All students admitted to the PhD program are offered a six-year funding package, contingent on satisfactory progress toward their degree. The funding package provides payment of tuition up to 14 credits per semester, partial payment of the health insurance premium, and a stipend.

For incoming graduate students, funding is normally provided through teaching assistantships, as well as appropriate fellowships and research assistant positions as they become available. After passing the preliminary written and oral examinations, graduate students occasionally have the opportunity to be the primary instructor (graduate instructor) for an undergraduate course.

Graduate instructor positions, nominated fellowships, and research assistant positions that are made available through faculty in the department or through departmental nomination, as well as TA or RA positions in other units of the university, are considered to be part of the six-year funding package.

Department Opportunities

Nominated Fellowships

During our admission process, the graduate committee will nominate appropriate applicants for the CLA Graduate Fellowships, the Interdisciplinary Center for the Study of Global Change (ICGC) Fellowship, and the Diversity of Views and Experiences (DOVE) fellowships, based on the applicant's file. These fellowships are by nomination only and cannot be applied for by applicants; however, applicants should indicate in their applications if they believe they would be good candidates for any of these fellowships.

Teaching/Research Assistantships

Most of the department’s support for graduate students takes place through these appointments:

  • Teaching assistants (TAs) help teach students in a specified course or courses under the general supervision of faculty or academic staff. TAs grade papers, lead labs and discussion sections, and hold office hours. They may also be assigned primary responsibility for an entire course.
  • Research assistants (RAs) carry out activities connected with research studies assigned by the supporting department or principal research investigator.

Appointments to a teaching assistant or research assistant position are offered through various departments and programs. You are encouraged to seek TA or RA positions outside the department, particularly if such positions will contribute to developing your dissertation research project.

Graduate Instructor Positions

Occasionally, due to faculty leaves or other reasons, the opportunity arises for advanced graduate students to be the graduate instructor for an undergraduate course. These positions are made available through a competitive process announced by our director of graduate studies. To be eligible to apply to teach such a course, funds must be available; the applicant must be ABD (have completed all work but the dissertation) and have the support of their advisors. Students who are still within their six-year funding timeline will be given priority.

Other Opportunities

University Opportunities

Graduate students in the Department of Anthropology are often successful in obtaining funding opportunities through the University of Minnesota. This includes many of the University Fellowship opportunities, as well as funding opportunities within the college or program-levels as well; for example, the Dissertation Proposal Development (DPD) Program through the CLA Office of Research and Graduate Programs, the Hella Mears Fellowship through German & European Studies, and FLAS Fellowships through Global Studies.

External Fellowships

Students are encouraged to apply for financial support outside the department. If appropriate, you will be encouraged to apply for the National Science Foundation Graduate School Fellowship and other external fellowships. Fellowships are also available for underrepresented and educationally disadvantaged students, for students with a diversity of views and experiences, and for other student backgrounds. Other avenues of financial assistance include student employment and various loan programs that are based on financial need. Refer to the Graduate School funding information website .

International Student & Scholar Services (ISSS) Financial Aid

In an effort to assist international students who are experiencing financial hardship due to unforeseen circumstances, International Student & Scholar Services (ISSS) offers a very limited amount of financial aid to international students. ISSS international student funding is designed to assist with the cost of tuition and fees only; international students must document that they are employed in an effort to cover their living expenses.

Additional Financial Aid

Students admitted to the graduate program who need additional financial aid should check out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and other grant and loan opportunities at the Office of Student Finance and OneStop's Financial Aid Resources.

Questions about funding opportunities?

Contact the Department of Anthropology graduate program at for more information.