Financial Assistance

The Religious Studies Department makes every effort to support qualified graduate students in ways that contribute not only to their financial well-being but also to their intellectual growth. The total package we offer excellent students is not only financially competitive with other major institutions but also intellectually stimulating because of the teaching experience it involves. Fellowship support in a variety of forms is available for strong candidates in their first and/or last years of graduate study. Qualified incoming students in the humanities will be considered for Chancellor’s, Humanities Pre-Doctoral, and Regents Fellowships, which award approximately $24,000 in the stipend years, payment of fees, health insurance, and tuition (first year only and not applicable to Regents), and guaranteed space in university-sponsored housing. Teaching assistantships are provided by the department during the non-stipend years.

Research in the humanities is encouraged and supported in many ways. Graduate students may apply to the Graduate Humanities Research Fellowship Program, which awards $24,000 plus payment of fees and health insurance to domestic doctoral students who have advanced to candidacy, and to the Graduate Student Humanities & Social Sciences Research Grant Program, which awards grants of up to $3,000. Doctoral students engaging in interdisciplinary research or dissertation-writing may apply for Interdisciplinary Humanities Center Pre-Doctoral Fellowships, which award up to $6,000, or to UCSB General Affiliates Graduate Dissertation Fellowships, which award $3,000 to eligible degree candidates.

In addition to these university fellowships, the Religious Studies Department offers a limited number of four-year packages consisting of three years of stipends combined with fee and insurance payments and a least one year (three quarters) of research or teaching assistantships.   Tuition fellowships may also be granted to out-of-state students during the first year.  As with university fellowships, these departmental packages are awarded on the basis of merit.  Rowny Fellowships, which are offered every year, are open to all applicants.  Cordano Fellowships, which are offered every few years, are open to applicants with an interest in Catholic Studies.

Finally, graduate students may apply for Academic Senate grants, graduate student travel funds, intercampus exchange funds enabling graduate students to use library and research facilities at other California institutions, loans, and work-study employment.

To be eligible for financial aid, all students must first fill out a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA ) form every year by the March 2 deadline.

The Graduate Division site has more detailed financial information applicable to prospective students from all departments.


Diversity Students
The Religious Studies Department is committed to increasing the diversity of its graduate student body. The largest fellowship packages, awarded by the university, will award approximately $24,000 per year during two years, as well as payment of fees, health insurance, and tuition (if necessary). Teaching assistantships are provided by the department during two more years. These packages are awarded following a campus-wide competition among each incoming group of applicants; our department nominates its highest-ranked merit-with-diversity applicants each year.The department also has a five-year fellowship for outstanding students interested in Native American religions. This fellowship is jointly sponsored by the department and the Graduate Division and is named the Robert S. Michaelsen Fellowship.In addition, a Faculty Mentorship program and other intellectual as well as social support programs are available. UCSB has important cross-departmental programs and facilities dedicated to instilling ethnic diversity on campus.
Last updated: 10/09/2015