The Department recognizes that financial support during the graduate years is crucial to student success. As a public institution, our budget is limited but, through a combination of university awards, departmental teaching assistantships, tuition assistance, student employment, fellowships, and travel grants, we are able to provide almost all our students with some level of support. Learn more at Affording KU. Department specific inquiries should be addressed to the Director of Graduate Studies.
Graduate Students in the department may be supported in their careers by a limited number of departmental teaching assistantships, typically awarded to M.F.A and Ph.D. students. Students are selected to receive assistantships as they become available and according to departmental needs and other criteria. These include a) the identification of those best qualified to provide a quality experience in the classroom, b) to render financial assistance to recruit top quality applicants into the graduate programs, c) to provide continued support of current graduate students making good progress to degree, and d) to provide students with teaching experience.
Incoming graduate students are automatically considered for a teaching or research assistantship based upon their admission application materials. Returning graduate students with or without a guaranteed multi-year GTA position are reappointed based upon their annual evaluations showing appropriate progress to degree, excellent teaching, and their interest in continuing employment as a GTA. Funding for teaching assistantships is limited, and masters-level applicants rarely receive them, although other support might be offered.
Students who receive a GTA appointment of at least .40 FTE (usually involving responsibility on two courses per semester) receive a monthly stipend and a tuition fee waiver. Lower FTE appointment may be made and these offer tuition waivers proportional to the appointment.
Other means of supporting graduate students in the department include student hourly paid positions and GA (graduate assistant) or GRA (graduate research assistant) positions. Except in rare circumstances, GA and GRA positions do not include tuition waivers.
From time to time, other programs at the University employ Ph.D. students for teaching or research assistance. These will be advertised or students can search Work at KU.
Important: Graduate students not receiving a GTA-ship should complete a FAFSA report to determine Federal Work/Study eligibility if they wish to be employed by the department.