Assistantships

Assistantships

Assistantships
Providing Students With Academic / Professional Development Experience
Assistantships

UCF and Graduate Studies Assistantships


Overview

UCF has more than 1,300 graduate students who have assistantships. These appointments provide students with academic or professional development experience while at UCF that will help prepare them for their future work in research, teaching, or other activities.

Graduate assistants receive a stipend for the duties that they perform, and UCF provides tuition remission and health insurance coverage for all qualifying assistantship appointments. Most assistantships are offered by a student’s graduate program or department.

If you are interested in a graduate assistantship, contact your Graduate Program Director and ask about the assistantship application process in your program. A few assistantship opportunities are available in nonacademic offices. Visit the Career Services website at career.ucf.edu for more information. All graduate assistantship appointments require full-time enrollment in a graduate program.

Students who have graduate teaching assignments are required to complete UCF GTA training before beginning their assistantships. International students who have graduate teaching associate or assistant positions will need to pass the Versant English Test administered by the UCF English Language Institute before beginning their assistantships. Depending on their discipline or assignments, graduate research assistants may also have training requirements (for example, lab safety). See Graduate Teaching for more information.

The Graduate Assistant Guide provides information on services that are available to you as a graduate assistant at UCF.


Policies

Students should refer to the Policies and Procedures for the university’s requirements for assistantships, as well as graduate teaching, tuition remission, health insurance, and parental leave for graduate assistants.


Types of Assistantships

Type Job Code Description Tuition Remission Health Insurance
Graduate Teaching Associate (GTA) 9183 Instructor of record for undergraduate courses in the specific discipline in which the student has the graduate-level expertise and 18 hours of graduate coursework (cannot be an instructor of record for graduate courses). Tuition waiver or payment Eligible if student’s assistantships total at least 20 hours per week
Graduate Teaching Assistant (GTA) 9184 Teaching-related duties under the supervision of a faculty member. The student may assist a faculty member in any aspect of course instruction but cannot serve as the primary instructor of record. Tuition waiver or payment Eligible if student’s assistantships total at least 20 hours per week
Graduate Teaching Grader (GTA) 9187 Grading papers or assisting a faculty member in the noninstructional aspects of course teaching. The student may have no direct instructional contact with students. Tuition waiver or payment Eligible if student’s assistantships total at least 20 hours per week
Graduate Research Associate (GRA) 9181 Research or research-related duties Tuition waiver or payment Eligible if student’s assistantships total at least 20 hours per week
Graduate Research Assistant (GRA) 9182 Research or research-related duties Tuition waiver or payment Eligible if student’s assistantships total at least 20 hours per week
Graduate Assistant (GA) 9186 General educational administration duties Tuition waiver or payment Eligible if student’s assistantships total at least 20 hours per week

Graduate students enrolled in fully online programs that exempt them from paying campus-based fees are not eligible for graduate assistantships. Nondegree-seeking students may be employed but may not be classified as graduate assistants. Others that do not meet criteria for being a graduate assistant may be hired as OPS (temporary) employees.


Full vs. Half Assistantships

The standard assistantship is 20 hours per week (full, 0.5 FTE) and either for the academic year (fall and spring semesters) or calendar year (fall, spring, and summer semesters).  Assistantships for a single semester are also possible.

Assistantships that are 10 hours per week (half, 0.25 FTE) are also possible.

Only a full-time assistantship or two half-time assistantships qualify for the benefits of a complete financial package.

A single half-time assistantship only qualifies for half resident tuition remission.


GTA Training

If you are serving as a GTA (Associate 9183, Assistant 9184, or Grader 9187), you must complete UCF’s GTA training. There is different training for different GTA responsibilities.

Required GTA Training Versant Test*
  Grader
(online)
Assistant
(online)
Associate
(online)
Associate (face-to-face) Minimum Score
  GTA Grader (9187) YES NO NO NO Not Required
  GTA Assistant (9184) YES YES NO NO 58 on the Versant Test (Prior to Spring – 50 on the SPEAK Test)
  GTA Associate (9183) YES YES YES YES 69 on the Versant Test (Prior to Spring 2018 – 55 on the SPEAK Test)

*Required for non-native speakers of English who do not have a degree from an institution where English is the language of instruction.

