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Graduate Assistant Handbook
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Graduate Assistantship Appointment Packet
Graduate assistantships at the master's and specialist levels are available in a number of academic, service, and research units. Students seeking assistantships should apply directly to the prospective employing unit. Openings are posted in the department and in the Graduate Studies and Research Office. All graduate assistants should be familiar with the policies and procedures published in the Graduate Assistant Handbook.
Students seeking support as Teaching Assistants of Research Assistants should contact the department directly. A list of websites for departments offering graduate programs can be found using the Degree Programs link on the Graduate School Home page.
Assistantships carry a minimum stipend of $395 per month for a quarter-time (25%) appointment or $896 per month for a half-time (50%) appointment plus waiver of tuition. Students have a work requirement relative to the percentage of the appointment. A quarter-time appointment requires 10 hours of work per week. A half-time appointment requires 20 hours of work per week. Appointments will not be made for less than 25 percent nor more than 50 percent time. In selected cases, students on less than 50 percent appointments may be eligible for limited employment in other University positions. Specific details about such special arrangements are available through Graduate Studies and Research, Rendleman Hall, room 2202. Students who hold appointments as graduate assistants should not simultaneously be employed outside of the University.
College Work Study funds are available to support graduate students and can be used to help fund graduate assistantships, providing 70 percent of an assistant's salary. Students seeking assistantships are encouraged to file the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) available from the Office of Student Financial Aid in order to be considered for College Work Study eligibility.
All assistantships are intended to be of direct educational benefit to appointees. In order to be approved by the Graduate Dean, an assistantship appointment must relate to the student's academic objective and be supervised by qualified personnel. Students who seek assistantships in units other than the one in which the student is pursuing a degree must have approval from the Graduate Program Director of the degree program and from the supervisor of the employing unit. Justification for the relationship between the student's assistantship responsibilities and the degree program must also be provided.
Students must be admitted to a graduate degree program before the unconditional award of an assistantship is made. Unclassified students are not eligible for appointments. Ordinarily, undergraduate students are not allowed to hold assistantship appointments. An exception may be granted to undergraduates in an approved combined baccalaureate/master's five-year program when they are within 12 semester hours and not more than one academic term of receiving a baccalaureate degree.
International students awarded teaching assistantships must show fluency and command of the English language. Students with low grade point average or an excessive number of incomplete or deferred grades will not be appointed or re-appointed by the Graduate Dean. Assistantships already awarded will be in jeopardy when an appointee's average in graduate work falls below the required minimum for retention in the student's academic program.
Graduate assistants can carry no more than 12 hours and must carry at least 6 hours of graduate credit per academic term (maximum of 6 and minimum of 3 during a summer session) unless specifically authorized to do so by the Graduate Dean. Courses taken for audit do not count toward the minimum hours but must be authorized if they are in excess of the maximum hours. Requests for exceptions to these restrictions must be made on the "Overload/Underload Petition for Graduate Assistants and Awardees," available from the office of Graduate Studies and Research.