Financial Assistance

At the School of Computing and Information (SCI), graduate students may be eligible for financial assistance. Several categories of financial assistance exist to underwrite some or all of the costs of your studies, including federal financial aid, SCI-funded financial support, scholarships, awards, fellowships, and assistantships.

1. Federally-Funded Financial Aid 

Explore federal funding options as outlined on the University of Pittsburgh’s Graduate School Financial Aid Instructions page. Please note that any federal financial aid applied for will be processed through the University’s Office of Admission and Financial Aid, not by the School of Computing and Information.

2. SCI-Funded Financial Support

SIS may have financial support available, on a competitive, merit or need-based basis, for full-time, on-campus students who meet full admission status (all prerequisites completed).

  • Applications for SIS-funded financial support will only be considered by the Committee once the student has been accepted into the school/MST program.
  • New students are evaluated on the basis of past academic achievement, relevant experience, and need; continuing students are evaluated on the basis of academic performance in their degree program, performance of assigned duties, and need. Financial need is determined on the basis of information supplied by the applicant.

3. Scholarships, Awards, Fellowships, and Assistantships

SCI and its partner organizations are pleased to offer a variety of opportunities for which its students may apply. A variety of scholarships, awards, fellowships, and assistantships, which are funded through the generosity of alumni, friends, foundations, and corporations, are offered to SCI students who demonstrate academic accomplishments and leadership skills. Students should research additional available funding sources as they are always changing. Please review the current list here.

Eligibility and Limitations

SCI encourages all eligible students to apply for financial assistance. Students eligible for financial support are those accepted for admission or currently enrolled in one of SCI’s programs. It is a University policy that only full-time graduate students are eligible for financial assistance. Full‐time enrollment is registration for a minimum of nine credits but no more than 15 credits in the fall and spring terms and a minimum of 3 credits in the summer term. Students awarded a GSA or TF are expected to register for at least nine credits but not more than 12 credits per term (fall and spring).

Priority is given to U.S. citizens in evaluating financial support applications. All international students are expected to come fully funded for their entire degree and any advanced study they may undertake in a certificate program or additional degree. International students may, in rare cases, be granted financial support such as the awarding of a Graduate Student Researcher assistantship for a funded project.

The University of Pittsburgh is committed to providing educational opportunities for qualified diversity students. In accordance with this policy, students from underrepresented groups are strongly encouraged to apply for financial assistance. In some cases, funding is specifically designated for the support of these students.

MSIS degree students may be considered for up to a maximum of four terms of aid. In addition, students applying for graduation in one term will not be considered eligible for aid in the following term.

IST PhD students may be considered for up to a maximum of four terms (including summer) of aid before taking the Preliminary Examination. After the Preliminary Examination, PhD students may be considered for up to three additional terms of financial support before the Comprehensive Examination. After the Comprehensive Exam, students may be considered for a maximum of three terms of financial support.

Application Process for Funding

To be considered for any funding opportunity, you must complete the pertinent sections in your application for admission on Apply Yourself.

The Committee will consider applications for financial support only after the student has been accepted into the IST program. All applicants are informed of funding decisions by letter. In the application for admission please be sure to supply the address to which funding decision letters should be mailed.

Application deadlines for SCI-funded financial support for the IST program are as follow:
Fall Term Spring Term Summer Term
Admission Application (Domestic) July 15 November 1 March 15
Admission Application (International) January 15 June 15 December 15
Financial Support Application January 15 September 15 January 15

Duration of Funding

The Committee usually approves full or partial SCI-funded financial support for two terms with the possibility of renewal for up to a maximum of four terms, although one-term appointments may be made. If not renewed, a tuition scholarship for the third term may be provided if performance has been satisfactory and funds are available. There are few, if any, new GSA appointments made in the summer term; however, any unused scholarship money will be disbursed.

Students who apply for but do not receive SCI-funded financial support must reapply in order to be reconsidered in a subsequent term.

Renewal after the initial award is dependent upon:

Reinstatement of Funding

Students re-entering the program after an absence of a term or more must re-apply for SCI-funded financial support. Such funding is subject to availability and cannot be guaranteed in these cases.