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Funding and Awards

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Graduate Anthropology Program

Funding and Awards

Graduate students in the Anthropology Department can apply for funding through multiple mechanisms. These are described below.

For information on tuition and fees, you may use the Office of the Bursar tuition estimator. Also, please let the department's Graduate Liaison know if you are a McNair scholar, as the deadline for McNair applicants is earlier than OU's general deadline for applications to the graduate program. For general inquiries about financial aid, please visit the website of OU's Financial Aid Office.

Graduate Teaching and Research Assistantships

The department offers multiple graduate teaching assistantships (GTAships). These are semester-long appointments at 20 hours a week. Some GTAs support faculty who teach large courses; others teach online or face-to-face classes. GTAships are awarded competitively using information from the graduate applications and annual evaluations. The tuition waivers that accompany graduate assistantship awards are described at Tuition Waivers

Please contact individual faculty members about the potential for grant funded research assistantships.

Research and Travel Awards

The Anthropology Department offers several awards for graduate student research and travel. These are awarded competitively, with applications due on October 1 and March 1 annually. To apply, download and fill out the Anthropology Scholarship Form. Students can use those funds to support travel that has already occurred. More information about these awards is given below. We expect students who apply for departmental research and travel funds to also apply for funds from one of the following: the Graduate College, the Graduate Student Senate, and/or the College of Arts and Sciences.

Examples of travel or research for which students may apply for support include:

  • Travel to present research at a conference;
  • Funds for a significant component of a research project, for example, travel or material expenses 
  • Funds to seed research or collect pilot data 

Awardees must work with the department staff assistant before any travel is arranged to be certain that university requirements are met.

Morris E. Opler Memorial Scholarships

Graduate students may apply for an Opler scholarship. Lucille Ritter Opler established this endowed fund in memory of her husband, Dr. Morris E. Opler, to provide scholarships to deserving anthropology students at the University of Oklahoma. Morris Opler was a leading scholar of Native North America. A specialist on Apachean people, he authored numerous articles in scholarly journals and wrote several books on the culture and history of the Chiricahua, Jicarilla, Lipan, Mescalero, and Plains Apache (Kiowa Apache). Dr. Opler was a member of the University of Oklahoma Department of Anthropology faculty for nearly two decades, having served here after a distinguished teaching and research career at Cornell University. Much respected for his knowledge and teaching ability, he retired as Professor Emeritus from the University of Oklahoma in 1977 and passed away in 1996. Among his many honors, Dr. Opler was past President of the American Anthropological Association.

Rain Vehik Award

The Rain Vehik Memorial Fund honors archaeologist Dr. Rain Vehik. Dr. Vehik had a long and productive career in Plains archaeology that included positions at the University of Wisconsin-LaCrosse, the University of North Dakota, and in Oklahoma. In Oklahoma, he served as head of the Archaeological Research and Management Center, worked with the Oklahoma Archeological Survey, and taught for the OU Department of Anthropology. The Rain Vehik Award offers funds to students to participate in scholarly conferences and workshops. Higher priority is given to students attending the annual Plains Anthropological Conference. This award is open to both graduate and undergraduate students. Each student is eligible for only one award per academic year.

Gilman-Minnis Scholarship in Archaeology

The Gilman-Minnis Scholarship in Archaeology was estalished by Dr. Patricia Gilman and Dr. Paul Minnis. Drs. Gilman and Minnis were faculty in the OU Department of Anthropology for many years, retiring in 2015. This scholarship offers funds to support archaeology graduate students' research projects. Typically, these funds are awarded only in the spring.