Graduate Assistantship in Teaching (GAT)
The principal financial assistance offered by the Department of History is in the form of a Graduate Assistant/Associate in Teaching (GAT). M.A. students are funded at the Assistant level; doctoral students with an M.A. are funded at the Associate level, which carries a higher salary.
Graduate Assistants/Associates are entitled to participate in the Registration Installation Plan that allows the GAT to pay a portion of registration fees on a deferment plan.
The Graduate Committee, appointed by the Department head and chaired by the DGS, evaluates applications on a competitive basis.
The Head of the History Department awards GATs to full-time students (minimum of 6 graduate credit hours per semester) on the recommendation of the Faculty Graduate Committee, with preference given to students who have the M.A. The number of GATs varies according to the funding we receive. If you are awarded a GAT, you can reasonably expect three renewals for a total of four years, provided that you maintain a high level of performance in your teaching and in your courses (minimum 3.0 grade point average), and fulfill the other requirements for satisfactory progress in your program of study. For example, grades of incomplete in your course work and failure to pass language examinations when required will count against you in your application for renewal. GATs automatically receive a waiver of tuition fees, a waiver of registration fees and student health insurance.
If you are employed by another University department, inform the DGS and the Graduate Program Coordinator of this employment immediately. Concurrent employment as a GAT in another department affects the payroll process. Informing the Business Manager of this additional employment in advance of hire will help her coordinate the preparation of your hiring documents and will assure appropriate payment.
The DGS makes GAT assignments in consultation with the Graduate Program Coordinator and professors teaching courses with GATs. The DGS makes the assignments at the end of each semester for the following semester. These assignments are subject to change depending on course enrollments. You will receive a course and instructor preference sheet which you should complete and return to the Graduate Program Coordinator.
Each August the Graduate College conducts a one time training session that is mandatory for all new GATs. The History Department also provides a mandatory one-day workshop for all GATs in History.
Most GATs conduct discussion sections under the supervision of the professor in charge of the course to which they are assigned. In addition to conducting discussion sections, you are required to attend course lectures and conferences scheduled by the professor, grade the papers of students in your sections, and keep regular office hours. Other GATs assist professors as graders in heavily enrolled upper division courses.
You will be expected to meet with the professor in charge of the course to which you are assigned to discuss course procedures. If you have any questions about your rights and responsibilities and those of the students in your sections, you should discuss these with the professor in charge. If you still have questions, see the DGS
Most GAT appointments are half-time, which is calculated at 20 hours per week. For discussion leaders, this means three discussion sections, each meeting once a week. For graders it means grading for between 60 to 75 students. GATs share office facilities in SSci #124A. Victoria Parker, Program Coordinator, Sr. manages the keys for the building, TA office, and copier room; the Graduate Program Coordinator distributes desk keys for the TA office.
In compliance with University policy, all teaching personnel are evaluated by their students using the Teacher/Course Evaluation form. Graduate College policy also requires supervising faculty to complete a Graduate College GAT Evaluation form for each GAT.
Criteria for GAT Awards
The Graduate Committee evaluates applicants for graduate funding on the basis of overall achievement in three categories:
- Quality of academic performance, as indicated by recommendations from the major advisor and other faculty, student performance evaluations from 600-level classes in history, and over-all GPA.
- Teaching capabilities, as indicated by letters of recommendation from faculty or past employers, evaluations by faculty whom the applicant assisted and student evaluations.
- Progress toward timely completion of degree requirements, as indicated by recommendations from the major advisor and/or other committee members and as measured by the “Point” System:
These points measure timely progress to degree:
2 ea Pass a language exam or equivalent (up to 2 languages) before comprehensives
1 Complete Historiography (HIST695K) in first year of program
1 ea Complete seminar courses (HIST696), up to 2 (in lieu of MA thesis)
2 Complete Master’s thesis
1 Complete Master’s degree
2 Complete Qualifying Review in second semester of doctoral program
1 ea Complete History 696 seminar paper
1 Pass a language exam or equivalent beyond 2 languages, if required by the student’s committee or advisor.
1 Form Exam Committee by third semester of doctoral program
2 Complete Ph.D. Minor requirements
3 Complete Doctoral Comprehensive Exams before seventh semester of program
2 Complete Doctoral Comprehensive Exams in seventh semester or later
2 Complete dissertation prospectus review within six months of completing exams
½ Sustained documented field research (per semester)
The Graduate College maintains specific criteria for GATs as well, which are specified on the Notice of Appointment, the official employment contract.