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Frequently Asked Questions

What is a graduate assistantship?
A graduate assistantship is an on-campus, part-time position receiving a financial award in the form of tuition benefit granted to graduate students for work in a department of the University while pursuing a degree.

What duties does a graduate assistant perform?
Graduate assistants are appointed to perform various types of duties. Most commonly, the duties relate to supervisory or administrative functions of the University.

Who is eligible to work as a graduate assistant?
Students who are currently enrolled in a graduate program with all requirements completed for admission to degree candidacy and who have received less than 36 credit hours of tuition assistance in graduate assistantships. Graduate assistantships exist primarily for graduate-level students. On rare occasions, professional degree students may apply to be a graduate assistant. In these instances, the Office of Student Financial Services must receive written permission from the Dean of the professional school stating the candidate has permission to apply and (if selected) work as a GA. Please note that application does not ensure placement.

How do I apply for an Assistantship?
To apply for an assistantship, please click here.

Can I apply for a graduate assistantship at the same time that I apply for a graduate degree program?
No, before applying for a graduate assistantship, an applicant must have applied for enrollment in a graduate program.

How do I get an assistantship?
Academic or University departments seeking graduate assistants will review eligible GA application files and conduct interviews. Students will then be contacted if a department wishes to interview them for an open position. The Office of Student Financial Services does not place Graduate Assistants, merely facilitates the necessary paperwork & process.

If I receive an assistantship, how will I know when to start work?
Before beginning work, all graduate assistants must sign an award letter which details the student's tuition benefit and requirements for maintaining the assistantship award. At the appropriate time, the Office of Student Financial Services will contact the student to sign the award letter.

How many hours will I be required to work per week as a graduate assistant?
Hours vary for each graduate assistant based on the student's program of study and benefit. For each credit hour of tuition benefit, a graduate assistant must work 32 clock hours. In general, graduate students work 15-20 hours per week.

If I am an employee's dependent student, can I be a graduate assistant?
Yes. Employee dependents do not receive tuition remission for graduate studies. As a result, employee dependent students are eligible to be graduate assistants and receive tuition benefit.

How many credit hours of tuition assistance will I receive?
Students who are awarded a graduate assistantship position can receive up to 18 credit hours of tuition assistance per academic year. The amount of benefit depends on department/school budgeted allocations and requirements of the position. Students may receive no more than 36 credit hours of graduate assistantship benefits.

As a graduate assistant am I required to maintain a certain GPA?
Yes, graduate assistants are required to maintain a GPA of 3.0 or above to remain in good academic standing.

Is graduate assistantship taxable income?
The IRS indicates that students who are candidates for a degree, generally can exclude a scholarship or fellowship, if used for tuition and fees required for enrollment or attendance. Please visit for more details.