Ph.D. Concentration

Cost and Commitment


Earning a doctorate is different than any other degree. A doctoral student is expected to read widely and deeply, engage in research, and disseminate scholarship. Most of this work is done outside of course hours. The successful completion of a doctoral program requires academic talent, strong analysis skills, and writing competence as well as the investment of a great deal of time. These attributes are developed through thought, reflection, and diligence.

Financial Cost

Tuition and Fees

The financial cost of doctoral courses varies each year. The USF Graduate Studies website provides the most current estimates of tuition and fees.

Professional Organizations and Conferences

Doctoral students in Early Childhood Education are expected to join professional associations and to attend national conferences. The goal is for students to eventually present research at these conferences. Professional memberships and conference fees can be expensive. Please see the Mentoring and Advising page for a listing of suggested organizations and conferences.

Funding Support


Assistantships may be available for doctoral students who wish to pursue full-time study by working within the university setting. Students who serve as graduate assistants typically teach two undergraduate courses in early childhood education or elementary education each semester (Fall and Spring). Along with this, there will the expectation that the student conducts and disseminates research. Graduate assistants receive tuition waivers along with stipends for the academic year.

For more information about assistantships available for full time doctoral study, visit the Graduate School website.


Graduate fellowships are financial awards offered to individuals who are applying to or who are enrolled in doctoral programs. Fellowships may be awarded by USF, federal agencies, or independent organizations. Many university fellowships are used as recruiting incentives. In other words, the best time to receive financial support is during the admissions process. However, many other fellowships are available for doctoral study, dissertation research, and graduate student travel.

The majority of all fellowships are based upon outstanding academic records and high test scores. The following are well-known awards:

*Please note, the deadline for many fellowships is much earlier than the February deadline for applications to USF. Students who are admitted by December 15th of the preceding year will have the greatest opportunity for scholarships and fellowships. The deadlines for these awards are earlier than the final application deadline for program admission. 

In addition to USF awards, many scholarly societies offer research and teaching grants for doctoral students and candidates.

Other Funding Opportunities

USF and the College of Education offer various awards, grants, and fellowships.

College of Education

USF Resources

In addition, many societies and foundations offer research and teaching grants for doctoral students and candidates. Below is a selected list of possible funding sources.