Graduate Assistantship Information

Appointment Details
Fall GA assignments begin August 16 and end December 15; spring assignments begin January 16 and end May 15 (not including Spring Break). Academic year appointments may run from August 16 to May 15. Summer assignments vary depending on funding. Work hours will depend on the arrangements made with the department supervisor. Graduate assistants are accountable to their supervisors for their time and are not required to make up hours missed on days the university is closed (e.g. snow days, holidays).

Term of Appointment
Appointments are renewable each semester, contingent upon satisfactory academic progress toward a degree. Satisfactory progress requires passing 9 graduate hours with a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher and satisfactory work performance the previous semester. Graduate assistants can be terminated during an appointment at the request of a sponsoring supervisor and after review by the Graduate Dean. Maximum appointment time is three years for a master’s student and five years for a PhD student.

Required Forms

  • Because assistantships are taxable, graduate assistants must go to Human Resource Services in the University Services Building and complete the new hire packet before they can be placed on the payroll.
  • An online Orientation will need to be completed by the student each year they received a Graduate Assistantship appointment. Emails sent to the students will contain the link for the orientation.
  • The department in which the graduate assistant is working must complete an Electronic Personnel Action Form (EPAF) and an Appointment of Graduate Assistantship form. Graduate assistants should check with their supervisors to make sure their department has completed these forms and submitted them to Human Resource Services.

Stipend Payment
As employees of UA Little Rock, graduate assistants will be paid twice a month (the 15th and the last day of the month). If the 15th or the last day of the month is on a weekend, payday will be on the preceding Friday.

All UA Little Rock payroll checks are automatically deposited into the employee’s bank account. The first check may be delayed if all forms are not completed prior to UALR’s next payroll run date.

Tuition Scholarship

  • Graduate assistants who are enrolled as full- or part-time students typically receive a tuition scholarship.
  • Undergraduate classes, even if required for certification purposes, for deficiency removal, or for personal enrichment, will not be covered by the tuition scholarship.
  • Tuition scholarships for students supported on grants and contracts are typically paid by the grants or contracts.
  • A full-time (20 hour) graduate assistant will receive a tuition scholarship covering up to 9 hours each spring or fall semester he or she works.
  • A part-time (10 hour) graduate assistant will receive a tuition scholarship for half of his or her enrollment, up to 4.5 hours per semester.

Minimum Enrollment

  • To qualify for their assistantships each semester, full-time graduate assistants must be enrolled in at least 9 graduate hours at UALR.
  • Half-time graduate assistants must be enrolled in at least 4.5 hours. Note: Typically, courses are 3 hours each so students would be enrolled in 6 hours.
  • Failure to enroll in the required course load or dropping below the required course load will result in a graduate assistant’s tuition not being paid and may result in loss of the assistantship.
  • Exceptions to the required hour rule can be made only once for the student. Generally this exception is used in the students last semester. Petitions for exceptions are made to the Graduate School.
  • Graduate assistants must notify the Graduate School Dean’s office of any changes to their class schedule (drop or add).

International Students
Students on F-1 or J-1 visas must also complete the Certificate of On-Campus Employment Eligibility and have it approved in the Office of International Services. This is required in order for international graduate assistants to be paid for their assistantships. The Office of International Services is located in Stabler Hall 105.