For Admitted Students

2023 Graduate Student Orientation

Thursday, August 24, 2023 | 9:30am | Bohannon 90

The full Orientation is recommended for all new graduate students, and certain sessions are recommended for first-time graduate assistants. Check the detailed schedule for the sessions that apply to you. Orientation will be held in person. (See campus map here.)

Graduate student orientation is held each year during Welcome Week in the fall semester. There is no orientation in spring semester, so students entering in spring semester should attend the following fall orientation. The purpose of orientation is to provide an introduction to on-campus and system-wide resources for graduate students, and to provide a chance for students from across disciplines to meet. Individual programs also hold separate orientation activities specific to the program. The online orientation modules below are available anytime.

Online Graduate Student Orientation Modules - GEAR1 & GEAR+
Designed for graduate students on the Twin Cities, Duluth, and Rochester campuses, GEAR1 (Graduate EducAtion Resources for the 1st Year) and GEAR+ (Graduate EducAtion Resources beyond the 1st year) contain a wealth of resources and advice to help you succeed. These Canvas modules are arranged so that you can return to them throughout your graduate career. Your University account must be activated in order to access GEAR1 and GEAR+.
Note:  These online resources are not intended to replace the in-person Graduate Student Orientation described above.

Mandatory Speaking Assessment for Graduate Teaching Assistants - August 2, 2023

Non-native English speakers holding graduate teaching assistantships are required by University policy to demonstrate English speaking proficiency in one of the following ways:

  • Minimum official TOEFL iBT speaking sub-score of 27 or IELTS speaking sub-score of 8
  • Bachelor's degree from US institution within the last two years
  • UMTC SETTA rating of 1 or 2

GTAs not meeting one of these requirements must take a speaking assessment prior to arrival to UMD, and may be required to take additional English language training. Speaking assessment is conducted online through the Center for Educational Innovation, and must be completed before you begin teaching. CEI has reserved August 2 as the assessment date for Duluth TAs. Use the link here to schedule a SETTA. Contact the Graduate Office ([email protected]) with any questions. 


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