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Award holder’s guide for Canada Graduate Scholarships - Michael Smith Foreign Study Supplements

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General requirements

To hold a supplement, award holders must:

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.

The information you provide in your application is collected under the authority of the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council Act.

The collection, use, disclosure, retention and disposal of your personal information are outlined in the following policy statements:

For more information, refer to the Personal Information Banks described in NSERC’s Info Source.


The institution where your CGS or Vanier CGS is held 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.

Once the award holder has accepted the supplement, 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 the 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

Changes to the proposed research study period abroad include changes to the trip dates, host supervisor, host institution and/or proposed activities.

You must receive approval from your CGS and host supervisors prior to submitting a request to change the proposed research study period abroad (i.e., changes to the trip dates, host supervisor, host institution and/or proposed activities); these approvals can be obtained by a brief email from both parties.

Send an email to your agency and the SLO with the approvals attached and provide a brief rationale for the proposed change(s). The agency will review your request and provide a response.


Trip date changes of less than one month do not have to be reported.

Reporting requirements

Within two months of completing your research study period abroad, you must submit an activity report to the agency (maximum two pages), which 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 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 (either with a signature in the report or an email confirmation)

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.

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 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 Canadian citizens, or permanent residents of Canada travelling abroad, visit the Visas web page of the Government of Canada website.


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

Email: CGSMSFSS-SEEMSBESC@cihr-irsc.gc.ca

Email: schol@nserc-crsng.gc.ca

Email: fellowships@sshrc-crsh.gc.ca

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