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- Deadline for applicants to present proposals to a university: See Toolbox
- NEW DATE:
Deadline for universities to submit preselected applications: October 1st, 2018, 4 p.m.
- Deadline for preselected applicants to submit applications to the FRQNT: November 1, 2018, 4 p.m. (UTC-5, Eastern Standard Time).
- Announcement of results: end of April, 2019
Please pay careful attention to the sections entitled “Eligibility Requirements” and “Submitting an Application”, as no reminders will be made, and no documents may be added after the application deadline.
The FRQ’s Common General Rules present the basic rules applicable to all Fonds de recherche du Québec programming, while these program rules provide additional rules that apply specifically to this award program. It is therefore necessary to read both documents in order to become familiar with all applicable rules. The provisions of these rules prevail over the Common General Rules.
Table of contents
- Target applicants
- Eligibility, citizenship and residence criteria
- Applicant preselection
- Submitting an Application
- Application assessment
- Awarding of the scholarships and announcement of the results
- Terms of the scholarship
- Research ethics and Conformity
- Integrity of the evaluation process
- Liability of the Fonds
- False or misleading information
- Other aspects
- General considérations
- Effective date
- For information
The Doctoral Research Scholarships for International Students (DE) program of the Fonds de recherche du Québec Nature et technologies (FRQNT) aims to stimulate international student’s interest in beginning or pursuing doctoral studies in Québec and provide financial support to leading international students wishing to carry out doctoral studies in natural sciences, mathematics and engineering fields.
2. Target applicants
The scholarships are aimed at international students who have been preselected by a Québec university and who wish to carry out their doctoral studies in natural sciences, mathematics and engineering fields.
To be eligible, applicants must specialize in one of the following areas:
- Information and communications technologies
- Health technologies
3. Eligibility, citizenship and residence criteria
- Meet all eligibility requirements on the competition closing date;
- Have been preselected by a Québec university;
- Not have obtained a Merit Scholarship for Foreign Students from the Ministère de l’Education de l’Enseignement supérieur du Québec (MEES) or one of the Fonds de recherche du Québec;
- Not be a Canadian citizen or permanent resident of Canada;
- Not have submitted an application for permanent residence under Canadian immigration law.
In addition to the aforementioned criteria, applicants should note the following restrictions and administrative prerequisites:
Study program restrictions:
- The scholarship cannot be used for qualifying studies.
Scholarship program eligibility period rules take into account all doctoral semesters (funded or not) completed prior to May 1, 2019.
When calculating the eligibility period, the FRQNT will consider all unregistered or part-time semesters for which registrar attestations are provided in the application. The applicant must verify his/her eligibility by consulting the equivalents table for unregistered or part-time semesters in the Toolbox.
The FRQNT will also consider the number of master’s and doctoral semesters for which the applicant received funding from a recognized funding agency (e.g. NSERC, CIHR, SSHRC, the Fonds de recherche du Québec, etc.) to ensure that the support does not exceed 18 semesters.
Eligibility period for applicants registered in direct-entry doctoral programs (bachelor’s to doctorate) and fast-track master’s/doctoral programs
Applicants admitted to a doctoral program after completing their bachelor’s degree and those who fast-tracked to a doctoral program without submitting a thesis may apply to the doctoral scholarships competition (DE) in the 3rd, 4th and 5th years of their graduate studies (between their 7th and 15th semesters). Semesters that are completed when the scholarship comes into effect will be subtracted from the funding period. Under no circumstances will funding be granted before the 7th semester or after the 15th semester.
Applicants who hold a master’s degree when beginning their doctoral studies must apply for the doctoral scholarships competition.
Doctoral scholarship eligibility period
Applicants are eligible for the doctoral research scholarships competition (DE) during twelve (12) consecutive semesters (or the equivalent) of the first fifteen (15) semesters of their full-time doctoral studies. However, the eleventh (11th) and twelfth (12th) semesters of funding are conditional on the initial submission of the thesis before the end of the twelfth funded semester. Under no circumstances will funding be granted after an applicant’s 15th doctoral program semester.
