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McKinley Building, Room 111

Office of Graduate Academic Services 4400 Massachusetts Avenue NW Washington, DC 20016 United States

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Financing Your Education

The School of Communication offers graduate students both merit-based and need-based financial aid. Merit awards, fellowships, and named scholarships are administered by the School of Communication's Graduate Admissions Office. Need-based awards are administered by the American University's Office of Financial Aid. There are also a variety of awards designated directly from American University and many opportunities from external sources. In addition, we support our nation's service members and their dependents through generous veterans' benefits

All merit awards are based on academic merit and professional experience, specifically your undergraduate grades and leadership activities as well as career-related accomplishments.

Merit awards are valid for one year, vary in amount, and are divided evenly between the fall and spring semesters.

Graduate Assistantship is a position offered within the School of Communication that allows students to be mentored by a faculty or staff member, but also requires the students to work 10 hours per week supporting the faculty or staff member. The payment is in the form of a bi-weekly paycheck.

Graduate Tuition Remission is monies awarded to top applicants in the form of a scholarship. The monies are awarded and deducted from your tuition and appear on your student account.

Spring term:
October 15
Fall term:
February 1

The School of Communication offers prestigious merit-based scholarships and fellowships. Fellowships provide varying amounts of tuition remission and stipend, and allow you to gain professional experience while completing your graduate program. 


Both part-time and full-time students may apply for need-based assistance, although only U.S. citizens and permanent residents are eligible for federal need-based aid. To apply, you'll need to complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) before the American University deadline. Please list the American University (AU) FAFSA code, 001434, in the university release section.

We strongly recommend that you complete the FAFSA online, but if you do not have Internet access, you may schedule an appointment with the American University Office of Financial Aid to complete the form electronically there, or submit a paper form if you prefer. Please contact the Office of Financial Aid to find out what information you will need to bring with you.

AU's Financial Aid Office also maintains a comprehensive list of private loans and scholarships.

Financial Aid for Prospective Students

Financial Aid Office 
American University 
4400 Massachusetts Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20016

Financial Aid for Current Students

AU Central
Asbury Building, Room 201
American University
4400 Massachusetts Avenue, NW 
Washington, DC 20016

Graduate Assistantships

We offer numerous graduate assistantships allowing students to work with and support faculty or staff mentors. Most graduate assistantships do not require additional information from you to apply, however you can apply to these specific assistantships directly.

The School of Communication is seeking a Graduate Assistant to assist the newly created position of SOC Inclusion Officer. The incumbent will work closely with the Inclusion Officer, Inclusion Coordinator, and other SOC staff on specific projects and tasks related to diversity and inclusion. This position will include, but not limited to creating an email newsletter, conducting interviews with staff, students and faculty, assisting the SOC Inclusion Officer and staff members with events, analyzing data, benchmarking, developing communications, online research, and other administrative tasks as assigned. The assistant must work 10 hours per week for 18 weeks. The hours are flexible and most of the work can be done remotely.


  • Passionate about diversity and inclusion issues on AU’s campus
  • Interest in topics related to gender, race, culture, class, sexuality, ethnicity, and identity
  • Excellent writing and editing skills
  • Strong computer and communication skills
  • Detail-oriented organized, and capable of multitasking and prioritizing tasks
  • Strong interpersonal skills


  • Applied and admitted to a graduate program within the School of Communication
  • Enrolled full-time (9 credits or more)
  • U.S. citizenship, permanent resident or international student

How to apply

Please submit, as part of your application to one of SOC's master's programs, the following documents:

  • An essay, no more than 250 words. Provide concrete examples of how you have contributed to inclusion and diversity issues personally and/or professionally.

Compensation: $4500, paid via a bi-weekly paycheck (taxable income).