teaching and graduate assistantships

Teaching Assistantships and Graduate Assistantships

Graduate students have the opportunity to be a Teaching Assistant (TA) for an undergraduate course or a Graduate Assistant (GA) for a graduate course.

Paid Assistantships

A graduate student can apply to be a paid TA/GA for any of the courses announced by the Graduate Office following each registration period. The stipend for the TA/GAship is $1,250.00, and the TAship is listed on the student’s transcript as carrying 0 units. Only full-time students in their third and fourth semesters are eligible to apply for paid assistantships.

Voluntary Assistantships

A graduate student can apply to be a voluntary TA/GA for any graduate or undergraduate course. The voluntary assistantship does not carry a stipend, and is listed on the student’s transcript as carrying 0 units. A student must be in his or her second semester, at the earliest, in order to be eligible for a voluntary assistantship.

How to Apply

To apply for both paid and voluntary assistantships, contact the instructor of the course that you would like to be an assistant for directly. You are required to send the instructor your qualifications in the form of a cover letter and résumé. These materials should highlight your skills, any relevant work experience or professional qualifications you may have, as well as your interest in the position. It is the responsibility of the instructors to select TAs or GAs for their courses and to notify the Graduate Office. It is the responsibility of the selected candidate to complete the TA or GA hire paperwork provided by the Graduate Office and to return it in a timely fashion.

Eligibility Requirements

  • The student must be an MFA, MA, Dual Degree, or Low-Residency MFA student in order to apply for a TA/GAship.
  • In the interest of providing the broadest possible range of teaching opportunities to graduate students, no student can repeat the same class as a paid TA/GA.
  • No student may be a TA or GA for a course in which he or she is simultaneously enrolled.
  • Students applying for TA/GAships must be in good academic standing; that is, the student: must not currently be failing any courses; must not be carrying more than one unresolved “incomplete”; and must not have been on academic probation during (1) the semester prior to the prospective TA/GAship, or (2) the current semester in which the TA/GAship is sought.
  • A student may only be a TA/GA for one course per semester, whether or not the assistantships are paid or voluntary.
  • Note that if the prospective TA/GA is an international student, the student will have to apply for a U.S. Social Security number prior to beginning employment. To apply, students may contact Jill Tolfa, Global Programs Advisor, at jtolfa@sfai.edu.