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A graduate/doctoral student who as part of their requirements assists a professor in their area of study with large lectures. They are often knowledgable about the material and are available to provide extra help to students who do not understand the material. Most TAs are fairly young (1-2 years older than undergraduate seniors) and the professors give them the sole responsibility of handling the grading of exams and other assignments. However, do not be fooled by their sincerity and kindness. They will not cut you any slack if you failed an exam because you're boyfriend broke up with you or your dog ate your homework. God, help you if they catch you cheating or plagiarizing because they will make your life a living hell. And in most cases, they are extremely harsh with their grading and they are usually told to manipulate grades so that the average falls below a certain grade.

They are often overworked by the entire department for which they are employed by. Often times they have their own coursework, projects, and research to focus on but since they need the money to stay in grad school they agree to help with coursework. Since they are essentially at the mercy of the department, it's likely that they will take their frustration out on your grades and you will most likely not do very well in the courses.
Student: Yo, Todd my Teaching Assistant is mad chill. I saw him drunk at the bar last night and he told me that I would get an A in the course.

Two days later

Student: WTF, I thought I was gonna do well. My TA is such a jerk.

Student 2: Please change my grade, I'll do anything.
TA: Sorry, I wouldn't have time for anything....

Student 3: If I don't get an A in this class, I'll get disowned by my family.
TA: I was disowned the moment I graduated college, it's honestly not that bad.
by PTrockstar92 September 30, 2013
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a FOB graduate student that cannot afford graduate school, so they help teach an undergraduate college class in exchange for free tuition.

They are often very knowledgeable about the topic that they teach, but are absolutely incompetent when it comes to teaching it due to their inability to speak to speak English fluently.
teaching assistant: ok, I wecmnd you use matrab, na mapre. if use mapre, open de sheet, and you see de sheet, and you type commands. I herp if you need herp.

by OlegTheGreat March 30, 2009
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