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Funding Opportunities

There are a variety of funding opportunities available to graduate students. Some are offered annually by the department, others are grants and travel awards offered by other departments on campus or that you can apply to via external sources.

Funding Sources

The department has several categories of funding available for graduate students.

Professional Development Funds

Silverman Research Award

The Silverman Research Award provides up to $2,000 funding for graduate student research supporting Human Rights Research broadly construed. Calls for proposals occur every spring and require a tentative budget be included.

Summer Methods Training Award

Awarded annually, students can be awarded up to $1,500 for reimbursement of travel, tuition, lodging, and living expenses associated with the methods training. Any methodological training institute is eligible for funding with justification. Existing methods training seminars include those offered by the Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research (ICPSR), the Institute for Survey Research (ISR) at the University of Michigan, and ASA workshops at the annual meeting. Calls for proposals occur every spring.

Paper Awards

Elizabeth Menaghan Paper Award

This paper award recognizes an outstanding paper in the field of marriage and family. The award honors Elizabeth Menaghan, whose research at Ohio State Sociology has made important contributions to the fields of marriage and family.

Frank L. Mott Paper Award

This award recognizes outstanding work of graduate students whose research addresses population and health issues. The award honors Frank Mott, whose tireless research over many decades at Ohio State's Center for Human Resource Research has been critical to the growth and development of population and health studies.

Outstanding Student Awards

Each year, the department seeks nominations for Outstanding Students, including Outstanding Second Year Paper and Outstanding PhD Candidate.


The Presidential Fellowship

The Presidential Fellowship is a year-long fellowship given by the Graduate School that recognizes the outstanding scholarly accomplishments and potential of graduate students entering the final phase of their dissertation research or terminal degree project. Students do not apply directly to the Graduate School, but are nominated by Graduate Studies Committee Chairpersons. There is a fall and spring competition. Read more here about the Presidential Fellowship.

Grants and Awards

Council of Graduate Students Ray Travel Award for Scholarship and Service

The Council of Graduate Students Edward J. Ray Travel Award for Scholarship and Service encourages and enables graduate students across the university to participate in professional conferences, both in their respective fields and in the broader community by reimbursing or partially reimbursing the expenses incurred by graduate students during travel to conferences and meetings to present original research.

The Ray Award evaluators give substantial weight to the applicant's service to his/her department, the university, and the surrounding community when making award decisions. Evaluators also take into account the academic standing of the applicant, the applicant's professional goals, the nature of the conference being attended, and the applicant's ability to convey the focus of his/her research to a general audience. Eligibility information is available at Eligibility information is available online. This is a quarterly competition.

Critical Difference for Women Research Grants

The Critical Difference for Women Awards is a scholarship/grant-offering program of OSU that provides financial support to women students (and some men), faculty, and staff. It offers (1) Re-entry Scholarships for women who have interrupted their education due to unforeseen obstacles such as family responsibilities or financial constraints and who are seeking undergraduate, graduate, and professional degrees; and (2) Coca-Cola Dissertation Grants for Research on Women, Gender, and Gender Equity. Administered through the Women's Studies Department, these awards typically have a spring deadline.

Edward F. Hayes Graduate Research Forum

Every spring quarter, the Council of Graduate Students hosts the Edward F. Hayes Graduate Research Forum for graduate study at The Ohio State University. Students enrolled in any area of graduate study at The Ohio State University are invited are invited to submit their work. Submissions are due in January. In February, eight papers from each of the 10 graduate school areas are chosen for the competition. Those selected give a public presentation on their research. Three winners are selected from each of the 10 Graduate School areas, and the winners are announced in April at the Research Forum. First prize is $300 cash and a $500 travel award, second prize is $200 cash, and third prize is $100 cash.

Midwestern Association of Graduate Schools Distinguished Master's Thesis Award

Each recipient of a MAGS Distinguished Master's Thesis Award will receive a $750 honorarium.  In addition, up to $500 will be available to each recipient for travel expenses to attend the Annual Meeting.  It is expected that the winner's institution will cover any travel expenses which exceed the $500 provided by MAGs for the awardee to attend the meeting to receive the award.  The faculty mentor or thesis advisor will also be invited to attend the presentation, but their expenses will not be covered. Read more about the MAGs Distinguished Masters Thesis Award.

