30 Great PhD Scholarships

Image of phd dissertation for our ranking of best phd scholarships Starting down the long road to a doctorate can be less stressful when you’re supported by PhD scholarships.

The PhD is a terminal, research-based doctorate that gives graduates the title of “Doctor.” PhD candidates spend anywhere from four to nine years engaging in rigorous education to claim the highest scholarly level in their field. Nearly all PhD programs include conducting cutting-edge research and writing a dissertation paper.

Doctoral students typically are pursuing jobs as university professors, researchers, clinicians, or senior administrators. PhD candidates are given a valuable opportunity to challenge themselves and push their careers to new heights, but the degree isn’t cheap. It’s not unheard of for PhD students to spend over $200,000 before graduating.

Get the financial footing you need to achieve your doctoral dreams by checking out the following 30 great scholarships for PhD study.

1. AAUW International Fellowships

Deadline: December 1st

Since 1917, the American Association of University Women (AAUW) has given International Fellowships to award $20,000 to women who aren’t U.S. citizens but wish to pursue full-time PhD study at an accredited American graduate school. Qualified applicants must hold a degree equivalent to a bachelor’s, be proficient in English, be conducting a full year of study or research, intend to return to their home countries for a professional career, and show prior commitment to the advancement of women.


AAUW International Fellowships
1111 Sixteenth Street NW
Washington, DC 20036
(202) 785-7700
Scholarship Link

2. Amelia Earhart Fellowship for Women

Deadline: November 15th

Through Zonta International, the Amelia Earhart Fellowship for Women will grant $10,000 annually to 35 women of any nationality who are pursuing a PhD in the typically male-dominated fields of aerospace engineering and aerospace science. Eligible candidates must be registered full-time in an accredited doctoral program, demonstrate a superior academic record, and have unmet financial need. Applications must include a biography, three letters of recommendation, official transcripts, resume or CV, and sample essay.


Amelia Earhart Fellowship for Women
1211 West 22nd Street Suite 900
Oak Brook, IL 60523
(630) 928-1400
Scholarship Link

3. Ann Olson Doctoral Scholarship

Deadline: February 1st

Ranging from $5,000 to $7,500 annually, the Ann Olson Doctoral Scholarship is presented by the Oncology Nursing Society (ONS) Foundation to registered nurses interested in earning a research doctoral (PhD) or clinical doctoral degree (DNP). To qualify, applicants must be accepted at a U.S. accredited nursing school, have current RN license to practice, showcase a commitment to oncology nursing, and submit two professional letters of support. There’s a small $5 application fee made through the ONS Store.


Ann Olson Doctoral Scholarship
125 Enterprise Drive
Pittsburgh, PA 15275
(866) 257-4667
Scholarship Link

4. Byron Hanke Fellowship

Deadline: May 1st

Each year, the Byron Hanke Fellowship program is hosted by the Foundation for Community Association Research (CAIRF) to provide $5,000 PhD scholarships to U.S. or Canadian students conducting research on topics related to community associations. Applicants come from a variety of majors, including law, economics, sociology, psychology, public affairs, and urban planning. Selection will be based on academic achievement, faculty recommendation, research competence, writing abilities, and benefits of the proposed study.


Byron Hanke Fellowship
6402 Arlington Blvd. Suite 500
Falls Church, VA 22042
(888) 224-4321
Scholarship Link

5. CAPCSD PhD Scholarship Program

Deadline: January 15th

The Council of Academic Programs in Communication Sciences and Disorders (CAPCSD) has created the PhD Scholarship Program to award $20,000 scholarships for doctoral study to students focused on an academic career in communication sciences and disorders. Eligible applicants must attend a regionally accredited U.S. college, have successfully advanced to candidacy (ABD), submit a curriculum vitae, and attach a three-page dissertation research summary. Recipients also receive free CAPCSD Conference.


