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CIHR, NSERC & SSHRC

Canada Graduate Scholarships-Master’s Program

CIHR – Frederick Banting and Charles Best Canada Graduate Scholarships
NSERC – Alexander Graham Bell Canada Graduate Scholarships
SSHRC – Joseph-Armand Bombardier Canada Graduate Scholarships

Overview
Value $17,500 for 12 months, non-renewable
Application Deadline December 1
Application Procedures See below
How to Apply
  • Canadian Common CV
  • Application
To create a Canadian Common CV, select This link will take you to another Web site Canadian Common CV.

To create or access an application, select Research Portal.

To view instructions, select Instructions.
For More Information See below

Important Information

Refer to the Tri-Agency Harmonization of the Canada Graduate Scholarships page for more information.

Objective

The objective of the Canada Graduate Scholarships-Master’s (CGS M) Program is to help develop research skills and assist in the training of highly qualified personnel by supporting students who demonstrate a high standard of achievement in undergraduate and early graduate studies.

Description

The CGS M Program provides financial support to high-calibre scholars who are engaged in eligible master’s or, in some cases, doctoral programs in Canada (refer to Eligibility). This support allows these scholars to fully concentrate on their studies in their chosen fields.

The CGS M Program supports 2,500 students annually in all disciplines and is administered jointly by Canada’s three federal granting agencies: the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR), the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) and the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC). The selection process and post-award administration are carried out at the institutional level, under the guidance of the three agencies. Students submit their application to the institution at which they propose to hold their award via the Research Portal.

Eligible Canadian institutions receive a CGS M allocation indicating the number of students to whom they can award scholarships; these allocations are divided by broad fields of study: health, natural sciences and/or engineering and social sciences and/or humanities.

Eligibility

Applicant

To be eligible to apply, you must:

  • be a Canadian citizen or a permanent resident of Canada;
  • be enrolled in, have applied for, or will apply for full-time admission* to an eligible graduate program at the master’s or doctoral level at a Canadian institution with a CGS M allocation. Note: Applicants who are not currently enrolled in their intended graduate program must submit an application for admission by the deadline for their intended graduate program or by March 15, whichever comes first;
  • have completed, as of December 31 of the year of application, between zero and 12 months of full-time studies (or full-time equivalent) in:
    • the master’s program for which you are requesting funding; or
    • the doctoral program for which you are requesting funding if you were admitted into a doctoral program directly from your bachelor’s program (you were never registered in a master’s program, or you are registered in a combined master’s-PhD program); or
    • a master’s program, but you are requesting funding for a doctoral program (an example is a student who has fast-tracked from a master’s to a doctoral program within 12 months of starting his or her master’s and is seeking funding for the first 12 months of his or her doctoral program); and
  • not have previously held a CGS M;
  • have achieved a first-class average, as determined by the host institution, in each of the last two completed years of study (full-time equivalent); and
  • submit a maximum of one CGS M application per year (the Research Portal will allow the application to be submitted to up to five institutions – refer to Application Procedures).

* Refer to the Canada Graduate Scholarships-Master’s (CGS M) Award Holder's Guide for details regarding part-time admission.

Program of Study Eligibility

An eligible graduate program must have a significant research component. A significant research component is considered to be original, autonomous research that leads to the completion of a thesis, major research project, dissertation, scholarly publication, performance, recital and/or exhibit that is merit/expert-reviewed at the institutional level as a requirement for completion of the program. Master’s programs that are based only on course work are typically not eligible since they do not include a significant research component. Given the specific requirements of certain disciplines, institutions are invited to contact the appropriate agency for guidance on the eligibility of programs of study.

Non-traditional Programs of Study

Joint programs with a professional degree (e.g., MD/PhD, DVM/PhD, JD/MA, JD/PhD, MBA/PhD, MA/MBA) are eligible if they have a demonstrated and significant research component as described above.

Clinically-oriented programs of study, including clinical psychology are also eligible programs if they have a demonstrated and significant research component as described above.

Tenure

Without exception, CGS M awards are tenable only at eligible Canadian institutions.

Field of Research and Subject Matter Eligibility

CIHR, NSERC and SSHRC support and promote high-quality research in a wide variety of disciplines and areas, which are divided into broad fields of research (health, natural sciences and engineering, and social sciences and humanities). This includes research that bridges two or more disciplines or that requires the skills of several disciplines.

Applicants must ensure that they are submitting their application to an institution that has an allocation for the field of research they wish to pursue. Applications deemed by a host institution to have been labeled incorrectly will be re-labeled according to the agency’s research subject matter guidelines (refer to This link will take you to another Web site Selecting the Appropriate Federal Granting Agency). Applicants should contact the Faculty of Graduate Studies (or its equivalent) at the institution where they wish to hold the award for further guidance on subject matter eligibility.

Application Procedures

To apply to the CGS M Program, applicants must complete and submit an application using the Research Portal. Applicants should consult the Canada Graduate Scholarships-Master’s Program Instructions for Completing an Application.

The Research Portal will instruct applicants to select up to five institutions where they wish to hold the award. Applicants may select institutions where:

  • they are currently admitted or enrolled full-time in an eligible program of study and wish to pursue their studies; or
  • they will apply for full-time admission to an eligible program of study by the deadline set for their intended graduate program or by March 15, whichever comes first.

Allocations

Each eligible institution is assigned a separate allocation of awards to offer from each agency. Institutions must respect the agency-specific allocation. Refer to the Canada Graduate Scholarships-Master’s Award Allocations page for a list of allocations by institution and by agency.

