Skip to Main Content

See our latest COVID-19 updates.

Graduate School

Congratulations
Spring 2021 Graduates!

Graduate Assistantships

Graduate Students Group Photo sitting on lawn

All graduate assistantships are awarded each year by academic units and non-academic units on a competitive basis following a highly qualified student's nomination by their graduate program and using predetermined criteria, including but not limited to the applicant's academic record, test scores, recommendations, and other pertinent information.

Graduate Administrative Assistant (GAA)

  • Students in this role assist in a program or non-academic unit that requires graduate-level knowledge, skills, and dispositions. GAAs assist faculty, departments, or other units in various activities that are closely related to the student's area of academic study and interest.

Graduate Lab Assistant (GLA)

  • Students holding GLA appointments may not have primary responsibility for a course. Still, they may assist in laboratory sessions, prepare lectures, grade papers, keep class records, conduct discussion groups and tutorials, hold student conferences, or help the course instructor in other ways. GLA's do not need to meet the 18 credit hour requirement and are under the professor of record's direct supervision. The department chair or division director shall determine that a student's credentials qualify the individual to undertake the work assignment.

Graduate Research Assistant (GRA)

  • The duties assigned for Graduate Research Assistantships should be relevant and add value to the student's major field of study, area of interest or expertise. The research is usually a component of the faculty advisor’s research. GRAs are generally expected to carry out a specific research project that often forms the basis for a thesis or dissertation.
  • General duties include:
    • Performing experiments, calculations, and analyzing the results and disseminating new knowledge orally or in written publications
    • Reflecting on the state of the field and proposing new research problems
    • Attending conferences to present results and collaborate with other researchers
    • Training and supervising less experienced research personnel

Graduate Teaching Assistant (GTA)

  • Graduate Instructors are those graduate students who are involved in instruction, usually of undergraduates. Qualified GTAs perform instructional duties in an area of their expertise, most often within their home departments, although qualified GTAs may perform teaching duties outside their departments. Students appointed as a GTA must have a baccalaureate degree and be enrolled in a graduate program. GTAs who are primarily responsible for teaching a course for credit and assigning final grades for such a course must have earned at least 18 credit hours of graduate coursework in the teaching discipline before their appointment, be under the direct supervision of a faculty member experienced in the teaching discipline, receive regular in-service training, and be evaluated regularly.
  • All GTAs teaching online courses must complete the D2L Faculty Training Course and complete the Faculty Needs Assessment for Online Course Design and Delivery. Information for online courses can be found at the DLDD (Distance Learning Design and Delivery) home page (http://dl.columbusstate.edu/index.php).

Doctoral Fellows

  • Doctoral fellows will typically be assigned responsibilities that overlap those of Graduate Research Assistants and Graduate Teaching Assistants. They are frequently engaged in research and may be assigned to work with one or more faculty members in the program.

  • The student must be fully accepted as "Regular" in an approved graduate degree, diploma, or certificate program at CSU. Students classified as "Provisional" or "Non-Degree" or on Probation are not eligible for an assistantship.
  • Students must be enrolled in at least six graduate credit hours in the semester in which they serve as a graduate assistant.
  • For the second-year student, satisfactory progress toward the degree must be evidenced by completing a minimum of 12-18 graduate semester hours with at least a 3.0 cumulative graduate grade-point average in his/her current degree program. Graduate Teaching Assistants (GTA's), who will have the primary responsibility of teaching a course and assigning final grades, must have earned at least 18 graduate semester hours in their teaching discipline.
  • Students must be eligible to work in the United States and cannot exceed any hourly limitations placed on them by a visa.

Stipend

  • Graduate Assistants will receive a stipend. All Graduate Assistantship appointments must meet the minimum wage hourly pay. Graduate Assistantship stipend amounts may vary by department, work expectations, and funding source. Stipends are taxed.

Tuition Waivers

  • Graduate Assistants pay a special tuition rate of $25 per semester as mandated by BOR policy.
  • What's NOT Covered by the Tuition Waiver: The cost of health insurance and all other University fees.

Mandatory Health Insurance

  • All graduate assistants are required to have health insurance. United Healthcare provides health Insurance through the University System of Georgia Student Health Insurance Program. All Graduate Assistants must apply for health insurance through the United Healthcare website.
  • Graduate Assistants who already have their own health insurance may apply for a waiver of the mandatory student health insurance through Health Services/United Healthcare website. Select "Waive Online." Proof of insurance must be provided each semester.

Option 1 - Review the Graduate Assistantship Job Postings on the HR website.

  • Use your password and ID to login and register on the HR website
  • Apply for the Job

Option 2 -Contact your academic department to learn about available GA opportunities.

  • Your program coordinator or department chair may be able to match you with faculty who are seeking a graduate assistant.

  • Typically, department representatives will interview applicants for the graduate assistant positions. Be sure to discuss the following, so you have a clear understanding of the expectations of the job: 1) What the project or job entails; 2) what are the expectations, tasks, and duties; 3) how often you will meet with your supervisor, and 4) how you will be assessed or evaluated.
  • The hiring supervisor will submit the paperwork notifying Human Resources of the candidate for the position. Human Resources will help you through the paperwork once you have been offered a position.
  • A background check is required, and a GA cannot begin work until the background check is complete.

  • A graduate assistant works nineteen (19) hours per week. Partial assistantships with half tuition waivers require 10 hours per week and must be approved by the Office of the Provost.
  • The employing department supervisor sets the student's schedule.
  • The employing department will provide specific duties and responsibilities.
  • Graduate assistants will accurately report the number of hours worked each week.

Graduate Assistant FAQs

Graduate Assistant Job Postings