Welcome to the Graduate Teaching Assistantship (GTA) information page for the Department of Physics. The information contained here is applicable to graduate students working as GTAs for the Department of Physics. For additional information about GTAs and training requirements, please visit the College of Graduate Studies’ Graduate Teaching webpage.
Congratulations on your appointment as a Physics GTA! Your job is an essential part of your professional development experience and plays an important role in the department’s education mission. It should be performed with the utmost integrity and professionalism.
Note: If you do not see a GTA’s, Grader’s, UTA’s, or ULA’s contact e-mail, please send your request to firstname.lastname@example.org.
GTA Training Requirements
Before you start your appointment as a GTA, you must complete all the required GTA Training, as specified on the College of Graduate Studies’ Graduate Teaching webpage.
Training consists of:
- Three (3) online modules: Grader, Assistant, and Associate
- One (1) face-to-face workshop: Associate
- Versant English Test, when applicable
- FERPA Training, when applicable (renew every 2 years)
In addition to the required GTA training, Physics GTAs must:
- Attend one (1) GTA meeting prior to the start of each semester
- Attend weekly GTA training for the assigned course(s): PHY 2048, 2049, 2053, 2054 (or other course)
- Proctor mid-term and final examinations, as needed
- Train other GTAs, as needed
- Perform other teaching duties as assigned by the faculty supervisor
In an effort to improve the graduate assistantship hiring process, graduate agreements will be created on an academic year or annual basis, as needed. The target date to request changes will be at least 2-4 weeks before the ePAF/Agreement submission deadlines (updated every year).
Note: Faculty that request a change to a graduate agreement after the ePAF/Agreement submission deadlines and/or after the agreement has been approved by the College of Graduate Studies will be asked to wait until the next semester for the change to be effective.
Effective Fall 2023 (or August 15th, 2023), graduate contracts will be split as follows (note: we may use different dates to avoid breaks in service):
Fall contracts: 8/21/23 – 12/13/23
Spring contracts: 01/8/24 – 05/03/24
Summer contracts (Summer C): 5/4/24 – 8/14/24 (Generally the first day of class for Summer C session to grades due date)
Academic Year contracts: 8/21/23 – 5/3/24
Annual contracts: 8/15/23 – 8/14/24
Note: Contract start dates may be earlier as per COS HR Processing Timeline. End dates are flexible if your grant ends a couple days earlier. Contracts that are created on a semester basis will mean that you (the student) will have a break in service during which time you (the student) will not be paid as you will not be working (Note: GRAs may be placed on an annual contract or contract dates may be continuous, hence they may not be impacted by a break in service). This, however, should not affect the health insurance coverage for eligible students on full-time graduate assistantships (see below):
Health Insurance Coverage Periods
Fall Assistantship or Fellowship: August 15 – December 31
Spring Assistantship or Fellowship: January 1 – August 14
Summer Assistantship or Fellowship: May 1 – August 14
Physics GTAs receive a semester stipend, tuition waiver, and free health insurance while on an approved full-time assistantship. Physics GTAs are responsible to pay their fees, unless the fees are covered by their advisor. Graduate teaching assistantships are limited, dependent on the availability of department funds, and are only guaranteed to first year students.
Standard GTA stipends per semester are noted below (as of Spring 2023):
Fall = $9,500.38
Spring = $9,500.38
Summer (C) = $5,990
Annual total = $24,990.76
Accepting your Graduate Agreement
Students – Please click here for instructions on accepting your graduate agreement.
Graduate students (2nd year or above) may sign up to be placed on the GTA waitlist every semester, as needed. However, please note that signing up for the waitlist does not guarantee financial support. All GTA requests will be verified with the student’s advisor and must be approved by the Department Chair.
CLICK HERE to sign up prior to the start of the semester you are requesting a GTA, by the specified deadlines:
Fall – by May 1st
Spring – by October 1st
Summer – by February 1st
Conditions of Assistantship
There are specific conditions to a graduate assistantship that are noted on the graduate agreement (contract). However, in addition to those conditions, as a Physics GTA you acknowledge and agree to the following:
- Enroll at least 2 months in advance of the semester that you will be assigned as a GTA.
- Perform the duties assigned to me with integrity and professionalism.
- Notify (or ask someone to notify) the GTA Trainer/Coordinator and/or the faculty supervisor of an unforeseen absence and to arrange for another GTA to cover in my absence.
- Request written approval from the GTA Trainer/Coordinator for a known absence and to arrange for another GTA to cover in my absence. Examples include, but are not limited to: conferences, medical procedures/appointments, personal travel, etc.
- Deliver grades to the faculty supervisor in a prompt manner (before grades due date).
- Respond to work e-mails within one (1) business day. (Effective Fall 2019, Physics GTAs will be required to use their business e-mails or “@ucf.edu” e-mails for all employment related matters, including the class syllabus.)
- Contact the faculty supervisor prior to the first day of class, to complete a Mutual Expectations agreement (must be completed by the first week of class) to coordinate teaching/grading/proctoring/other duties while on a GTA.
Students hired on a graduate assistantship are encouraged to tender a letter of resignation if they are leaving their position before the end of their assistantship contract (e.g., withdrawing from the university, changing from salary to wages or changing status from student employment to faculty or staff). The letter can be sent to the appropriate program supervisor and/or payroll representative. Note: Leaving appointments early may result in the student owing charges for graduate tuition waivers received. We strongly advise that you contact email@example.com to determine what effect the end of the appointment will have. If you receive financial aid, you may also want to contact the Office of Student Financial Assistance (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Termination before End of Appointment
A student’s graduate assistantship appointment may be terminated before their scheduled end date for any of the following reasons, including, but not limited to:
- Academic misconduct
- Excessive Absences
- Misconduct in assigned duties
- Breach of the UCF Golden Rule (code of conduct)
- Lack of departmental or advisor funds
When applicable, supervisors may give student employees verbal and/or written warnings prior to ending a graduate assistantship appointment early.