For more information about GTA Training, see Graduate Teaching.


Other Training Requirements

Depending on your assistantship assignment, you may need to complete university training other than that for graduate teaching. Environmental Health and Safety offers resources and training in laboratory safety, hazardous waste, biological safety/biomedical waste, radiation safety, and other areas. Your graduate program or department may also have workshops or training to help prepare students for their assistantships.

Please consult your faculty supervisor or graduate program for requirements for your assignment.


Assistantship Agreement

The assistantship agreement is an agreement between you and your hiring department to perform duties for a specified time period. When your agreement is ready for your review and signature, you will receive an e-mail message sent to your Knights account with instructions on how to sign (accept) the agreement online. You must accept your assistantship agreement prior to starting your assignment.

Before accepting your assistantship agreement, you should carefully review the following sections:

Assistantship start and end date Specify the start and end date of your assistantship. During this time, you will be expected to perform duties related to your assignment.
Standard hours The number of hours you will be expected to work per week. A standard assistantship is 20 hours per week.
Assistantship Category The type of assistantship that you have been offered. Please see Types of Assistantships for a general description of the assistantship category and GTA Training to determine if you are required to complete additional training.
GTA Assignment A GTA assignment is only assigned if you have received a GTA assistantship. This is the course prefix, course number , nd section for which you will perform GTA related duties.  Please see Types of Assistantships for a general description of your GTA category.
Faculty Supervisor Your faculty supervisor is the faculty or staff member who will supervise you while you are on your assistantship.
Total Stipend The total stipend that you will receive for the duration of your assistantship. You will receive your stipend as a biweekly paycheck through UCF Human Resources.
Resident Tuition Remission These are the terms that you will receive resident (in-state) tuition remission paid for by the university or your hiring department.
Optional Fees The credit amount toward optional fees (local fees), if applicable.
Conditions of Assistantship The conditions that must be met in order to maintain your assistantship.

Once you have reviewed your assistantship agreement, you may accept (sign) your agreement online. Your academic program or hiring department will then continue with the hiring process. (NOTE: Health insurance acceptance is separate and is done after your assistantship is fully approved by Human Resources.)

Remember to:


Payment

Students with a full-time assistantship (20 hours per week) or two half-time assistantships (10 hours per week each) receive a full funding package with assistantship stipend, tuition remission, differential out-of-state fee if a nonresident for tuition purposes, and health insurance.


Funding for Full-time Assistantship

Component Payment
Stipend Biweekly paycheck from Human Resources
Tuition Remission Tuition waiver or payment credit on your semester fee invoice to cover resident (in-state) tuition only
Differential Out-of-State Fee $0.00 charge for nonresident tuition and fees on your semester fee invoice
Other fees charged by the university (e.g., building, capital improvement, financial aid, activity and service, athletic, transportation access, health, technology, materials and supplies, distance learning) Not covered
Health Insurance Policy The College of Graduate Studies pays Gallagher Koster directly for your UnitedHealthcare health insurance. There is no cost to you unless you wish to add other coverage (e.g., dental plan or dependents coverage).

You are required to Accept health insurance in your myUCF Student Center before the College of Graduate Studies will enroll you in health insurance. This acceptance is done after your assistantship has been fully approved by Human Resources.


Funding for Half-time Assistantship

Component Payment
Stipend Biweekly paycheck from Human Resources
Tuition Remission Tuition waiver or payment credit on your semester fee invoice to cover half of the resident (in-state) tuition
Differential Out-of-State Fee Not covered
Other fees charged by the university (e.g., building, capital improvement, financial aid, activity and service, athletic, transportation access, health, technology, materials and supplies, distance learning) Not covered
Health Insurance Policy Not covered


Assistantship Hiring Process

All assistantship agreements are signed online, rather than on a paper agreement. Please see these instructions on how to log in and accept your assistantship agreement:

Instructions for Students

This how the assistantship hiring process works:

Please remember to consult with your hiring department or program for more information about the hiring process.


