Competition year : 

Deadline (application) : 
October 15th, 2020 at 16:30 (EST)

Announcement of results : 
April 2021

Amount : 
$21,000 per year

Duration : 
3 years


Foundation of Stars

In your application, you will be able to describe how the COVID-19 pandemic may have affected your training or research activities during the past few months, in order for this information to be considered in the evaluation. Please refer to the document “Considering the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic in the evaluation of funding applications” for further information.
In addition to these program rules, it is the responsibility of the applicant to financial support to consult the Common General Rules (CGR) of the Fonds de recherche du Québec, which apply to all of FRQS programs. If special conditions apply to this program, they are described below and take precedence over the CGR.


This program, designed for medical students interested in a joint career as a clinician and research investigator, enables them to pursue medical studies concurrently with research training leading to a doctoral degree.

Important note: It is the responsibility of the applicant to choose the right program and the right form for the award application. No program transfer will be made following the applicant’s file eligibility review.


Eligible applicantsTo be eligible to apply, applicants must :
  • Hold an undergraduate or graduate university degree
    hold a diploma of college studies and who have earned at least 90 credits of courses in a university program.

    Applications from individuals holding a college diploma but who have not accumulated 90 course credits in a university program must be validated by the faculty of medicine in a letter of recommendation from the dean.

  • have been enrolled at a Québec university on a full-time basis (or equivalent) for 2 of the 3 semesters prior to the competition deadline (not including the semester of the competition),
    have a Régie de l’assurance maladie du Québec (RAMQ) card that is valid at the competition deadline or proof of eligibility for RAMQ covering the competition deadline (see section 2.1 of the Common General Rules).
Terms and conditions
  • be enrolled in a regular undergraduate medical program in a Québec university
  • and simultaneously, in a regular research doctoral program (Ph.D.) within a structured M.D.-Ph.D. program recognized by the FRQS in the same university.

To be considered “a research program”, the doctoral program must consist of a minimum of 36 credits dedicated to research and lead to the writing of a doctoral thesis.

  • Doctoral awards are intended for applicants who are enrolled in a doctoral research program for 14 terms or less as of April 30th, 2021.
    The number of enrolment terms is calculated from the first application date to a research doctoral program related to human health.
  • Submit a research project that is directly related to human health and that can be completed within a maximum of 3 years (Ph.D.).
  • Awardees must temporarily interrupt their regular medical studies for a maximum of 3 years.
  • Individuals must be supervised by a university researcher or clinical university researcher  (as defined in the Definitions section of the Common General Rules).
Training location

A recognized research establishment in Québec 

Awardees must complete their research training in the physical location of the host institution. Distance learning is not allowed.
  • Students who suspended their doctoral studies to take parental leave or because of serious illness or major family obligations may defer their eligibility period for up to one year.
  • If an applicant is a person with disabilities in accordance with the Act ensuring handicapped persons their rights for academic, professional and social integration (L.R.C. chapter E-20-1), the rules pertaining to program registration do not apply.
  • Professional master’s and doctoral programs are not eligible
  • An individual who already holds a research doctoral degree in the field of human health is not eligible to submit an application in this program.
  • An individual who has received financial support from a recognized funding agency (e.g. SSHRC, NSERC, CIHR, FRQNT, FRQS, FRQSC, etc.) over a period totaling six years (or 18 terms) cannot submit an application to the FRQS to undertake or pursue a master’s program (see section 6.1 of the Common General Rules).
Basic research ethics training

Basic research ethics training is compulsory for all FRQS awardees conducting research projects that involve human beings.

Research on human beings involves:

  • Participation of human beings
  • Use of human biological materials (parts, products, tissue, cells, genetic materials, derived from a living or dead individual)
  • Assisted procreation activities or the use of human embryos derived therefrom, within the meaning of the Act respecting clinical and research activities relating to assisted procreation (CQLR c. A-5.01)
  • The use of administrative, scientific or descriptive data from human participants

Awardees must therefore successfully complete levels 1 and 3 of the Online Tutorial in Research Ethics developed by the Ministère de la Santé et des Services sociaux.

