Funding & Employment

Teaching Assitantship (TA) Hiring Process in the School of Engineering

The selection and appointment of TAs in the School of Engineering (SOE) will follow the procedures outlined in the prevailing Collective Agreement with CUPE 3913, Unit 1, and as summarized here: 
  • Assessment of TA Applications
  • The Graduate Student Job Security Period (JSP)
In the event of a discrepancy between this document and the Collective Agreement, the Collective Agreement shall be considered the final authority.

Guiding principles

TAs are essential to support the delivery of our undergraduate programs. They are selected to provide undergraduate students with the best learning experiences possible. GTA work assignments also provide graduate students with employment and experience performing teaching-related duties. The assignment of Teaching Assistantships is a complex and dynamic process in the School of Engineering due to the large number of undergraduate courses and applicants for the posted work assignments. The aim is to make the process as transparent, fair and efficient as possible. All faculty and TAs are encouraged to contact the Associate Director of Undergraduate Studies with any questions about this process.

Composition of the TA Hiring Committee

This committee is composed of the Associate Director of Undergraduate Studies, one or more Area Heads, and one or more staff members including the Engineering Program Assistant. As the SOE values diverse input to the hiring process, the committee will include representation from one or more designated group (women, racialized people, indigenous people, members of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender or queer communities, or persons with disabilities). As subject matter experts, course instructors provide assistance in identifying the required and preferred qualifications of their course and evaluating the qualifications of applicants relative to the required and preferred qualifications included in the job posting.  

TA Hiring Process

  1. Level of Consideration. First, possible work assignments will be identified for engineering students who are still within their Job Security Period (Level 1 applicants). For Level 1 applicants, a work assignment in this period was included as part of the Offer of Admission. No assignment will be made to a Level 1 applicant unless they meet the required qualifications. Next, Level 2 applicants who are still within their prescribed program period (6 semesters for Masters students and 12 semesters for PhD students) will be considered for work assignments totalling up to a maximum of 140 hours. 
  2. Required Qualifications. The onus is on the applicant to demonstrate qualifications. It is not sufficient for the applicant to state that they meet the qualifications; it is necessary for the applicant to explain how they meet the qualifications and provide additional supporting evidence to the extent possible. Within each Level of Consideration, candidates must meet the required qualifications provided in the job posting to be given further consideration for a work assignment. Previous experience teaching a course may not be sufficient to demonstrate qualifications and should not be considered to give an applicant priority over other applicants. Given the number of available work assignments, the School is not always able to offer work to all qualified applicants.
  3. Preferred Qualifications. The qualifications of applicants, who meet the minimum job requirements, will then be evaluated against the preferred qualifications, to identify the most qualified applicant(s).  Again, it is critical that candidates demonstrate and provide evidence, to the extent possible, of how they meet the posted qualifications of each work assignment to which they apply. Applicants are encouraged to provide contact information for at least two references as evidence of subject area knowledge, teaching experience and other qualifications. Applicants may be invited for an interview. 
  4. Preferences and Coverage of All Required Work Assignments. In all cases of TA hiring decisions, the School strives to ensure the best fit of TA qualifications with the pedagogical needs of the course and operational needs of the School. At the same time, the School strives to maximize preference-satisfaction of applicants. To this end, the selection committee takes into consideration, where possible, the candidate’s expressed interest in the course as determined by the preference for the work assignment that the applicant indicates on the application. Applicants are encouraged to indicate an order of preference for their top 3 or 4 courses (i.e. preference cannot be considered if an applicant gives multiple courses the same rank). While every effort is made to match preferences to courses, the School is unable to meet all preference requests.
  5. Seniority. Seniority is considered only when candidates within the same Level of Consideration are demonstrably equal. 
  6. Consider Me For All. If there are no qualified Level 1 or Level 2 applicants for a particular work assignment, applicants who selected “consider me for all” will be considered. 
  7. Level 3 Applicants. If there are no qualified Level 1 or Level 2 applicants, candidates who have exceeded the prescribed program period for their program of study will be considered; 
  8. Next, qualified candidates who have already been assigned 140 h of work, may be considered. 
  9. Once all qualified engineering applicants have been considered, candidates applying outside their home department may be considered. 
  10. If there are no qualified applicants for a work assignment, the work assignment will be re-posted if there is sufficient time. If the work assignment cannot be re-posted, the committee will access any applications currently on file. If there are none, the work assignment will be assigned to another person deemed suitable.  