International Student Payroll Sign-In

International students receiving an assistantship must complete the payroll sign-in process at the UCF Global prior to receiving payments from the university. You will receive email communications from UCF Global to your Knights Email account about this process.


myUCF Information

In the myUCF Student Self Service, Student Center page, scroll down to Graduate Students and select the Graduate Funding page to view

The myUCF Employee Self Service area has a Payroll and Compensation page where you can


Parental Leave for Graduate Assistants

The Parental Leave program is designed to assist graduate assistants on existing assistantship agreements during pregnancy or immediately after the birth or adoption of their infant child. The mother may choose to use up to six weeks of leave for pregnancy and/or maternity needs.   The spouse or partner may choose to use up to six weeks of leave to assist in the care of the newborn child and the child’s mother during the postpartum period. Graduate assistants who have assumed parenthood through the adoption of an infant may also use this leave. This includes graduate assistants in a domestic partnership. For this leave policy, a domestic partner is defined as a same-sex individual who shares a committed, mutually-dependent relationship.


Qualifying for Parental Leave

Only full-time enrolled graduate students holding active assistantship appointments (job codes 9181, 9182, 9183, 9184, 9186, or 9187) are eligible for the leave. These include Graduate Teaching Assistants (GTAs), Graduate Research Assistants (GRAs), and Graduate Assistants (GAs).

Applicants for the leave must submit an Application for Parental Leave to the College of Graduate Studies (send to gradassistantship@ucf.edu or Fax 407-823-6442) at least four weeks prior to the anticipated start date of the leave. Provisions will be made for those who must start leave earlier than anticipated due to medical circumstances. The application consists of two parts. Part 1 is the Request form giving the anticipated dates of leave and showing approval of the leave by the funding sponsor of the assistantship (e.g., department chair, research adviser, unit head).  Part 2 is the Anticipated Parent Information from an attending physician about the pregnancy and/or birth or from an adoption agency verifying the date of adoption and arrival of the infant.

All students on parental leave must submit an Intent to Return to Assistantship from Parental Leave form to the College of Graduate Studies (send to gradassistantship@ucf.edu or Fax 407-823-6442) at least two weeks before their anticipated return date. Those who experienced pregnancy and delivery must complete the Medical Release section on the form affirming that they have sufficiently recovered to resume their assistantship responsibilities. A student unable to return after the six-week leave period must petition for a Medical Withdrawal or a Special Leave of Absence (contact gradservices@ucf.edu in the College of Graduate Studies).


Benefits to Graduate Assistants

During the approved parental leave, the student will retain student status and all privileges of an enrolled student.

Approved parental leave is paid leave for up to six weeks but maybe a shorter period, depending on the student’s graduate assistantship agreement(s). The student’s assistantship status will be maintained during the leave, including paid tuition remission and health insurance (if the student accepted this coverage offered by the College of Graduate Studies).

The parental leave applies to the graduate assistantship position and does not excuse students from required coursework. Prior to the leave, the student is expected to confer with his/her course instructors to develop plans as necessary to make up any academic work that may be missed during the leave.


Assistantship Payment and Coverage

The College of Graduate Studies will pay the assistantship stipend equal to the rate of the student’s existing assistantship agreement(s) during the approved leave period. Arrangements for this payment will be coordinated with the student’s assistantship sponsor (i.e., hiring department).

Since the assistantship sponsor does not pay the stipend during the approved leave, the sponsor may hire a replacement at its own expense to fill the duties of the student on leave. This hire may be done using a short-term OPSGRD or a Supplemental Assignment for an existing graduate assistant. The Supplemental Assignment will be approved by the College of Graduate Studies as long as the replacement is in good academic standing with at least a Graduate Status GPA of 3.0, has a history of academic progress in the degree program, and has completed required training for their assignments (e.g., GTA training and English Speaking Test; for grants, responsible conduct of research training).

The parental leave period of up to six weeks is only in effect for the duration of an existing assistantship agreement and will not extend beyond the agreement end date. However, parental leave could be divided between the end of one semester and the beginning of the subsequent semester if there are assistantship agreements in both semesters.