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Award Holder’s Guide for Canada Graduate Scholarships – Michael Smith Foreign Study Supplements

General requirements

To hold a supplement, the award holder must:

  • accept the terms and conditions of the supplement, as set out in this Guide, in the Notice of Award (including attachments) and in the program description;
  • currently hold an active CGS, at the master’s or doctoral level, or hold an active, eligible Vanier CGS (and be a Canadian citizen or permanent resident of Canada) and adhere to all the terms and conditions attached to that scholarship;
  • be registered full-time and progressing satisfactorily in a graduate studies program at an eligible institution;
  • comply with the This link will take you to another Web site Tri-Council Policy Statement: Ethical Conduct for Research Involving Humans and the policies and guidelines regarding animal care and biohazards;
  • comply with the policies outlined in the This link will take you to another Web site Tri-Agency Framework: Responsible Conduct of Research;
  • wherever possible, acknowledge the This link will take you to another Web site CIHR, NSERC, or This link will take you to another Web site SSHRC’s funding assistance for the research study period abroad;
  • take up the supplement within one year of receiving the Notice of Award for the Canada Graduate Scholarships – Michael Smith Foreign Study Supplements (CGS-MSFSS);
  • return to complete their degree in Canada.

Note: Refer to the Tri-Agency Research Training Award Holder’s Guide for details regarding part-time status.

Supplements may be cancelled without notice if the terms and conditions under which they are granted are violated. Any payment made for a period during which you were not eligible to hold the supplement must be reimbursed. All personal information collected by the agencies is subject to 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.

Note: Your institution is responsible for the administration of this supplement, and your Scholarship Liaison Officer (SLO) must be copied on all relevant communications regarding the supplement.

Acceptance or refusal of CGS-MSFSS

You must notify the agency and the SLO by email of your decision to accept or refuse the supplement.

The agency will cancel any supplement not accepted by the deadline date indicated in the Notice of Award.

Payment of CGS-MSFSS

The supplement will be paid separately from the CGS or Vanier CGS.

The agency will transfer the CGS-MSFSS funds in one instalment to the institution where the CGS is held, and the award holder will receive their funds from the institution.

Value and duration of CGS-MSFSS

The value of the supplement, detailed in the Notice of Award, is a maximum of $6,000, based on the information and budget justification provided in the application package. The supplements are non-renewable.

Award holders are expected to adhere to their travel dates, as indicated in their application (minimum of two months, to a maximum of six months).

A supplement must begin before the end date of your CGS or Vanier CGS and cannot be taken up during an interruption of a CGS or Vanier CGS award.

Changes to the proposed research study period abroad

You must receive approval from the agency before making any changes to the research study period abroad. This includes changes to the trip dates, host supervisor, host institution or proposed activities. Such requests must be made prior to the travel date.

To receive approval, send an email to your agency and the SLO and provide a brief rationale for the proposed change(s). To support your request, you must also provide a letter or email from both your current and host research supervisors.

Reporting requirements

Within two months of completing your research study period abroad, you must submit an activity report to the agency (maximum two pages) that must include:

  • the activities that were carried out and results achieved;
  • the ongoing activities resulting from the research study period abroad, such as joint publications, the development of new techniques, etc.;
  • any unanticipated benefits derived from working at, or attending, the host institution in relation to your current research objectives at your Canadian institution;
  • problems encountered;
  • advice on how the CGS-MSFSS Program could be improved;
  • the start and end dates of your trip;
  • confirmation from your CGS or Vanier CGS supervisor that they have reviewed the content of your report.

Termination of CGS-MSFSS

If you terminate your CGS or Vanier CGS before the start of the research study period abroad, you must advise your granting agency and the SLO immediately.

Note: If your trip ends before the required minimum of two months, the value of the award may be prorated to the date of your termination.

Taxation and other issues


The agencies do not provide advice on taxation. Award recipients can contact the relevant government agencies for information on these topics and can seek the advice of professionals.

Award recipients receiving payments through Canadian institutions will be issued tax forms by the institution rather than by the agency.


The granting agencies are unable to assume liability for accidents, illness or losses that may occur during the research study period abroad. You are responsible for ensuring that you have appropriate insurance.

You are encouraged to communicate with your provincial health insurance office before leaving Canada; spending a significant length of time outside the country may impact the coverage available to you when you return.


For information on the visa requirements of foreign countries for Canadians or permanent residents travelling abroad, visit the This link will take you to another Web site Visas page of the Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada’s website.

Contact us

When communicating with the agency, indicate the application number and “CGS-MSFSS” in the email subject line.

Program Design and Delivery Branch
Scholarships and Fellowships Division
Research Training Portfolio