Skip to main content

The Graduate College Handbook

for students, faculty and staff – August 2017

Chapter 8: Assistantships and Fellowships

There are many policies which govern assistantship and fellowship appointments, including those set by the Office of the Provost and other governing bodies on campus.  Because students are frequently also employees, they need to be aware of policies set by Academic Human Resources, and the University’s agreement with the Graduate Employee’s Organization (GEO). Students should consult and be familiar with campus policies set by the following units as they pertain to assistants and fellows.

Academic Human Resources – Administers University policies for employees, including graduate employees, hours of work, stipends and leaves.

Division of Research Safety – provides online training that is mandatory for all employees or students working in research labs that have or use biological, chemical, or radiological materials. This training should be completed within the first month of activity in such a lab.

Graduate Employee’s Organization (GEO/IFT/AFT/AFL-CIO) – recognized officially as the exclusive bargaining unit for all graduate assistants (GAs) and most teaching assistants (TAs). For assistants represented by GEO, wages, hours, terms and conditions of employment are included in their Agreement with the University of Illinois (PDF). Teaching assistants not represented in the bargaining unit include those whose assistantships are not waiver-generating, and teaching assistants who are teaching for the first time in one of the following units: Animal Biology, Biochemistry, Cell and Structural Biology, Chemistry, Germanic Languages and Literatures, Microbiology, Plant Biology, and Psychology.

Office of the Provost – requires that graduate teaching assistants attend training before beginning any teaching appointment. Before the start of classes, departments either conduct training programs for all new teaching assistants or require attendance at the Graduate Academy for College Teaching (which includes sessions about language and culture that meet the University's policy requirements for all non-native speakers of English before they teach in a University of Illinois classroom). For more information, see the Center for Teaching Excellence Web site.

University Ethics Office – administers an annual online ethics training program to all University of Illinois employees. The University of Illinois Ethics Office contacts students via their official University e-mail account during a pre-announced time period with individual login instructions for the training.

Vice President of Human Resources – administers an annual online Abused and Neglected Child Reporting Act (ANCRA) training program to all University of Illinois employees. The Vice President of Human Resources contacts all employees via their official University e-mail account during a pre-announced time period with individual login instructions for the training.