Eligibility Policies

Student eligibility

Op3.16-1 Graduate Assistantship Eligibility

  1. To be eligible for a graduate assistantship, a student must be admitted to a graduate program at Missouri State University. A minimum GPA of 3.00 on the undergraduate cumulative, last 60 hours, or graduate cumulative (minimum of 9 hours) is required. In very rare circumstances an exception may be made to the 3.00 GPA requirement. Requests for exceptions are to be made to the Dean of the Graduate College by the unit wishing to hire the student as graduate assistant. Personnel Action Forms for graduate assistants not meeting eligibility requirements should not be submitted unless approval to do so has been given by the Dean of the Graduate College.
  2. A graduate assistant is required to complete a minimum of 6 hours of graduate course work (600-800 level) during the fall semester and 6 hours of graduate level coursework during the spring semester. A student may hold an assistantship in the summer without being enrolled in coursework, as long as they are registered for the subsequent fall semester. A graduate assistant may enroll in as few as one credit hour during the final semester of their graduate program as long as they have applied to graduate and the reduced course load is sufficient to graduate. Audited classes do not count toward the required minimum credits. Dropping classes mid-semester may endanger the student’s eligibility in retaining the GA position.
  3. Graduate assistants must maintain a 3.00 GPA to continue eligibility.
  4. Given Human Resources guidelines and the time commitment to successfully complete a program of graduate study and effectively execute assistantship responsibilities, graduate students who hold full-time assistantships (20 hours per week) are not eligible for additional work on campus. If there are occasional special opportunities that involve additional university compensation, requests for exceptions can be made to the Dean of the Graduate College.
  5. The number of academic semesters a student may hold an assistantship is limited (summer assistantships do not count toward maximums). A student admitted only to a graduate certificate program may hold an assistantship for two academic semesters. A student in a master's degree program may hold an assistantship for a maximum of four academic semesters. A student in a doctoral program (other than the PsyD), an MFA, or the MS in Counseling is eligible for six academic semesters of assistantship support, and a student in the PsyD is eligible for eight semesters of support. A student who is pursuing a second graduate program at the same level is eligible for half the number of semesters of assistantship support associated with that second program. Students must graduate from the first program and be admitted to the second program for additional eligibility. Students pursuing a second graduate degree at an advanced level are not subject to these restrictions.

International student eligibility

Op3.16-2 International Students/Foreign National Employees

Eligibility to hold Teaching Assistantship

In accordance with RSMo § 170.012, graduate students who have not lived in the United States and/or did not receive both their primary and secondary education where English was the primary language must receive a cultural orientation, successfully complete one semester of graduate studies at Missouri State University, and demonstrate proficient use of English required in a classroom setting in order to qualify for graduate assistantships with teaching assignments at Missouri State University. Specific procedures for meeting these requirements are provided by the Graduate College.

Department and unit eligibility

Op3.16-3 Department/Unit Eligibility

  1. Budget allocations for graduate assistantships are reflected in each department’s/unit’s 632 budget line. In January of each year, the Graduate Dean will send a notice to academic departments/colleges to give them an opportunity to request additional graduate teaching assistant funds (beyond their 632 budget line) to support their summer school programs. A relatively small number of summer graduate teaching assistantships are available compared to those supported in the academic year.
  2. Prior to the department completing an electronic BearPAF (Personnel Action Form) for a graduate assistant and submitting to the Graduate College for processing, each department/unit should determine that sufficient funds are available in its 632 budget line. If sufficient funds are not in the 632 budget line to cover an assistantship, funds may be transferred to the 632 budget line from another account. Additional funds may be required to cover the fee waiver (see Fee Waiver Costs). Funds cannot be transferred from the 632 budget line to other accounts without written approval from the Graduate Dean.