UW Graduate School

Graduate School Presidential Dissertation Fellowship in the Arts, Humanities, Social Sciences, and Social Professions

The Graduate School Presidential Dissertation award is intended to assist Ph.D. candidates in the final stages of writing and completing their dissertations. The 2019-20 Dissertation Fellowship is a one-quarter award established with support of the University President.

Two committees will meet to evaluate nominees: one for nominees in the arts and humanities, and one for nominees in the social sciences and social professions. Each unit listed at the end of this announcement may submit ONE nominee for this award. 

The purpose of these awards is to relieve graduate students of their teaching duties or other employment not directly related to the dissertation in order to devote their full time to writing the dissertation. Typically, during the tenure of the award service responsibilities are suspended.

The award must be used during the 2019-20 academic year (summer 2019 through spring 2020). The choice of the quarter will be left to the discretion of the graduate student in consultation with his or her supervisory committee chair.

2019-20 NOMINATION DEADLINE:  Tuesday, April 9, 2019; noon (PDT)


In order to be considered for this award, the student must:

  • Have passed the General Examination and attained candidate status at the time of nomination.
  • Have demonstrated progress on the dissertation which indicates completion by the end of Summer Quarter 2020 or sooner.
  • Be in a tuition-based program; students in fee-based programs are not eligible.
  • Not have received another dissertation award from the Graduate School (e.g., Gatzert, GO-MAP)

Nomination Process

Nominations must be submitted through the Awards portal in MyGrad Program. Please do not email nomination packages.

Nominations are due to the nomination site no later than noon, Tuesday, April 9, 2019. No late materials will be accepted; nominations will not be considered unless they are complete and submitted by the deadline.

Departments may nominate ONE student only.

Submit a Nomination through MyGrad Program

Nomination Materials

Nominations must include the following:

  1. A letter of nomination from the GPC or chair of the department. Information about the nominee’s current status and performance in the program or comparison with other recent students would be useful.
  2. A one-page statement from the dissertation adviser demonstrating his/her opinion of:
    • The significance of the research
    • The progress made to date, including the anticipated completion date.
    • Where appropriate, the nature and importance of the nominee’s contribution to a team project should be included.
  3. A statement from the candidate (not to exceed four pages, double-spaced) describing the dissertation project, including its title, relation to current literature, methodology and goals. Footnotes can be single-spaced and are included in the four pages. Any bibliography or endnotes are limited to one page, single-spaced, and are not considered part of the four pages.
  4. Timeline of expected dissertation activities in 2019-20 and specifically during the planned fellowship quarter (not to exceed one page, single-spaced)
  5. The nominee’s curriculum vitae, including names of publications.
  6. A copy of the student’s current UW transcript. An unofficial copy will be sufficient.

These awards are made on the basis of academic merit. Statements about the student’s financial need should not be included.

Selection Criteria and Process

Two interdisciplinary faculty committees (one committee for Arts and Humanities and one committee for Social Sciences and Social Professions) will evaluate proposals. Nominees should be encouraged to consider this audience when preparing the project description.

Criteria used in evaluating nominations include:

  • significance and originality of the dissertation project
  • evidence of scholarly promise, such as publications or presentations at scholarly meetings
  • evidence that the dissertation will be completed during the 2019-20 academic year

The specific information provided in the nomination packet on these issues is important in the evaluation process.

Awards will be announced by late May 2019.

Terms of Award

  • This is a one-quarter award.
  • Award must be used during the 2019-20 year (summer 2019 – spring 2020).
  • Students must enroll for at least 10 credits during the quarter they receive the award (except in summer, when it is 2 credits).
  • During the quarter of award, students may not receive funding or employment from another source without prior approval from the Office of Fellowships and Awards.
  • The award provides a stipend equivalent that of a standard Predoc TA II (currently $2,703 per month), GAIP insurance, and UW state tuition and fees (excluding U-PASS) up to 18 credits.
  • The number of awards will be determined by the caliber of the applications and the amount of funding available.
  • Students in fee-based programs are not eligible.


Contact the Office of Fellowships and Awards: gradappt@uw.edu or 206-543-7152.

Eligible programs for the Graduate School Dissertation Fellowship competition:

Arts and Humanities

  • Art History
  • Asian Languages and Literature
  • Classics
  • Comparative Literature
  • Digital Arts and Experimental Media
  • Drama
  • English
  • French and Italian Studies
  • Germanics
  • History
  • Individual Ph.D. Program
  • Linguistics
  • Music
  • Near and Middle Eastern Studies
  • Philosophy
  • Scandinavian Studies
  • Slavic Languages and Literature
  • Spanish and Portuguese
Social Sciences and Social Professions

  • Anthropology
  • Business School*
  • Built Environment*
  • Communication
  • Economics
  • Education
  • Environmental and Forest Resources*
  • Gender, Women and Sexuality Studies
  • Geography
  • History
  • Human Centered Design and Engineering*
  • Individual Ph.D. Program
  • Information School*
  • International Studies (Jackson School)
  • Law
  • Near and Middle Eastern Studies
  • Philosophy
  • Political Science
  • Psychology*
  • Public Affairs
  • Social Work
  • Sociology
  • Speech and Hearing Sciences*
  • Urban Design and Planning

*Social sciences emphasis only