Eligibility period exceptions
Scholarship eligibility period exceptions will only be made in circumstances that are beyond the applicant’s control. In such cases, all supporting documents must be submitted along with the application.
Applicants who suspend their studies for a maternity or parental leave may ask to extend their eligibility for a maximum period of 12 months per leave. In such cases, all supporting documents must be submitted along with the request.
When the applicant is a person with a disability under the Act to secure handicapped persons in the exercise of their rights with a view to achieving social, school and workplace integration (R.S.Q. c. E-20.1), the eligibility period requirements do not apply. However, the doctoral scholarship period remains the same (three years). In such cases, all supporting documents must be submitted along with the application.
4. Applicant preselection
Universities may support two competition applications per year.
Applicant preselection is the sole responsibility of the university. A table of preselection deadlines at the different universities is available in the Toolbox.
University staff in charge of preselecting applicants should consult the Instructions for Preselecting Candidates in the Toolbox.
University staff in charge of preselecting applicants must fill out the candidate nomination form, which is available in the FRQNT FRQnet system. The form must be submitted electronically by October 1st, 2018, at 4 p.m.
Applicants must meet all program eligibility requirements. Applications submitted by a university may be deemed ineligible by the FRQNT if all program requirements are not met.
Preselected applicants may also be preselected for a Merit Scholarship for Foreign Students awarded by the Ministère de l’Education de l’Enseignement du Québec (MEES).
5. Submitting an Application
Preselected applicants must create a FRQnet account. The FRQNT will then contact the preselected applicants to have them complete the electronic application form. Applicants may consult the document Instructions for completing an application in the Toolbox.
Only the 2018-2019 competition e-forms and other required documents will be accepted. Any appendices or documents other than those required will not be given to the evaluation committee.
The e-forms are only available in the secure section of the FRQNT FRQnet system. These forms must be filled out and submitted electronically by the competition deadline. Applicants will not be able to update their applications after the competition deadline.
Applicants are not required to include a hard copy of their application form with the required documents sent to the FRQNT. However, it is recommended that applicants keep a hard copy for their personal files.
The form may be completed in French or English. Applicants who submit their applications in English must provide a French translation of the project title.
Letters of reference (online)
Two letters of reference from referees should be transmitted to the program manager.
To allow the referee to complete the reference letter, the applicant must enter the referee’s account information in the FRQnet form. The referee will then have access to the letter in the “En tant que répondant[H1] ” section of his/her Portfolio.
Documents to attach to the electronic form (PDF)
The documents listed below must be attached in the “Other documents” section of the electronic application form. The student must ensure that the documents are not protected by a password.
Documents submitted in a language other than French or English must be accompanied by a translation of the original.
- A copy of the identification page of the applicant’s valid passport from his/her home country or any other official document that establishes the applicant’s citizenship;
- A copy of transcripts for all years of the applicant’s university studies, whether they were completed or not (certificate, diploma, bachelor’s, master’s, doctoral, etc.). You do not have to include a copy of your diploma unless it indicates a grade. The applicant must also provide the transcripts for any equivalencies that were granted for courses taken in other institutions or as part of other programs. Any transcripts from institutions located outside North America must include a note from the applicant explaining the marking system. The transcripts must be organized chronologically from newest to oldest;
- Acknowledgements of receipt or letters from editors for articles that are submitted, accepted or in press (acknowledgements for published articles will not be given to the committee).
Additional document for applicants who carried out part-time or unregistered semesters since first registering for their graduate studies:
- An attestation from the registrar listing any unregistered or part-time semesters.
Additional document for applicants seeking an eligibility period exception:
- An official document attesting to the applicant’s suspended registration and a medical certificate indicating the reasons and duration of the suspension, if applicable;
- For the eligibility extension for parental leave, a copy of the child’s birth certificate or adoption certificate.
The FRQNT reserves the right to verify the authenticity of all documents and information provided in the application with the institutions concerned.
