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Graduate Assistantship Guidelines (Academic Year)

  1. Position Assignments
    • The Nature of the Appointment
      Students appointed to graduate assistantships shall be employed to perform specific professional assignments such as assisting with an educational project, teaching or research. If the graduate assistantship is for a purpose other than those professional assignments listed above, approval must be received before an appointment is made by the Dean, School of Graduate Studies.
    • Reappointment
      All re-appointments are contingent upon satisfying all academic progress requirements and the availability of funding. In addition, each department/program/area may have requirements regarding assistantship renewal in addition to the academic requirements contained in the current graduate bulletin.
    • Academic Criteria
      All graduate students who have been admitted to graduate studies for the purpose of pursuing course work that will normally lead to a master's degree are eligible for consideration. A 2.75 undergraduate cumulative grade point average (G.P.A.), or the equivalent, is required for all programs of study except Environmental Studies. Environmental Studies requires an undergraduate cumulative grade point average of 3.0. In addition, some departments/projects may require minimum score on the Graduate Record Examination and/or a personal interview or other evaluative measures for consideration for an assistantship. Students who have been "provisionally" admitted to graduate studies may not be eligible for a graduate assistantship until all provisions attached to admission have been satisfied. All provisionally admitted graduate students receiving an assistantship will be reviewed each semester for continuation. A provisionally admitted student may not fall below a 3.00 G.P.A. Graduate students who have previously been awarded a master's degree are eligible for consideration, if readmitted for the purpose of pursuing either a second designation or an additional master's degree.
  2. Compensation
    • Resident Tuition Status
      Students appointed to graduate assistant positions are considered residents of Minnesota for the purpose of determining tuition during the period of the appointment. Departments/programs are required to submit the Faculty Appointment Request Form no later than the tenth instructional day of the semester in which the appointment becomes effective.
    • Stipend
      All graduate assistants shall be paid at the rate of $425 per pay period regardless of the funding source (Some graduate assistant positions are TAXABLE; for specifics about your position, contact Marilyn Lanners at The maximum number of clock hours for non-teaching graduate assistants is fourteen 14 hours per week. Graduate assistants whose primary assignment is instruction shall teach no more than four (4) credit hours per semester. The full-time graduate assistant academic year stipend is $8,500. This amount will be equally allocated during each semester (20 pay periods). Please note: Due to a change in BSU accounting system, payroll checks for graduate assistants will be direct deposited. If this is not workable, checks will be mailed directly to their homes. 
    • Tuition Award
      Full-time graduate assistants whose funding is provided by the University will receive a tuition waiver of six (6) graduate semester credits for the Fall semester and six (6) graduate semester credits for Spring semester. A total of 12 semester hours of graduate credit are available per academic year. Half-time graduate assistants will receive a total tuition award of six (6) graduate semester hours over the entire academic year (3 for Fall; 3 for Spring). The tuition award shall apply to graduate course work only. There is no carry-over of a tuition-wavier from one academic year to the next. LATE FEES WILL BE ASSESSED! Graduate students are required to pay tuition for all semester hours beyond the tuition waiver and are responsible for the payment of all student fees.
    • Attention: Effective January 1, 1995, Universities may need to add the value of all graduate tuition waivers to the employees' taxable income. If it is determined that the tuition waiver for a particular Assistantship is taxable, the dollar value of the graduate tuition waiver will need to be added to the student's paycheck. Taxes will be taken on the tuition waiver amount, including Federal, State, and FICA. The value of the waiver will be divided over as many paychecks as possible each semester to lessen the tax burden on each paycheck. The value of the waiver WILL be included in the student's taxable earnings on their W-2 for the year. If there are questions about this process please contact Marilyn Lanners at 755-2902, Deputy Hall 201.
    • Health Insurance
      Graduate assistants are not covered by the University's faculty, staff and administrative insurance policies. However, they may be eligible for student health insurance through the Center for Health & Counseling Services office.
    • Retirement
      Graduate assistants do not contribute to the Teacher's Retirement Fund.
    • Social Security
      Graduate Assistants are not covered by Social Security.
    • Other Employment at BSU
      Graduate Assistants are not allowed to have other employment on the BSU campus.
  3. Academic Progress Requirements
    • Minimum Semester Hours and Cumulative Grade Point Average All graduate assistants are required to register for and complete a minimum of six (6) graduate credits each semester. A 3.00 G.P.A. ("B" average) must be maintained for all course work attempted. Graduate assistants that do not satisfy the minimum requirements will receive one additional semester to satisfy any deficiency.
    • Incomplete and In-progress Courses Graduate assistants are not permitted to carry forward more than three graduate credits of incomplete ("I") or in-progress("IP") grades, other than thesis, research paper, or internship/ practicum credits, grade designations from a prior semester or summer session. Students who have satisfied all course work requirements, with the exception of research paper or thesis credits, should contact the Dean of Graduate Studies regarding the minimum semester hours and grade point average requirements.
    • Any failure to satisfy either requirement, or the falsification of any information, may result in the termination of the GA appointment.
    • Bemidji State University is an equal opportunity educational employer.

Graduate Assistantship Guidelines (Summer)
How to Apply