Administrative Manual — Collective Bargaining Agreement & Grievance Procedures

Administrative Manual —Terms and Conditions of Employment for Graduate Assistants

Graduate teaching and research assistant appointments and employment terms and conditions are governed by:  

  1. The University Operations Manual (
  2. Graduate College and Department Policies (; and
  3. Regarding base wages,  a collective bargaining agreement between the Board of Regents, State of Iowa, and UE Local 896 COGS (

Graduate Assistant Employment Manual & Grievance Procedures

The Graduate Assistant Employment Manual addresses employment matters such as posting of appointments, hours, health insurance, paid leaves and holidays, unpaid leaves, personnel files and grievance procedures.

Grievance Procedures

Graduate assistants may file grievances related to any matters alleging a violation involving the application and interpretation of provisions of the graduate assistant terms of employment. The grievance procedures described in the Graduate Assistant Employment Manual do not apply to complaints or grievances filed under other University policies.

The parties to a complaint should first try to resolve the issue informally. The graduate assistant has the right to be accompanied by a witness observer or support person in all stages of the grievance procedure. If an alleged violation of the bargaining agreement cannot be resolved informally, the first level at which a formal grievance may be filed is with the DEO. If the grievance is appealed to the College (the second level of grievance), it should be sent to the Dean or Dean’s designee (240 Schaeffer Hall, 467-4250). Dean Getz or her designee will respond to the grievance on behalf of the College.

See Grievance Procedure in the Graduate Assistant Employment Manual, for time limits on filing grievances and responding to grievances and for levels of appeal. Michelle Kongable, Employee and Labor Relations, 319 335 3558 can also advise on grievance procedures.

COGS Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA)

Graduate assistant employees are in a bargaining unit represented by the United Electrical, Radio, and Machine Workers of America, Local 896 COGS. The UE/COGS collective bargaining agreement is negotiated every two years; the current agreement is in effect through June 30, 2019. The agreement covers wages.

The 2017-2019 and 2019-2021 Collective Bargaining Agreements are posted on the web at