CAPCSD PhD Scholarship Program
3000 South Jamaica Court
Aurora, CO 80014
(303) 835-9089
Scholarship Link

6. Charlotte W. Newcombe Doctoral Fellowship

Deadline: November 15th

Sponsored by the Woodrow Wilson Foundation, the Charlotte W. Newcombe Doctoral Fellowship is bestowed for $25,000 to support 12 months of full-time dissertation writing for PhD candidates who are studying the religious, ethical, or philosophical aspects of any field. Qualified recipients must be enrolled in an American doctoral program, have fulfilled all pre-dissertation requirements, expect to complete their research in one calendar year, and have never previously applied.


Charlotte W. Newcombe Doctoral Fellowship
5 Vaughn Drive Suite 300
Princeton, NJ 08540
(609) 452-7007
Scholarship Link

7. Eileen Blackey Doctoral Fellowship

Deadline: March 1st

Created in 1987 to honor the Dean at UCLA’s School of Social Welfare, the Eileen Blackey Doctoral Fellowship is granted for $10,000 annually by the National Association of Social Workers (NASW) to PhD candidates focusing their dissertation on welfare policy and practice. Applicants must be NASW members, attend a doctoral program accredited by the CSWE, be in good academic standing, and submit a three-page proposal summary. Dissertations including a diversity component are strongly encouraged.


Eileen Blackey Doctoral Fellowship
750 First Street NE Suite 800
Washington, DC 20002
(202) 408-8600 ext. 298
Scholarship Link

8. Fahs-Bek Doctoral Dissertation Grant

Deadline: April 1st or November 1st

Valued at $5,000, the Fahs-Bek Doctoral Dissertation Grant is provided by the New York Community Trust to PhD candidates in the United States or Canada whose dissertation research has the potential to positively impact the well-being of children, adults, couples, families, or communities. Eligible students must be enrolled in an accredited doctoral program with any major. Applying for these PhD grants requires submitting a dissertation proposal, IRB approval, two sponsoring letters, and a curriculum vitae.


Fahs-Bek Doctoral Dissertation Grant
909 Third Avenue 22nd Floor
New York, NY 10022
Scholarship Link

9. Ford Foundation Predoctoral Fellowship

Deadline: January 8th

Administered by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine, the Ford Foundation Predoctoral Fellowship gifts around 60 doctoral scholarships for $24,000 apiece to minority students pursuing a PhD or ScD in a research-based major. Eligible fellows must be U.S. citizens or permanent residents, attend a non-profit American institution, demonstrate superior academic achievement, plan a career in teaching or research at the university level, and have at least three years of study remaining.


Ford Foundation Predoctoral Fellowship
500 Fifth Street NW
Washington, DC 20001
(202) 334-2000
Scholarship Link

10. George H. Nofer Scholarship

Deadline: April 15th

The Alexander Graham Bell Association offers the George H. Nofer Scholarship to provide $5,000 to three full-time PhD students who have pre-lingual bilateral hearing loss that’s in the moderately severe to profound range. Eligible candidates must have an unaided PTA of 60dB or greater in the better hearing ear, use spoken language as the primary communication method, and be attending at accredited U.S. graduate school. Applicants should be majoring in law, public policy, public administration, or a similar field.


George H. Nofer Scholarship
3417 Volta Place NW
Washington, DC 20007
(202) 337-5220
Scholarship Link

11. Gertrude M. Cox Scholarship for Women

Deadline: February 23rd

In the amount of $2,000, the Gertrude M. Cox Scholarship for Women is bestowed by the American Statistical Association (ASA) to women in the United States or Canada who are admitted full-time to a MS or PhD program in the statistical sciences, including biostatistics. Along with the application form, candidates must submit unofficial academic transcripts, three reference letters, a resume or CV, and a one-page personal essay highlighting their goals in statistically oriented professions.


Gertrude M. Cox Scholarship for Women
732 North Washington Street
Alexandria, VA 22314
(703) 684-1221
Scholarship Link

12. Harry Frank Guggenheim PhD Fellowships

Deadline: February 1st

The Harry Frank Guggenheim Foundation offers 10 or more scholarships for PhD study at $20,000 each to deserving graduate students worldwide who are entering the dissertation stage of their accredited doctoral program. Any major is accepted, but research must concern violence, aggression, crime, terrorism, war, or intergroup conflict. Applicants must log into the online application to submit a research abstract, current CV, official transcript, 15-page project description, and IRB approval if necessary.


