UC Davis graduate student teaching a course in front of a chalkboard

TA, AI_, GSR, and Reader Appointments

Student Academic Employment and Appointments

Student Academic Employment positions provide one of the largest sources for graduate student support. They also constitute an important aspect of graduate training under faculty guidance.

UC Davis offers several types of employment to graduate students providing financial support and exciting professional experiences in addition to opportunities for career development. Students earn a salary and, depending on the type of employment, may have all or part of their fees paid as a benefit. In addition, students in qualifying appointments may be eligible to receive child care reimbursement. Explore the pages listed below to learn more about student employment.

Graduate Student Academic Employment encompasses the following positions:

  • Graduate Student Researcher
  • A Graduate Student Researcher (title code 3282) is a full-time registered UC Davis graduate student appointed to assist in performing research under the direction of a ladder-rank faculty member or authorized Principal Investigator.  Graduate Student Researchers are selected for high achievement and promise as creative scholars; they may collaborate in the publication of research results as determined by supervising faculty members. Students must be registered in the previous spring quarter to be eligible for a summer GSR appointment. Incoming students may begin summer GSR prior to fall enrollment once they have submitted their Statement of Intent to Register.
  • Associate In__
  • The title Associate In __ (title code 1506) is assigned to a graduate student of excellent scholarship and teaching promise, who is temporarily employed as the instructor of an entire lower division course or group of students in a lower division course. An AI may instruct an upper division course, but only on the basis of a petition for exception to policy which has been approved by Academic Senate Committee on Courses. An AI should be competent to conduct instruction independently and without supervision. Master's degree or completion of 30 units of graduate work and one year teaching experience, including any time served as a TA are required to hold and AI position.
  • Teaching Assistant
  • A Teaching Assistant (title code 2310) is a full-time registered graduate student, chosen for excellent scholarship and teaching promise, serving an apprenticeship under the active tutelage and supervision of a regular faculty member. Teaching Assistant is not responsible for the instructional content of a course, for selection of student assignments, for planning of examinations, or for determining the term grade for students. The Teaching Assistant is responsible for the conduct of recitation, laboratory, or quiz sections under the active direction and supervision of a regular member of the faculty to whom final responsibility for the course's entire instruction, including the performance of Teaching Assistants, has been assigned. No student may serve as a Teaching Assistant (TA) in a course in which s/he is enrolled.
  • Reader
  • The title Reader (title code 2850) is given to a graduate or undergraduate student appointed for the ability to render diverse services as a "course assistant," which will normally include the grading of student papers and examinations. A Reader will not be assigned the responsibilities of leading discussion or laboratory sections. A student may not serve as a Reader in a course in which he or she is enrolled. Non-student appointments are reviewed on a case-by-case basis by Graduate Studies prior to employment
  • Tutor
  • The Tutor (title code 2860) works with individual students or small groups of students to assist them in their learning. Material covered may be topical in nature or related to a specific course. Tutors may keep regularly scheduled drop-in hours for student consultation and tutoring. Tutors do not grade tests, papers or other student assignments and do not work under the direct supervision of a faculty member. The title "Remedial Tutor" is used for appointments in the School of Law and the School of Medicine.

Eligibility and Restrictions

To be eligible for any academic appointment, graduate students:

  • Must be full-time enrolled UC Davis graduate students.
  • Must be in good academic standing (requires a grade-point average of at least 3.0 in academic work, fewer than 12 units of incomplete or no grades, and status within normative time and/or time to degree standards);
  • May work 15 academic quarters in teaching titles  (18 max by exception)
  • May work 18 academic quarters in a research title (21 max by exception)
  • Student employment is limited to 50% time during the academic quarter.
  • On a case-by-case basis students may work up to a maximum of 75% during the academic quarter with an exception that must be submitted to Graduate Studies for review and approval.
  • Students may work more than half time between quarters (including summer) without an exception.
  • Must provide evidence of employment eligibility (US Citizen, lawful Permanent Resident, eligible Visa status (J1, F1), Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA))

The above information provides the minimum qualifications for the various student research and teaching positions. Please note that these are minimum qualifications only. Individual departments may have unique needs for their discipline. Departments that wish to hire someone who does not meet the stated minimum qualifications must file a Petition for Exception to Policy with Graduate Studies. No offer of employment may be made nor employment begun unless and until the petition has been approved. These minimum qualifications are established by and at the sole discretion of the University of California.

For qualifications and applications procedures, please contact the appropriate departmental contact person. You may also wish to refer to Appendix IIB of the UC Davis Academic Policy Manual for further information regarding policies and procedures related to these positions.