesday, April 30th.

Read the entire description and complete the first checkpoint for the Final Project by ✅ Tuesday, April 30th. Note that this involves scheduling a meeting with your assigned tutor – you can't leave this until the last minute!
May 1st
Growth vs. Fixed Mindset, Scenarios, Reflection Read Why I Don't Grade and Learning Objectives.
May 8th
Academic Integrity
Featuring Tricia Bertram-Gallant, the director of the AI Office
Submit the second checkpoint for the Final Project by ✅ Tuesday, May 14th.
May 15th
Project Advice, Reflection, ScenariosSubmit the third checkpoint for the Final Project by ✅ Tuesday, May 21st.
May 22nd
Project Feedback, Structural FactorsWhile not strictly required, plan to send a draft of your Final Project to your assigned tutor this week to get feedback.
May 29th
More Structural Factors, WritingSubmit the Final Project by ✅ Tuesday, June 4th to this Google Form.
June 5th
ConclusionFill out SETs + the End-of-Quarter Survey by Saturday at 8AM.

For discussion, we will use Slack, and you will submit any assignments (that aren’t Google Forms) to Gradescope. Let Suraj know if you can’t access one of those platforms.


DSC 95 is a 2-unit, P/NP discussion-based course that is required of all first-time DSC tutors. The course is designed to guide new DSC tutors through their first quarter as a tutor. The specific topics we will cover are in the Schedule above.

Note that the class is not lecture based. We tell our students that the best way to learn concepts in data science is by doing data science, whether that’s actually writing pandas code or practicing runtime analysis problems. Likewise, the best way to learn how to teach data science is to actually teach data science, which you will get practice with in office hours and on your class’ discussion board. DSC 95 provides you with a forum to reflect on your teaching with a group of students who are also at the start of their teaching journeys.

There is exactly one goal in this class, and that is to get you to think very carefully about your teaching, to consider different scenarios that might arise (and how to deal with them), and to get you to genuinely enjoy teaching! (Okay, that was actually three goals, but they’re basically the same thing in my mind.) - Victor Huang, CS 375 @ Berkeley


Suraj Rampure

Classes taught: DSC 10, 40A, 80, 90 (History of Data Science), 95, DSC 180AB (Capstone sequence)

Anastasiya Markova

Classes tutored: DSC 10, 20

Jessica Song

Classes tutored: DSC 40A, 40B, 140A

Remember that contains links to course websites of several DSC courses.


DSC 95 is graded P/NP. There are three things you need to do to pass:

  1. Attend and participate in all DSC 95 class sessions (Wednesdays at 2PM in Warren Lecture Hall 2207).
    • This is a discussion-based class, so attendance and participation are mandatory. (How can you expect your students to be engaged if you’re not? 😉)
    • If you need to miss a DSC 95 class session for any reason (e.g. if you’re sick or have a conflicting exam), let Suraj know in advance on Slack.
      • Note that lecture attendance for the class you’re tutoring for is not a requirement of DSC 95; your instructor may still require you to attend as part of your paid tutor duties.
  2. Complete weekly readings and homework assignments, usually due on Tuesdays at 11:59PM.
    • Each week, we will provide you with readings and tasks to complete that should help you reflect on your time as a tutor so far. These will all be posted in the above Schedule.
    • Responses are graded on a 2/1/0 scale:
      • 2: Thoughtful and complete.
      • 1: Lack of effort.
      • 0: Not submitted.
    • Since the readings and homeworks are short (~1 hour per week), there are no slip days or extensions. We need your responses in no later than Tuesday night so that we can plan the next day’s class session.
    • You can miss at most 1 weekly assignment and still pass.
  3. Complete a satisfactory Final Project.
    • The Final Project in DSC 95 involves creating a video that will benefit students in the course you’re tutoring.
    • Not only will your Final Project be given to your class’ instructor, but it’ll also be part of the “DSC 95 Project Showcase” for future DSC 95 students to see!
    • There will be multiple checkpoints to help you plan. More details to come.

Useful Information

Here’s an assortment of information that will be useful the first time you tutor.


To get paid for your tutoring hours, submit your hours biweekly into Ecotime.

Outside Tutoring

As a tutor, you are not permitted to approach students to offer services of any kind in exchange for pay, including tutoring services. This is considered solicitation for business and is strictly prohibited by University policy.

On a related note, as a tutor, you should only help students in your course through official channels (e.g. office hours or Ed). You may be friends with some of your students and have them on social media, but they should not message you on social media with questions about the course. All students should have equal access to course staff – your friends shouldn’t have an unfair advantage just because you happen to be a tutor.


DSC 95 was designed and run by Marina Langlois for many quarters, so much of what you see here was originally developed by her. When designing this quarter’s offering of DSC 95, I also referred to CSE 95 taught by Mia Minnes and CS 375 taught by Victor Huang at Berkeley, as well as the improvements made by both Colin Jemmott (Winter 2024) and Marina Langlois (Fall 2023).