Harry Frank Guggenheim PhD Fellowships
25 West 53rd Street
New York, NY 10019
(646) 428-0971
Scholarship Link

13. Hertz Foundation Graduate Fellowship

Deadline: October 30th

Over nine months, the Hertz Foundation Graduate Fellowship will award full tuition and a $32,000 stipend for students acquiring a PhD degree in any applied physical, biological, or engineering sciences. Eligible applicants must be U.S. citizens or permanent residents, exhibit exceptional intelligence, display high moral character, and be willing to make their skills available to the United States in time of emergency. Fellows are accepted at over 40 participating research universities nationwide.


Hertz Foundation Graduate Fellowship
2300 First Street Suite 250
Livermore, CA 94550
(925) 373-1642
Scholarship Link

14. Institute for Humane Studies PhD Scholarships

Deadline: March 1st

Annually, the Institute for Humane Studies (IHS) awards 50 PhD Scholarships for $1,500 each to full-time graduate students enrolled in PhD programs who intend a career in higher education. Preference is given to doctoral candidates doing work to advance the principles of liberty and freedom in the humanities or social sciences, especially economics, history, political science, and philosophy. Applicants must uphold a current CV, recent writing sample of 3,000 words or less, electronic transcript, and dissertation proposal.


Institute for Humane Studies PhD Scholarships
3434 Washington Blvd.
Arlington, VA 22201
(703) 993-4880
Scholarship Link

15. Jennings Randolph Peace Scholarship

Deadline: December 4th

Funded by the United States Institute of Peace, the Jennings Randolph Peace Scholarship is available for $20,000 for citizens of any country who are enrolled in a recognized PhD program in the United States. Successful candidates must have completed all doctoral coursework, be entering the dissertation writing phase, study topics related to international conflict management or peace building, provide three reference letters, write sound research proposals, and show potential as future peace scholars.


Jennings Randolph Peace Scholarship
2301 Constitution Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20037
(202) 457-1700
Scholarship Link

16. Joseph L. Fisher Dissertation Award

Deadline: February 20th

Carrying a stipend of $18,000, the Joseph L. Fisher Dissertation Award is given by Resources for the Future (RFF) to full-time PhD candidates in the final year of their doctoral dissertation research studying issues related to the environmental, natural resources, energy, or sustainability. Both U.S. and non-U.S. citizens can apply with proper residency documentation. Applications should also include a one-page dissertation abstract, 2,500-word technical summary, graduate transcript, and letter from the department chair.


Joseph L. Fisher Dissertation Award
1616 P Street NW
Washington, DC 20036
(202) 328-5000
Scholarship Link

17. Josephine de Karman Fellowship Trust

Deadline: January 31st

Established in 1954 by the world-renowned aeronautics expert and teacher, the Josephine de Karman Fellowship Trust provides eight PhD scholarships for $22,000 to full-time doctoral students in any discipline who are studying in the United States. Special consideration is given to applicants in the humanities, including history, political science, sociology, psychology, anthropology, geography, and linguistics. Applicants must be competitive with outstanding letters of recommendation, significant publications, and several dissertation chapters completed.


Josephine de Karman Fellowship Trust
P.O. Box 3389
San Dimas, CA 91773
(909) 592-0607
Scholarship Link

18. KPMG Minority Accounting Doctoral Scholarship

Deadline: May 1st

To increase the diversity of business school faculty, the KPMG Foundation offers the Minority Accounting Doctoral Scholarship for $10,000 annually to 11 African American, Hispanic, or Native American PhD students who are enrolled in an accounting doctoral program. Qualified candidates must attend an AACSB-accredited school full-time, have U.S. citizenship or legal residency, carry a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0, exhibit financial need, and be committed to a career in university teaching.


