Leading in Your Role: Teaching Assistants
Teaching Assistants Professional Growth
(Online Conference)
July 4-7, 2023

Professional Development for Teaching Assistants, in Mandarin and English, on what and how they can do to grow professionally.



ACAMIS AND PDAcademia invite you to submit a proposal for presentation at our annual online conference for teaching assistants.

We are accepting proposals from presenters until March 15, 2023 (Wednesday). Presenters don’t have to pay to present. However, if the presenters want to attend the conference, they will receive a special discount on registration and may qualify for free registration.


Designed for TAs.

This live facilitated online conference is specifically designed for teaching and non-teaching assistants, and co-teachers. It is also relevant for teachers who work with teaching assistants or co-teachers. The purpose of this conference is to help participants to inspire them to take charge of their professional growth and develop practices and skills in partnering with their teachers and parents to assist students in achieving their full learning potential.


Target Audience

Teaching assistants, learning support and library assistants, arts/music/PE assistants, lab technicians, child-care assistants, co-teachers, and teachers of international/bilingual schools.


4 Days

Tuesday, July 4 to Friday, July 7
8:00 am to 12:30 pm (China Time)

6 Thematic Sessions

Tuesday, July 4 – Thursday, July 6
8:20 am – 11:15 am (China Time)
Including a 15-minute break in between

  • Empowering Yourself (English and Mandarin Chinese)
  • Essential Skills for Effective PD (English and Mandarin Chinese)
  • Benefits & Challenges of PD for TAs
  • TAs’ Wellness & Wellbeing
  • The Career Path of a TA
  • Individual Development Plan

Each workshop will be available in English and Mandarin Chinese.


Multiple Elective Sessions

Tuesday, July 4 – Thursday, July 6
11:30 am – 12:30 pm (China Time)

Friday, July 7
8:00 am – 10:00 am (China Time)

These sessions are in either English or Mandarin Chinese depending on the presenter.

Job-Alike Session

Friday, July 7
10:15 am – 12:15 pm (China Time)

This session provides an excellent opportunity to share resources/information and engage in discussions among education professionals with similar job responsibilities, broaden their perspectives, share knowledge, and network regionally. 

Certificate Course

A certificate of participation will be awarded.

Registration Fee

ACAMIS Members (Early Bird)
1-4 Participants: US$146.25 per person
5-9 Participants: US$117 per person
10-14 Participants: US$102.38 per person
15+ Participants: US$78 per person

Non-members (Early Bird)
1-4 Participants: US$183.75 per person
5-9 Participants: US$147 per person
10-14 Participants: US$128.63 per person
15+ Participants: US$98 per person

Early bird offer expires after May 31, 2023.

Approved Peer Presenters:  US$75 per person.

Please email events@pdacademia.com for registration instructions.



"I came, I grow."

- Annie Lv, Suzhou Singapore International School

"Learning, improved, and inspired"

- Vicky Gao, Hangzhou International School

"Learning from awesome people from different backgrounds."

- Jane Zhang, Nanjing International School

“[If you] want to be better [at your job], please join us at the next conference.”

- Carrie Chu, Dulwich College Beijing

“The whole training is very informative and really inspired me in many ways.”

- Sonia Zhang, Tsinghua International School

“Everyone here understands you.”

- Effie Sun, TEDA Global Academy


What will I learn?

No school can operate effectively and efficiently without its support staff. Administrative and operational staff provide a reliable point of contact for all parties involved. The people that fill these roles determine how education is delivered and what it needs to develop and progress into the future. While they may not necessarily be perceived as crucial to delivering quality educational service, without admin service making sure an educational institution is operational, the entire campus can be at risk. Since there are many different administrative jobs in a school and a wide range of skills necessary for each role, this conference seeks to provide training to improve these skills. Experienced professionals from various international and bilingual schools will present at the conference.

Far too often, we focus on doing the work and lose sight of sharpening the tools that help us achieve better-quality outcomes. Hence, the theme of this conference is Teaching Assistant Professional Growth. PD opportunities help teaching assistants to gain new skills in areas that are both relevant for them individually and aligned with the school’s priorities.

By the end of the conference, participants will be able to:

  • Empower themselves by taking charge of their professional growth
  • Identify essential skills for effective professional development
  • Discover the benefits and challenges of professional development for teaching assistants
  • Learn about TA’s wellness and wellbeing
  • Explore the career path of a TA
  • Develop an Individual Development Plan (IDP)
  • Acquire knowledge, insights, and skills to become an effective TA
  • Network with assistants, co-teachers, and teachers from other international/bilingual schools.


