The Graduate School of Arts and Sciences offers a comprehensive program of financial support, including grants and fellowships from internal and external sources, traineeships, teaching fellowships, research assistantships, other academic employment opportunities, and several types of loans.

Funding for PhD Students

Standard Funding Package

Harvard guarantees full financial support to PhD students—including tuition, health fees, and basic living expenses—for a minimum of five years (typically the first four years of study and the completion year), using a tiered tuition structure which reduces tuition over time as students progress through their degree programs. This multi-year funding package includes a combination of tuition grants, stipends, traineeships, teaching fellowships, research assistantships, and other academic appointments. In addition, GSAS students are particularly successful in securing grants, fellowships, and other sources of external funding as part of their professional development.

The standard funding package includes:

  • Grant toward tuition and fees—paid in full for years 1 through 4, plus the dissertation completion year
  • Living expense stipend during years 1 and 2
  • A combination of stipend, teaching fellowships, and/or research assistantships during years 3 and 4
  • If noted in your Notice of Financial Support, summer research funding following the first four academic years from GSAS or faculty grants
  • Stipend and/or research support during the completion year.

In some programs, the timing and structure of living expense support may vary from this pattern. For example, students in the sciences typically receive full funding until they complete their degrees.


Funding for Master's Students

The GSAS Office of Admissions and Financial Aid publishes Financing Your Master's Degree, which is designed to familiarize students with the various forms of available financial support. It includes guides to help with multi-year planning and an overview of important financial aid policies and procedures.

Because master’s programs are not fully funded, prospective students should be prepared to contribute significantly towards their educational expenses. A limited amount of grant support and research funding is available from GSAS master's programs. In addition, students have access to loans and employment opportunities, as detailed in the following section.

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