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The Composition and Cultural Rhetoric Doctoral Program (CCR)

Funding Opportunities

Students applying to the doctoral program in Composition and Cultural Rhetoric are eligible to apply for the following awards (figures for graduate appointments represent 2017-2018 stipends). It is anticipated that all recipients who remain in good standing will continue to receive some form of financial support for up to four years of graduate study. To be considered for admission in Fall 2018 and for financial aid, we must receive your completed application package no later than January 15th, 2018.


Graduate Teaching Assistantships
Offered to approximately four new students each year; 8.5 months; no more than an average of 20 hours work per week; includes a stipend of $18,000. Assistantships include remitted tuition for 9 credits per semester, 6 in summer, for the first 3 years. Teaching assistants, appointed by the Writing Studies, Rhetoric, and Composition, have full responsibility for 3 sections of writing instruction a year, are expected to attend regular staff meetings and professional development workshops, attend a weekly teaching practicum during the first year, and participate in professional development seminars thereafter. There is also an ongoing mentorship and review of each teaching assistant's performance as a teacher.


Syracuse University Fellowships:
Tax-free stipend of $25,290 for 8.5 months of full-time study; tuition scholarship for 12 credits per semester and 6 credits per summer for a total of 30 during the academic year.


Summer Teaching
1 section, offered to some graduate students based on teaching record and availability.


Additional Funding (post-4th Year)


The CCR program makes every effort to ensure that students have the requisite funding to complete their degrees, but the program cannot guarantee that funding will be available (beyond the typical 4-year assistantship/fellowship packages) for each student who requires it.


For students who require financial support beyond the 4-year term of their fellowship or assistantship packages, there are various options. Students are strongly encouraged to pursue both internal and external dissertation fellowship opportunities during their 4th year if they know that they will require additional funding. Depending on availability, there may be a limited number of 1-year teaching assistantships. Students may apply for PWI positions, although these again depend on availability and a competitive application process. There are also 2 positions available annually with the Graduate Editing Center. Finally, there are occasionally positions available that involve the WP partnering with other departmental units.


Decisions regarding these opportunities are not made until the completion of the admissions cycle, which can have an effect on the number of positions available. However, in mid-March, the Director of Graduate Studies will send an announcement to the CCR list, detailing the funding opportunities available to students for the following year. All interested students must apply for these positions, and their applications should include:


  • A cover letter indicating their ranked preferences as well any specific qualifications they have for the positions
  • An updated copy of their curriculum vitae
  • A letter from their (Examination or Dissertation) Director outlining the student’s degree progress to date and projected progress for the upcoming year

Applications will be due in the first week of April. The Graduate Studies Committee will review all applications, and in consultation with the Program Director and Director of Undergraduate Studies, allocate the positions. They will attempt to accommodate students’ preferences, but this may not always be possible. Students will be notified of the committee’s decision by the end of the semester.


Applications will be evaluated according to the criteria applicable for any academic position (general qualifications, etc.). Additionally, the committee will take into consideration any specific qualifications the student may possess; for example, experience in the Writing Center and/or working with non-native speakers may serve as additional qualification for a GEC position. Finally, the committee will consider carefully the student’s degree progress. The ultimate goal in providing these opportunities is to enable a student to complete the degree, and as such, a student is more likely to receive a 5th year of support than a 6th or 7th. Our ideal would be to support every student for as long as they need funding; unfortunately, this is not normally possible. Support beyond a 5th year is exceptionally rare.