The Department offers several different sorts of financial aid to graduate students.
We offer up to four “Puryear” Fellowships to incoming first-year graduate students. These fellowships typically carry a stipend of between $15,000 and $20,000 for the first year. Tuition and most fees are waived in the case of any student receiving a Puryear Fellowship. Additionally, Puryear Fellowship recipients receive a guarantee of continued financial aid for four additional years, conditional upon satisfactory performance in the program and the availability of funds. Such continued financial aid typically comes in the form of a Teaching Assistantship.
We sometimes also offer partial fellowships carrying stipends between $8,000 and $15,000 plus remission of tuition and most fees. In rare instances we may offer Teaching Assistantships to first-year students. This would occur only in the case of an individual who has teaching experience as a graduate student in another program.
Most students who come in with financial aid are awarded Teaching Assistantships (TA) starting in their second year in the Program. In recent years a full-year TA has carried a stipend of about $17,300 plus remission of tuition and most fees. Each TA is assigned to an undergraduate course, where he or she teaches discussion sections, grades exams, holds office hours, and performs other duties as assigned by the instructor of the course. Advanced graduate students are often awarded Teaching Associateships (TO). Each TO has full responsibility for the construction, teaching, and grading of his or her own course. Stipends associated with TOs are the same as those associated with TAs. Some graduate students receive financial aid in the form of Graderships. They grade exams for some course. The stipends associated with Graderships are variable.
In recent years all of students active in the PhD program have had sufficient financial aid to enable them to get tuition and fee waivers. During AY14-15, for example, every full-time, course-taking student in the Ph.D. program has sufficient financial aid and is not required to pay tuition.
Financial Aid Received by UMass Philosophy Graduate Students during AY 14-15
First Year Departmental Fellowships: 6
Full-Year TAs or TO’s: 23
Full-time students taking courses but receiving no financial aid: 0