Graduate Teaching Assistantships
Applicants for admission to the three programs in English--Master of Arts (MA), Master of Science (MS), and Master of Fine Arts (MFA)--may apply for a teaching assistantship, an academic appointment made on a competitive basis. TAs are only awarded to new, incoming students and are only available for students who plan to begin their graduate work in the fall semester.
English Department TAs receive an annual stipend of $9,000 for MA and MS and $11,000 for MFA. In addition, TAs qualify for Graduate Student Support Plan (GSSP) benefits which cover payment of tuition at either an in- or out-of-state rate in the first year, in-state rate in the second year and health insurance. Although tuition is paid in full, the arrangement does not cover university fees.
University and Department Definitions and Expectations
Teaching Assistantships at NCSU are defined by the Graduate School as one-half-time appointments. The workload in English thus averages about 20 hours per week. This time may be somewhat lighter in the first year, when TAs are beginning their training and assisting other instructors, and heavier in the second year, when they may be teaching classes of their own.
The assignment of courses TAs will teach or assist in depends on departmental need. The majority of TAs in the department are trained in the First-Year Writing Program to teach composition (ENG 101). They assist 101 faculty in the first year and teach their own sections in the second year.
TAs in Linguistics and Film Studies concentrations and TAs in the MFA and MS programs may be assigned to teach composition or to assist with courses in their respective fields.
Graduate Student Support Plan (GSSP)
All TAs are limited to two years by the terms of the Graduate Student Support Plan (GSSP). TAs may take summer classes, but those who do pay their own tuition. Health insurance, however, remains in force during the first two summers.
It is very important for out-of-state students to begin the process of establishing NC residency early in their first semester. Otherwise, they'll be responsible for paying the difference between in-state and out-of-state tuition. For the rules regarding NC state residency, see: Graduate Handbook, Chapter 4.6, "Establishing Residency" at http://www.ncsu.edu/grad/handbook/index.htm.
TAs must maintain a full-time load in order to remain eligible for GSSP. In the first 3 semesters, full-time is 9 hours or more. In the 4th and final semester, TAs may enroll in fewer than 9 hours if that's all they need to complete the degree (3 hours at minimum). Here is a helpful visual: GSSP Eligibility At A Glance Chart.
For more information on the GSSP, see: http://www.ncsu.edu/grad/support-plan/