Submitting the required documents
The applicant must submit the electronic form to the FRQNT before the competition deadline.
It is the applicant’s responsibility to verify that the documents attached to the electronic form (PDF) include all required documents for the application to be considered admissible. No required document sent by email or mail will be accepted.
Applicants must ensure that referees send their letters of reference no later than the competition deadline.
Acknowledgement of receipt
Applicants will be informed by email in December of the receipt of their application. Applicants who have not received this notification should contact the program manager before December 15th.
6. Application assessment
Applications are evaluated according the following criteria and weighting:
|Applicant’s academic record||30 points|
|Applicant’s research skills and relevant research experience||30 points|
|Quality and scientific interest of the project and its socio-economic scope, if applicable.||20 points|
|Social involvement, leadership and communication skills||20 points|
Applicant’s academic record
- Grade point average
- Academic progress
- Years of schooling
- Awards and prizes
Research skills and relevant research experience
- Soundness of the application and research interests
- Applicant’s experience and achievements
- Letters of reference from referees
Quality and scientific interest of the research project
- Clarity of the scientific objectives
- Relevance of the methodology in relation to the stated objectives
- Originality of the project
- Project’s contribution to advancing knowledge in the field
- Project’s relevance to the research director’s field
Social involvement, leadership and communication skills
- Applicant’s leadership skills
- Organization of conferences and meetings
- Positions held
- Supervisory experience
- Experience in knowledge transfer
- Project management
- Committee chairmanship
- Ability or potential to clearly and logically communicate scientific concepts
- Overall presentation
Role of the evaluation committees
Eligible applications will be assessed by a four-member multidisciplinary committee. The committees will include university faculty members who may call upon representatives from the private and government sectors.
The evaluation committee will assess applications based on program criteria and rank the applications according to merit.
Role of the Board of Directors
The Board of Directors of the FRQNT will receive recommendations from the evaluation committees and make the final funding decisions. The Board is accountable for its decisions to the government of Québec.
Role of the program manager
The FRQNT program manager is responsible for ensuring that the evaluation committees respect the evaluation criteria and rules in effect as well as current rules of ethics.
7. Awarding of the scholarships and announcement of the results
Awarding of the scholarships
Applications will be evaluated and ranked according to merit by the evaluation committees. For each committee or group, scholarships will be awarded based on available funds. The FRQNT reserves the right to adjust its scholarships in accordance with the objectives adopted by its Board of Directors.
Announcement of results
The decision of the Board of Directors of the FRQNT will be announced electronically in late April, informing applicants directly via their E-Portfolio. Each applicant will be informed of his/her ranking and may print his/her scholarship notification.
It is strictly prohibited to contact committee members, who must abide by confidentiality rules.
All decisions made by the Board of Directors of the FRQNT are final and without appeal. There is no review process.
After receiving their scholarship notification, applicants have 30 calendar days to accept or decline the scholarship by completing the “Manage my funding” form in their E-Portfolio. After this deadline, applicants are deemed to have declined the scholarship.
8. Terms of the scholarship
Scholarship holders must hold a Certificat d’acceptation du Québec (Québec Acceptance Certificate) (CAQ) issued by the Ministère de l’Immigration, de la Diversité et de l’Inclusion du Québec as well as a student authorization issued by a Canadian consulate or embassy that is valid for the entire study period in Québec.
Scholarship holders must comply with all scholarship rules set out in the Scholarship Holder’s Guide.
The scholarship period must begin between May 1, 2019 and January 15, 2020. Barring exceptional circumstances, the scholarship cannot be transferred from one year to the next. For applicants whose study program is already underway, the scholarship period will begin in May 2019.
The scholarship is not retroactive. Any semesters completed prior to summer 2019 will not be funded.
Except in special cases pertaining to part-time studies set out in the Scholarship Holder’s Guide, the scholarship holder must be registered as a full-time student in the doctoral program for which the scholarship was awarded.
The scholarship is granted for the entire eligibility period, conditional upon the presentation of progress reports judged satisfactory by the program manager.
