California Occupational Guides

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Summary Guide for

Graduate Teaching Assistants in Los Angeles County

May also be called: Graduate Assistants; Graduate Research Assistants; Research Assistants; and Teaching Assistants

What Would I Do?

Graduate Teaching Assistants are graduate students who help faculty members or other instructional staff at postsecondary educational institutions by teaching or performing teaching-related duties. These duties include preparing and assigning course materials and developing and administering quizzes and exams.

The position of Graduate Teaching Assistant is offered through the graduate studies program at private or public colleges or universities. Graduate Teaching Assistants work in classrooms, department offices, field locations, or laboratories. Their workweek usually consists of no more than 20 hours. However, at times those who are doing research may work longer hours due to grant proposal deadlines.

Will This Job Fit Me?

The job of Graduate Teaching Assistant may appeal to those who enjoy assisting, communicating with, and instructing people. In addition, this occupation may also be a good choice for an individual who prefers following set procedures and routines.

What Wages and Benefits Can I Expect?

Graduate Teaching Assistant wages vary by postsecondary educational institutions. Some may earn college credits/units instead of receiving wages. While other Graduate Teaching Assistants may receive a yearly salary for the duration of their graduate career.

Health and dental benefits offered to Graduate Teaching Assistants may vary among educational institutions. However, since they are students, a student health service fee is usually included with their paid tuition.

What is the Job Outlook?

Even though college tuition may fluctuate and programs may be cut, there should still be increased job opportunities for Graduate Teaching Assistants. However, there also has to be a need and available funding through the academic departments for Graduate Teaching Assistants.

How Do I Qualify?

A bachelor's degree is the minimum educational level that postsecondary educational institutions will consider for a position as a Graduate Teaching Assistant. Other requirements include enrollment in a graduate degree program at the institution in the student's field of study and a minimum of a 3.0 grade point average. The student must also be registered in 6 to 12 units. Advanced computer skills may also be vital to the success of the Graduate Teaching Assistant.

Finding a Job

Direct application to the California State University or University of California campuses websites remains one of the most effective job search methods. Job openings can also be found through private colleges or university campuses websites. Online job opening systems include JobCentral at and CalJOBSSM at

To find your nearest One-Stop Career Center, go to Service Locator. View the helpful job search tips for more resources. (requires Adobe Reader).

Learn More About Graduate Teaching Assistants