Graduate Assistantships graphic

All applicants admitted to our graduate program are considered for a department assistantship on a competitive basis with other admitted applicants, depending on funds available each semester. No additional/separate application is needed to be considered.

If you must have funding to support your studies, you should have your application complete and processed before the International application deadlines. Funding decisions for fall semester are made the previous March.

The basic assistantship in the department is a one-half time appointment. However, due to budget stringencies, new graduate students are sometimes offered quarter-time assistantships with the understanding that successful effort will qualify them for one-half time appointments as soon as possible. A half-time assistantship carries with it the obligation to devote at least 20 hours per week in research duties over the duration of the student's program. Quarter-time assistantships are obliged to work 10 hours per week. Acceptable completion of assigned research tasks, rather than simply working a specified number of hours per week, constitutes a fulfillment of the assistantship obligation. Research assignments will be made by the student's major professor.

Students receiving a one-half time appointment will remain at that level of assistance for the duration of their program, assuming acceptable performance. As a rule, graduate assistants will be placed on full-time assistantship pay only when doing field work on a faculty member's research project that is not connected with the student's thesis research and when the student can demonstrate to his major professor and the DGS that he or she is making satisfactory progress towards fulfilling the assistantship obligation. Once such projects are completed, the student will revert to half-time status and stipend level.

Assistantships ordinarily are awarded on an annual basis. However, there is no guarantee that stipend payments will continue for the full year; acceptable performance of assistantship duties is always required. Each assistantship will be reviewed annually by the student's major professor and Advisory Committee, the Graduate Program Committee, and the Director of Graduate Studies. Annual renewal will be based upon acceptable performance of work responsibilities and academic progress. Subject to annual review, one-half time assistantships are renewable for a maximum total service of 24 months for M.S. students and 48 months for Ph.D. students when continuously enrolled at the University of Kentucky after initiating graduate study.

Half-time assistantship stipends are determined annually in each fiscal year and are paid on a 12-month basis. Rates are based on comparable salaries and are higher for Ph.D. students than for Masters students. All tuition, fees, and health insurance for the student are also covered through the research assistantship.