Almost all admitted doctoral students are offered financial support from the department in the form of a Teaching Assistant (TA) position or from an advisor's research grant as a Research Assistant (RA) position. In addition, ATOC encourages doctoral students to apply for fellowships and grants that fund graduate research.  For example, several graduate students in our department have been awarded the NSF GRFP, the NASA FINESST, among others.  Positions include a tuition remission of 9-18 credit hours per semester, ~90% of health insurance costs, and a monthly stipend.  Students are responsible for paying mandatory student fees, any applicable course fees, and the remaining costs of health insurance.

Typically, incoming PhD students are supported as a 50% (20 hours/week) Research Assistant (RA) or Teaching Assistant (TA) during the first fall (August 15-December 31) and spring (January 1-May 15) semesters.  ATOC students typically will work as a 100% (40 hours/week) RA for 3 months in the summer (May 15-August 15).  There is no ATOC requirement to hold a Teaching Assistant (TA) appointment.  During the fall and spring semesters, students are limited to a 50% (20 hours/week) position.

Currently, the academic year 2023-2024 annual salary for ATOC students appointed as teaching assistants or research assistants is no less than $43,860 (pre-comps) to $46,186 (post-comps).  This information was last updated on August 15, 2023.

The admissions committee automatically considers admitted entering students for fellowships provided by the University of Colorado at Boulder; there is no separate fellowship application for entering applicants. Fellowship recipients are selected during the admissions process in most circumstances or as soon as this information is available.

Opportunity for underrepresented students

Underrepresented students may apply to participate in the Colorado Advantage graduate preview program. All expenses are paid for participants to visit the CU-Boulder campus to meet faculty and current graduate students, tour facilities, and learn more about the graduate admissions process. Application details may be found by clicking here.