KPMG Minority Accounting Doctoral Scholarship
3 Chestnut Ridge Road
Montvale, NJ 07645
(201) 307-7932
Scholarship Link

19. Lawrence F. Skibbie Graduate Scholarship

Deadline: September 30th

Administered by the National Defense Industrial Association (NDIA), the Lawrence F. Skibbie Graduate Scholarship will distribute up to $10,000 to PhD students accepted or enrolled full-time in a doctoral program related to engineering, science, or management. Eligible applicants must be U.S. citizens, have completed a four-year bachelor’s degree, have stated interests in the national security or defense industry, display academic merit, and possess outstanding leadership capabilities.


Lawrence F. Skibbie Graduate Scholarship
2111 Wilson Blvd. Suite 400
Arlington, VA 22201
(703) 522-1820
Scholarship Link

20. Mary Isabel Sibley Fellowship

Deadline: January 15th

Valued at $20,000, the Mary Isabel Sibley Fellowship is presented annually by the Phi Beta Kappa Society for doctoral candidates devoting full-time work to dissertation research studying the history, archaeology, culture, literature, or linguistics of Greek or French. Eligible recipients must be unmarried women from 25 to 35 years old, demonstrate excellent ability to carry out original research, have fulfilled all doctoral requirements except the dissertation, attend a U.S. accredited school, and have three recommendation letters.


Mary Isabel Sibley Fellowship
1606 New Hampshire Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20009
(202) 745-3287
Scholarship Link

21. McKnight Doctoral Fellowship Program

Deadline: January 15th

The Florida Education Fund has created the McKnight Doctoral Fellowship Program to provide $17,000 PhD grants to African American and Hispanic students who are enrolled full-time at one of nine participating universities in Florida. Eligible applicants must be receiving a PhD in the sciences, business, engineering, health sciences, nursing, or visual and performing arts. Holding U.S. citizenship and at least a bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited institution is required.


McKnight Doctoral Fellowship Program
201 East Kennedy Blvd. Suite 1525
Tampa, FL 33602
(813) 272-2772
Scholarship Link

22. Mellon/ACLS Dissertation Fellowships

Deadline: October 21st

Supported by the American Council of Learned Societies, the Mellon/ACLS Dissertation Fellowships are worth $38,000 for PhD students in the humanities and related social sciences who are in their final year of doctoral dissertation writing. Qualified applicants must attend a U.S. institution, have obtained ABD status, and have progressed no further than the sixth year. For consideration, the committee must receive a five-page proposal, bibliography, completed dissertation chapter, and two reference letters.


Mellon/ACLS Dissertation Fellowships
633 Third Avenue
New York, NY 10017
(212) 697-1505
Scholarship Link

23. Microsoft Research PhD Fellowship

Deadline: October 9th

The Microsoft Research PhD Fellowship will provide 100 percent of tuition for two academic years and a $28,000 living stipend for doctoral candidates who are enrolled full-time in accredited computer science, electrical engineering, or mathematics programs. Eligible recipients must attend a U.S. or Canadian university, be entering their second or third year of PhD studies, and agree to a salaried internship with Microsoft. Nominees must submit a thesis proposal, curriculum vitae, and three letters of reference.


Microsoft Research PhD Fellowship
1 Microsoft Way
Redmond, WA 98052
(800) 642-7676
Scholarship Link

24. NSF Graduate Research Fellowships

Deadline: November 6th

As one of the most competitive doctoral scholarships, the National Science Foundation (NSF) receives over 16,000 applications annually for its Graduate Research Fellowships. To qualify for the $46,000 support, candidates must be pursuing a research-based PhD in STEM disciplines at accredited U.S. graduate institutions. Applicants must be U.S. citizens or permanent residents who have completed no more than 12 months of full-time graduate study. Submitting a personal statement, research plan, academic transcript, and three references is required.


NSF Graduate Research Fellowships
1818 N Street NW Suite 600
Washington, DC 20036
(866) 673-4737
Scholarship Link

25. Paul W. Rodgers Scholarship

Deadline: January 15th

Since 1999, the International Association for Great Lakes Research (IAGLR) has offered the Paul W. Rodgers Scholarship for $2,000 to master’s or doctoral students of any major who plan to pursue a career in research, conservation, education, or natural resources management. To be eligible, applicants must be IAGLR members, attend an accredited U.S. school, be involved in activities related to Great Lakes issues, provide official transcripts, and write a one-page personal statement.