Deadlines

  • Application deadline (date by which the complete application must be submitted by the applicant): December 1.
    Applications must be submitted before 8:00 p.m. (ET) on the deadline date using the Research Portal. If the deadline falls on a weekend, your application must be submitted by the following working day.
  • Results deadline (date on which institutions may begin posting their competition results using the Research Portal): April 1 of the following calendar year.
  • Acceptance and declines of offers: Applicants will have 21 days from the date of each offer of award to accept or decline. If an offer of award is accepted, the system will automatically set all other offers and alternate statuses to “Declined”. The status of offers not accepted or declined within the 21 days will also automatically be set to “Declined”.

Selection Process

The Faculty of Graduate Studies (or its equivalent) at each Canadian institution is responsible for coordinating the selection process for the CGS M applications, and for communicating the results to the applicants and agencies. The institution selection committees evaluate each CGS M application. Institutions could have more than one selection committee.

Selection Criteria

The merit review of CGS M applications will be carried out by institutions with an allocation and will be based on the following evaluation criteria:

Criteria Description Weight
Academic Excellence As demonstrated by past academic results, transcripts, awards and distinctions.

Indicators of Academic Excellence:
  • Academic record (first class average)
  • Scholarships and awards held
  • Duration of previous studies
  • Type of program and courses pursued
  • Course load
  • Relative standing (if available)
50%
Research Potential As demonstrated by the applicant’s research history, his/her interest in discovery, the proposed research, its potential contribution to the advancement of knowledge in the field, and any anticipated outcomes.

Indicators of Research Potential:
  • Quality and originality of contributions to research and development
  • Relevance of work experience and academic training to field of proposed research
  • Significance, feasibility and merit of proposed research
  • Judgment and ability to think critically
  • Ability to apply skills and knowledge
  • Initiative, autonomy and independence
  • Research experience and achievements relative to expectations of someone with the candidate’s academic experience
30%

Personal Characteristics and Interpersonal Skills

As demonstrated by the applicant’s past professional and relevant extracurricular interactions and collaborations.

Indicators of Personal Characteristics and Interpersonal Skills:
  • Work experience
  • Leadership experience
  • Project management including organizing conferences and meetings
  • The ability or potential to communicate theoretical, technical and/or scientific concepts clearly and logically in written and oral formats
  • Involvement in academic life
  • Volunteerism/community outreach
20%

Notification of Results

Institutions will establish a list of applicants to whom awards will be offered as of April 1. The offers of awards will be made using the Research Portal, where applicants will have 21 days to Accept or Decline the offers. Institutions may make subsequent offers should some of the offers be declined, until they have no awards remaining, but before January 31 of the following year.

It is the responsibility of the applicant to verify the Research Portal for results of the competition.

Applicants may accept only one CGS M offer. If they accept an offer, they will be deemed to have declined any other pending offers (if applicable), and they will not be eligible to receive further offers.

Applicants are not eligible to receive or accept a CGS M offer from an institution where they are not currently enrolled in nor have applied for admission to an eligible program of study.

Conditions of the Award

Awards must be held at the institution where the offer of award originates. Awards are not intended to be portable between institutions; however, exceptions may be made in extenuating circumstances at the discretion of the host institutions, according to the academic and administrative regulations of the host institutions. Awards may be portable within the host institution and within the same field (e.g., change of department) as long as award eligibility requirements continue to be met, and at the discretion of the host institution.

Applicants and award holders must comply with the policies and guidelines set out in the Canada Graduate Scholarships-Master’s (CGS M) Award Holder’s Guide and in any other documents related to scholarship applications and awards. In addition, the award is subject to final approval by the relevant agency before funds can be released.

The agencies reserve the right to interpret and enforce the policies and guidelines for their funding opportunities set out in their published materials.

Use and Disclosure of Information

All personal information collected as part of this program is used by the agencies and by the relevant officials in the eligible research institutions to review applications and to administer and monitor awards. It may also be used to determine the most appropriate funding jurisdiction, or to monitor overlap in federal support. Details on the use and disclosure of this information by the agencies are described by CIHR in This link will take you to another Web site Info Source, by NSERC in the Use and Disclosure of Personal Information Provided to NSERC, by SSHRC in the This link will take you to another Web site Protection and Disclosure of Personal Information: Fellowships and Scholarships, and in the relevant program literature.

Each agency may publish the names and other limited award information of award holders on their Web sites in accordance with the agencies’ policies on disclosure under the Access to Information Act and their Privacy Act policies and guidelines related to the collection, use, retention and disposal of personal information. For more information, consult the This link will take you to another Web site Access to Information Act and the This link will take you to another Web site Privacy Act.

Official Languages

The main body of the application should be written in either English or French and not in a mix of both official languages. Institutions should have mechanisms in place to review both English and French applications.

Related Opportunities

CGS M holders may be eligible to apply for a:

For More Information

The first point of contact regarding the CGS M Program is the Faculty of Graduate Studies (or its equivalent) at the institution where you wish to hold the award.

You can also contact any of Canada’s three federal granting agencies for information about this program. You should communicate with the agency whose mandate corresponds to your field of research.

CIHR
CGS M Award Program Delivery Coordinator
Tel.: 613-952-0763
E-mail: cgsma@cihr-irsc.gc.ca

NSERC
Contact List
E-mail: schol@nserc-crsng.gc.ca

SSHRC
Tel.: 613-943-7777
E-mail: fellowships@sshrc-crsh.gc.ca

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