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Hiring RA and TA Positions (ASE's)
Academic Student Employees

Who's Covered?
- Specific Occupation Codes

In general, our departmental TAs and RAs will be covered by the union contract as employees if they meet the following criteria:

  • The student's compensation is given in return for work performed for the University that gives the University (or the Grant) economic benefit
  • There are specific work products or work assignments
Who's Not Covered?
  - Specific Occupation Codes
Assigning a student paid on a training grant to a job code in the bargaining unit may jeopardize funding from grant sponsor.

Fellows and Trainees are typically not covered.

If there are no specific work assignments or work products required (i.e. a service expectancy), or if they are working less than 110 hours in a year or the work is done as part of the student's academic training and conveys no economic value to the University, the student is not considered an ASE and is therefore not covered by the Collective Bargaining Agreement.

This group will normally include all trainees paid on our department's training grants but does not preclude the requirement to be covered under the contract if there is a determination of a service requirement to the position. PI's should keep documentation on file as to how determination is made and be clear with the trainee about the distinctions of service vs. training program requirements, as in many cases students are working closely together and will have questions as to what the differences are.

If there are any questions as to whether the work being performed is part of a traineeship or required as part of the work on a research project, contact
Posting and Notification Requirements
  • ASE positions must be posted for at least a week before a selection can be made. (RA positions where faculty select a student with whom they have a formal mentor relationship (committee member, advisor), do not need to meet this requirement.)
  • The chosen ASE candidate must be given a 30 day "notice of selection". (There are exceptions to this in emergencies.) This should be in the form of an offer letter. See offer letter template below.
  • The chosen ASE candidate must have at least one week to accept or reject the offer.
  • 3 weeks before the appointment begins, the ASE must be presented with the "complete job duties" for the position containing more detailed information than the job description in the original announcement.
Appointment Terms and Conditions
  • Standard work load for a 50% ASE is limited to 220 hours during the 3 month academic quarter (i.e. 20 hours per week for 11 weeks).
  • Since an ASE is paid for 12 weeks, but is limited to working 11 weeks worth of hours, 1 week is considered as vacation pay.  (The actual days taken as vacation are negotiable between the ASE and supervisor, but vacation time does not count toward the 220 hour work limit.)
  • Leave, including sick leave, accrues at the rate of 7 days per FTE per year.  A 50% position would accrue 28 hours over the course of a year  (equivalent to 7 4-hour days).  A 25% position would accrue 14 hours over the course of a year  (equivalent to 7 2-hour days).  Leave taken does count toward the 220 hour work limit.
  • All work hours, vacation and accrued leave for an ASE working less than 50% will be pro-rated.
  • ASEs are not required to work during the break between quarters.

    If faculty need an RA to work more hours they should request an extra hourly appointment for the student.  (If more budgetary support is needed for a TA position, please consult the department chair.)
  • Overtime pay rules will apply if  work exceeds 40 hours in a week.
  • If the faculty member needs the student to work prior to the start of a quarter, the term of employment may be adjusted.
Pay Schedules

In planning for budgets, please consult the rates:

Requesting an exception to the pay range maximum for student employees:

Detailed Contract Information



Requesting a Position
If the position will not be paid on an HSERV budget or the student employee will be working more than 50% FTE, please review the policy at:
Student Employment - Employer Responsibility
For positions paid on an HSERV budget, complete the appropriate request form below. STEP 2:
Send the completed form as an attachment in an email to

When the form is reviewed, the Chair's office will notify you of the status of your request.  If approved, the position will need to be advertised on the web.

Advertising a Position
Faculty supervising RA or TA positions should familiarize themselves with the information on the department RA/TA employee information page.

Prepare a draft of the position announcement including the closing date and email it to

We will circulate the position announcement on the appropriate email lists and will post it on the department web site along with the application forms and general RA/TA employee information.

Candidates should return applications for RA and TA positions to:
Making an Offer
Once the closing date passes and a candidate is chosen, the ad will be removed from the department web site.  The person hiring the position will need to complete the offer letter below and send a copy to the candidate at least 30 day prior to the start of the position. STEP 6:
The candidate has at least one week to accept the offer.  Once the candidate signs and returns the letter, it should be forwarded to Lynne Hamilton, who will begin to process the payroll documents.