Paul W. Rodgers Scholarship
4840 South State Road
Ann Arbor, MI 48108
(734) 665-5303
Scholarship Link

26. Robert S. McNamara Fellowships

Deadline: February 2nd

Sponsored by the World Bank Group, the Robert S. McNamara Fellowships grant $25,000 to students from developing countries wishing to travel abroad to conduct PhD research related to development at an accredited U.S. university. For consideration, applicants must be citizens of World Bank member developing countries, be 35 years old or under, be enrolled full-time in a PhD program, and have completed all doctoral coursework before the dissertation. Fellows must commit to working in their home nations after graduation.


Robert S. McNamara Fellowships
1818 H Street NW
Washington, DC 20433
(202) 473-1000
Scholarship Link

27. Ruth L. Kirschstein Predoctoral Research Award

Deadline: Varies

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) funds the Ruth L. Kirschstein Predoctoral Research Award to provide up to $20,000 to PhD candidates enrolled full-time at approved U.S. graduate schools who have selected training in specified clinical shortage areas. Eligible applicants must be American citizens or lawfully admitted for permanent residence, have good academic standing, demonstrate scientific leadership potential, and be conducting research that can significantly impact the country’s health-related needs.


Ruth L. Kirschstein Predoctoral Research Award
6705 Rockledge Drive
Bethesda, MD 20817
(301) 496-3255
Scholarship Link

28. Scott and Paul Pearsall Scholarship

Deadline: October 1st

Through the American Psychological Foundation (APF), the Scott and Paul Pearsall Scholarship is awarded for $10,000 to full-time master’s or PhD students conducting work that increases the public’s awareness of the psychological pain of adults living with physical disabilities. Applicants must attend a U.S. accredited university, have IRB approval, and submit a five-page research proposal. Other APF doctoral scholarships include the Clarence J. Rosecrans Scholarship and William C. Howell Scholarship.


Scott and Paul Pearsall Scholarship
750 First Street NE
Washington, DC 20002
(202) 336-5843
Scholarship Link

29. Sigma Alpha Iota Doctoral Grant

Deadline: March 15th

As the international music fraternity, Sigma Alpha Iota has established a Doctoral Grant to award $2,500 to full-time PhD candidates in the final stages of conducting dissertation research related to music education, music therapy, musicology, ethnomusicology, etc. Eligible awardees must be initiated SAI members, be in good financial standing with the fraternity, and be currently enrolled in accredited American doctoral program. There’s also an International Study Grant and Conducting Scholarship for Graduate Students.


Sigma Alpha Iota Doctoral Grant
One Tunnel Road
Asheville, NC 28805
(828) 251-0606
Scholarship Link

30. Wadsworth International Fellowships

Deadline: March 1st

Annually, the Wadsworth International Fellowships are granted by the Wenner-Gren Foundation for $17,500 to support students under 35 years of age undertaking doctoral study leading to a PhD in anthropology at an accredited U.S. university. Fellows must be from countries where anthropology is underrepresented, such as South Africa, Haiti, Vietnam, Iran, and Chile. Priority is given to applicants who haven’t begin their doctoral training and haven’t already earned an undergraduate degree outside their home country.


Wadsworth International Fellowships
470 Park Avenue South 8th Floor
New York, NY 10016
(212) 683-5000
Scholarship Link

Earning a PhD is a long-term endeavor that requires you to invest significant time, energy, and money. Most PhD candidates have little time to spare in their research to work and bring home a paycheck. Doctoral grants and scholarships can provide a critical lifeline to cover your tuition, research, and living expenses over at least four years. Unlike Federal PLUS loans, scholarships won’t accrue interest or need to be repaid. Reach for the highest level of education and achieve your research goals by applying for some of these 30 great PhD scholarships.

GCD Staff

This concludes our coverage of top PhD scholarships available today to make your terminal degree more affordable.