Funding & Grants

Guaranteed and Competitive Funding

All incoming students are guaranteed 5 years of funding. This includes full tuition and stipend, contingent upon adequate progress in the program. You are also encouraged to pursue grants for fieldwork and dissertation write-up as early as possible. It is a requirement of our program that all students undergo the process of competing for funding as this is an important learning process that will be critical for your career.

All students are expected to apply for the Graduate School grants for which they are eligible. Review the Find Funding opportunities on the Graduate School website.

In order to receive a semester of total departmental funding, which includes compensatory pay, the student must be in residence at Duke, completing service (TA/GA work). This does not apply to the fieldwork year (during which time the student may receive departmental funding if they have not been awarded external funding). 

Option to "Bank" Funds

For students who are successful and, after the third year, receive a grant (from a source external to the department and external to the Graduate School) that will cover their expenses have the opportunity to receive "banked" Duke funding.  Banked funding is for one semester.  


We recommend that students spend at least one year in the field. Students who have received an outside fellowship award may spend an additional semester in the field (eighteen months total). Those who get outside fellowships and spend eighteen months in the field will return to Duke with three semesters of funding.  

The students who have not received outside funding and spend one year in the field will return to Duke with two semesters of funding in year five

Students who choose to remain in the research field an additional year (year five) will only receive the non-compensatory portion of their pay as stipend support from the department.  

The choice to remain in the field in year five will result in no funds equal to TA or GA payments.

Duke offers fieldwork grants through the Graduate School.

Dissertation Research

In the spring of the second year, students should collect information about relevant grants for their field dissertation research starting in January of the third year. Please note: some deadlines are as early as mid-summer after the second year. In the fall of the third year, you are expected to apply to all relevant sources for external funding for dissertation research. There are grants specifically allocated to support students in the dissertation writing stage.