Financial Aid & Graduate Resources

All students admitted to the doctoral program in History at USC receive a five-year funding package. Packages typically include two years of fellowship support and three years of support as teaching assistants. 

  • FINANCIAL AID packages typically consist of two years' fellowship support and three years' support as teaching assistants.  For more information see Financial Aid Information.

    If you are interested in additional need-based aid such as government loans and grants, however, you must make separate application through the University's Financial Aid Office

    There are three basic sources of financial aid available to graduate students in history who are U.S. citizens:

    • The university’s Office of Financial Aid handles all need-based aid such as government-guaranteed student loans and work-study allotments. A separate application for this type of aid is requireed.
    • The Dana and David Dornsife College of Letters, Arts and Sciences and the Graduate School each offers a few highly competitive fellowships to students entering doctoral study here. Graduate Merit Awards from the College are multi-year packages, with two years of fellowship support in addition to three years or more of graduate assistantship included in each. These carry 24 units of tuition remission per year and an additional stipend of $21,000 or more for the academic year. Graduate School fellowships are one-to-three year awards covering all tuition and mandatory fees, and currently provide a minimum stipend of $21,000 for the academic year. Very strong performance in previous academic work and high scores on the Graduate Record Examination, coupled with the department’s recommendation, are the major criteria for receiving these fellowships. Over the past few years the department has maintained an excellent track record in obtaining these coveted awards for its most highly qualified applicants.
    • Teaching Assistants (TAs) help full-time faculty in course instruction, taking responsibility for leading discussion sections which complement lectures, grading student work, helping the professor with class preparation, and advising undergraduate students on both course requirements and their classroom performance. TA stipends are for a full-time appointment, and all also provide tuition remission for full-time study as well as health insurance and mandatory student health center fees. On rare occasions, editorial or research assistantships are also offered by the department.
  • TEACHING ASSISTANTSHIPS are typically assigned by the Chair of History and Director of Graduate Studies at the end of each semester for the forthcoming semester.  Students may request to teach in a particular class or for a particular professor, but will be placed where most needed.

    The University, Dornsife, and the department offer annual orientation sessions to new TAs.

    For University policies and guidelines for TAs, check the Handbook for Teaching Assistants.

  • OTHER SOURCES OF FUNDING for research and travel are available as USC-funded internal grants and grants/fellowships from external sources.

    • Research centers and institutes around USC offer competitive research funds, e.g., EMSI, VSGC, IRG-CRCC et al.
    • The History Department provides up to $500 in research & travel funding to every doctoral student per year.
    • The History Department offers competitive funding through the Roberta Persinger Foulke Fellowship.
    • The University and Dornsife offers limited competitive research funding through endowed fellowships.

    Your mentors and members of the USC administration can help you investigate external grants possibilities.


  • SUMMER SUPPORT for students who have not passed qualifying exams is available from a variety of sources.  First- and second-year students usually use summer months to catch up on their reading for exams, continue language training, and/or in temporary employmenty on or off campus.  ABDs often use the summers for research travel or writing.




  • SHORT-TERM EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITIES exist within and outside the History Department.

    • Ask your professors if they need Research Assistants--you'll be surprised how many have research funding and need a paid  assistant researcher.
  • Department of History
  • 3502 Trousdale Parkway
  • Social Sciences Building (SOS) 153
  • Los Angeles, CA
  • 90089-0034