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I've received an offer for admission next year. I would very much like to accept the offer, but I'm not sure the 50% TA position will be enough to cover the costs of commuting and an apartment near the university.

During the interviews last weekend, one of my likely advisors stressed the point that when an offer was made (they didn't come out and tell me then, but were very clear that my chances were good) it would be negotiable, but he didn't elaborate and I didn't feel comfortable asking what he meant.

How should I broach the subject of receiving more funding without coming across as ungrateful, and is there any way to know what kinds of additional aid the university might have available?

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marked as duplicate by ff524, scaaahu, The Hiary, Austin Henley, Peter Jansson Mar 6 at 9:40

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Ask local grad students as well. At my institution, 50% TA just means half time teaching is expected and is the most a non-lecturer position gets. The pay, though coordinated with amount of teaching or research duties, is fixed and is enough to get by living locally. –  Chris C Mar 6 at 3:54
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up vote 8 down vote accepted

As long as you are polite and don't come with a list of unreasonable demands, you don't have to worry about seeming ungrateful.

How should I broach the subject of receiving more funding without coming across as ungrateful

Try this:

"When we spoke last weekend, I got the impression that the level of funding could be negotiable. Is that still the case? I appreciate the 50% TA position very much, but I'm concerned that it won't cover my living costs."

Is there any way to know what kinds of additional aid the university might have available

Ask them:

"Are there any other kinds of aid (besides the TA position) that I could be considered for?"

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Simple and good. –  Pete L. Clark Mar 6 at 0:55
    
"Are there any kindsd of aid that I could be considered for"! Nice! –  drN Mar 6 at 1:28
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