Graduate Assistantships

A graduate assistantship is a paid position in which graduate students carry out teaching, research, and other duties at Texas A&M Galveston. Graduate students on assistantship earn generous pay and can elect to receive benefits. 

Types and Requirements    

The most common types of assistantships are teaching and research. Less common are lecturer (for senior Ph.D. candidates) and non-teaching assistantships.

Types of Assistantships

Graduate students on assistantship earn generous pay and can elect to receive benefits.

Type Acronym Primary Focus Reports To Pay Frequency
Teaching GAT Teaching Academic department and faculty in charge of courses Monthly
Research GAR Research Research faculty or academic department Monthly
Lecturer GAL Teaching Academic department Monthly
Non-Teaching GANT Support Academic support units Weekly

Assistantships require that students

  • Work 20 hours per week
  • Maintain full-time enrollment while employed in a GAT, GAR, or GANT position (9 hours in fall/spring semesters and 6 hours in summer).

Employment start dates are as follows:

  • Fall semester: September 1
  • Spring Semester: January 16
  • Summer: June 1

Pay and Benefits    


Salaries for graduate assistants start at $1,950 per month. Possible increases are detailed below.

  • M.S. thesis students get an opportunity for a $50 per month increase with the approval of their degree plan and proposal by The Graduate and Professional School.
  • Ph.D. students get two opportunities for a monthly salary increase:
    • $150 when a G7 Ph.D. student becomes a G8 (if applicable)
    • $150 when a Ph.D. becomes a candidate.
  • Students can view their status of the degree plan, etc. by visiting their Degree Evaluation through Howdy My Record.

Graduate assistantships may select benefits within the first 45 days of employment to go into effect on the 60th day.  For graduate students needing benefits earlier than 60 days, please contact Human Resources for deadlines. 

  • Non-Resident Tuition Waivers: Non-resident or international graduate students on assistantships are eligible to receive a non-resident tuition waiver. Waivers typically are applied within the first week of school. 
  • Tuition and Fee Payment: Ph.D. students on assistantships receive a payment for tuition and mandatory fees.
  • Employee Assistance Program: Graduate assistants receive access to our Employee Assistance Program (EAP).
  • Vision and Dental Insurance
  • Membership in Staff Council

Hiring and Onboarding    

The hiring department helps graduate assistants with the hiring process, onboarding, and connecting the graduate assistant with their supervisor.  The hiring department

  • Creates the positions and routes them through our hiring system (Workday)
  • Contacts the graduate assistant to offer them an assistantship and start the background check process and other aspects of hiring
  • Coordinates departmental training for teaching assistants (GATs)
Hiring and Onboarding Overview
Hiring and Onboarding Overview

In general, the hiring process includes:

  1. Receiving an offer letter from the hiring department
  2. Completing a background check
  3. Onboarding in Workday
  4. Orientation and Training
  5. Starting the position
  6. Receiving salary and benefits (if applicable)
Offer Letters
Offer Letters

The hiring departments working with the Business Administrators issue offer letters to new graduate assistants.  The offer letter should include:

  • Hire Date
  • Salary and frequency
  • Responsibilities (i.e. what courses you will teach)
  • Benefits eligibility
  • What school expenses the position will pay (i.e. non-resident tuition, tuition, fees)
  • A place for you to sign and indicate your acceptance of the position
Background Check
Background Check

Upon receipt of an offer, graduate assistants should reach out to their hiring department to initiate the background check. 

Onboarding in Workday
Onboarding in Workday

When onboarding, graduate assistants will have access to Workday (our hiring system).  Please do not take any steps in Workday until directed by the hiring department or Human Resources. 

Selecting and Receiving Benefits
Selecting and Receiving Benefits

Graduate assistants will select benefits within 45 days from their start date.  For graduate assistants receiving bill waivers and/or payments, those actions will be automatically removed by RGSO by the 5th class day.  If you receive information from main campus about filling out a waiver or payment form, please disregard the message. 

Orientation and Training
Orientation and Training
  • The Human Resources Office coordinates orientation to finalize getting the graduate assistant on payroll. Graduate assistants should check their emails daily to receive guidance throughout the onboarding process. 
  • GATs are required to complete departmental training

RGSO and Assistantships    

The Research and Graduate Studies Office (RGSO) plays a role in the hiring process of graduate assistants. RGSO

  • Works with the academic departments and the Center for Teaching Excellence to make sure that every new GAT has been trained
  • Maintains the GAT budget, making sure that equity exists throughout all of the GATs
  • Approves all graduate positions in Workday