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Departmental Funding Criteria

The funding criteria stated below are applicable to funding that is controlled and allocated by the Department. These are:

These criteria also apply to TA positions funded by other programs, such as MMSS, that use Economics students as TAs

Students’ admission letters specify the nature of the funding in the first and subsequent years Typically, funding is offered for five years (20 quarters). The Department attempts to support students beyond 20 quarters until the Spring Quarter of the sixth year (23 quarters), and to fund students in later years who were not offered funding in their first year.

We do so by defining and enforcing criteria for satisfactory progress to be eligible for funding, and because some students obtain Research Assistantships (RA) or obtain external fellowships. The Graduate School (TGS) has policies to supplement and incentivize external awards.

Students holding University Fellowships or Graduate Assistantships can undertake additional work for hourly pay. There are limits on the additional hours each quarter, and permission must be obtained from TGS in advance.

In rare cases, a student's admission letter may contain alternative funding criteria, which take precedence over these rules.

You can also download a Summary of Continuation and Funding Rules.

 

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Foreign Students

Students graduating from institutions where instruction is not in English must demonstrate proficiency in English prior to being funded as a TA.


Academic Year Funding

First year students

A student's admission letter indicates whether they have been awarded a University Fellowship in the first year. Unfortunately, we cannot make additional fellowships available during the first year. However, funding in the second year and beyond depends on the student's progress, as detailed below, and not on the nature of first year funding.

Second year students

Students who remain in the doctoral program are funding eligible irrespective of whether they have achieved candidacy. Second year funding is as a TA.

Third year students

Eligibility for third year funding requires certification by a faculty member by July 31 of an acceptable Economics 501 paper (see certification form). While certification is required, presentation in the Economics 501 seminar is not. The presentation of the paper is usually in the Fall Quarter of the third year, although presentation in the Spring Quarter of the second year is encouraged. Third year funding is as a TA.

Fourth year students

Eligibility for fourth year funding requires completion of a thesis prospectus by August 31. The thesis prospectus requires a successful thesis proposal defense and completion of all course work. Fourth year funding is as a TA in Fall and Winter Quarters, followed by a DYUF in Spring Quarter. The latter requires the student's dissertation committee chair to certify by February 15 that the student is expected to enter the job market in their fifth year (see certification form). In the absence of such certification, the student is funded as a TA in the Spring Quarter.

In addition, the department awards the Robert Eisner Memorial Fellowship to one fourth year student. To be eligible, students must have met the standard requirements for departmental funding. This award recognizes a student who has distinguished his or herself in both teaching and research.

We cannot guarantee that TA funding is available for a student whose thesis prospectus is completed after August 31. In any event, TA funding is not awarded for any quarter in which the student has not completed the thesis prospectus. For example, a student completing the prospectus in November of the fourth year will not receive TA funding for the Fall Quarter and can only be funded in the Winter and Spring Quarters if there are any unallocated TA positions remaining within our budget.

Fifth year students

Eligibility for fifth year funding requires certification by the dissertation committee chair by July 31 that the student has submitted a written paper sufficiently far in advance of the deadline for the faculty member to have comprehensively reviewed it, and that it is of suitable quality to form at least one chapter of a dissertation (see certification form). Coauthored papers are allowed but can only be used by one student for purposes of paper certification.

Provided a satisfactory written paper is provided, the dissertation committee chair can indicate whether the student will be on the job market in their fifth year. If the student intends to be on the job market, funding is as a DYUF in Fall and Winter Quarters, followed by a TA in Spring Quarter. If the student withdraws from the job market prior to the ASSA meetings, the Winter Quarter DYUF is converted to a TA.

In the event that there are still funds available within the budget after all of the eligible students in years two through four and the job-market fifth and sixth year students have been funded, other fifth year students who have provided a satisfactory written paper may be supported. These students perform TA duties in every quarter that they are funded. However, if the student's dissertation committee chair certifies by February 15 that the student is expected to enter the job market in their sixth year, the Spring Quarter TA is converted to a DYUF (see certification form). (Note that if the student took advantage of a DYUF in the Spring Quarter of their fourth year, they are not eligible again in their fifth year.)

If the student has not provided a written paper, or if the paper is not of sufficient quality to form at least one chapter of a dissertation, or if the student’s dissertation committee chair certifies that the student is not making good progress on their dissertation, the student is not eligible for any fifth year funding.

 

Sixth year students on the job market

Eligibility for funding requires certification by the dissertation committee chair by July 31 that a satisfactory draft of a job-market paper has been submitted and the student is entering the job market (see certification form). Students can use any remaining quarters of their three-quarter DYUF eligibility that they did not use in their fourth or fifth years. (The department suggests that students give priority to taking a DYUF in the Winter Quarter, as they will be traveling and unable to undertake alternative funding such as a TA or RA.) The remaining quarters are funded as a TA.

If the student withdraws from the job market prior to the ASSA meetings, any remaining quarters of funding are withdrawn. Such students may be funded as a TA, but only if there are still funds available after all the qualified younger students have been funded.

Sixth year students not on the job market

Non-job market sixth years are generally not funded. If there are still funds available after all the qualified younger students, and the job-market sixth year students, have been funded, other sixth year students may be supported. To be eligible, the dissertation committee chair must certify by July 31 that the student is making good progress (see certification form). These students are funded as a TA in every quarter that they are funded. DYUF funding is not available to sixth year students who are not on the job market.

Seventh and higher year students

In normal circumstances, university rules do not permit funding of students in the seventh and higher years. The department can petition WCAS for funding as a TA only if (a) there are still funds available after all of the qualified younger students have been funded, and (b) there is an inadequate number of Teaching Assistants to meet classroom needs. The dissertation committee chair must have certified by July 31 that the student is making good progress, and preference is given to those on the job market (see certification form). However, DYUF funding is not available, even if the student is on the job market.

Summer Quarter Funding

First year students

A student's admission letter indicates whether they are eligible for a Summer University Fellowship (SUF) at the end of the first year. Recipients of SUFs must:

The acceptance form for summer funding must be submitted between May 1 and May 15  (see acceptance form).

Second through fifth year students

To obtain an SUF, students must:

The acceptance form for summer funding must be submitted between May 1 and May 15 each year (see acceptance form).

Sixth year students and beyond

The university only funds summers up until the fifth year. Older students can seek RA positions.

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