Financial Support for PhD Students

The Graduate School of Arts and Sciences offers incoming PhD students full financial support—including tuition, health insurance fees, and basic living expenses—for a minimum of five years (typically the first four years of study and the completion year). This funding package includes a combination of tuition grants, stipends, traineeships, teaching fellowships, research assistantships, and other academic appointments.

Each student is provided a Notice of Financial Support at the time of admission and is assigned a financial aid officer, who administers this funding and is available to assist with financial concerns.Each spring, continuing students supported by GSAS-administered funding sources are required to activate their funding for the upcoming academic year using the GSAS Student Aid Portal, an online financial aid management system.

A typical funding package* includes:

  • Grants toward tuition and the Harvard University Student Health Program, paid in full for years G1 through G4 and the dissertation completion year
  • A combination of stipend, teaching fellowships, and/or research assistantships during years G1 through G4
  • Summer research support from GSAS or faculty grants following the first four academic years
  • Up to $2,500 of support for professional development activities (for students entering in 2015 or later, available for use in years G3 and beyond)

*In some programs, the timing and structure of living expense support may vary from this pattern.

The initial Notice of Financial Support assumes continuous enrollment as a full-time resident student. Students may find that their actual enrollment patterns necessitate adjustments to the timing of their funding. Students wishing to defer GSAS-administered funding indicate this in the GSAS Student Aid Portal during the annual financial aid acceptance process. The options for deferring financial support vary by type of aid; please refer to the applicable sections of the financial aid policy webpages for details. Students who are considering deferring financial support are strongly encouraged to contact their financial aid officers to review how such actions may impact their funding in future years.

PhD Students in the Natural Sciences, Engineering and Applied Sciences, and Medical Sciences

While funding packages vary by program, PhD students in the sciences typically receive full funding until they complete their programs of study. Contact your department administrator or financial aid officer for details.

PhD Students in the Humanities and Social Sciences Programs of the Faculty of Arts and Sciences

See more detailed information about funding for students in humanities and social sciences programs of the Faculty of Arts and Sciences.

Humanities and Social Sciences Programs in the Faculty of Arts and Sciences

HUMANITIES

  • African and African American Studies
  • Classics
  • Celtic Literatures and Languages
  • Comparative Literature
  • East Asian Languages and Civilizations
  • English
  • Film and Visual Studies
  • German
  • History of Art and Architecture
  • Inner Asian and Altaic Studies
  • Linguistics
  • Music
  • Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations
  • Philosophy
  • Religion
  • Romance Languages and Literatures
  • Slavic
  • South Asian Studies

SOCIAL SCIENCES

  • American Studies
  • Anthropology
  • Economics
  • Government
  • History
  • History of Science
  • Human Evolutionary Biology
  • Middle Eastern Studies
  • Psychology
  • Social Policy
  • Sociology

 

PhD Students in Humanities and Social Sciences Programs Offered in Partnership with Other Harvard Schools

A number of humanities and social sciences PhD programs are offered in partnership with Harvard's professional schools. While funding packages vary by program, PhD students in these interfaculty programs generally receive at least four years of financial support for tuition, health fees, and living expenses; most programs provide dissertation completion fellowships as well. For more information, refer to your Notice of Financial Support or contact your financial aid officer.

Interfaculty Programs in the Humanities and Social Sciences

  • Architecture, Landscape Architecture, and Urban Planning
  • Business Administration
  • Business Economics
  • Education
  • Health Policy
  • Organizational Behavior
  • Political Economy and Government
  • Public Policy

 

Acceptance of Financial Support

Each student is provided a Notice of Financial Support at the time of admission and is assigned a financial aid officer, who administers this funding and is available to assist with financial concerns. Students are required to formally accept their financial aid offers and acknowledge their understanding of GSAS Financial Aid policies. Students should also consult their academic programs to determine whether program-specific conditions apply.

Each spring, continuing students supported by GSAS-administered funding sources are required to activate their funding for the upcoming academic year using the GSAS Student Aid Portal, an online financial aid management system. Continued eligibility for financial aid is contingent upon an annual report by the faculty that the student is making satisfactory progress toward the degree.