Hiring Graduate Assistants
Graduate Assistants are graduate students who are employed at the University. There are three types of graduate assistants:
Duties include, but are not limited to, duties primarily in support of administrative functions, such as: clerical support (copying course materials, general office work/clerical/receptionist, correspondence, and supervising reading room); technical/support services; webmaster/assisting faculty with web pages, network administration/end user support, equipment management, monitoring instructional and service labs (computer, video, etc.); translation; routine support for publications (record keeping, writing copy for university or department newsletters or non-research publications, correspondence, etc.); advising/providing curricular and academic advice to students, providing support to advisors); and outreach duties (recruiting students, publicizing programs and activities to campus and public constituencies, and working with/assisting with event management).
For tax purposes, research activities may include, but are not limited to, the following examples of applying and mastering research concepts, practices, or methods of scholarship: conducting experiments; organizing or analyzing data; presenting findings; collaborating with others in preparing publications; and conducting institutional research for an academic or administrative unit.
Duties include, but are not limited to, duties primarily in support of instruction and educational services such as: leading discussion sections; leading class discussions; holding lectures; the design of course materials; exam preparation; proctoring and grading assignments or exams; holding office hours; note-taking; meeting special needs of students with disabilities; and/or any other educational activity or service provided.
While many colleges may post internally, units may also post openings via the Hiretouch system and have their vacancy posted on the UIC HR Job Board.
Hiring Graduate Assistants
The registration requirement for a student to hold a graduate assistantship is at least eight (8) hours each semester.
Graduate Assistants with a title of Graduate Assistant or Grad Teaching Assistant and have a total FTE between 25% and 67% are covered by the GEO Contract.
Offer letter Templates
Hiring units must follow the assistantship offer letter templates available on the UIC HR website for Teaching Assistants and Graduate Assistants that are covered by the GEO contract.
There are also recommended template letters available for graduate research assistants and graduate hourly appointments.
Tuition (excluding differentials) & Selected Fee Waiver Eligibility: Must meet registration requirements throughout the term and hold an assistantship between 25% and 67% for a minimum of 91 continuous calendar days during the period beginning a week before instruction and the last day of finals during Fall or Spring semester and for 41 continuous calendar days during the summer term service period. A 25%-67% time appointment must be maintained for the duration of the assistantship to be eligible for a tuition and selected fee waiver. Increasing the assistantship above 67% or decreasing it below 25% will cause loss of the waiver. The only exceptions are appointments during the break between Fall and Spring semesters, as well as during the Spring break.
AY GA 2019-2020 appointment dates
|Fall Semester (2019)||08/19/2019 - Week before instruction begins
08/26/2019 - Start of academic term
12/13/2019 - Last Day of finals
|Example of 91-day appointments:||08/16/2019 – 11/17/2019
08/19/2019 – 11/17/2019
08/26/2019 – 11/24/2019
09/14/2019 - 12/13/2019
|Spring Semester (2020)||01/06/2020 - Week before instruction begins
01/13/2020 - Start of academic term
05/08/2020 - Last Day of finals
|Example of 91-day appointments:||01/01/2020 – 04/05/2020
01/06/2020 - 04/05/2020
01/13/2020 – 04/12/2020
02/08/2020 - 05/08/2020
|Summer Term (2020)|
05/16/2020 - 08/15/2020 Service Dates
|05/18/2020 – Start of Session I term
06/12/2020 – Session I Last day of Finals
06/15/2020 – Start of Session II term
08/07/2020 – Session II Last day of Finals
|Example of 41-day appointments:||05/16/2020 – 06/25/2020
05/18/2020 – 06/27/2020
06/15/2020 – 07/25/2020
06/28/2020 – 08/07/2020
06/28/2020 – 08/15/2020
More detailed information regarding Graduate Assistantships can be found on the Graduate College website
Tuition waivers will cover the cost of the full tuition except for those graduate programs that have tuition differentials. Please see Admission and Records for a current listing of Tuition and Fees breakdown.
Note: Those who received an assistantship tuition waiver in the Spring semester, but do not have an assistantship in the summer, will be eligible for the summer auto waiver. A student with a summer assistantship must meet the criteria for a summer waiver regardless of whether or not they held a Spring appointment.
Taxability of Certain Assistantship Tuition and Service Fee Waivers
In compliance with Internal Revenue Code Section 127, $5,250 per calendar year in tuition and service fee waivers associated with GA and/or PGA appointments is excluded from taxable income. Please see the University Payroll and Benefits website for more information.
Graduate students may also hold Pre-doctoral Fellowships which are zero percent, non-benefit eligible appointments awarded to Graduate students, who have yet to earn their Doctorate or terminal degree.
Processing Graduate Reappointments
Steps for processing Graduate reappointments can be found in the HR Front End Graduate Reappointment job aid.