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Urban and Regional Planning Positions

Graduate Student Instructors (GSIs) at the University of Michigan are considered members of the community of scholars.

Graduate Student Instructor Overview

Applicants must be students in the Urban and Regional Planning Program. Only students who have satisfactory academic performance are eligible for a GSI position.  Satisfactory academic progress is defined as:

  • a B average
  • no more than one outstanding incomplete
  • progress toward degree at the rate of 9 or more credits per semester

Do not apply to GSI for a course that meets at the same time as a course you will be enrolled in.

All positions require that you submit a cover letter and a resume combined into a single PDF file.

The cover letter header must include:

  • name
  • program (MURP or PhD)
  • expected date of graduation (MM/YYYY)
  • Umich email address
  • Student ID #
  • Position(s) you are applying for, listed in ranked order from highest to lowest.

Please note that only students currently enrolled at Taubman College are eligible to apply to become a Graduate Student Instructor (GSI) in Taubman College. These positions, as posted, are subjected to a collective bargaining agreement between the Regents of the University of Michigan and the Graduate Employees' Organization, American Federation of Teachers, AFL-CIO 3550.

The program chair is responsible for final selection of applicants.

All Graduate students of Taubman College are eligible to apply for GSI positions but each program hires students from within their field.

Dual-degree students must take 75% of their course work in the College of Architecture and Urban Planning, and must be enrolled for at least 6 credit hours in the term they hold a GSI position.

We estimate that all positions will be filled, and the applicants notified by December 11, 2017. The percentage of effort for each position is detailed in the posting. Should enrollment warrant, and the GSI agree, an increase in percentage is possible. GSI and Faculty should check in regularly to ensure that the outline on the fraction calculation accurately reflects the effort. Unsuccessful applications will be retained for consideration in the event that there are last minute openings for available positions. In the event that an Employee does not receive his or her preferred assignment, he or she can request a written explanation or an in-person interview with the hiring agent(s) to be scheduled at a mutually agreed upon time.

The University of Michigan is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer. The University will not discriminate against any applicant for employment because of race, creed, color, religion, national origin, ancestry, marital status, familial status, parental status or pregnancy status, sex, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, age, height, weight, disability, citizenship status, veteran status, HIV antibody status, political belief, membership in any social or political organization, participation in a grievance or complaint whether formal or informal, or any other factor where the item in question will not interfere with job performance and where the employee is otherwise qualified. The University of Michigan agrees to abide by the protections afforded employees with disabilities as outlined in the rules and regulations, which implement Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Americans with Disabilities Act.” 


Winter 2018 GSI Positions

Job Opening ID - 149655

Working Title
Urban Planning Graduate Student Instructor positions at Taubman College

Apply here

URP 503 - Comparative Planning Institutions and Law  

Facutly: Ana Paula Pimentel Walker
Positions: up to 1
Effort: 25% - 35%

This course focuses on the legal aspects of urban and regional planning from a comparative perspective. Throughout the world, legal systems enable and constrain developers, property owners, environmentalists, housing advocates, and other actors in the achievement of their visions of the good (urban) life. Planning practice is inserted in this legal field of contention. Thus, we will examine how different countries exercise the public control of land use and development and the impact that these distinct legal institutions have on urban sustainability. Reading materials, class discussions, and course assignments analyze the U.S. practice of land use regulations vis-à-vis the legal-institutional context of other common and civil law countries. Topics include traditional land use issues, such as alternatives to public regulations (e.g., nuisance law), constitutional and statutory considerations of community planning, the administration of zoning and other land-use regulations, contemporary innovations on inclusionary housing, and environmental protection.

GSI responsibilities: Attend all classes, lead and/or assist with sporadic discussion section(s), grade assignments, hold weekly office hours, and help with clerical work, such as scanning, library trips, et al. Detailed assignments will be worked out with the instructor.  

Required qualifications: Professionalism (punctuality and reliability regarding course tasks) and ethical conduct with students, such as respect for privacy and students’ educational background. Detail- oriented in assessing students’ work. Strong organizational skills. Relevant coursework. Strong academic performance.  

Desired qualifications: Passion for learning about the comparative aspects of planning law on a global scale. Preference is given to students who have successfully completed UP 513 in a prior term. 

Eligible: Masters or PhD students in Urban and Regional Planning.

URP 506 - Planning Methods Quantitative Focus  

Facutly: Robert Goodspeed
Positions: up to 1
Effort: 25% - 35%

This course introduces students to quantitative methods commonly used in urban planning practice and urban research to understand the past, present, and future of cities and regions.  It includes extensive practice with use of spreadsheet software to manipulate and analyze data, as well as the synthesis of data for policy formulation and analysis.  The course also includes an introduction to various data sources commonly utilized in planning practice, such as data from the US Census. Key topics covered include demographic analysis, multivariate regression, graphic data presentation, and survey design and data analysis.  The emphasis is on methods in the context of planning practice and urban policy research, and employing data judiciously to support specific policy arguments.

GSI responsibilities: The GSI will attend lectures (3 hours weekly), attend planning meetings (1-2 hours weekly), and grade and otherwise provide feedback on regular assignments (8-10 hours weekly).  Weekly time commitment will be between 12-15 hours per week.  

Required qualifications: High level of knowledge of introductory statistics; Experience with quantitative analysis of data and spreadsheet software; Familiarity with the US Census and other commonly used planning data sources.  

Preferred qualifications: Basic understanding of research design and/or experience with multivariate regression in an applied context. Preference is given to students who have successfully completed UP 504 in a prior term. 

Eligible: Masters or PhD students in Urban and Regional Planning.