Skip to main content

Future Students

Costs & Financing

The department of Human Centered Design strives to fund all of its PhD students through Teaching Assistantships/Associateships (TAs), Staff Assistantships/Associateships (SAs), and Research Assistantships/Associateships (RAs).

Students enrolled in full-time study (10 credits/quarter) are eligible for funding. Benefits for TAs, SAs, and RAs include a tuition waiver and a monthly stipend. HCDE students are guaranteed 12 quarters of funding (excluding summers), but often are funded throughout their entire program. For information on graduate appointments, see the UW graduate school assistantships page.

Funding Guarantee Details

HCDE's current minimum funding guarantee is 12 quarters of employment-based funding to be used during the academic year (autumn, winter, and spring quarters), consisting of two rotation quarters of research assistantships, in which admitted students work on research with two different faculty members in the department, and ten quarters of employment as a teaching assistant/associate, predoctoral instructor, or staff assistant/associate. 

International students should familiarize themselves with the Graduate School’s English requirements. HCDE PhD graduate students who are not native speakers of English must meet the criteria in Policy 5.2: Conditions of Appointment for TAs who are not Native Speakers of English to receive an employment offer as a TA. Policy 5.2.1 includes additional requirements beyond English language proficiency for admission to the HCDE PhD degree.
At the time of admission, some candidates may also be offered fellowships and/or additional research assistantships, depending on alignment with available opportunities.
After beginning the program, many students match to additional research assistantship opportunities or apply for fellowships that support their studies. This funding typically extends rather than replaces the quarters included in the funding guarantee. 
The funding guarantee is conditioned on satisfactory performance academically (see graduation continuation policy) and in employment. Additionally, students who leave a department-funded research assistantship, teaching assistantship or instructor position, or staff assistantship within 30 days of the start of the appointment forfeit that quarter of guaranteed appointment.

Funding guarantee prior to 2022

Students who matriculated prior to autumn 2022 were guaranteed four years of funding (regardless of source), extended by a year due to COVID-19. For these students, the remaining years of guarantee were converted to guaranteed department-funded quarters effective in autumn 2022. For example, a student starting their fifth year had the remaining year of their funding guarantee converted to three quarters.

Additional Resources

Also investigate the following for financial assistance: