Graduate Student Financial Support


All graduate students at UC San Diego are responsible for tuition and fees each quarter. Students can receive financial support to help cover these costs in the form of fellowships, scholarships, financial aid, and academic student employment positions. To be eligible for financial support, graduate students must be registered full-time (12 units) and be in good academic standing.

The UC San Diego Division of Graduate Education and Postdoctoral Affairs (GEPA) Financial Support website has the most up-to-date and relevant information regarding graduate funding. Please review it thoroughly. 


Throughout the year, fellowships and awards are available to all graduate students. Please review the following fellowships/scholarships resources: 

Academic Student Employment Positions

Both Ph.D. and M.S. students are eligible for Academic Student Employment positions, but priority is given to Ph.D. students.  Appointments are quantified by a percentage based on a 40-hour work week (i.e., 100% = 40 hours per week; 50% = 20 hours per week; 25% = 10 hours per week.) Graduate students cannot work more than 50% during the academic year, or 100% during the summer.

Graduate Student Researcher (GSR)

Paid research positions are available via grants awarded to faculty members. Students employed as GSRs at 25% or above qualify for GSR Tuition and Fee Remission which covers all tuition, fees, and nonresidential supplemental tuition (if applicable). Students should talk to their faculty advisor for availability.

Pay rates are posted on the GEPA website. MAE M.S. students are paid at the Step 4 GSR rate, and Ph.D. students are paid at the Step 6 GSR rate until they advance to candidacy, after which time they are paid at the Step 7 GSR rate. 

Teaching Assistant (TA) / Reader

Teaching Assistants and Readers are hired on a quarterly basis to support teaching instruction. Appointment percentages are assigned based on course enrollment. Students in the MAE Department and Program in MATS will be notified when quarterly applications are opened. Students can also apply for positions in other departments on the UC San Diego Open Instructional Assistant Positions website. Offers are typically extended one month prior to the start of the quarter. Students employed as TAs or Readers at 25% and above are eligible for TA Fee Remission which covers the majority of resident tuition and fees. The Teaching + Learning Commons offers training opportunities for TAs and future faculty members.  

International Graduate Students: International graduate students who are nonnative speakers of English must be certified as having requisite language skills before they can serve as teaching assistants. If offered a TA position, please contact to schedule an English Language Certification Examination (ELCE). The ELCE must be taken during finals week or the week after (of the prior quarter) in order to be eligible to work as a TA the following quarter. Please find more information about the ELCE here

The New Academic Student Employee (ASE) Orientation is required of all students who are first-time Associate Ins, Teaching Assistants, Readers, and Tutors. The MAE department staff will provide the orientation information once it's scheduled. 

Visit GEPA's website for additional information regarding support for student parents.

Travel Funding

The MAE Department provides travel grants of up to $1,000 per fiscal year (July-June) to Ph.D. students who are presenting their work at conferences. Applicants must be in good academic standing and must be registered for the quarter during which the conference occurs. Students applying for grants during the summer must have been registered during the preceding spring quarter.

To apply for travel funding, Ph.D. students must submit an MAE Ph.D. Student Travel Grant Form prior to booking travel arrangements. If approved, the student will receive a confirmation email from the MAE Student Affairs Office with the award amount. Prior to travel, the student must contact the faculty assistant (who will be included in the award confirmation email) for details on travel requirements. Payment of funds will be processed as reimbursements.

Additional Resources:


It is UC San Diego policy that U.S. citizens on support will not have out-of-state tuition paid by the University after their first year. Therefore, if a domestic student does not establish California residency prior to the start of their second year, they will be responsible for out-of-state tuition. Please review here for more information about the Residence for Tuition Purposes policy. 

International students will have nonresidential supplemental tuition waived for three years after the successful completion of the Senate Examination.

Direct Deposit

In order to avoid payment delays, it is highly recommended that students enroll in direct deposit. Please review the process for direct deposit enrollment here. 

Additional Resources