More opportunities are available from:

SPIN is a search engine allowing you to search for funding oppurtunities, curated through OSU. (https://spin.infoedglobal.com/Home/Search)


AAUW American Fellowships / International Fellowships 

AAUW American Fellowships support women scholars completing doctoral dissertations, conducting postdoctoral research, or finishing research for publication. Recipients must be U.S. citizens or permanent residents. Dissertation fellowships are currently set at $20,000 for the academic year. International Fellowships are open to women who are not U.S. citizens or permanent residents and may also be used for doctoral research. International Fellowships are awarded for full-time study or research in the United States to women who are not U.S. citizens or permanent residents. Both graduate and postgraduate studies at accredited U.S. institutions are supported. Recipients are selected for academic achievement and demonstrated commitment to women and girls. Recipients often return to their home countries to become leaders in business, government, academia, community activism, the arts, and sciences.

AERA Minority Dissertation Fellowship in Education Research 

Support for outstanding minority students to undertake dissertation research relating to education. Student need not be in an Education program, but dissertation topic must relate to education. $12,000 for one year plus $1,000 for travel to AERA professional conference. Supplemental awards are allowed. Open to US citizens and permanent residents who are African Americans, Alaska Natives, American Indians, Hispanics/Latinos, and Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islanders.

Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS) Graduate Research Fellowship (GRF) Program

 This program provides awards to accredited universities for doctoral research that uses BJS's criminal justice data or statistical series and focuses on crime, violence, and other criminal justice-related topics. BJS invests in doctoral education by supporting universities that sponsor students who demonstrate the potential to complete doctoral degree programs successfully in disciplines relevant to the mission of BJS, and who are in the final stages of graduate study. The primary goal of this solicitation is to increase the pool of researchers using criminal justice statistical data generated by BJS, thereby contributing solutions that better prevent and control crime and help ensure the fair and impartial administration of criminal justice in the United States.

Ford Foundation Fellowship Program  

Pre-Doctoral, Dissertation, and Post-Doctoral awards for PhD and Sc.D students intending academic careers as scholars and teachers. This award is open to US citizens in most fields of study. The award aims to promote diversity in higher education by funding candidates: (a) Who are a member of an under-represented minority, including Alaska Natives, Black/African Americans, Mexican Americans, Native American Indians, Native Pacific Islanders, and Puerto Ricans. (b) Whose research and career aims demonstrate a likelihood of using the diversity of human experience as an educational resource in teaching and scholarship.

Harry Frank Guggenheim Foundation Dissertation Fellowships  

Dissertation completion award of $20,000 for candidates in the final year of their Ph.D. program. The HFG Foundation supports research on violence and aggression in relation to social change, intergroup conflict, war, terrorism, crime, and family relationships, among other subjects. Field / discipline is open, but dissertations with no relevance to understanding human violence and aggression will not be supported.

Fulbright Foreign Student Program

The Fulbright Foreign Student Program enables graduate students, young professionals, and artists from abroad to research and study in the United States for one year or longer at U.S. universities or other appropriate institutions. Application details and grant terms for the Fulbright Program vary by country of citizenship and program. Potential applicants should consult individual country pages for program availability and contact information or see a list of current programs. 

International Dissertation Research Fellowship Program

The IDRF program is committed to scholarship that advances knowledge about non-U.S. cultures and societies grounded in empirical and site-specific research (involving fieldwork, research in archival or manuscript collections, or quantitative data collection). The program promotes research that is both located in a specific discipline and geographical region and engaged with interdisciplinary and cross-regional perspectives. Fellowships will provide support for nine to twelve months of dissertation research. Fifty fellowships of approximately $20,000 each were awarded in 2007.

