Information for Current Sociology Graduate Students
The Sociology Graduate Manual can be found here.
Graduate Plan of Work
The Graduate School requires that students who have completed 15 hours of the program file an online Plan of Work (POW). The POW is located in MyPack under Student Self Service. Make sure to “save” your POW only. You will not “submit” your POW for approval until your final semester. Submitting your POW starts the approval process, going to your Committee Chair first, then to the DGP, and then to the Graduate School for final approval. “Saving” your POW allows for department review and discussion with your advisor.
Note the four different tabs at the top of the POW:
You must sign this in order to be eligible for graduation, so do it now.
Plan of Work
Here is a brief tutorial from The Graduate School on how to complete your POW. You will select courses using the catalog, your transcript, etc. Add as many rows as needed and select the appropriate courses that satisfy your program/concentration requirements. Refer to the Sociology Graduate Manual for information on requirements.
If you are completing a Thesis in the MA program, your Committee will consist of at least three members. At least two members must come from the sociology graduate faculty and the third committee member may be either a member of the sociology graduate faculty or a member of the graduate faculty in another discipline in which the student has taken course work and/or which is related to the student’s thesis or project. If you are completing a Dissertation in the PhD program, your Committee will consist of at least three members of the sociology graduate faculty and one member from the graduate faculty in the minor field if a minor is declared. If there is no minor, the fourth member may be either a member of the sociology graduate faculty or a member of the graduate faculty in another discipline in which the student has taken course work and/or which is related to the student’s dissertation research.
The Comment tab allows you to document special arrangements or program-specific requirements that are not built into the POW default structure. Use this feature to identify transferred courses approved by the Graduate School and the requirements they fulfill; to document course waivers; to list the title of your thesis; and so forth. The Graduate Services Coordinator will use the Comments system to confirm your fulfillment or waiver upon receiving appropriate documentation.
Sociology Graduate Student Association (SGSA)
Within the department the Sociology Graduate Student Association (SGSA) represents the interests of graduate students. SGSA elects a president, vice president, secretary, treasurer, and also sponsors programs and parties. The SGSA meets every month to discuss departmental developments. There are several committees within the SGSA that provide opportunities for involvement, including the finance committee, social committee, and professional development committee. These committees work to support graduate students in a variety of ways including providing funding for research, hosting seminars and workshops, and creating opportunities to socialize. One important task of the SGSA is to match incoming students with a mentor student already in the program who has interests compatible with your own. The aim of this peer mentor program is to provide new students with the support they need as they enter both a new academic environment and city. Your peer mentor is available to answer any questions you might have about the program, the Raleigh area, or just graduate life.
Graduate Teaching Assistantships
A limited number of teaching assistantships are available to applicants in our programs. Sociology Department TAs receive full tuition coverage along with health insurance and a modest stipend intended to help defray living expenses. Although tuition is paid in full, the arrangement does not cover university fees and other living expenses.
Below you will find information regarding the Graduate Student Support Plan (GSSP). Assistantships are given out by the Director of the Graduate Program and the Graduate Services Coordinator. Any questions can be directed to them.
Extent of Appointment
Teaching Assistantships are one year appointments renewable for another year as indicated in your Terms and Conditions letter. All TAs are limited by the terms of the Graduate Student Support Plan (GSSP). TAs may take summer classes, but those who do pay their own tuition. Health insurance, however, remains in force during the summer.
Teaching Assistantships at NCSU are defined by the Graduate School as one-half-time appointments. The workload in Sociology thus averages about 20 hours per week.
Constraints on Additional Employment
Please note that your appointment as a TA places some constraints on your eligibility for other employment on campus.
- First, of course, is the workload. Your assistantship duties are designed with your full-time courseload in mind; you must maintain a 9-hour load and stay in good academic standing each semester to retain your assistantship. We do not recommend taking on additional employment lest it affect your success in one or both of these arenas.
- A second constraint is the campus payroll system. Students on assistantship are technically permitted to work up to eight or nine extra hours per week with the approval of their departments. But if that limit is exceeded you will be ruled ineligible for your assistantship (because you’ll no longer look like a full-time student). To avoid jeopardizing your TA appointment, check with the Director of Graduate Programs before you commit to any additional employment.
- A third constraint is in regards to International students. International students are only allowed to work 20 hours per week and must speak with the International Office before accepting any additional employment above their stipend.
Students will receive an e-bill approximately one month before the beginning of each semester. For TAs, the in-state tuition charge is covered and the mandatory student health insurance fee is removed under GSSP. Tuition and the student health insurance will appear on your bill, but you may ignore those charges because they will be removed at a later date. TAs are responsible for other charges on the bill, including fees. A thorough explanation of required fees is provided at the Student Services Center page, “Explanation of Tuition and Required Fees.” For more information about tuition, fees, and estimated annual expenses, please visit the Student Services Center page, “Tuition and Fees.” For information regarding fee payment, with Tuition Management Systems (TMS) or financial aid, please visit the “Bills, Payments and Refunds” page at Student Services Center.
NC State allows students to pay education expenses monthly – interest-free – through our partner, Nelnet Campus Commerce. Find more information here.
Direct Deposit is mandatory for TAs. The deadline is one week prior to your first paycheck. Please refer to the bi-weekly pay schedule to see when you will receive your first paycheck. Remember, your first day of hire is August 16th so please look at the payday for the pay period in which August 16th falls. You will want to have direct deposit completed at least one week before your first payday.
Information about enrolling in Direct Deposit can be found at the NC State Human Resources webpage entitled, “Direct Deposit Information.”
Please note, even if you completed direct deposit for financial aid, you must also complete direct deposit for your role as a TA.
You will be automatically enrolled in the GSSP health insurance plan if you meet the minimum requirements on the Requirements/Benefits at a Glance chart. You will be automatically waived from the Mandatory Student Health Insurance plan if you qualify for the GSSP insurance by the waiver deadline. The deadline is posted on the GSSP webpage.
If you are considered a Non-Resident for tuition purposes, your GSSP benefits only cover one year of out-of-state tuition. You are REQUIRED to apply for in-state residency status once you have lived in NC for at least 12 months, as the GSSP will not cover out-of-state tuition your second year. As indicated in your Terms and Conditions document, it is your responsibility to complete the necessary “residency acts” in your first year to ensure you are able to convert to in-state residency your second year. Important: You must initiate those acts (“Some examples of residency acts include getting a NC driver’s license, registering to vote, registering a vehicle, and further actions which demonstrate ties to NC.”) as soon as you move here, so that you will be able to document 12 months of residence before your second year begins. Please review the Residency website and reference the Residency PDF to ensure that you complete an item for all three categories. After 12 months of residency you will visit the residency website to complete the application.
Taxation of Assistantships
Students exceeding 29 hours per week lose their FICA (social security) tax exemption. We cannot approve any jobs on campus that exceed 29 hours or .725 FTE without the Dean’s approval.
For more information about the Graduate Student Support Plan, please review the GSSP website.
Life After GSSP
Our department has been able to support many students as instructors after their GSSP expires. We have two mechanisms for this form of support: GSSP Lite (which requires you to register for three credit hours) or Lecturer (which requires you to register for one credit hour per semester). You can find more information listed in Life After GSSP.