Graduate Student Instructor (GSI) Position Information

The Program in Biology coordinates the hiring of all GSI positions for the Biology, EEB, and MCDB courses that require teaching assistance.  

GSIs are hired for fall, winter, spring, and summer terms, and the applications open twice per year (in October for winter, in mid-February for fall, spring, and summer).

Graduate Student Instructor Application


Frequently Asked Questions:

Q:  What is the time frame for placement?  When will I find out if I received a position?

A:  Applications are open for 3-4 weeks.  After this time, faculty and staff work together to make first round matches.  Most of these are made within 30 days of the application close date.  The appointment process is rolling after this point (as graduate student commitments and undergraduate enrollments change) and is complete by the first day of classes.


Q:  I am a graduate student in an outside unit (i.e., not MCDB or EEB), can I apply for a position?

A:  Yes!  Biology hires many outside unit GSIs.  However, preference is given to in-unit students when making initial placements.


Q:  I was employed as a GSI last term, do I need to complete the application again to be considered for future terms?

A:  Yes.  Application data will be needed to make hiring decisions and facilitate the appointment process.


Q:  How do I find out more about the rights and responsibilities of GSIs?

A:  Review the Graduate Employees' Organization (GEO) contract!


Q:  I applied for a GSI position but I have received alternate funding (or am otherwise unable to teach), what should I do?

A:  Inform the Program in Biology immediately!  It is very important that the program fill these positions.  Poor communication (i.e., late withdrawal) will be communicated to the instructor and the department heads and may adversely impact your chances of being hired at a later date.


Q:  I received an email indicating I have been matched with a position!  What do I do next?

A:  You will need to check in with the Undergraduate Office to complete your hiring paperwork!  Some forms may be completed electronically, others will need to be signed in the office (1140 USB).


Q:  Tell me more about the position.

A.  The Program in Biology hires 70-100 GSIs each full term to assist instructors with various introductory and upper-level courses in the biological sciences (specifically BIOLOGY, EEB, and MCDB courses).  GSIs typically teach 2-3 sections of 20-30 students each.  The GSI will work closely with the instructor(s) on all facets of the course in order to help meet student needs.  Familiarity with the subject matter covered in the course is assumed. 

Full-term GSI positions are 50% effort. The anticipated workload is 16.5 -20 hours per week.  Specific weekly hour estimates for the courses hiring GSIs will be provided upon hire (or upon request during application process) in a separate “Fraction Calculation” form.

Required Qualifications include the following: graduate student in good standing in the University, an undergraduate degree in biological sciences or related field, enrollment in not less than six (6) credit graduate hours during employment term, acceptable English language skills (assistance is available), and eligibility to work in the U.S.

Selection Criteria will include: - Relevant academic preparation for teaching the course material - Extent of prior instructional experience - Relevance to graduate training