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Graduate Associateships

Graduate Associateships allow graduate students to work for a university unit in exchange for a fee authorization (payment of tuition and fees) and stipend. There are three kinds of graduate associateships: graduate teaching associate (GTA), graduate research associate (GRA), and graduate administrative associate (GAA).

Graduate Associateship details for students and staff


A graduate student’s principal objective is to earn a graduate degree. Appointment as a GA contributes to that objective by providing an apprenticeship experience along with financial support. This apprenticeship complements formal instruction and gives the student practical, personal experience that can be gained only by performing instructional, research, or administrative activities. It is expected that GA responsibilities will not interfere with a student’s reasonable progress toward completion of the graduate degree.

Appointments are typically referred to in percentages, and most GAs hold 50% appointments. GAs with a 50% appointment are expected to average 20 hours per week (regardless of whether they are a GTA, GRA, or GAA), for which they receive a full fee authorization. GA appointments of 25% (averaging 10 hours per week) receive a fee authorization that covers half of a student’s tuition and fees.

Typically, students who apply for admission to a program will be considered for GA positions, if available. If students are interested in finding a GA position, they should always begin with their home departments. Students can hold GA appointments in units other than their home department, but those are local decisions. There is no central clearinghouse for GA appointments at Ohio State. For more information about the rules pertaining to GAs, see Section 9 of the Graduate School Handbook.

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