Other Information

Candidates need to apply for TA work assignments using the TA/Sessional hiring website. The onus is on the applicant to contact the School if a confirmation email is not received upon submission of an application. Only candidates who apply, before the posted deadline, will be considered for a TAship.  To be eligible for a TAship, candidates must be a registered student during the term of the work assignment. Applicants who have successfully completed their program or who have a scheduled defense, will be removed from the pool of applicants. Students who are guaranteed a TA (Level 1) for a particular semester must apply to at least one posting AND identify themselves as Level 1.  
After the deadline for applications, the Engineering Program Assistant will provide the hiring committee and instructors with access to the applications and CVs.  The applications will be the primary source of information and the CV (and documents appended to the CV file) will be used to verify and supplement the content of the applications. Applications will first be reviewed to determine whether each applicant has the required qualifications for the work assignment. If a required qualification is not met or is not evident in the application, the applicant will be removed from the pool of candidates for the work assignment and will not be further assessed. The preferred qualifications of applicants meeting all of the required qualifications will be scored and an overall score for each candidate will be calculated. 
A TA appointment usually spans 14 weeks - 12 weeks of classes plus preparation and/or examination time. Graduate students should consult their class (and other) schedules before making their applications. In general, applicants are responsible for ensuring that they will be available to TA for the courses to which they apply. Note that TA duties for a course will typically include invigilating final exams, as well as giving labs, seminars, grading, etc.; students should, therefore, not normally apply to TA for a course which has labs/seminars or final exam which they cannot attend.
If an offer for a TAship has not been accepted by the specified deadline, the work assignment will be offered to next most qualified applicant. At the beginning of each semester a TA has been awarded, the awardee will meet with the faculty/individual(s) responsible for the course/service(s) to complete an Assignment of Work Agreement form outlining the expected distribution of effort. 
The salary of TAs includes a 4% payment in lieu of vacation time. Other leaves of absence from TA work assignments are described in the agreement with CUPE 3913, Unit 1.
[Updated – June 6, 2019]

Graduate Settlement

Graduate Settlement is a form on WebAdvisor that graduate students must complete every semester to indicate if they will be paying their tuition and fees using either payroll deduction, departmental trust fund, or awards. If students are unsure about the source of funding, contact Graduate Program Assistant at before submitting the Graduate Settlement. Students paying their account personally in full do not need to complete the Graduate Settlement process.

Further information regarding Graduate Settlement can be found on Student Financial Services website. Please watch the video for help with completing the Graduate Settlement.

Selecting Payroll Deduction

If graduate students receive Graduate Research Assistantship (GRA) or Graduate Teaching Assistantship (GTA) payment, students may choose to pay their tuition fees through payroll deductions, with departmental approval. Students who wish to pay their tuition using payroll deductions must complete graduate settlement every semester before the deadlines.

After selecting payroll deduction, monitor both WebAdvisor (Account View) and e-pay stubs; there should be a bi-weekly payment towards tuition as a result of a deduction to your pay.

Selecting Awards

Even though scholarship/award funds may already appear on the student account, students must select ‘Award Payment’ on the Graduate Settlement if it is their intent to use those funds to pay tuition.


New Graduate Students

Students receiving a GRA or GTA payment must submit required documents to Human Resources (HR) in order to be paid through Payroll.

SOE HR will contact you for further information by emailing to your GryphMail ( Please read the email carefully.


E-Pay Statement

As a university employee, you can access your own pay statement(s) using your central login and password via Electronic Pay Statement Portal. Further information about how to access your own pay statement can be found on Human Resources website.