How to Complete Your Grad Student/Postdoc Tax Return (and Understand It, Too!)

Are you intimidated by the prospect of preparing your grad student tax return? Are you confused by the tax forms you received from your institution or funding agency – or the forms you didn’t? This asynchronous workshop breaks down how to calculate your taxable income from your salary, stipend, fellowship, grant, and/or scholarships; minimize your tax liability using education tax benefits; and report your income, qualified education expenses, and estimated tax paid on your tax return. It also touches on the special tax situations that may apply to students under age 24. The workshop is for US citizens, permanent residents, and residents for tax purposes, and comprises pre-recorded videos, worksheets, and live Q&A calls.

What is included?

  • 11 videos with transcripts totaling just under two hours, titled:
    • Introduction
    • Background
    • Tax Preparation Methods
    • Self-Assessment: Income
    • Higher Education Tax Benefits
    • Self-Assessment: Qualified Education Expenses
    • Applying Education Tax Benefits
    • Filling Out Forms
    • If You Were Under Age 24
    • If You Are Class of 2021 (Bachelor’s)
    • Off-Target Effects
  • 2 worksheets (PDF and Excel versions)
  • Invitations to at least one live Q&A call per month throughout tax season (open to everyone in the workshop)—the recordings are added to workshop as well.

PDPA is covering the cost of the workshop for up to 100 PhD students and Postdocs on a first come-first served basis. After that, the workshop can be purchased at the cost of $20 per person.

If you would like access to this content, please register using the form below. (*Please register only if you plan to use the workshop resources so you do not take a spot away from someone who needs it*).

Shortly after you have registered with PDPA, you will receive a unique registration link from that leads to a unique version of the workshop. After you register with that site, you will receive their auto-generated login information. When you log in through, they will see a link for the workshop.

Tax Return Workshop Registration

The workshop was designed and created by Dr. Emily Roberts. Dr. Roberts is a personal finance educator specializing in early-career PhDs. Through her business, Personal Finance for PhDs, she equips graduate students, postdocs, and PhDs with Real Jobs to make the most of their money. She gives seminars at universities and for associations, interviews PhDs on her podcast, and creates courses and workshops on taxes, investing, and more. Emily holds a PhD in biomedical engineering from Duke University and lives in southern CA with her husband and two children.