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Graduate Studies

CIHR Canada Graduate Scholarship – Doctoral

The CIHR Doctoral Research Award consists of two programs administered through a single application:

  • Frederick Banting and Charles Best Canada Graduate Scholarships Doctoral Awards (CGS-D): Provides special recognition and support to students pursuing a doctoral degree in a health-related field in Canada.
  • Doctoral Foreign Study Award (DFSA): Provides special recognition and support to students who are pursuing a doctoral degree in a health-related field abroad.

Value

  • Trainee stipend: $30,000 per annum (for 36 months)
  • Research allowance: $5,000 per annum (for 36 months)

Eligibility

To be eligible to apply, an applicant must:

  • be a Canadian citizen or a permanent resident of Canada, as of the application deadline date
  • have completed no more than 24 months of full-time study in their doctoral program by December 31 of the calendar year of application if previously enrolled in a master’s program
  • have completed no more than 36 months of full-time study in their doctoral program by December 31 of the calendar year of application if enrolled in a joint program; for example, MD/PhD, MA/PhD
    • applicants who fall into this category have access to the 36-month window whether or not they were previously enrolled in a master’s program
  • have completed no more than 36 months of full-time study in their doctoral program by December 31 of the calendar year of application if enrolled directly from a bachelor’s to a PhD program (with no time spent in a master’s program)
    • direct-entry applicants must be enrolled in their doctoral program at the time of application
  • Eligibility for CGS D is based on the number of months of full-time study in the degree for which you are requesting funding by December 31, 2020. Two terms of part-time study count as one term of full-time study.
  • Applicants can submit a maximum of one scholarship application per academic year to either CIHR, NSERC or SSHRC. Nominations to the Vanier CGS program and applications to the Banting Postdoctoral Fellowships program do not count toward this limit (other exceptions may apply to CIHR internships).
  • Applicants cannot have already received a doctoral-level scholarship from CIHR, NSERC or SSHRC (does not apply to CIHR Fellowships).

COVID-19

Allowable inclusions

The agencies have added “pandemic” to the list of special circumstances that applicants may cite as having an impact on their research and academic trajectory.

Program of study

An eligible doctoral program must include a significant research component 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.

Joint programs with a professional degree (e.g., MD/PhD, DVM/PhD, JD/PhD, MBA/PhD) as well as clinically oriented programs of study, including clinical psychology, are eligible if they have a significant autonomous research component as described above.

General application process

  • Applications must be prepared, finalized and submitted by applicants using ResearchNet.
  • Any information that is not required or exceeds the page/character limits will be removed from the application prior to peer review.
  • Applicants must preview all components of their application to ensure its completeness.
  • CIHR cannot legally accept an application until the “Consent and Submit” task is completed on ResearchNet.
  • Applicants are not required to indicate their name, the project title, the section title (e.g., Research Project Summary) and the page number for each application section.
  • For the submission of attachments, candidates must use either Arial, Calibri or Times New Roman font size of 12 point, black type (other font may be used, but must be of similar size appearance of those indicated). Maximum of six lines per inch, margin of 2 cm (3/4 inch) – minimum – around the page. Do not use condensed/narrow font sizes, type density, or line spacing. Smaller text in tables, charts, figures, graphs, and references (format at discretion of candidates) is acceptable, as long as it is legible when the page is viewed at 100%. Note: failure to comply with these requirements can negatively impact the status and evaluation of your application in a competition.
  • Complete CIHR Doctoral application instructions are available online

Indigenous applicants

Applicants who wish to self-identify as an Indigenous applicant may do so by completing the Frederick Banting and Charles Best Canada Graduate Scholarship Doctoral Awards (CGS D): Voluntary Self-Identification Form for Indigenous Applicants and uploading it to their application by McMaster’s internal deadline of October 1, 2020.  McMaster can recommend applications from self-identified Indigenous applicants to the doctoral awards competition beyond our application quota.

Institution paid

Important: The institution paid field determines which organization will receive your application (Canadian institution with a quota OR CIHR).

