Departmental Support

Financial assistance is available for graduate teaching assistants (GTA) and for graduate research assistants (GRA).  A GTA handles laboratory sections, grades papers, or performs other assigned instructional duties.  A GRA is compensated to conduct supervised research, which generally relates to the student’s thesis or dissertation research.

A full-time GTA or GRA is equivalent to approximately twenty (20) hours per week of assigned duties during the academic year.  Part-time service is compensated in accordance with expected hourly effort. 

Graduate assistants must be degree seeking, and must registered as full-time students (9 credits each fall and spring semester, and 2 credits each summer session) during the period of appointment.  

Approximately 50% of all graduate students receive assistantships. Students who are registered for nine credits with a qualifying assistantship are entitled to a significantly reduced tuition rate, in addition to a monthly paycheck. The minimum compensation (established annually by the Board of Regents, and currently set at $3,830 for a 10 hour per week assistantship) must be awarded in each semester to qualify for reduced tuition. For an out of state Master's student, the value of a 20-hour per week assistantship with tuition reduction is approximately $25,000 for the academic year. Ph.D. stipends are typically higher. Additional summer support may also be available.  

You will be automatically considered for research assistantship support based on information provided on your application. No further application materials are required. Financial awards are primarily granted to research students who begin enrollment in the fall. Graduate students wishing to be considered for financial assistance should submit their application and all required admission documents by February 15.

Graduate assistants under state contract are subject to institutional policies set forth in the Faculty/Staff Handbook. Research assistants are required to sign an “ Employee Agreement to Disclose Inventions” form. Teaching assistants are required to sign a “Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act Compliance Sheet”.

Contact your prospective Academic Department to find out what they might offer in terms of assistantships, fellowships, and hourly pay. 


Graduate Education Office

South Dakota School of Mines & Technology
501 East St. Joseph St.
Chemistry Building,
Room 2201
Rapid City, SD 57701-3995

Phone: (605) 355-3468
Fax: (605) 394-1767
E-mail Graduate Education