The Department strives to provide funding for every graduate student. Particular effort in recent years has gone to putting together multi-year (usually 5-year) funding packages for newly admitted students, although this is not always possible. Funding can take a variety of forms, both internal and extramural, including:
- multi-year university fellowships (available only at admission, by departmental nomination)
- multi-year external US government fellowships (e.g. NSF, Javits). Domestic applicants are strongly encouraged to apply for these when applying to graduate school.
- FLAS (Foreign Language Area Studies) fellowships, to support students studying a particular language
- other specialized external grants
- dissertation year fellowships (external and internal)
- departmental stipends for the academic year and/or summer research
- support for organzing or traveling to conferences
- Graduate Student Researcher (GSR) positions in Linguistics or other departments (normally for continuing students only)
- Graduate Student Instructor (GSI) positions in Linguistics or other departments (normally for continuing students only)
The ideal funding package is a 5-year combination of fellowship support and teaching, which many students augment with 6th year dissertation fellowships; this combination provides students both with the opportunity to do fulltime coursework and research and with the opportunity to gain teaching experience. The experience of teaching is invaluable in a student's own training in linguistics; it is also essential in the post-Ph.D. competition for academic positions, a competition in which Berkeley Ph.D.s typically excel, due to the depth and breadth of their graduate training.
The Graduate Division fellowships website has a helpful and comprehensive list of fellowships and other funding opportunities available to new and continuing graduate students. Information in a much briefer form is provided in the Graduate Division's flyer on graduate study. Financial aid, for other forms of aid available to students, including loans, see Berkeley Financial Aid & Scholarships.
All domestic students applying for any kind of university fellowships, departmental awards or financial aid must submit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), usually due at the beginning of March.