  • For CGS D applicants: To submit your application to McMaster University, select McMaster University from the drop down menu.
  • For DFSA applicants: Manually type in the non-Canadian institution in the “Other” field to submit your application to CIHR

Transcripts

  • Up-to-date official transcripts of the applicant’s complete academic record (this includes all undergraduate and graduate studies, completed or ongoing). Instructions below must also be followed:
  • One copy of the legend (reverse of each transcript) must be included;
  • Transcript text must be horizontal and uploaded in order from least recent to most recent. Original copies of any uploaded transcripts must be retained since they may be requested by CIHR for verification purposes at any point in the process.
  • Transcripts printed from the applicant’s personal institution account are not accepted.
  • Up-to-date official transcripts are defined as transcripts issued by the Registrar’s Office and dated or issued in the fall session of the year of the application (if currently registered) or after the last term completed (if not currently registered). Opening the envelope to scan the transcript will not render it unofficial for CIHR’s purposes.
  • CIHR has not yet announced if they will be accepting unofficial transcripts due to the current context. We will inform departments and students as soon as possible should there be any changes to the CIHR transcript requirements.

McMaster internal application deadline: Tuesday, October 1, 2020, 11:59 p.m.

Applications are prepared and submitted by students in ResearchNet by the internal deadline set by McMaster.  You will not be able to submit your application to ResearchNet until all the required tasks are completed, including the letters from your sponsors. 

Sponsor assessments

*Note Applicants can manage the deadline by which sponsors must submit their assessments. By default, the Sponsor Required Deadline in ResearchNet is set for two days before the application deadline. However, applicants can adjust this to any date prior to the application deadline.

It is the applicant’s responsibility to follow up with sponsors to ensure the assessments are submitted prior to the deadline date and therefore ensure the application completeness. Only after all sponsors have submitted their assessments will this task be marked as complete in the ResearchNet Application Task List. Applicants do not have access to the content of the assessment submitted by sponsors. However, applicants may follow the status of the assessments submission directly under this section and are encouraged to follow up with the sponsors if the task is not completed shortly before the deadline.

Clarification of signature pages

  • Only supervisor(s) signatures are required. Printed names should always accompany signatures.
  • No institutional signatures are required on the pages at the time of application.
  • Scan and upload the signed signature pages, including the routing slip, as one PDF (unprotected and not exceeding 30 MB), in the Print/Upload Signature Pages task in ResearchNet prior to submitting the application.

Selection criteria

Expandable List

Indicators of research ability and potential:

  • Quality of research proposal
    • specific, focused and feasible research question(s) and objective(s)
    • clear description of the proposed methodology
    • significance and expected contributions to research
  • Relevant training, such as academic training, lived experience and traditional teachings
  • Research experience and achievements relative to the applicant’s stage of study, lived experience and knowledge systems
  • Quality of contributions and extent to which they advance the field of research. Contributions may include: publications, patents, reports, posters, abstracts, monographs, presentations, creative outputs, knowledge translation outputs, community products, etc.
  • Demonstration of sound judgment and ability to think critically
  • Demonstration of responsible and ethical research conduct, including honest and thoughtful inquiry, rigorous analysis, commitment to safety and to the dissemination of research results and adherence to the use of professional standards
  • Enthusiasm for research, originality, initiative, autonomy, relevant community involvement and outreach
  • The ability or potential to communicate theoretical, technical and/or scientific concepts clearly and logically in written and oral formats

Indicators of relevant experience and achievements obtained within and beyond academia:

  • Scholarships, awards and distinctions (amount, duration and prestige)
  • Academic record:
    • Transcripts
    • Duration of previous studies
    • Program requirements and courses pursued
    • Course load
    • Relative standing in program (if available)
  • Professional, academic and extracurricular activities as well as collaborations with supervisors, colleagues, peers, students and members of the community, such as:
    • teaching, mentoring, supervising and/or coaching
    • managing projects
    • participating in science and/or research promotion
    • community outreach, volunteer work and/or civic engagement
    • chairing committees and/or organizing conferences and meetings
    • participating in departmental or institutional organizations, associations, societies and/or clubs

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