Graduate Assistantship FAQ

Consult the Graduate Assistantship Manual for additional information about becoming a graduate assistant (GA) at the University of Central Arkansas.

Do I qualify for a Graduate Assistantship? In order to qualify for a GA position at UCA, an individual must meet the following criteria:

  1. Must be admitted with full qualifications to a graduate program at UCA. Students who are admitted conditionally or have a contingent status cannot be awarded a Graduate Assistantship.
  2. Must be a full time graduate student seeking a degree at UCA.  Students must be currently enrolled in a minimum of nine graduate hours during each of the Fall and/or Spring semesters, and in at least one course during any summer session. The Summer semester has partial terms- taking a class in either a Summer I, or Summer II, or a 10-week session satisfies the enrollment requirement. 
  3. Must be in good academic standing (minimum 3.0 cumulative graduate GPA)
  4. Must have no incomplete courses (X grades)

 What is the process to apply?  

  1. The Graduate Assistantship Application can be found by clicking here.  Please complete the form and submit it to the Graduate School.
  2. (Optional) Submit your resume along with your GA application to the Graduate School.
  3. Additionally, your program may have its own GA application process.  Check with the department for details.

What happens after I submit the application form to the Graduate School?  The Graduate School will forward a copy of the form (and resume, if included) to the department that houses your degree program (i.e. If the student's degree program is Biology, the Graduate School submits the GA application to the Biology Department.)  From this point on it is the responsibility of the student to be proactive and follow-up with the department to discuss possible GA opportunities.  A current listing of available assistantships being advertised may be found by clicking here.

While most departments choose their GAs from within their own graduate program, there are some who do select students from other fields.  There are also non-academic offices that hire graduate assistants, such as Admissions, HPER, Student Center, Sponsored Programs, Career Services, and others.  Graduate students are welcome to pursue positions by contacting these offices with copies of their GA application and resume.

How much does an assistantship pay?  This question is determined by the department or office that is awarding the assistantship and is based on many variables.  The duties of the position (ie. research, teaching or administration), as well as special qualifications or skill sets the student possesses are all considered when determining the award.  The hiring department or office is responsible for selecting and recommending students for graduate assistantships.  The amount of  the stipend, and if applicable, tuition scholarship is also determined by the department.  For more information on the type or amount of assistantship available, please contact the hiring department.

How many hours can I expect to work if awarded an assistantship?  Assistantships may be full time (maximum of 20 hours per week) or part-time.  This is determined by the department or office awarding the assistantship.  Length of appointment periods, start-stop dates, and work schedules are likewise determined by the supervising department.  Full-time GAs (20 hours per week) are not permitted to engage in any concurrent employment without the express consent of the hiring department and the Dean of the Graduate School.

If I am awarded an assistantship, do I qualify for an out of state tuition waiver?  Students who are awarded full time assistantships (20 hours per week) qualify for out of state tuition waivers.  Part time GAs are not eligible for the waiver.

If I drop below a 3.0 cumulative GPA, will I lose my assistantship?  Yes.  Students who are placed on academic probation (less than 3.0 cumulative graduate GPA) do not qualify for a graduate assistantship.


For further questions, please consult the Graduate Assistantship Manual or contact the Graduate School.