The department allocates a minimum support of 11 months each year for a Ph.D. candidate during the entire course of study. These allocations are dependent on a student’s demonstration of satisfactory progress towards completion of his/her research project.
Financial support is provided to those seeking an M.S. degree only in exceptional, rare circumstances. When such support is provided, it is guaranteed support for two semesters plus one summer. Beyond that, if a student is making satisfactory progress, support is usually provided for an additional semester. Because of the nature of research at the Master’s level, we anticipate that three semesters and a summer should be enough time to complete the M.S. degree.
Students on a Research Assistantship (RA) appointment will receive a monthly stipend, tuition covered by departmental resources (except mandatory student fees) and health insurance. An RA will receive 11 months of support at rates established by the university (half-time appointments). An RA is expected to make normal progress on his/her research project. Averaged over the course of a semester, a half-time RA should spend 20 hours per week on research. In addition, typical support is for 11 months out of the calendar year. This means that a maximum of one month vacation time is allowable, including semester break and summers. In all cases, students should inform their major professor as to when they wish to take vacation time.
Teaching Assistant (TA) appointments only apply during the 9-month period between August and May. Consequently, these appointments are usually supplemented by two months of RA support in the summer. A TA is expected to complete 20 hours per week of service for a half-time appointment. Students on a TA appointment will receive a monthly stipend, tuition covered by departmental resources (except mandatory student fees) and health insurance.