This training must be completed in the year following the receipt of a confirmation from the FRQS that the award was granted.

The FRQS encourages awardees to follow a one-credit research ethics training course in addition to the compulsory basic research ethics training, whenever possible.


HINT: Take the time to read in the Toolbox the document Tips for filling out your application. Without being exhaustive, these valuable tips are based on recurring comments made by the evaluators. They therefore point out critical elements for the evaluation of your application.

By October 15, 2020, 4:30 pm (EDT)

Documents sent via mail or e-mail will not be accepted

Letters of recommendation will not be accepted

Transmission via the FRQS electronic Portfolio only

  • Any document missing or non-compliant with program rules and electronic forms, but deemed crucial for eligibility or evaluation, makes the funding application ineligible.
  • Applicants will not be contacted to provide the missing documents or information
  • Any document received after the submission deadline will not be added to the application file as no update is allowed once submitted.
  • Any unrequested document transmitted with the application will be removed from the file before its evaluation.
  • No extension will be granted. After the deadline application, forms that are not already submitted will be automatically rejected.
  • Any official document submitted in a language other than English or French must be accompanied by a certified translation of the original. Any other document submitted in a language other than English or French must be accompanied by a simple translation.
  • IMPORTANT : Once the application is submitted, it will no longer be possible to modify it.
  • Canadian Common CVFunding CV version, for the FRQS (updated since June 2019)

  • Detailed contributions updated since June 2019 (attachment required through the FRQS Electronic Portfolio on the Canadian Common CV page),  consult the document entitled Guidelines for the CV attachment in the Toolbox

IMPORTANT and crucial for evaluation :

  • in the CCV : scholarships or fellowships must be listed in the Research Funding History section, and honours and distinctions in the Recognitions section;
  • in Detailed contributions: the summary table regarding scholarships/fellowships, honours and distinctions at a university level, must be completed as reported in the appropriate sections of the CCV.
  • Electronic application form : Formation de doctorat pour les étudiants en médecine (M.D.-Ph.D.)/ Doctoral training for medical students (MD-Ph.D.)
    PDF version – for information

  • A copy of a Régie de l’assurance maladie du Québec (RAMQ) card that is valid at the competition deadline or proof of eligibility for RAMQ covering the competition deadline (official RAMQ document before the issuance of the card) (crucial for eligibility)
    • If the RAMQ card or a proof of eligibility to the RAMQ is not provided, please include a proof of registration at a Québec university for the fall trimester (crucial for eligibility).
  • Form to calculate the number of training program terms (Calcul du nombre de sessions au programme de formation) available in the FRQS Electronic Portfolio, menu Documents and in the toolbox (crucial for eligibility)

  • Copies of official academic transcripts (the unofficial electronic version is not accepted) for all years of university courses completed or not (crucial for eligibility and evaluation)

    • For a current program of study, the transcript must be the most recent and include the summer trimester preceding this competition, if applicable

    • Academic transcripts must be complete and include grading scales (at the back of the transcript), for candidates from Québec as well as for candidates outside of Québec.

    • For transcripts from institutions located outside North America, the applicant must include a note explaining the institution’s marking system.

    • If no transcript is issued by the institution where the studies are pursued, an explanatory letter must be attached to the application.

  • Acknowledgements from publishers for articles submitted or accepted for publication
  • Only applicants who have not earned 90 course credits in a university program must submit a letter of recommendation from the dean of the faculty of medicine.
Candidates will be notified by email regarding the eligibility or ineligibility of their applications  in November.
Research supervisor (and co-supervisor, if applicable)
At the start date of the award
At the start date of the award and for each subsequent term

At the start date of the award and for each subsequent term, the awardee will have to provide:

  • An official proof of registration from the Office of the Registrar in both programs : Doctorate and Medicine (by e-mail, PDF document)
Before the start of the second year of the award

To start the second year of the award, the awardee will have to provide:

  • a confirmation from the supervisor indicating that the student is still under his/her supervision (and annually thereafter) (by email)
  • ethics training certificates (levels 1 and 3), if applicable (by email in a single PDF document)


Effective date

May 2021 (Summer term), September 2021 (Fall term) or January 2022 (Winter term), according to the starting date of the Ph.D. program.

