Graduate Research Assistantships

These research positions enhance the educational experiences provided by academic course work and teaching assistantships at the university, allowing students to extend their range of academic specializations and expertise, and to augment research skills by direct contact with objects in the collections. If necessary, these positions may be offered remotely in accordance with Yale policy.

Projects in 2022–2023

Archives: Narratives of the Yale Center for British Art: An Oral History Program

Supervised by Rachel Chatalbash, Deputy Director for Research. Duration: One semester or full academic year.

The Yale Center for British Art’s Archives seeks to appoint a Graduate Research Assistant (GRA) for either one semester or the full academic year to participate in the development of its oral history program. The GRA will have the opportunity to identify significant individuals and topics pertaining to the museum’s history in accordance with the GRA’s interests and expertise, conduct in-depth scholarly research on those subjects in preparation for interviews, and create oral histories. By gathering firsthand comprehensive testimonies that explore a range of topics including architecture, art collecting, and scholarship, these oral histories will shed light on the Center’s history and contribute to scholarship on British art and modernist architecture. The successful candidate will create and provide access to new narratives that reflect the multifaceted experiences of those involved in the Center’s past, present, and, potentially, its future.


Curatorial: Tudor and Stuart Paintings

Supervised by Edward Town, Assistant Curator of Paintings and Sculpture. Duration: Academic year.

The Curatorial Department of the Yale Center for British Art seeks to appoint a Graduate Research Assistant (GRA) for the academic year to help with the development of an exhibition in 2025 on portraiture in the sixteenth and early seventeenth centuries. The GRA will assist with various aspects of the exhibition and the accompanying publication. Responsibilities will include refining the content and cataloguing information in the exhibition checklist, which in turn will feed into the publication. The GRA will undertake art historical, provenance, and picture research, and compile written texts including draft loan letters. This assistantship provides an excellent opportunity for the successful candidate to gain experience working with a curatorial team in the culminating phase of a long-standing, object-based research project where the art historical inquiry is underpinned by thorough technical study.


Conservation: Technical Cataloguing

Supervised by Jessica David, Senior Conservator of Paintings. Duration: Academic year.

The Painting Conservation Department of the Yale Center for British Art seeks to appoint a Graduate Research Assistant (GRA) for the academic year to assist in the technical cataloguing of the Center’s painting collection. Working under the supervision of the painting conservators, the successful candidate will examine paintings and write technical descriptions to be published on the Center’s online catalogue. These technical descriptions will include material elements such as a painting’s support, ground or priming material, paint application, and varnish. The selected group of paintings may be either in line with the GRA’s research interests or the department’s. In addition to strengthening their skills in close visual analysis, the GRA may develop fluency in reading supplementary visual and textual documents such as X-radiographs and treatment reports, which will be provided where applicable. This position requires good visual and research skills, some knowledge of painting techniques, and a willingness to research artists’ materials and methods.


GRAs at the Yale Center for British Art and the Yale University Art Gallery are open to PhD candidates in all disciplines. The number of assistantships offered may vary each year. GRAs are designed to provide Yale University doctoral students, in their second through sixth year, the opportunity to work as part of an intellectual team on a major scholarly project at one of the museums.


Applications are now closed. Please check back in 2023.

Financial Terms and Duration

The GRA stipend for 2022–23 is equivalent to the stipend for Yale teaching fellows.

No positions beyond those described here can be financed at full stipend level or counted in lieu of teaching requirements. If a student holds a university fellowship, the research assistantship replaces the fellowship for the year in which the student holds the position.

Research assistantships may be offered for one or two semesters depending on project and student circumstances. Full-year GRAs are initially awarded for one semester and are renewed for the second semester after a midyear review, at the discretion of the supervising curator and the Director of Graduate Studies (DGS). At the discretion of the DGS, students in their second and third years may substitute up to two semesters of the research assistantship in lieu of fulfilling the teaching requirements. If, in an extraordinary case, a student wishes to pursue the same project for a third or fourth semester, they may be allowed to continue at the discretion of the supervising curator and the DGS.

Contact the Research department at | +1 203 432 2824