The Prize Teaching Fellowships are among the most important honors that Yale bestows upon graduate students. Based on the nominations from undergraduate students and faculty, these fellowships are awarded jointly by the offices of the Dean of the Graduate School and the Dean of Yale College.


To be eligible for selection, a graduate student must:

  • be in good standing in a Ph.D. program
  • have served in Yale College as a Teaching Fellows (TF) or Part-Time Acting Instructors (PTAI)
  • be making satisfactory progress towards the Ph.D. degree, as shown in the Dissertation Progress Report filed with the Graduate School

Nomination Process

  • Twice a year, at the end of the fall term and in the middle of the spring term, the Yale College Dean's Office solicits nominations from Yale College students via email. To avoid potential conflicts of interest, graduate student instructors should not ask their students for nominations.
  • Students in Yale College may nominate any graduate student enrolled in a Ph.D. program who they had as a Teaching Fellow (TF) or Part-Time Acting Instructor (PTAI).
  • Nominations need not be lengthy, but they should provide specific information about how a particular TF or PTAI has excelled as an instructor rather than general expressions of enthusiasm. The determination is not made merely on the number of nominations received; this is not a popularity contest. The selection committee pays attention to the quality rather than just the quantity of information it receives.
  • Letters of nomination must include
    • the full name, class year, and residential college affiliation of the undergraduate student writing the letter
    • the full name of the graduate student being nominated
    • the name, number, and term of the course in which the graduate student taught

Selection Process

  • Selections are made in April by a committee consisting of the Dean of Undergraduate Education in Yale College, an Associate Director of the Center for Teaching and Learning, and the Assistant Director of the Teaching Fellow Program in the Graduate School.
  • After the selection committee receives student nominations, it selection committee contacts relevant departments and seeks supporting information from the faculty member in charge of the course with which the TF or PTAI was affiliated, or as relevant, the DUS, DGS, Chair, or other departmental officer of the program sponsoring the course. This additional input helps the selection committee make its final choices among the nominees.


  • The number of Prize Teaching Fellowships generally falls between 10 and 15 each year.
  • The winners of Prize Teaching Fellowships receive a cash prize of $3000.
  • Those selected as Prize Teaching Fellows will be honored at a celebratory event in the fall, hosted by the Dean of the Graduate School and the Dean of Yale College.