Please note that applicants seeking to change program, project or place of tenure must submit a request as set out in the Scholarship Holder’s Guide.
Value of the scholarship
The FRQNT Board of Directors reserves the right to modify the value of scholarships at any time, without notice, notably in accordance with the credits annually allocated by the Assemblée nationale du Québec, its strategic priorities and budgetary process.
The maximum annual value of the Doctoral Research Scholarships for International Students is $21,000. During the eligibility period (twelve semesters or 48 months), the scholarship holder may receive up to 12 payments totalling $84,000. Each payment of up to $7,000 covers a period of four months or one semester. The 11th and 12th instalments are conditional on the initial deposit of the thesis before the end of the 12th funded semester.
Place of tenure
Scholarship holders must attend the Québec University at which they were preselected and carry out studies or research activities in Québec or abroad in the case of a cotutelle doctoral program.
Concurrent funding is prohibited with:
Awards granted by government departments and agencies and Canadian and Québec government funding agencies.
Concurrent funding is permitted with:
Awards granted by the private sector or the scholarship holder’s home country and university scholarships.
Except in special cases pertaining to paid work set out in the Scholarship Holder’s Guide, scholarship holders may accept employment that does not exceed the maximum hours per semester allowed by their institution, provided that their research director does not object and that the employment does not interfere with their research activities.
The salary received by a scholarship holder for working exclusively on his/her research project is considered to be a scholarship that may be held concurrently with a Doctoral Research Scholarship for International Students.
9. Research ethics and Conformity
Any individual or institution that receives funding must demonstrate the highest standards of research ethics and scientific integrity. See the Common General Rules for further details.
10. Integrity of the evaluation process
At no time may applicants or their institutional authorities make contact with evaluation committee members, unless such contact is specified as part of the evaluation process. Similarly, evaluation committee members must not make contact with applicants, unless such contact is specifically indicated in the evaluation process. The identities of evaluation committee members are kept confidential to avoid any attempt at collusion. The Fonds reserve the right to withdraw an application from competition if there is any inappropriate intervention, lobby, undue influence or collusion during the evaluation process, as stipulated in the Policy for the Responsible Conduct of Research.
11. Liability of the Fonds
The Fonds make all reasonable efforts to ensure optimal service. However, they cannot be held liable for any direct or indirect damage resulting from their handling of applications for funding. Furthermore, without limiting the generality of the foregoing, the Fonds are not liable for any direct or indirect damage resulting from the disclosure of personal or confidential information that was not authorized by the Fonds.
12. False or misleading information
The Fonds presume the good faith of the declarations provided in funding applications or in any other document submitted at any time during the funding cycle, from the initial funding application to the final report. Applicants and funding holders must be transparent and provide accurate and precise information. They must be conscientious about advising the Fonds of any changes in their situation, where applicable.
Under the Act Respecting the Ministère de l’Enseignement supérieur, de la Recherche, de la Science et de la Technologie (CQLR, c. M-188.8.131.52), any individual who submits an application containing false or misleading information to obtain or procure financial support is committing an offence, is liable to a fine and could be barred from receiving financial support for a period of up to five years. Where a legal person commits such an offence, every director or representative of that legal person who was aware of the offence may be liable to a fine. Furthermore, such a declaration constitutes a breach of responsible research conduct, as set forth in the Fonds de recherche du Québec Policy for the Responsible Conduct of Research, and may be subject to sanctions in accordance with this policy.
The Fonds reserve the right to take immediate measures to stop the use of public funds obtained through false or misleading information, and to take legal action to recover fraudulently obtained funds and claim compensation for damages caused where appropriate.
13. Other aspects
Please refer to the Common General Rules for any questions regarding the responsible conduct of research, confidentiality and the protection of personal information, intellectual property and the protection of academic freedom.
14. General considérations
15. Effective date
These rules apply to the 2019-2020 fiscal year.
16. For information
Please note that the FRQNT does not accept collect phone calls.
Applicants who contact the FRQNT by email should provide a phone number where they can be contacted.
Priority is given to email requests.