Institutional Policy: E-31

Graduate Teaching Assistant (GTA)
November 13, 2014

E 31-1. Authority

W. Va. Code § 18B-1-6

E 31-2. Purpose of GTA Program

The purpose of the Graduate Teaching Assistant (“GTA”) program is to enhance educational opportunities and training for West Virginia School of Osteopathic Medicine (“WVSOM”) students in a selected discipline.

E 31-3. Administration of the Program and Line of Authority


The overall GTA program is administered through the office of the Vice President for Academic Affairs and Dean, whose responsibility is, through the Associate Deans, to assure the proper handling of the applications, a fair and appropriate selection process, the review of individual selection, and a review of the program itself.  The GTA selection process shall be conducted in accordance with WVSOM’s procedure on the GTA program.


GTAs will report to the GTA Program Director of their relevant discipline.  The GTA Program Director will report to the appropriate Department Chairperson, who will report to the appropriate Associate Dean regarding all aspects of the GTA Programs in his or her area of responsibility.

E 31-4. Schedule

The GTA program will consist of 52 weeks of service, which will begin during the student’s Year 3 and will be allocated over two consecutive years under WVSOM’s academic calendar, resulting in the student’s Year 3 being extended over a two year period.  The schedule for weeks of service will be determined by the academic needs of WVSOM and the discipline to which the GTA will be assigned, in conjunction with the needs of the student and Office of Predoctoral Clinical Education for scheduling of rotations during the 52 weeks of the student’s Year 3 that are not spent as part of the GTA program.

E 31-5. Duties and Responsibilities


Each GTA Program Director will review all duties and responsibilities for each GTA under his or her supervision during the first week of the student’s GTA service.  Each GTA will have a number of assigned duties in his or her discipline, including assisting in the planning and presentation of the discipline; tutoring students in that discipline; and other duties as assigned by the GTA Program Director.  In addition, the GTA may be requested to support educational needs of general educational programs within WVSOM that cross disciplines.  Requests for such additional assignments will be made to the appropriate GTA Program Director.  The GTA Program Director will then consult with the appropriate Associate Dean and the GTAs involved determining if such an assignment may be accommodated within the needs of the individual programs.


All GTAs will adhere to all WVSOM policies and procedures and will be held to the highest standard of professional behavior.

E 31-6. GTA Job Support and Benefits


Each GTA will be provided with resources necessary to complete his or her assigned duties, such as a desk, institutional computer, telephone, access to printer and copying, etc.


Each GTA will be provided the following financial benefits:


payroll stipend for the 24 months of the student’s Year 3;


tuition and fee waiver for the 24 months of the student’s Year 3, and for 12 months of the student’s Year 4; and


educational stipend (travel) at a rate to be determined by the relevant Department Chairperson, when budgetary resources allow.


No employee benefits, such as health or disability insurance, participation in retirement funds, accrued vacation or sick time, etc., will be provided.


Benefits provided to GTAs are contingent on satisfactory performance of the GTAs in their position.  If the GTA withdraws or is released from the GTA program, all tuition and fee waivers will cease immediately.  Repayment of tuition and fee waivers and salary may be required, as described below.


GTAs will receive no additional or substitution of academic credit.  GTAs shall not graduate prior to completion of the 52 weeks of GTA service.  It is the GTA’s responsibility to ensure that all requirements for graduation are met prior to graduation.

E 31-7. GTA Performance Reviews and Termination of GTA Contract


The GTA Program Director will conduct a job performance review after every 26 weeks of the GTA’s service, and provide a written copy of the job performance review to the GTA, Department Chairperson, appropriate Associate Dean, and Vice President for Academic Affairs and Dean.  A copy shall be kept in a locked file in the appropriate Department Chairperson’s office. The job performance review shall include the GTA Program Director’s recommendation as to continuation or termination of the GTA contract.


If recommendation is made for termination of the GTA contract, the reasons for the recommendation must be clearly documented, with documentation that an appropriate improvement plan has been tried, if appropriate.  The GTA may appeal the recommendation for termination of the GTA contract to the Vice President for Academic Affairs and Dean.  After due consideration and additional investigation if necessary, the decision whether to terminate or continue the GTA contract shall rest with the Vice President for Academic Affairs and Dean. The decision of the Vice President for Academic Affairs and Dean is final.

E 31-8. Withdrawal or Dismissal from the GTA Program


Student request for early withdrawal.  A student who desires to be released from the GTA program prior to its completion must first receive written approval from his or her GTA Program Director.  The student must then provide a letter to the Vice President for Academic Affairs and Dean, giving specific details of reasons for his or her request for withdrawal.  Full repayment of waived tuition and fees is required for the semester in which the withdrawal occurs.


Dismissal.  A student may be dismissed from the GTA program at any time based on academic deficiencies, student unprofessional conduct, or poor job performance.  Full repayment of tuition and fees is required for the semester in which the dismissal occurs.


If a GTA withdraws or is dismissed from the GTA program, graduation shall be determined based on satisfactory completion of all requirements for graduation.