How will I learn?


Based on extensive research, we have developed a model for virtual professional development that will:

  • Enable participants to enjoy a mix of content delivery methods to meet the needs of various learning styles and preferences, including but not limited to lecturers, case studies, role-plays, discussions, and video showings.
  • Challenge participants to apply knowledge and tools introduced throughout the conference to their own working context.
  • Connect participants to process content collectively and share unique experiences and perspectives in small and large groups.
  • Allow participants to review the presentations at their own convenience for 12 months after the conference to reinforce their learning.



Thematic Sessions:


Empowering Yourself

In the context of an education specialist, self-empowerment is taking charge of your own professional growth. Far too often, we focus on doing the work and neglect the sharpening of the tools that help us achieve better-quality outcomes. While great strides forward have been made in recent years, the sad truth is that most schools need to invest the resources, including time to develop their teaching assistants. Professional development programs come in all different shapes, sizes, and models. The participants in this session explore the various ways to take charge of their professional growth.

Essential Skills for Effective PD

Professional development opportunities are rare for support staff, including teaching assistants. Yet, we ought to seize every opportunity to learn and grow effectively. Possessing essential learning skills when participating in PD is critical to reinforcing learning and optimizing growth.

Benefits & Challenges of PD for Teaching Assistants

Teachers, including teaching assistants, are lifelong learners, particularly in today’s changing world of emerging technologies. If there is one thing education leaders agree can improve classroom instruction, student learning, and staff retention all at once, it is providing a robust professional development program. It is imperative to understand the benefits of PD so that we can capitalize on every PD opportunity. It is also necessary to identify the challenges of PD so that we can overcome the obstacles that prevent us from learning and growing.

TAs’ Wellness and Well-Being

Teaching assistants are responsible for many tasks. If we are not careful, we may become stressed and get burned out. Wellness is a central element of overall well-being. It refers to a state of physical health in which people have the ability and energy to do what they want to do in life. Different aspects of well-being will add up to a thriving, fulfilling life. In the session, participants identify various ways of cultivating wellness and well-being.

The Career Path of a Teaching Assistant

A career path is a sequence of jobs that leads to your short- and long-term career goals. Some follow a linear career path within the teaching field, while others change fields periodically to achieve career or personal purposes. It is a series of jobs that help you progress toward your goals and objectives. Career paths traditionally imply vertical growth or advancement to higher-level positions, but they can also include lateral (sideways) movement within or across industries. Having a career path benefits both the school and the teaching assistants. In this session, participants will discuss different career paths and the skills they need to create their own career path.

Individual Development Plan

It is a customized agreement between an employee and their employer that details new skills to be acquired or learned and how the teaching assistant’s performance can enhance within a specific time frame. It also includes an action plan for these goals. How to create an effective individual development plan? How to write an IDP? What should you put on your IDP?


What Our Past Participants Are Saying:

"I met some fantastic people and learned a lot about my role as a TA."

- Gabrielle McCann, Australian International School Hong Kong

"In this conference, you are not only a learner but also a teacher. You will think about your job differently after interacting with many peers who play the same role in other schools."

- Nini Ni, Beijing City International School

"Education is more than just about academics. Emphasize character building; it is what will make the world a better place. Your actions matter."

- Isma Hussain, Yew Chung International School Hong Kong

"TA are also 'Teaching Angels'* who shouldn't underestimate themselves."

- Christel Luo, Nanjing International School

*Sue Larkey coined the term 'Teaching Angels'.


Email communication before the course start date

Emails related to this Online PD Program will be sent from events@pdacademia.comPlease immediately add this email sender to your safe sender list.

Approximately 2-weeks before the start of the course, participants will be emailed a course introduction, instructions for how to participate and a pre-course survey and readings, if applicable.  If you do not receive this email please let us know.



If notice of cancellation re the registered participant/sponsor is received:

  • 30+ days pre-event: 80% of fee is refundable
  • 15-29 days pre-event: 40% of fee is refundable
  • Less than 15 days pre-event: no refund

Online PD Programs - No refund will be granted re participants commencing an online PD program and withdrawing part way through. Course material fees (re DiSC surveys, book fees, etc) are not refundable once access is granted.



In the event of cancellation of a conference, workshop or online PD program, we will fully refund the registration or sponsorship fee(s) paid. However, we will be unable to refund any travel, visa or accommodation expenses incurred or course material fees where access has been granted.