All PhD students are awarded merit-based (regardless of need) full financial support for five years, typically for the first four years of study as well as for the completion year. This support includes a fellowship for tuition and health fees as well as a stipend for living expenses; it also includes Summer Research Awards for the first four years of study. PhD students do not have teaching responsibilities during the first two years of graduate study; most students serve as Teaching Fellows in years 3 & 4 of enrollment. In cases in which the length of PhD study extends beyond five years, students are ordinarily able to secure financial support through various Harvard and non-Harvard opportunities, including research fellowships, teaching fellowships, and research assistantships.
For more information or to schedule an appointment with a Social Sciences Financial Aid Officer click here.
Teaching Fellows assist in courses under the supervision of course instructors. Duties may include teaching sections, conducting tutorials, recommending grades, and supervising independent study projects.
To qualify for stipends during their third and fourth years of graduate study, PhD students ordinarily teach two sections of a standard lecture course each semester (a section consists of a weekly meeting of up to eighteen undergraduate students). Graduate students also may teach sections of the sophomore or junior tutorials. As of the fall of 2016, G3 and G4 students may defer semesters of guaranteed teaching into the G5 year or later.
While the standard funding package is guaranteed, students are nonetheless encouraged to apply for external funding from various sources. History of Science PhD students have been awarded fellowships from many organizations, including:
- International Dissertation Research Fellowship (IDRF)
- Mellon/American Council of Learned Societies (ACLS) Dissertation Completion Fellowships
- Dumbarton Oaks (includes 2 year Tyler Fellowship for Harvard graduate students only)
- Dan David Fellowship (Past, Present, and Future designated fields in any given year intermittently relevant to History of Science)
Newcombe Fellowship ("designed to encourage original and significant study of ethical or religious values in all fields of the humanities and social sciences")
- DAAD: grant program for students to study or do research in Germany.
- Spencer: for students working on the history of education (may be broadly construed).
- The Bourse Chateaubriand, a "fellowship designed to conduct research of scientific orientation in France." History of Science students are eligible to apply.
- Delmas: for students planning to do research in Venice.
- Travel to Collections: many archives, University libraries, and some museums have funds available to pay for researchers to come use their collections. One example is the Linda Hall Library in Kansas City, Missouri. "Fellowships, lasting anywhere from one week to a full year, are awarded to outstanding projects in history of science, environmental history, and related science and technology studies fields that make use of the Library’s collections."
- Professional Societies and Foundations: the American Association for the History of Medicine(AAHM), the Chemical Heritage Society, SHOT (Society for the History of Technology), and other organizations offer essay prizes and/or grants in support of research. Find out which societies/organizations are relevant for your research, and what they offer.
Alternative Sources of Support
Suggestions for alternative sources of support may be found on the GSAS website.