Jennings Randolph Peace Scholarship Dissertation Program  

Open to students enrolled in US universities who are researching and/or writing doctoral dissertations on topics related to peace, conflict, conflict resolution, and international security. Proposals from all disciplines are welcome, with preference given to research that shows clear relevance to policy issues. No citizenship restrictions. The award is currently set at $20,000 for ten months.

Josephine de Karman Dissertation Fellowships  

Approximately eight (8) fellowships, $25,000 for graduate students and $15,000 for undergraduate students, will be awarded for the regular academic year (fall and spring semesters or the equivalent where the quarterly system prevails), paid through the fellowship office of the university in which the recipient is enrolled for study in the United States. Study must be carried out only in the United States and all funds must be expended only within this country.De Karman fellowships are open to students in any discipline, including international students, who are currently enrolled in a university or college located within the United States. Only candidates for the PhD who will defend their dissertation in or about June 2019 and undergraduates entering their senior year (will receive bachelors degree in or about June 2019) are eligible for consideration for a 2018-2019 fellowship. Postdoctoral and masters degree students are not eligible for consideration. Special consideration will be given to applicants in the Humanities.

Mellon/ACLS Dissertation Completion Fellowships  

Dissertation completion fellowship in the humanities and related social sciences. For use in the final year of the Ph.D. program. No citizenship restrictions. Approximately 65 fellowships of $30,000 (plus other funds to support research and university fee costs) awarded annually.

NAEd / Spencer Dissertation Fellowship 

Dissertation completion fellowship of $25,000 for research in any discipline relevant to the improvement of education, with emphasis on research that brings fresh and constructive perspectives to the history, theory, or practice of formal or informal education anywhere in the world. Open to all disciplines with no citizenship restrictions, but research must focus on education.

National Defense Science and Engineering Graduate Fellowship

The National Defense Science and Engineering Graduate (NDSEG) Fellowship is a highly competitive, portable fellowship that is awarded to U.S. citizens and nationals who intend to pursue a doctoral degree in one of fifteen supported disciplines. NDSEG confers high honors upon its recipients, and allows them to attend whichever U.S. institution they choose. NDSEG Fellowships last for three years and pay for full tuition and all mandatory fees, a monthly stipend, and up to $1,000 a year in medical insurance. 

National Institute of Justice Graduate Research Fellowship

The Graduate Research Fellowship provides dissertation research support to outstanding doctoral students undertaking independent research on issues related to crime and justice.

Charlotte W. Newcombe Doctoral Dissertation Fellowships 

The Charlotte W. Newcombe Doctoral Dissertation Fellowships are designed to encourage original and significant study of ethical or religious values in all fields of the humanities and social sciences, and particularly to help Ph.D. candidates in these fields complete their dissertation work in a timely manner.  Approximately 20 awards of $25,000 are made per year for twelve months of full-time dissertation writing. 

Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Health Policy Research Scholars  

For full-time first or second year doctoral students (as of start of program) from historically disadvantaged or underrepresented populations who want to inform and influence health policy.  Provised annual stipend up to $30,000 for up to four years.  Participants are also eligible for a competitive dissertation grant of up to $10,000.

Ruth Landes Fellowship  

Grants are available to scholars and other professionally qualified individuals of recognized merit for work toward a doctoral dissertation, for postdoctoral work, or for independent scholarship. Eligibility is limited to United States citizens and permanent legal residents. Grants are awarded on an objective and non-discriminatory basis and without regard to race, gender, religion, national origin, sexual orientation, age or ethnicity.

Awards range from $10,000 to $60,000 per year, and may be used for research, including field studies, and related expenses, including travel (where appropriate) and living costs over the period covered by the Landes Grant. Senior scholars may request stipends based on their previous year’s salary and professional standing. Applications for multiyear grants will be considered.

Social Science Research Council (SSRC) Opportunities  

Most support from the Council goes to predissertation, dissertation, and postdoctoral fellowships, offered through annual, peer-reviewed competitions. Some programs offer summer institutes, advanced research grants, and grants for professionals and practitioners to conduct research. Most support individual researchers, rather than groups or institutions. Although SSRC fellowship and grant programs take a variety of forms, they share the goals of supporting innovative knowledge production and of building research capacity in areas of critical social importance.

