Tiers and Categories

1. Tiers

We use Tiers to better accommodate the correct allocation of stipends and waivers to the amount of work required of the student. There are four Tiers:

  • Tiers
    Hours Worked per Week
    Stipend Amount per Semester
    Tuition Waiver Hours per Semester*
  • I
    10 hrs/week
    $2,200 per Semester
    Maximum 6 hours waived
  • II
    15 hrs/week
    $3,850 per Semester
    Maximum 9 hours waived
  • III
    20 hrs/week
    $5,500 per Semester
    Maximum 12 hours waived
  • IV-Pre-Arranged
    max 20 hrs/week
    Maximum 12 hours waived

*only graduate level credit hours can be waived.  We cannot waive tuition for undergraduate courses.

Tier IV Pre-Arranged are situations where The Graduate College has committed a set number of stipends for a defined period of time and/or a specific stipend amount. These situations may include a new program starting up, special recruitment situations, or responses to a need related to an external agency or grant. Tier IV Pre-Arranged are negotiated with The Graduate College office staff.

2. Categories

Graduate Teaching Assistant (GTA) - this position is for graduate students that are teaching a course(s) and listed as the "Teacher of Record" (TOR) or assisting with teaching courses (assisting a faculty member with classroom activities such as grading tests/quizzes/papers, leading a discussion section, conducting labs, posting materials or responding to questions on D2L, tutoring students; or other special activities).  Graduate students in this category must have completed GRAD 9001 - College and University Teaching or an approved equivalent before starting their teaching assignment.

Graduate Research Assistant (GRA) - this is a student whose work predominantly involves assisting a faculty member with academic research. GRAs are not independent researchers and are not directly responsible for the outcome of the research. They are responsible to, and report to a research supervisor or principal investigator (PI). The duties of a Graduate Research Assistant primarily involve applying and mastering research concepts, practices, or methods of scholarship. Duties may include but are not limited to: 
performing independent research under the direction of a faculty member; conducting literature reviews or library research; preparing materials for submission to funding agencies, foundations, or IRB; collecting, coding, cleaning or analyzing data; designing an experiment; assisting in a faculty member's laboratory; coding computer programs to automate processes; presenting findings in a publication or dissertation; co-authoring the resulting research papers.

Graduate students are not to be used as "student assistants", to staff offices as an administrative assistant might, or to do work that would not normally require holding a bachelors degree.