Financing Your Graduate Studies

Tuition & Fees: General Information
Achievement Scholarships
Graduate Assistantships in the Department of Second Language Studies
Lecturer and Casual Hire Positions in the Department of Second Language Studies
Graduate Assistantships in Other UHM Departments
East-West Center Graduate Degree Fellowship
Funding Opportunities for International Students
Funding Opportunities for U.S. Citizens/Residents
Employment Information for O‘ahu

Tuition & Fees: General Information
Complete information on tuition, fees, and payments is provided by Records & Registration at the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa. Information on upcoming tuition schedules and estimated cost of attendance is also available on the UHM Financial Aid Services websites. Please see the Hawai‘i Residency Requirements page for residency rules.
Most MA students take 9 credits per semester. Each regularly offered course in the program is 3 credits.

Achievement Scholarships
Each semester, the department awards a number of Achievement Scholarships on the basis of academic achievement. All MA applicants for admission to the program are automatically considered for these scholarships. Achievement Scholarships are awarded in varying dollar amounts, depending on qualifications and prior support. Scholarships are awarded for one semester initially, but may be renewed provided the student remains in good standing (see Award Conditions): Award recipients must maintain an enrollment of six credits or more of degree-related courses and a cumulative GPA of 3.5 or above, for the entire period of the award.

Graduate Assistantships in the Department of Second Language Studies
Graduate Assistantships for instructors in the undergraduate program in Second Language Studies are reserved for PhD candidates in the Department of Second Language Studies. A limited number of Graduate Assistantships in the department’s two English for academic purposes programs, the ELI (English Language Institute) and HELP (Hawai‘i English Language Program), are available. There are occasional openings for a course assistant or a research assistant in one of the department’s or college’s research and teaching centers.
First-semester MA students usually do not receive a Graduate Assistantship, and Advanced Graduate Certificate in Second Language Studies candidates are not eligible. (MA and AGC applicants should refer to the section on Lecturerships and Casual Hire Positions.) Admitted applicants to the PhD program are automatically considered for a Graduate Assistantship.
For the spring semester, application deadlines for Graduate Assistantship in the department are usually in the beginning of October. For fall semester, application deadlines are usually in early February.
Graduate Assistants in the Department of Second Language Studies usually receive a 9-month, 0.50 FTE appointment, which averages to a 20-hour workweek with duty during the fall and spring semesters. (The time of duty each semester includes the week prior to the start of classes and the week of final exams.) The 9-month appointment provides a stipend paid out in bimonthly installments over a 12-month period (before taxes for academic year 2013-2014: $17,502 for MA-level; $18,204 for PhD-level graduate assistants). Additionally, for full GAs (.50 FTE), health benefits are provided, and tuition is also waived. The payment of student fees is not covered. Please see the information for Graduate Assistants for details on eligibility and criteria, compensation and tax withholding, benefits, and rules and regulations.

Lecturer and Casual Hire Positions in the Department of Second Language Studies
Currently enrolled and incoming MA, AGC, and PhD students in Second Language Studies are eligible to apply for the lecturer pool for the department. Admitted applicants to the PhD program are eligible to apply for the lecturer pool in the SLS undergraduate program, ELI, and HELP. Admitted applicants to the AGC and MA programs are eligible to apply for the lecturer pool for the ELI and HELP. Announcements about Lecturer positions will be made on the department listserv at least once a year, but interested applicants should refer to HELP also announces Casual Hire positions through the SLS jobs listserv. Courses run on 8-week terms, and HELP positions vary greatly depending on enrollment. Casual Hire positions offer a flat payment for each course; they do not provide tuition waivers. However, work at HELP is considered on-campus employment for international students.

Graduate Assistantships in Other UHM Departments
Enrolled MA and PhD students in the Department of Second Language Studies are eligible to apply for Graduate Assistantships in other departments across the university. In the past, students in Second Language Studies have worked for the Spanish program of Languages and Literatures of Europe and the Americas, Student-Athlete Academic Services, the Center for Disability Studies, and the College of Education at UHM. Opportunities become available based on departmental needs, and postings of opportunities can be found on (search with Position Type: Graduate Assistant).

East-West Center Graduate Degree Fellowship
The East-West Center Graduate Degree Fellowship offers substantial funding toward education and living expenses so that graduate students can participate in educational, cultural, residential, and leadership development programs at the East-West Center while pursuing graduate study at the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa. Citizens or permanent residents of the United States and citizens of countries in the Pacific and Asia, including Russia, are eligible to apply. The deadline for application is usually mid- to late October for the following fall semester. See the Student Programs page and the Graduate Degree Fellowship page for eligibility requirements and application information.
All applications for the East-West Center Graduate Degree Fellowship are first reviewed by East-West Center, and upon recommendation, applications are passed to the UHM Office of Graduate Education. After the Office of Graduate Education’s evaluations, the applications are then forwarded to the Department of Second Language Studies. The East-West Center Graduate Degree Fellowship application requires its own forms for letters of recommendation. For the purposes of the Department of Second Language Studies, the same letters may be submitted to the Department, to be emailed directly to from the recommenders.


International students in the past have found sources of funding from their own educational ministries and/or agencies, as well as through the following resources:
          UHM International Student Services
          Fulbright Program for Foreign Students
          Scholarships administered by the East-West Center
For scholarship, employment, and visa information for international students, applicants should refer to UHM International Student Services.


WICHE Program
The University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa participates in the Western Regional Graduate Program (WRGP), administered by the Western Interstate Commission on Higher Education (WICHE). Legal residents of the following WICHE member states and commonwealth may be eligible to enroll in select out-of-state graduate programs at resident tuition rates: Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Hawai‘i, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, North Dakota, Oregon, South Dakota, Utah, Washington, Wyoming, and the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands.
MA and PhD in Second Language Studies applicants who are eligible legal residents of the WICHE member states and meet the 3.5 minimum GPA requirement are identified through the application process for resident tuition status upon acceptance and enrollment.

Foreign Language and Area Studies (FLAS) Fellowships
For applicants interested in combining a degree program in SLS with the study of an East Asian language (Chinese, Japanese, Korean) or a Southeast Asian language (Cambodian, Indonesian, Tagalog, Thai, or Vietnamese), there are a number of fellowships available that offer stipend and tuition support. U. S. citizenship is required. For more information, applicants should contact the UHM School of Pacific and Asian Studies.

Financial Aid Services
A variety of financial aid is available to graduate students, including UHM scholarships and grants, federal grants, federal Work Study, outside funding, and loans. Please refer to Financial Aid Services for more information.


Two intensive ESL programs on the UHM campus regularly hire for short-term programs on a part-time basis. There are also four community colleges, several small private colleges, federally funded programs, private K-12 modern language programs, and a number of private language schools on O‘ahu. Additionally, we often receive requests for qualified language tutors.
The University of Hawai‘i Student Employment & Cooperative Education office also offers listings of on-campus employment for both international and U.S. students.
Applicants and current students are encouraged to become familiar with two important professional organizations on the island of O‘ahu: Hawai‘i TESOL (HITESOL) and the Hawai‘i Association of Language Teachers (HALT). Additionally, the website for the Teacher Portfolio & Preparation Series (TiPPS) workshop is a great resource for beginning and experienced job seekers.
Generally, it is advantageous to be physically present in Honolulu in order to find either SLS-related or other types of employment.



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