Assistantships

While assistantships are prioritized for doctoral students, a number of assistantships are offered to promising M.A. students. As a rule, assistantships at the M.A. level do not involve teaching. M.A. graduate assistants generally work ten hours weekly in varying capacities as support staff for our undergraduate and graduate programs: as projectionists for the weekly screenings in our various courses; as equipment checkout personnel for our production equipment; as assistants in the Digital Arts and Entertainment Laboratory (DAEL); and in various other capacities. In addition, all graduate assistants must work five hours per week assisting a faculty member (assigned to them) in a research or creative project. Generally, production M.A. students would be assigned to one of our production faculty, where they would assist on various production projects. M.A. studies students would be assigned to one of our Moving Image Studies faculty, where they would assist in a scholarly research project.

The minimum assistantship for M.A. level students is $6,000 for the academic year. Additional funding may be available in the summer, but is not guaranteed. All assistantships waive the cost of tuition and matriculation fees; however all assistantships require payment of student fees.

Student assistants are evaluated every year in April. Assistantships are renewable for the second and sometimes the third year, provided the student has successfully performed the duties of the assistantship and is making satisfactory progress toward the degree.

Assistantships are awarded to full-time students only. All students on assistantship must register for 18 credit hours per semester: 9 to 11 hours of coursework, and the remaining 7 to 9 hours in Directed Research under their assigned faculty member.

Full details of assistantship policies and procedures can be found in the M.A. Handbook. You can download the assistantship application here.
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The Communication Department believes strongly that teaching is a central component of any doctoral education, and so nearly all of our incoming doctoral students are offered a teaching assistantship. The minimum assistantship for doctoral-level students is $15,000 for the academic year. Additional funding may be available in the summer, but is not guaranteed. All assistantships waive the cost of tuition and matriculation fees; however all assistantships require payment of student fees.

The doctoral assistantship has two components: the teaching component and the research component. For the teaching component, the beginning graduate student teaches three break-out sections per academic year of a large lecture course, while more advanced doctoral students can teach three stand-alone courses per academic year (or a combination of stand-alones and breakout sections). The research component of the assistantship assigns each graduate student to one faculty mentor, whom the student assists for five hours per week on a research project.

Student assistants are evaluated every year in April. Assistantships are renewable through the fourth year of study, provided the student has successfully performed the duties of the assistantship and is making satisfactory progress toward the degree.

Assistantships are awarded to full-time students only. All students on assistantship must register for 18 credit hours per semester: usually 9 hours of coursework, one hour of doctoral proseminar, and the remaining 8 hours in Directed Research under their assigned faculty member.

Full details of assistantship policies and procedures can be found in the Ph.D. Handbook. You can download the assistantship application here.
Apply Now