Teaching and Research Assistant Information

Purpose of assistantships

  • To provide graduate students learning opportunities that expand their academic skills and increase their breadth of scholarly experience
  • To provide support for faculty engaged in activities that further the mission of the Department
  • To provide financial assistance to graduate students as they pursue advanced degrees

Assistantships

Each year the Department sets aside a number of Gradate Assistantships for entering PhD students. In the current academic year, graduate assistants received a total financial package of at least $21,523 for a level 1, ½-time assistantship. This package includes a waiver of up to nine credit hours tuition each term (fall/spring), health insurance coverage, and for out-of-state students, waiver of out-of-state tuition. University, College, and Departmental Fellowships are also available. Students recruited with assistantships may expect a minimum of four years of support so long as they make satisfactory progress in their studies.

Application process

All assistantships are contingent upon availability of resources. Any HDFS student may indicate interest in being awarded an assistantship by completing a questionnaire provided by the Graduate Secretary each spring. This questionnaire will also allow applicants for TAs to submit in writing course placement preferences. Priority is given to students with committed funding.

Types of assignments

Teaching and research assistantships are available to qualified graduate students. Assistantships may include the following types of assignments: assisting with ongoing research, assisting with graduate or undergraduate courses in HDFS, or assisting in the Child Development Laboratories or Couple and Family Therapy Clinic. Further information can be obtained from HDFS faculty members and administrators.

Criteria for awarding assistantships

Teaching assistantships are awarded based on academic merit, fit with specific needs of the Department, past support, and financial need (e.g. out of state).

Research assistantships are awarded based on the availability of grants and contracts secured by faculty in HDFS. Faculty in charge of the projects, in collaboration with the Graduate Program Director and Chairperson, are responsible for selecting students based on academic merit and fit with specific needs of the project.

Tuition Waiver and Health Benefits

GEU Contract

Graduate teaching assistants are eligible to join the Graduate Employee Union. The current contract between the GEU and the University describes the rights and responsibilities of Union members. Graduate students who possess a graduate assistantship should become familiar with this document.

Responsibilities and Evaluation

Graduate assistants are expected to meet with their faculty supervisor to discuss their responsibilities before the semester begins. An evaluation of each student's work is completed at the end of each semester. That evaluation should take place in a meeting between the student and the faculty supervisor with whom he or she has been working.

Teaching Assistants are required to attend TA professional development sessions provided by the department, college and university. Graduate students who desire a teaching experience should attend trainings as well to learn the expectations and opportunities in the department.

The following is a list of courses that typically required a TA for Fall/Spring

HDFS 145
HDFS 211
HDFS 212
HDFS 225
HDFS 238
HDFS 270
HDFS 414
HDFS 442
HDFS 444
HDFS 445
HDFS 448
HDFS 472
HDFS 481
HDFS 497
HDFS 888
SSC 499

*courses may vary by semester

The following is a list of courses that typically required a TA for Summer

HDFS 145
HDFS 211
HDFS 212
HDFS 225
HDFS 238
HDFS 414
HDFS 442
HDFS 444
HDFS 445
ISS 210