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Financial Support

A variety of financial support may be available to students undertaking graduate study in CLASS. Doctoral programs and some master’s programs in the departments offer a limited number of funding packages that might include employment as a teaching or research assistant and/or various forms of scholarship or fellowship funding. All support packages are awarded on a competitive basis. Eligibility for all of these forms of graduate support requires full-time enrollment (generally 9 credit hours in the Fall and Spring semesters) and maintenance of a GPA of at least 3.0. Consult the website of the particular program you are interested in to find details of the forms of financial support that may be available for your studies and how to apply for them. Decisions regarding competitive graduate financial support are made by faculty selection committees in the departments and programs or the college.

Graduate Assistantships

Doctoral programs and some master’s programs in the departments offer employment stipends for Graduate Assistantships of various sorts, such as Teaching Assistant (TA) or Research Assistant (RA) positions. These generally require 20 hours per week of work supporting faculty instruction or research. For students who are not Texas residents, these assistantships provide eligibility for a waiver of the non-resident portion of program tuition.

Tuition Fellowships

All CLASS PhD programs offer the Graduate Tuition Fellowship (GTF) to highly-qualified students. The fellowships cover tuition and mandatory fees for recipients and are renewable for students who meet departmental standards and requirements. Some CLASS master’s programs offer the Student Success Tuition Fellowship (SSTF), which provides partial tuition support for graduate students who are serving as Teaching Assistants in the department. Check departmental websites for further information on these fellowships.

Other Competitive Support

Presidential and Provost’s Fellowships:  The most highly qualified incoming doctoral and Master of Fine Arts students in CLASS may be eligible for additional scholarship support such as the Presidential and Provost’s Fellowships.  These two-year awards are available to students entering graduate programs at the University of Houston; departments must nominate qualified applicants to these fellowships. Selection is based on potential for academic (and in the case of MFA students, also creative) excellence in a graduate program.  Eligibility requires full-time enrollment (generally 9 credit hours in the Fall and Spring semesters) and maintenance of a GPA of at least 3.0 throughout the period of the award.  See departmental websites for further information and selection criteria for nomination.

$1000 Scholarships: Some master’s and doctoral programs offer additional scholarship funding to qualified incoming students, including the $1000 DW Mitchell Scholarships (also known as Dean’s Scholarships). Some departments and programs may additionally offer departmental scholarships of a similar sort. These scholarships may be used toward the cost of tuition and fees of the student’s graduate program. For students who are not Texas residents, these scholarships may provide eligibility for a waiver of the non-resident portion of program tuition.

Dissertation Completion Fellowships:  These fellowships go to PhD students in the final year of their doctoral careers, offering them two long semesters of release from teaching in order to concentrate fully on completion of the dissertation in a timely manner.  Departments must nominate highly qualified candidates for this fellowship program to a college selection committee.  Selection is based on excellence of the dissertation project, academic excellence in and timely progress through the program, and likelihood of completion of the dissertation within the year. Click here for more information. The deadline for application for the Dissertation Completion Fellowship is annually in late February.

Selection Criteria for Competitive Financial Support in CLASS

Selection for competitive support is based on review of an applicant’s entire record, taken as a whole. While the particular criteria for selection will vary from program to program, the general requirements for competitive funding in CLASS include:

For new applicants to a graduate program:

  • Unconditional admission to a UH graduate program
  • Quality of academic record at previous undergraduate or graduate institution
  • Strength of letters of recommendation and student’s writing sample (if required)
  • Applicant’s performance on examinations such as the GRE and TOEFL or entrance auditions/portfolios in arts and performance areas, as appropriate
  • Demonstrated interest in obtaining a graduate degree as evidenced by the statement of purpose
  • Overall promise of excellence as evidenced by all application materials

For students continuing in a UH graduate program:

  • Quality of academic record at the University of Houston, including at minimum a 3.0 GPA
  • Maintenance of good standing and continuous enrollment in program
  • Overall excellence of academic work and professionalism in program and performance of job duties (for Graduate Assistants)
  • Demonstration of likelihood of timely completion of the graduate program