Biological Sciences

Financial Aid

Financial Aid for your studies may be available. Administration of this type of aid is done by the university, not by the department. If you have questions, contact the Financial Aid Office at Cal Poly. The phone number is (909) 869-3700. Information may also be obtained from the Financial Aid Office web site.

Teaching Associate Positions

The Department may have some part-time Teaching Associate positions available. Availability of positions, and the number of positions, is subject to budget considerations.

The typical appointment would require the Teaching Associate to teach six contact hours of laboratory per week, hold one office hour per week, attend class lectures (three hours per week), perform lab preparation, grade papers, and perform other appropriate related duties determined by the supervisor up to a maximum of 20 hours per week. Teaching and other duties are assigned by the Department Chair in consultation with the faculty. The teaching assignment usually involves courses in basic biology.

How to apply

New graduate students planning to become a Teaching Associate should:

  1. Contact Roxanne Mendoza to inquire about the application process.
  2. If you hope to teach in the first semester that you begin your graduate study, please let Roxanne know of your teaching preference.

If the TA assignment deadline has passed for a given semester at the time you submitted your request (and/or TA application), most likely no Teaching Associate positions are available, but the department will keep your application on record in case any new lab sections (or other TA positions) become available.

Important Dates for Teaching Associate applications
Spring semester (Jan. - May) Teaching Associate assignments are announced in October by email to all enrolled graduate students and finalized by the end of November in the previous year.

Fall semester (Aug. - Dec) Teaching Associate assignments are announced in April by email to all enrolled graduate students and finalized by the end of May in the same year.

Requirements

Only unconditional, classified graduate students are eligible for Teaching Associate (TA) appointment. Applicants must submit an Application for Academic Employment form, three letters of recommendation, an official transcript and a graduate program acceptance letter to Roxanne Mendoza at the Biological Sciences Department Office: Building 8, Room 119; (909) 869-4038.

  1. Application for Academic Employment form: Application for Academic Employment forms are available from the Faculty Affairs web site
  2. Letters of Recommendation: Letters you used for admission to the program may be suitable for your TA application. However, these letters will need to be resubmitted to the Department Office directly by the original letter writer
  3. Official transcript: Applicants must have graduated and provide an official transcript with the degree earned
  4. Acceptance to CPP Biological Sciences Master program: A copy of acceptance letter to the Biological Sciences Master program should be provided

Finally, applicants should expect to be interviewed by the Chair of the Biological Sciences Department. The Graduate Coordinator and/or the Graduate Committee may be consulted, but final recommendations on appointments are made by the Department Chair. Appointments must be approved by the Dean of the College of Science.

Graduate Teaching Associates are not considered part of the faculty collective bargaining unit, but are covered under a separate collective bargaining agreement. Compensation and other terms of employment are subject to collective bargaining. Please contact the Department (909-869-4038) for details.

Teaching Associates will be appointed according to the programmatic needs of the department. When programmatic needs do not force a distinction to be made among applicants on the basis of specific skills or experience, appointments will be made by the following criteria. Summer appointments are excluded from this policy. Because summer offering are very limited and administered through the College of the Extended University, appointments are done on a department need only basis.

Tier One (Highest Priority)

Classified graduate students in the Biological Sciences Department Master of Science program who have not yet completed four semesters of TA assignment, who have filed the Graduate Contract (GS-101) with the graduate coordinator by week 6 of the second semester of study, and who have successfully completed BIO 6930 (Thesis Proposal) by the end of the third semester of study.

Tier Two (Lower Priority)

Classified Graduate Students in the Biological Sciences Department Master of Science program who have completed four semesters of TA assignment, but who have not yet completed six semesters of TA assignment, who have filed the Graduate Contract (GS-101) with the graduate coordinator by week 6 of the second semester of study, and who have successfully completed BIO 6930 (Thesis Proposal) by the end of the third semester of study.

Tier Three (Lowest Priority)

Classified Graduate Students in the Biological Sciences Department Master of Science program who have completed four semesters of TA assignment, but have not completed six semesters of TA assignment, and who have NOT filed the Graduate Contract (GS-101) with the graduate coordinator by week 6 of the second semester of study, and/or who have NOT successfully completed BIO 6930 (Thesis Proposal) by the end of the third semester of study.

AND 
Classified Graduate Students in the Biological Sciences Department Master of Science program who have six or more semesters of TA assignment.