Grants for Research

Beth B. Hess Memorial Scholarship  

The Beth B. Hess Memorial Scholarship will be awarded to an advanced sociology Ph.D. student who began her or his study in a community college or technical school. A student advanced to candidacy (ABD status) in an accredited Ph.D. program in sociology in the U.S. is eligible to apply if she or he studied at a U.S. two-year college either part-time or full-time for the equivalent of at least one full academic year that was not part of a high-school dual-enrolment or enrichment program.

Fulbright-Hays Doctoral Dissertation Research Abroad (DDRA) Fellowship 

Six to twelve months of funding for overseas dissertation research in areas outside western Europe. Open to U.S. citizens and permanent residents who are advanced to doctoral candidacy, in good standing at their university, and who possess the language skills necessary to complete their project. Please note that graduate students may still apply to the regular Fulbright U.S. Student Program (https://us.fulbrightonline.org/) to support overseas dissertation research, although that program, unlike this one, is not primarily intended for that purpose and supports other kinds of international student exchange activity as well.


The Hayek Fund for Scholars makes strategic awards of up to $1,000 to graduate students and untenured faculty members for career-enhancing activities such as: Presentations at academic or professional conferences, Travel to academic job interviews, Travel to and research at archives or libraries, Participation in career development or enhancing seminars, Distribution of a published article to colleagues in your field, Submission of unpublished manuscripts to journals or book publishers.

Horowitz Foundation for Social Policy

The Horowitz Foundation for Social Policy is now accepting applications for grants. In 2017, the Horowitz Foundation offered 19 awards for the most outstanding research in social policy by PhD candidates. This year, they are planning to do the same. With awards valued at $7,500 - $12,500, their grants are among the largest offered to PhD students. Please visit their site (linked above) for more information about criteria and eligibility. 

Russell Sage Foundation 

The Russell Sage Foundation's program on Social Inequality supports innovative research on whether rising economic inequality has affected social, political, and economic institutions, and the extent to which increased inequality has affected equality of opportunity, social mobility, and the intergenerational transmission of advantage. We seek investigator-initiated research projects that will broaden our understanding of the causes and consequences of rising economic inequalities in the United States.

Social Science Research Council (SSRC) Opportunities  

Most support from the Council goes to predissertation, dissertation, and postdoctoral fellowships, offered through annual, peer-reviewed competitions. Some programs offer summer institutes, advanced research grants, and grants for professionals and practitioners to conduct research. Most support individual researchers, rather than groups or institutions. Although SSRC fellowship and grant programs take a variety of forms, they share the goals of supporting innovative knowledge production and of building research capacity in areas of critical social importance.

Society of Family Planning Graduate Trainee Grant  

The SFP Research Fund supports research on contraception and abortion that exerts a sustained, powerful influence on clinical practice, public policy, health services, programs and culture. 8 or more grants ranging from 7,500 to 10,000 will be disbursed.

The Washington Center for Equitable Growth

This center is interested in research that explores the ways in which inequality may affect growth, particularly through the channels of macroeconomics, human capital, innovation, and institutions.  Grants of $15,000 are available to current Ph.D. students.

Woodrow Wilson Dissertation Fellowships in Women's Studies

The Woodrow Wilson Dissertation Fellowships in Women's Studies support the final year of dissertation writing for Ph.D. candidates in the humanities and social sciences whose work addresses issues of women and gender in interdisciplinary and original ways. Awards of $3,000 each are applicable to research/travel costs. 

Post-doctoral funding opportunities often arise and are ever-changing. For current opportunities, please contact the Graduate Program Coordinator at asc-gpc@osu.edu.
Additionally, the following list provides helpful links to graduate students wanting to learn more about post-doctoral funding opportunities:

Ford Foundation Postdoctoral Fellowships

NSF SBE Postdoctoral Research Fellowships

NIH Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award (NRSA) program

OSU Office of Postdoctoral Affairs

National Academy of Education/ Spencer Foundation Postdoctoral Fellowships