Financial Support

This information is for students enrolled in a graduate degree program in the department.

Dr. Audrey J. Grupe (Psychology Professor Emerita) established the Grupe Fellowship in School Psychology. Dr. Audrey J. Grupe and Mary Jane McCarthy support the Fellowship through gifts to the department recognizing the financial aid they received while pursuing their degrees and to commemorate their professional careers. They wish to help fellowship recipients from their home states (Illinois and Indiana) earn graduate degrees in school psychology, so recipients might provide services to children and their families in a school setting. Applicants who accept admission to the specialist program in School Psychology and hold an undergraduate degree from an accredited institution in either Illinois or Indiana are automatically eligible for the Grupe Fellowship.

Dr. Doug Lamb established the Outstanding Graduate Thesis Award in Clinical Counseling, and he supports this award through gifts to the University to encourage graduate student research broadly defined and includes thesis research, empirical and qualitative research, theoretical contributions that stimulate research programmatic research, and other scholarly work that stimulates research, as well as collaborative research with department faculty and other students.  Of particular interest is research which contributes to the understanding of college student behavior, characteristics, or programs and services which address student needs.  This award will be given annually at the Department of Psychology Fall Award Ceremony to a Clinical Counseling Student, who has conducted outstanding research.  The recipient will be selected by a majority vote of the clinical counseling faculty.

Dr. John Pryor and Dr. Glenn Reeder established the Social Psychology Graduate Student Research Fund, and they support the fund through gifts supporting graduate student research in social psychology in the Illinois State University Department of Psychology.  This fund will support primarily quantitative (rather than qualitative) research in nature pertaining to social psychology topics.  These topics may include (but are not limited to) attitudes, social cognition, social influence, stigma, prejudice/discrimination, pro-social/antisocial behavior, interpersonal relations, and group processes. Award recipients must be conducting research projects that are high quality, and applications should contain the following information:

  1. Description of the social psychological theories and prior research that provide a basis for the current research
  2. Description of the research methodology and overview of the planned statistical analysis
  3. Statement of the hypotheses being tested
  4. Budget of the funds being spent

Acceptable expenditures include participant payments, purchases of hardware or software directly connected to the research project, travel expenses related to data collection, and other justified expenditures directly related to the conduct of the research.  Student travel expenses connected to the presentation of the research at professional psychology conferences (e.g., annual conferences held by the Midwestern Psychological Association, the Association for Psychological Science, the American Psychological Association, the Society of Personality and Social Psychology, etc.) can also be included in the budget.  The application should run no more than three pages, single spaced. 

Students must apply for this fund prior to November 1st by emailing Dr. Dan Ispas, IOS program coordinator. 

Dr. Larry Alferink established the Graduate Scholarship in School Psychology, and he supports the scholarship through gifts to the department.  This scholarship was established to provide financial assistance to School Psychology doctoral first-year students.  Applicants must provide a short essay (max. 300 words) describing their dedication to the advancement of underrepresented groups through their work in the field of School Psychology.  One or two scholarships will be awarded each year to incoming students during the recruitment process for the following year.   This is a one-time, non-renewable award.  The recipient will be selected by a majority vote of the School Psychology faculty. 

Dr. Laura Berk (Distinguished Professor Psychology Emerita) established the Developmental Psychology Graduate Teaching Fellowship for a master's degree student admitted to the Developmental Psychology sequence. The Fellowship supports a second-year graduate student with an assistantship for teaching a developmental psychology course. The department also provides the student with a full tuition waiver for the fall, spring, and summer semesters. Each year, the Developmental Psychology faculty members select a first-year graduate student as the Berk Fellow. The student's faculty mentor prepares the student to teach a psychology course during the following academic year. The graduate student must enroll in PSY 491 Internship in College Teaching of Psychology before teaching a psychology course.

Dr. Mark Swerdlik established the Graduate Student in School Psychology Recruitment Scholarship, and he supports the scholarship through gifts to the department.  The Swerdlik Graduate Student Recruitment Scholarship provides a top incoming graduate student enrolled in either the Doctoral or Specialist School Psychology Program a one-time award for the following term.  The recipient must demonstrate potential contributing to the field of School Psychology as either a future practitioner or university educator as determined by their undergraduate GPA, at least one letter of recommendation, and the candidate's personal statement and past volunteer/work experiences.  They must demonstrate aptitude in the field of School Psychology and have plans for the future.  The recipient will be selected by a majority vote of the School Psychology faculty. 


The department awards graduate assistantships to first year students. Graduate assistants must maintain a grade point average of 3.0 or higher (on a 4.0 scale) and must enroll for at least nine graduate credits for the fall and spring semesters. An assistantship includes a monthly salary that is subject to applicable taxes and a tuition waiver for fall, spring, and summer semesters. The availability of graduate assistantships is subject to receipt of anticipated funding from the state of Illinois, and the student must be eligible for employment based on U.S. immigration laws.

The department notifies students if they are eligible for an assistantship. The student must complete the graduate assistant application before receiving an employment contract from the University. Students who accept a graduate assistantship are employees of the University and the state of Illinois. Under the State Officials and Employees Ethics Act (5ILCS 430/5-10), state employees must complete the Mandatory Governmental Ethics Online Training each year. The University notifies graduate assistants during the fall semester about the deadline for completing the ethics training. Graduate assistants who do not complete the ethics training will lose their assistantship and tuition waiver, and may not receive future assistantships at the University.

APA Scholarships, Grants, and Awards website

APAGS Scholarships and Awards website (American Psychological Association of Graduate Students)

Federal Student Aid Website (also known as FAFSA Free Application for Federal Student Aid)

Psi Chi Graduate Awards & Grants website Psi Chi, The International Honor Society in Psychology