Master of Arts Graduate Fellowships

The Department of English currently has available twenty-one Teaching Fellowships, one Research Fellowship, and one Dissertation Fellowship. These Fellowships are awarded on the basis of merit. Fellowships include tuition, certain fees, and a stipend. The stipend for 2015-2016 is $15,000 for M.A. assistants. Further details about the fellowships are outlined below.

*NEW* -- Duquesne University is now offering the "Nimick Forbesway Foundation English Graduate Diversity Teaching Assistantship" for a qualified Master's or Doctoral applicant from an underrepresented population; this award adds an additional $4000 to the current Master's or Doctoral Teaching Assistantships.

Another form of financial assistance is available through Tuition Remission Scholarships. Awarded on the basis of merit, these scholarships pay the full or partial tuition for three to nine credits of course work per semester. Such scholarships are renewable for up to two years providing students make satisfactory progress in their program.

Applicants may specify on application for admission whether they wish to be considered for a Teaching Fellowship, Research Fellowship, Tuition Waiver Scholarship, or any combination. Any applicant who wishes to be considered for financial aid must have all application materials in on or before January 15.

Teaching Fellowships

Students seeking the master’s degree may hold a Teaching Fellowship for two years, and those seeking the doctorate for four years, providing students make satisfactory progress in the program.

In order to provide students with solid training and ample opportunity to teach independently without creating an overwhelming workload, a tier system has been developed for our fellowship program. The following guidelines are typical for teaching fellows, but because students have varying strengths and experience, adjustments are often made to the tier system with the approval of the Director of Freshman English and the Director of Graduate Studies.

Training for Teachers

The Center for Teaching Excellence at Duquesne University offers a three-day workshop to all new teaching fellows, usually the week before the fall semester is scheduled to begin. Besides providing new teaching fellows with books and articles relevant to teaching at the college level, this workshop covers important advice for teachers such as how to promote classroom discussion. The Center for Teaching Excellence also offers workshops regularly during the school year.

The Director and Assistant Director of Freshman English also offer a workshop before classes begin that is designed specifically for English Teaching Fellows.

All first year fellows must complete a year-long course on Teaching College Writing.

New Teaching Fellows with little or no teaching experience will spend their first semester co-teaching a first-year writing class with a more experienced teacher/mentor.

Teaching workshops for the English department are held during the academic year. These sessions are usually led either by English faculty or teaching fellows, and the topics may cover anything from dealing with plagiarism to creating a teaching portfolio.

The Writing Center Director and Assistant Director offer an orientation session before the Writing Center opens for the fall semester and professional development meetings throughout the academic year to provide ongoing support and training.  The Writing Center also offers workshops for teachers during the year.

Teaching Opportunities and Responsibilities

Typically, teaching fellows teach one section of first-year writing in the fall semester and one section of introduction to literature in the spring semester. Department guidelines are provided for each course. The introductory literature courses are structured around theme-based clusters; sections are taught independently, but the cluster group of teachers provides a forum where methods and ideas may be exchanged.

Every effort is thus made to provide graduate students with teaching and leadership opportunities that will prepare them for future academic work.

Research Fellowship

The student will work closely with a faculty member, conducting research on a full-time basis. This fellowship is renewable for up to two years providing the student makes satisfactory progress in the program. Master’s students may renew the fellowship as a teaching fellowship after the first year of research.