Assistantships

OSU is a Research-Extensive University, and graduate students play a vital role in both its teaching and research missions. Over 1700 graduate students help finance their graduate education at OSU through employment as Graduate Teaching Assistants/Associates (GTA) and Graduate Research Assistants/Associates (GRA).The use of “assistant” applies to master’s-level and “associate” to doctoral-level GTA and GRA appointments.

research picture

A Graduate Teaching Assistant (GTA) must be admitted to and meet the requirements of the Graduate College, be fully admitted to a graduate program, enrolled, and be under the supervision of an appropriate graduate faculty member. In consultation with the supervisor, the GTA works to gain instructional skills and an increased understanding of the discipline. The GTA is provided a stipend and their primary responsibilities are to support the University's instructional mission.  Services provided by a GTA may include: classroom or laboratory teaching; advising and mentoring of students; proctoring examinations; grading papers, homework, and/or projects; accompanying/coaching musical or vocal performances, providing artistic instruction or assisting with preparation and management of materials and programs that are utilized in imparting knowledge or in the instructional process; or providing other general assistance in the instruction process.  A GTA may be assigned primary responsibilities in an extension, outreach, or service role for which those responsibilities support the instructional mission of the University. GTAs may not be given duties to support faculty research or those primarily clerical in nature.

Graduate Researcher

A Graduate Research Assistant (GRA) must be admitted to and meet the requirements of the Graduate College, be fully admitted to a graduate degree program, enrolled, and be under the supervision of an appropriate graduate faculty member.  A GRA is provided a stipend and their primary responsibilities are to provide general support to the University's research mission.  These responsibilities may or may not relate directly to the student's thesis or dissertation.  Duties of the GRA primarily involve applying and mastering research concepts, practices, or methods of scholarship.  Services provided by a GRA may include: assisting faculty members in a research or creative activity; perform degree-related professional or administrative services that supports research, instruction, professional development, or outreach missions of the University; developing and evaluating instructional materials or curricula; or assuming responsibility for designated scholarly endeavors.

“Performing degree-related professional or administrative services” does not include jobs that are outside of the student's field of study.

The Student Worker is an employed student not meeting the above criteria and would constitute an employer-employee status within the Oklahoma State University system and requires compensation based on actual time worked as assigned.  Documentation of hours worked via a time sheet and an hourly wage of at least the Federal minimum wage ($7.25, as of 2012), are required.

A student worker may also be considered exempt versus hourly if the following conditions are met:      

"Compensation of no less than $455 per week regardless of FTE or $1,972 per month, as of 2012, regardless of FTE and meet the Fair Labor Standards Act categories of executive professional or administrative"