Graduate Student Assistantships

Please read our lastest Update on Collective Bargaining. We are working hard to advocate for Academically-Employed Graduate Students.


Under Section 58.4(1)(c) of the Labour Relations Code, the GSA is "the bargaining agent for academically-employed graduate students" and is to act with "exclusive authority" in representing graduate student workers in negotiating a Collective Agreement. The process is outlined in GSA Bylaw and Policy, Section Q: Collective Bargaining.

The GSA bargains with Board of Governors' representatives, primarily the Provost and Vice-President (Academic), to negotiate changes to salaries, benefits, and working conditions for Academically-Employed Graduate Students (AEGSs) (Graduate Teaching Assistants, Graduate Research Assistants, and Graduate Research Assistant Fellowship holders).

In October 2021, the GSA signed a service agreement with the Public Service Alliance of Canada (PSAC). This agreement grants us access to the extensive resources of the PSAC, including professional negotiators, researchers, outreach and education programs, and a well-established strike/lockout fund. The PSAC represents graduate students across Canada, and most notably, has signed service agreements with the three major graduate student unions of Alberta – University of Calgary, University of Lethbridge, and us. We look forward to working with the PSAC and our Alberta counterparts moving forward.

Pursuant to a vote of members of the bargaining unit, the GSA collects a union due. This due amounts to 1.0% of the salary portion of all AEGSs' stipends. Collected dues are held in the GSA Labour Union Fund and used solely to support the GSA’s activities pursuant to the Labour Relations Code on behalf of AEGSs, including collective bargaining and representation of members of the bargaining unit. For more information, see GSA Bylaw and Policy, Section Q.

Please click here to read the CA.

Please click to consult a CA information sheet.

Who is covered under the Graduate Student Assistantship Collective Agreement (CA)?

  1. All graduate students holding assistantships:
    • Graduate Teaching Assistants (GTAs) (including Principal Instructors)
    • Graduate Research Assistants (GRAs)
    • Graduate Research Assistant Fellowship holders (GRAFs)
  2. Academically-Related Employment other than Assistantships (ARE):
    • Casual Academically-Related Employment

Note: Students who are funded through scholarships are NOT covered under the CA.

Note: GRAFs provide funding to graduate students to pursue their own research and are not defined in the CA as being an employment relationship. While included in the CA, GRAF stipends consist of solely an award component (not an award and salary component) and are not subject to the deduction of either income tax or union dues.


Visit the Archive tab for past CAs.