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Education Policy Doctoral Program

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    General Information

    For most students in the doctoral program, international and domestic, the primary source of on-campus support is graduate assistantships. These pay Education Policy students for working on research projects and for teaching relevant courses. Included in an assistantship is a salary (stipend) and tuition credit. There are no guarantees about receiving this kind of support as a by-product of admission.

    Assistantship Benefits

    • Salary (stipend) paid every two weeks
    • Medical Insurance – Graduate Student Medical Plan. Students holding a fall and spring appointment, have insurance coverage for the entire academic year.
    • Tuition waiver of up to 9 credits per semester employed
    • Out of State Tuition waiver (for out of state and international students) for credits taken above 9 per semester of employment (fall and spring) or up to 5 per summer semester of same academic year. Students with Fall and Spring appointments in an academic year, are also given an out of state waiver for summer semester, even if not employed during summer.
    • Note: fees are not covered by a graduate assistantship, they are the student’s responsibility to pay.

    Work Requirements and Compensation

    • Appointments for fall semester begin on August 16 and end December 31, spring appointments begin January 1 and end May 15. Summer appointments may vary in length, but a full summer appointment runs from May 16 to August 15.
    • Graduate assistantships vary from quarter-time to half-time. For each quarter-time appointment, the assistantship holder is required to provide an average of 10 hours per week over the course of the appointment period. A half-time appointment requires an average of 20 hours per week over the appointment period.
    • Stipends depend on percentage of time and level of assistantship, which is based on prior academic background and semesters of experience in a related assistantship.


    International teaching assistants must satisfy a specific English proficiency requirement, the details of which can be reviewed online at the Graduate School.

    How to Apply

    After being admitted to the program, a student needs to examine the assistantship opportunities that exist at a College of Education graduate assistantship website. Apply directly to the specified employer stating your qualifications and your desire to fill the particular opening. Hiring decisions are worked out between each employer and the students who apply. All Teaching Assistantships are governed by the Graduate Employees Union (GEU) and the GEU contract.

The MSU Controller's Office maintains an up-to-date website that outlines all tuition and fee schedules for the university.