The School of Human Evolution and Social Change provides a variety of financial resources and awards to our graduate students.

If you are a U.S. citizen, please also complete the federal aid forms and seek out additional awards. Graduate students have further opportunities for funding through the Graduate College and The College of Liberal Arts and Sciences.

Funding Opportunities for Incoming Students

Multi-Year Recruitment Packages

Our school typically offers multi-year Graduate Research and Teaching Associateships to our most competitive applicants. For recipients incoming with a B.A., these awards cover 4 academic years (pending budgetary approval/availability), and for recipients incoming with an M.A., the awards cover 3 academic years.

  • These half-time appointments carry a stipend of $18,000 per academic year.
  • Tuition and student health insurance are covered as part of the award. The award does not cover miscellaneous registration fees.
  • Recipients are required to stay enrolled in a minimum of 9 credit hours per semester (not to include course auditing).

This award is intended to provide students with the opportunity to immerse themselves in their graduate education, carry out a graduate research program and gain teaching experience. Recipients are required to take on a teaching or research associateship and relevant required responsibilities.

To maintain these packages of support, recipients:

  • Must maintain a record of satisfactory progress and a cumulative GPA of 3.5.
  • May not supplement the award with additional or outside employment.
  • Must, beginning in the second year of the associateship, work with faculty advisors to prepare a comprehensive written plan for the graduate program each year. This will be submitted to the faculty along with their regular annual self-evaluation. Continuation of the award after the second year is contingent upon fulfilling the plan each year.

During the period of the award, recipients may be granted a deferment of up to a year if they are involved in activities directly related to their graduate programs that prevent them from meeting their responsibilities – for example, if they are abroad, carrying out field research and cannot serve as a teaching assistant.

Application Fee Waiver

As part of our commitment to reducing financial barriers, the School of Human Evolution and Social Change offers a waiver of the Graduate Application Fee for students who qualify. If you were eligible for a Pell Grant as an undergraduate, please complete the Fee Waiver Form prior to submitting your program application. We will also waive the graduate application fee if you are a citizen resident of a lower- or middle-income country per the World Bank classification.

Funding Opportunities for Current Students

Resident Scholars

Each year, by the November 1 deadline, we will nominate graduate students for the Resident Scholar Fellowships at the School for Advanced Research. Talk to your advisor if you think you are qualified and would like to be nominated.

Travel Award

Doctoral students can apply for Travel Awards up to $1,000 to use towards travel to a conference. Within a year of receiving this award, students must submit a one-paragraph report of their use of the funds and the experience they gained.

Research Grant

Doctoral students can apply for research grants up to $3,000 (in exceptional circumstances a small number of grants above $3,000, but not exceeding $6,000, may be funded.) Students must be enrolled in at least six credits during the semester the award is offered. Awards may cover any research needs, including in-state, out-of-state and international travel.

Tuition/Insurance Coverage

Doctoral students who have advanced to candidacy may apply for Tuition/Insurance Coverage, to cover one credit of tuition and insurance (if needed) in order to maintain continuous enrollment while they are in the field, collecting data or writing their dissertation.

Summer Writing Fellowship

Doctoral students who have advanced to candidacy may apply for a $7,000 stipend and one credit of tuition coverage as a summer award. This award is meant to allow students to focus their summer solely on writing and completing their dissertation.

Completion Fellowship

Students in the final academic year of a PhD program can apply for this fellowship which covers one credit of tuition and insurance (if needed) and a stipend of $9,000 for both fall and spring semesters. This award can only be received once. After receiving a Completion Fellowship a student is no longer eligible for school funding, even if they do not graduate during the term of the fellowship.

Dissertation Writing Fellowships

If you are actively writing your dissertation, you may be eligible for these one- or two-semester awards, which pay a stipend of $9,000 per semester. You will not be required to serve in an assistantship, and tuition (1–9 hours per semester, depending on individual enrollment requirements) and health insurance are provided. These awards cannot be deferred.

The fellowship criteria include proof that you have a good overall record, a significant dissertation project and:

  • Your dissertation data collection is complete,
  • You are actively writing your dissertation,
  • You and your faculty committee chair can make a good case that you will defend your dissertation before the beginning of the following fall semester,
  • You are resident in the Phoenix or Tempe area and thus can maintain close contact with your dissertation committee, and
  • You will be able to devote yourself full time to writing your dissertation.

To be considered for the award, submit the following by the deadlines when announced:

  • A statement, of no more than 500 words, that briefly summarizes your dissertation project and specifically addresses the above points (including justification for possible exceptions).
  • A letter of support from your committee chair or other committee member that specifically addresses the feasibility of your plans for the coming year.

Competitive Awards and Prizes

Learn about our past student award winners

Reynold Ruppé Prize in Archaeology and Ruppé Prize Honorable Mention

The Reynold Ruppé Prize in Archaeology is awarded each year to the best paper in archaeology by a graduate student at Arizona State University. The recipients ($500 for first place, $250 for honorable mention) are announced at the spring graduation awards reception at the school. This competition alternates between pre- and post-M.A. students each year. Out-of-cycle submissions will be held over for the following year if appropriate. You are eligible to submit if you were at the level of the competition at any time during the appropriate academic year.

This prize is limited to current students in graduate degree programs in the School of Human Evolution and Social Change at Arizona State University. You may make one submission every year you are eligible, as long as you submit a different paper every year.

To be considered in this competition, send the following to the student and academic services team by the deadline announced each semester or have a faculty member make the submission on your behalf:

  • A paper about, or directly relevant to, archaeology written during the 18 months preceding the deadline. Papers being considered for submission for publication are particularly welcome.
  • Faculty may submit for students with the approval of the student, and faculty may nominate multiple students.
  • Papers may be co-authored by two ASU students; no paper may have a co-author who is not an ASU student. Co-authored papers must include a statement outlining the contributions of each author.

Donald H. Morris Award for Outstanding Doctoral Student in Evolutionary Anthropology, and for Outstanding Doctoral Student in Bioarchaeology

The Donald H. Morris Award is presented to honor the academic excellence of our most outstanding graduate student in evolutionary anthropology and bioarchaeology. The recipient of this $300 award is announced at the spring awards and graduation reception in the school.

To be eligible, you must have completed at least one full year in the program, must possess an outstanding academic record and must not have received the award previously. There is no requirement for nominations, since this honoree is selected by the relevant faculty committee.

Philip Mason Thompson Award

The Philip Mason Thompson Award is presented to honor the academic excellence of our most exceptional graduate student in sociocultural anthropology. The recipient of this $100 award is announced at the spring awards and graduation reception at the school.

To be eligible, you must have completed at least one full year in the program, must possess an outstanding academic record, and should display evidence or promise of making the world a better place to live in. Relevant faculty members meet in the spring to nominate up to five students for consideration.

To submit your self-nomination, respond to the call for nominations that will be e-mailed to you by the deadline established annually, by submitting:

  • Your current curriculum vitae.
  • Other relevant supporting material (e.g., a seminar paper or project report).

Additional Financial Resources

Arizona State University Graduate College is also a rich resource for additional information such as:

  • Teaching and research assistantships
  • Graduate Education fellowships
  • Conference & travel awards
  • National fellowship resources