Prospective Student Funding
Applicants to the Geology Graduate Program that indicate that they are interested
in applying for an assistantship will be considered for available Teaching or Research
Assistantships, the details of which can be found below. Assistantships are open
to both M.S. Research track and Ph.D. students – M.S. Professional Studies track
students are not eligible for these assistantships.
The Geology Program offers competitive graduate teaching assistantships to M.S. and
Ph.D. students. TAs are employed to work in support of undergraduate courses across
environmental geography, geographic information science, and human geography. Applicants
who wish to be considered for a TA position should make that request known in their
A TA is a nine-month appointment paying $15,750 per year (M.S.) or $18,000 (Ph.D.),
and a waiver of full-time university tuition (up to 12 credit hours per semester).
The value of the stipend plus university tuition waiver is more than $29,000. In
return, the student works about 20 hours per week (half time) teaching and/or assisting
in undergraduate labs and classes. Summer university tuition is waived for students
who held a TA or RA during the preceding two semesters. Health insurance coverage
is required of all students as are library, computer use, and recreation fees,
and these are not waived. A few TA positions are available in summer. TA awards
are highly competitive, and normally only tendered to strong applicants.
The TA review process starts in February, with first offers issued in early March.
Positions are normally filled by April 15. While most TA’s start in Fall, there
is from time to time a TA vacancy for Spring semester start. Approximately
10 TAs are awarded to new entering graduate students each year.
Research Assistantships support graduate students under supervision of a faculty
members with funded research grants. RA’s commonly provide up a twelve months of
support and pay approximately $17,000-$23,000 per 12 months, plus a full waiver
of university tuition. It is not uncommon for students to switch between RAs and
TAs on a semester basis. The research performed is frequently for a student’s thesis
or project. Students interested in obtaining RA support should contact faculty
working in their field.
WVU offers several fellowships to exceptional incoming Ph.D. students. Potential
candidates are nominated by WVU Geology faculty after application to the Program
is complete. For more information, visit the Graduate Education and Life
Stipends from Research Units
The Morgantown National Energy Technology Center, the West Virginia Geological and
Economic Survey and the National Research Center for Coal and Energy sponsor research
assistant positions that provide hourly wage fellowship positions for some students.
These positions may include university tuition waivers.
Departmental Funding Packages
Funded Ph.D. students are guaranteed 4 years of funding through TA, RA, or Fellowship
positions (contingent upon progress within the program), and are eligible for continued
funding in years 5, based upon performance. Funded M.S. students are guaranteed
2 years of funding through TA or RA positions (contingent upon progress within
the program). All funded positions include a stipend, a tuition waiver, and health
Meritorious Tuition and Fees
Meritorious Tuition Waivers are regularly granted to students on Fellowships whose
stipend does not cover university tuition. Furthermore, students that have surpassed
their TA or RA support may apply for waivers of university tuition.
WVU Tuition and Fees
Explore current graduate student costs and other WVU resources at
To apply for admission, submit transcripts, GRE test scores, letters of recommendation,
and statements of interest through the WVU application portal (
Program and University Information
WVU has R1 Carnegie Ranking, with a ‘very high research’ classification. We are located
in Morgantown, a vibrant town located near excellent recreational opportunities
and just 75 miles south of Pittsburgh. The Geology Program is housed in a state-of-the-art
research facility. WVU is an Equal Employment Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer
dedicated to building a culturally diverse and pluralistic faculty, staff and students
committed to working in a multicultural environment. The university welcomes applications
from all qualified individuals, including minorities, females, individuals with
disabilities, and veterans.