Financial Support for Graduate Students

Most incoming students receive financial support, primarily in the form of teaching and research assistantships or University fellowships. Currently, the department guarantees newly admitted students internal academic-year support for at least 4 years providing that they maintain good standing in the program. Internal support beyond 4 years is decided by the area into which the student is admitted and, although not guaranteed, typically continues for students making satisfactory progress toward completion of the degree requirements. Stipends usually increase annually. No additional application is required for financial support offered through the department. Major sources of support are described more fully below.

Graduate Teaching Assistantships:

Half-time and quarter-time graduate teaching assistantships provide academic-year (9-month) support plus tuition remission. Half-time assistantships offer full stipends and require students to devote up to 20 hours/week to one of the department's undergraduate courses. Duties vary by course but typically include preparing and proctoring examinations, grading assigned papers, conducting review and help sessions, maintaining regular office hours for meeting students, and serving as clinical assistants (clinical area only). Assistants assigned to courses with lab or recitation sections may have the instructional responsibilities for one or more weekly sections. Quarter-time teaching assistants have similar duties but are only required to devote up to 10 hours/week to their assigned course.

Graduate Research Assistantships:

A faculty member with an extramural (e.g., federally funded) research grant can offer half- or quarter-time research assistantships to students who work with them as their major professor. Students supported in this fashion are expected to conduct the ongoing research project(s) from which their financial support is derived for an amount of time comparable to that described for teaching assistantships.

University-sponsored Fellowships:

Support is also available for qualifying students from competitive funding provided by the University. For example, some students may be nominated for an Andrews Fellowship or the Ross Fellowship, a number of which are awarded yearly to students whose undergraduate academic records are especially outstanding. These fellowships provide 12-month support for up to two years. Nominations for University-sponsored fellowships are made on behalf of the applicant by the department upon receipt and review of the completed admission application.

Purdue Research Foundation Fellowships:

Incoming students with a Master's degree or continuing students who have completed the Master's requirements of the program are eligible for up to two years of 12-month support from the Purdue Research Foundation for a research project to be conducted by the student during the award period. Application for one of these competitive fellowships is typically submitted on behalf of the student by his/her major professor.

Extramural Fellowships:

Incoming and continuing students can also apply for individual predoctoral training awards from the National Institutes of Health and the National Science Foundation. These fellowships provide 12-month support and fee remission and have award periods of up to 3 years. Unlike the sources of support described above, these fellowships require a separate application to the awarding agency by the student with a letter of support from the major professor. Additional information about the application process can be obtained directly from the agency:

For currently enrolled students, Purdue awards a number of Fellowship Incentive grants on a competitive basis ( for students applying for extramural support from selected agencies or programs. 

The American Psychological Foundation also offers a variety of awards and grants each year. The APA Science Council web page offers links to these opportunities and can be found at:

Resident Assistant Positions:

Resident Assistants live in a designated space within University Residences and work to build relationships and an inclusive community among residents. The Resident Assistant team act as role models and provide information about campus and community resources.  Evening and weekend duty is required and response to emergency situations is expected.  These 10-month appointments include tuition stipend, along with room and board.  The position requires a separate application and interviews.  More specific information about the opportunity and application process is listed here:

To qualify, individuals must meet the following by the end of the Spring semester:

  • 36 undergraduate credit hours (those in master's and Ph.D. programs meet this requirement)
  • Minimum of one year living in a residence hall at the college/university level
  • Cumulative 2.5 GPA or higher
  • Must be able to serve for one full academic year
  • Must complete an online application by the fall semester deadline

Department Awards for Graduate Research Innovation:

In order to support your research efforts at a particularly critical time in your career, the department will provide up to $1,500 (per project) to students in their 2nd, 3rd or 4th years here in our program to support empirical research projects that are not part of a student's thesis or dissertation project. Individual and collaborative projects are welcome. To apply for these funds, simply send a one-page document summarizing your research idea and proposed budget (up to $1,500) to the Director of Graduate Studies. Please also indicate in your document your year in the program and confirm that the proposed project is not part of your thesis or your dissertation. Students are limited to two awards. There will be two competitions for these funds each academic year, one in the Fall with an August 30th deadline and one in the Spring with a January 30th deadline.

Supplemental Support for Graduate Student Training in Research Methods & Statistics:

The Department of Psychological Sciences will provide small stipends to graduate students intrested in enhancing their methodological and/or statistical training beyond the courses offered at Purdue University. For more information and instructions on applying please click here. {PLEASE NOTE THAT THESE FUNDS ARE NOT AVAILABLE FOR AY 2020-2021}.

Department Travel Grants:

Graduate students in good standing in Psychological Sciences who are in their first six years of training will be eligible for a Departmental Allocation per fiscal year (July 1 to June 30) to support their travel to a conference (or conferences) where they will be presenting their research. Student's in their sixth year must provide evidence that they have applied for a conference travel grant, (if applicable), and must submit a statement from their major professor indicating that other funds are not available for the student's travel. Both primary authors and supporting authors are eligible for the award. In addition, first year graduate students who wish to attend a conference but will not be a primary or supporting author may still be eligible for the support. To receive reimbursement of conference expenses, each student needs to provide the business office with:

    1. Complete a Travel Request in Concur at least two weeks prior to the conference and before booking travel.
    2. Evidence that his or her paper or poster was accepted for presentation at the conference (e.g., confirmation e-mail, copy of the program, etc.), unless the student is a non-presenting first year student.
    3. Evidence of conference registration.

Purdue Graduate Student Government Travel Grants:

The aim of the Purdue Graduate Student Government (PGSG) Travel Grant is to assist Purdue University graduate students in attending technical conferences which in turn will help to develop graduate students professionally and augment the overall quality of research at Purdue. Grants are distributed among graduate students on a competitive basis.

Because the number of applications varies each semester and the total budget for Travel Grants varies year to year, the number and amount of awards will not be determined until after all applications have been received. Grants are typically about $200 and are awarded to 20-40% of applicants. A few exceptional applications may receive slightly larger award amounts if funds are available.

Summer support:

Financial support during the summer months is automatically included with some awards (e.g., University-sponsored and extramural fellowships). For students on academic-year support (e.g., a teaching assistantship), summer funding opportunities are available through faculty research grants, internal support from Purdue or the department via competitive application, and teaching of departmental undergraduate courses offered during the summer sessions.

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