Graduate Assistants

Resources for GA's and program coordinators

A limited number of graduate assistantships are offered to departments with graduate degree programs, as well as to other administrative offices.

Graduate assistants provide educationally beneficial assistance to the departments which award the assistantships. Students are only eligible for the financial assistance provided by a graduate assistantship for two years (24 months) applicable to the completion of one graduate degree. Once a student has completed a graduate degree, whether that program of study required one year or two, the student is no longer eligible for a graduate assistantship.

Departmental GAs work directly in their program of study (i.e. Nursing, Music Therapy)
Teaching Assistants are GAs in Biology, the MFA program, or the MA ENG program who teach lower-level classes and/or labs.
Administrative GAs support non-academic offices (i.e. Grants, the Women's Center) and are paid by the hiring department.


Applications for graduate assistantships should be directed to the graduate coordinator of the degree program to which the student has applied. Approval will be granted by the academic school dean, upon the recommendation of the chairperson or director of the hiring department, and the student's graduate coordinator.


To obtain a graduate assistantship a student must meet the following requirements:

(1) Be approved for regular admission to a graduate degree program.

(2) Maintain academic good standing. If a student's grade point average falls below a 3.00 (academic warning), the student will have next semester or summer term to improve and return to good standing before termination of the assistantship. Should a student fail to return to good standing after the next semester or summer term, or should a student receive academic exclusion and be dismissed from the degree program, the assistantship will be terminated at once.

Graduate assistants are required to work between ten and twenty hours per week (depending on their contracts) for a total of 150-300 hours during the fall and spring semesters. Course loads for graduate assistants must be at least six graduate semester hours.

Tuition and Fees

The assistantship covers tuition, but does not cover any of the student fees; therefore, the student is responsible for paying athletic, student activity, health, technology, parking and any laboratory fees. Residence hall and meal plan expenses are also the responsibility of the student.

In lieu of the usual matriculation fees charged, all graduate assistants are required to pay a special matriculation fee of $25.00. MAT students receive 6 hours of tuition waiver. Ten-hour-per-week graduate assistants pay half the usual matriculation plus the special fee of $25.

Student Insurance Requirement

Students in the categories listed below are required to have insurance. Students who are not covered by a policy held by a parent, spouse, company or organization on the approved waiver list or if the policy does not meet the minimum standards, must purchase the USG SHIP policy. Students with individual or association plans will not be considered for a waiver. For additional detailed information regarding the Student Health Insurance program, visit the University System of Georgia Web site.

  • All graduate students receiving a Full or Partial Tuition Waiver as part of their graduate assistantship award.
  • All graduate students enrolled in programs that require proof of health insurance.
  • All graduate students receiving fellowships that fully fund their tuition.
Notification of Approval and Pay Dates

The graduate coordinator will send written notification when the student's recommendation for appointment has been approved. The letter of approval will contain the name of the department chairperson, dean, or director who will assign the work responsibilities and the amount of the stipend per semester. The supervisor will also receive a copy of the approval letter.

Graduate Assistants will be paid one fourth of their stipend on each of the payroll dates determined by Payroll Services.