Graduate Research Assistant Program

Graduate Research Assistant Program

2024 Winter/Spring Quarter

The Graduate Research Assistant Program offers graduate students an opportunity to work closely with faculty on a research project or creative activity that is related to the students' academic studies/pursuits. Student assistants should not be used as general clerical help or as teaching assistants. Students will work either 100 or 200 hours per quarter under the direction of a faculty member.


All CDM full-time faculty, including those on research leave, are eligible to apply for graduate research assistants through this program. Graduate assistants can be assigned to either individual faculty members, or two or more faculty who are collaborating on a project or activity. The faculty member and a pre-selected graduate student must apply together.

All graduate students in the Jarvis College of Computing and Digital Media who are pursuing a MS, MA, or MFA and have completed all Introductory/Foundation Courses where indicated in their declared program are eligible to apply. PhD students who receive no other funding are also eligible to apply. Graduate students who participate in this program may not work on externally-funded projects. Students must be in good standing and have at least a 3.0 GPA at the time of the application. Tuition waivers may only be used for CDM courses required for the degree.

Selection Criteria

The CDM selection committee includes members of the CDM Research committee and an Associate Dean. The selection committee will evaluate the proposal and provide recommendations for funding to the Dean. The number of proposals that will be approved at each application cycle depends on the available funding. Awards notifications will be sent to faculty and graduate students by the deadline posted on this page.

Evaluation criteria will include:

  • Equitable distribution of available assistantships across schools and faculty.
  • The student’s qualifications for Research Assistant work.
  • The value of the research project itself.
  • The project's potential to provide real involvement and positive learning outcomes for the Graduate Research Assistant.
  • Special consideration will be given to first-time faculty applications and applications by untenured tenure-track faculty.

Additionally, as part of CDM commitment to enhance and strengthen diversity, equity and inclusion in CDM programs and initiatives, higher priority for a subset of graduate assistantships will be given to

  • proposals involving
    • graduate students in historically underrepresented groups, including, but not limited to, LGBTQ students and students of racial and ethnic minorities (African American, Asian/Pacific Islander, Latinx or Hispanic, Native American/Alaskan Native), or
    • graduate students who have demonstrated commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion; and
  • proposals that contribute to initiatives aiming to increase inclusiveness and social justice.


All applications for 2024 Winter/Spring funding must be received by 5pm on November 15th, 2023.

A faculty member may apply for a Graduate Research Assistant for 1 or 2 quarters by completing the faculty application form on MyCDM. Once the application form is submitted, the student will receive an email with a link to the student application form. Both faculty and student application forms must be submitted before the deadline.

For more information, please contact Raffaella Settimi, CDM Associate Dean.


Graduate Assistants will be compensated as follows:

  • Part-time graduate assistantships will consist of
    • Tuition waiver (i.e. scholarship) for one four-credit hour CDM course required for their degree.
    • A stipend, paid through Payroll, corresponding to 100 hours of work. This will be paid biweekly.
  • Full-time graduate assistantships will consist of
    • Tuition waivers (i.e. scholarship) for two four-credit CDM hour course required for their degree.
    • A stipend, paid through Payroll, corresponding to 200 hours of work. This will be paid biweekly.
  • Stipends and tuition waivers are not available for the summer quarter and the December intersession.


  • Deadline for applications: November 15th, 2023.
  • Notifications to faculty by December 7th, 2023.

At the end of the Spring quarter, the faculty member evaluates the performance and progress made by the student using the faculty evaluation form. The Student evaluates the graduate research experience using the student evaluation form. All evaluations must be submitted by June 30th, 2024. Failure to submit the evaluations may result in the faculty member being ineligible for applying to this program in the future.