Appointment of Ph.D. Teaching Fellow: Policies and Procedures


The appointment of dissertation-stage Ph.D. students as Ph.D. Teaching Fellows is intended to benefit both the students and the Robinson College of Business. The Ph.D. student is provided with an additional teaching-related credential on the resume, and income beyond that which would be received for teaching as a GTA. The College gets a commitment from competent instructors (who are “AQ” for AACSB accreditation purposes) to staff courses for two semesters, as opposed to the semester-to-semester commitment of GTA appointments.

Criteria for Awarding a Ph.D. Teaching Fellow Appointment

A Ph.D. student appointed as a Ph.D. Teaching Fellow must meet the following criteria:

  1. Demonstration of superior academic standing; for example, a GPA of 3.5 or above.
  2. Completion of dissertation proposal defense.
  3. Completion, on a timely basis, of all requirements for the Ph.D. degree to date and any other evidence of the necessary self discipline to have a high probability of completing the dissertation during the year of appointment. To be eligible for appointment as a Ph.D. Teaching Fellow, a Ph.D. student’s time elapsed from successful completion of the most recent comprehensive exam to completion of the Ph.D. Teaching Fellow appointment year cannot exceed three (3) years.
  4. Demonstration of satisfactory classroom teaching ability, as indicated by consistently good ratings on the Student Evaluation of Instructor Profile administered for at least two class sections taught as a GTA.
  5. Background of teaching in some area of the Robinson College of Business where there is a projected shortage of instructors to staff scheduled course offerings during the period of appointment.
  6. Not be engaged in any other employment.

The RCB academic unit in which the Ph.D. student is being appointed must meet the following criterion:

  1. Demonstrate the need for the appointment in order to be able to staff scheduled course offerings during the coming academic year.

Terms of Appointment as Ph.D. Teaching Fellow

A Ph.D. Teaching Fellow is appointed for one academic year. This appointment period of two semesters may begin either with the fall semester or the spring semester. If the appointment begins at spring semester, it will be continued through fall semester of the same calendar year (excluding the summer term) to achieve the two academic semester appointment.

Normally, the Ph.D. Teaching Fellow is appointed for a period of one academic year. While an appointment for a second year may be granted, a Ph.D. Teaching Fellow cannot be employed in that position for a period of time greater than two academic years (four consecutive academic year semesters) or beyond three years after successful completion of the most recent comprehensive examination.

During the two academic-year semesters of the appointment, a Ph.D. Teaching Fellow will teach four course sections.

The number of course preparations of the Ph.D. Teaching Fellow must not exceed three for the academic year; whenever possible two sections of the same course should be assigned in any given semester so as to maximize time available for work on the dissertation.

For budgetary and personnel purposes, a Ph.D. student appointed as a Ph.D. Teaching Fellow will be appointed as a maximum appointment GTA (2.5 appointments, equivalent to half-time, 20 hours per week) on an academic year stipend of $30,000 ($15,000 per AY semester).

As these appointments will be as GTAs and the stipends will be more than $2000 per semester, Ph.D. Teaching Fellows will continue to receive full tuition waivers. They are responsible for their mandatory student fees and for their student health insurance. As dissertation-stage Ph.D. students, they will continue to be registered by the RCB Ph.D. Office for a full load of dissertation credit hours and assistantship evaluation credit hours.

Appointment Request and Approval Procedures

To request appointment of a Ph.D. student as a Ph.D. Teaching Fellow, the head of the candidate’s academic unit must submit a completed copy of the “Request for Approval of Ph.D. Teaching Fellow Temporary Instructorship Appointment” form along with the supporting documentation requested in that form. For fall semester appointment, the application deadline (set annually by the Associate Dean in a memo to Department Chairs) is generally in mid-July and the last date to complete the proposal defense (or meet any other criteria for the appointment) is August 1. For spring semester appointment, the application deadline is generally in mid-November and the last date to meet all appointment criteria is December 1.

The approval decision is made by the associate dean with responsibility for faculty and GTA hiring, taking into consideration both academic (student qualification) and administrative (budgetary, class scheduling and staffing) factors.