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For more information, please contact us at:

Environmental Studies Program
Jeannette Rankin Hall 106A
The University of Montana
Missoula, MT 59812-4320
Tel: (406) 243-6273
Fax: (406) 243-6090

Environmental Studies Graduate Teaching Assistantships

Environmental Studies has a limited number of teaching assistantships to award annually to first- and second-year Masters students. For first year students, we currently offer three full year TAs in Environmental Studies, and another four full year positions through the English department. For second year students, we currently offer two full-year Environmental Studies TAs, which are often divided to fund four students.

Duties of Teaching Assistants

The duties of a teaching assistantship vary greatly. Environmental Studies/ENGLISH TAs teach a section of English Composition (WRIT 101--a 3-credit course) each semester for a year. Environmental Studies/ENGLISH TAs attend a week-long orientation before fall term begins; enroll in WRIT 540, a 3-credit graduate course in fall semester; and attend monthly meetings during spring semester. For more information on Environmental Studies/ENGLISH TA's, see Environmental Studies TAs are assigned to assist one Environmental Studies faculty member with an Environmental Studies course each semester. Typical duties of an Environmental Studies TA are leading discussions and grading papers. Because we seek to spread the wealth as widely (albeit sometimes thinly) as possible, students who receive TAs in their first year rarely receive one in their second year.

Full year teaching assistantships (two semesters) receive a full tuition waiver. This does not include approximately $1,250 (the amount varies from year to year) in student fees each semester that cannot be waived. That amount includes approximately $700 for health insurance. Half year teaching assistantships (one semester) adjust accordingly. You must enroll for at least nine (9) credits each semester.

Applying for a TA - First-Year Students

Check the lines on the Environmental Studies Application form if you wish to be considered for a TA and include the requested writing sample for an English TA. No samples are required for an Environmental Studies TA - your application materials will be used to review your qualifications.

Criteria for First-Year TA Selection

Assistantships are used to help recruit first-year students, especially out-of-state students for whom the tuition waiver accompanying the assistantship is especially valuable. In general, the committee looks for all-round excellence in first-year TAs. To assign a first-year student to teach an English composition class, the faculty looks closely at the student's writing ability as demonstrated in the application through the writing examples, GRE scores, and college transcripts.

Applying for a TA for the second year

Students submit an application to the Environmental Studies office in the spring semester, typically April 15th. Applications must include a plan of study for the next academic year with the number of credits planned and expected graduation date; a statement indicating the course you wish to assist (to be announced) and why you are qualified; and names of two references.

In addition to TAs, many of our second-year students are partially supported by awards and grants.