The Literature Department offers our strongest applicants fellowships that include full tuition remission and a substantial (taxable) stipend for each of two years of full-time study. We also offer some partial awards: half tuition remission and half stipend. The competition for merit scholarships is keen. The priority application deadline to be considered for merit fellowships is January 15.
Factors that contribute to selection for merit awards are an outstanding undergraduate academic record, a well-written and engaging personal statement, and most importantly a strong writing sample in one genre. Some workshop experience is also encouraged. Applicants are not required to submit GRE scores. In order to be considered for a merit award, students must submit their completed application by January 15.
Students who receive full merit awards have the opportunity to work up to twenty hours a week—for which they are compensated on an hourly basis—as writing consultants at AU’s Writing Center. The full merit award is rarely offered.
Students who receive partial merit awards may opt to work for ten hours a week at the same hourly compensation. Other opportunities include editing for Folio or writing for Cafe Americain.
Budget permitting, we also offer a few work-study opportunities for up to ten hours a week—with the same compensation noted above—for students to serve as either teaching assistants or writing consultants. These optional hours of work provide not only further financial assistance but also valuable hands-on experience to students interested in teaching.
Scholarships from “outside” organizations are an additional method of financing your graduate education.
Note: We strongly urge you to check any organization with the Better Business Bureau and we advise against using any organization that requires payment to do a search. For information about evaluating scholarship search companies, visit the Federal Trade Commission’s "Scholarship Scams" page.
The following sampling of websites offer scholarship search assistance:
Students are encouraged to contact the university’s Human Resources Office (202-885-2591) for information about part-time and full-time employment opportunities on-campus. The university provides eligible faculty and staff members with educational benefits including tuition remission for graduate courses taken at American University. Note: You must have completed four months of active full-time employment before the last day of late registration for any given semester in order to qualify for tuition remission benefits for that semester. The maximum benefit available is eight credits per semester. In addition, your total credits for courses taken under the program may not exceed 20 credits per academic year. For more information, please contact the university’s Human Resources Office.