If the Ph.D. program is already in progress in May 2021, the award should begin in May 2021, with some exceptions.


6 years, 3 of them must be devoted to full-time research or until the completion of the awardee’s doctoral studies (final submission of the thesis), whichever the earliest.

Parental leave

The awardee may benefit from an award payment deferral during parental leave (maternity, paternity or adoption) for a maximum period of 12 months as described in section 6.13 of the Common General Rules.

Awardees must fill out the Award payment deferral form, accompanied by the documents supporting the leave, to inform the FRQS of their intention to receive a supplement to their award for a parental leave.

The FRQS reserves the right to reject any request that is not properly justified.

Sick leave or other reasonsAwardees may defer their award due to illness or other reasons provided by the Loi sur les normes du travail as described in section 6.14 of the Common General Rules. Awardees must fill out the Award payment deferral form accompanied by the documents supporting the leave.

The FRQS reserves the right to reject any request that is not properly justified.

Part-timePart-time studies are permitted exclusively for caregivers, parents and persons with disabilities. To benefit from this measure, the award holder must submit a request to the FRQS by filling out the Part-time studies form (Études à temps partiel) and provide the required documentation.

Caregiver or Parent

This measure applies only to the award holder who acts as the caregiver for a close family member or for a person that is the main care provider for a young child.

During the terms that will be part-time, the awardee will receive 50 % of the value of the regular award installments.

The awardee will need to fill out the Part-time studies form and provide the following documents :

  • a proof of part-time studies at the University
  • a letter of support from the research supervisor
  • a copy of the medical certificate (for caregiver) or the birth certificate or certificate of adoption of a child (parent)

If applicable, this can be cumulated with the benefits paid by the Parental Insurance Plan.

Person with disabilities

This measure applies only to a person with disabilities in accordance with the Act ensuring handicapped persons their rights for academic, professional and social integration (L.R.C. chapter E-20-1)

During the terms that will be part-time, the awardee will receive the full value of the regular award installments as long as the University authorizes the part-time studies of the individual.

The awardee will need to fill out the Part-time studies form and provide the following documents :

  • a proof of part-time studies from the University
  • a letter of support from the research supervisor
  • a medical certificate confirming the condition
As stated in section 6.5 of the Common General Rules, any change in an award holder’s status must  be reported in the Manage My Funding module of the ePortfolio.



$21,000/year* for 3 years of full-time enrolment in a research program

$10,000/year* for 3 years during which the awardee completes the research project or pursues research activities (seminars, thesis writing) concurrently with medical studies

*except in some cases (see the section Awards in partnership)


One new award per year, per university

Exceptionally two awards, if no application for the M.D.-M.Sc. program is submitted by the university


The award will be paid to the awardee by installments. Three installments per year will be made at the end of May, end of September, and end of January.

Instalments are conditional upon receipt of all required documents and compliance with eligibility requirements.

Cancellation of an installment or the scholarship

If all the required documents are not received or if the eligibility conditions are not met within two months of the start of the trimester and if no request for postponement has been received, the FRQS will cancel the instalment for that trimester. The FRQS will terminate the scholarship if instalments must be cancelled for two consecutive trimesters due to missing documents or failure to meet the eligibility requirements.

Income Tax

The awardee is responsible for paying the income tax due on the amounts received from the FRQS. The FRQS does not make any deductions on the amounts disbursed during the taxation year.

The payment date determines the year in which the awardee must declare the amounts received as income for personal tax calculations.

Revenue Canada’s T4A slip and Revenu Québec’s RL-1 slip are made available in the Manage My Funding module of the FRQS ePortfolio in February of the year following the taxation year in question.

The details provided in these program rules are for information purposes only. The FRQS is not responsible for the validity of any income tax information.

Indirect costs of research

This program does not benefit from the amount paid out by FRQS to cover indirect costs of research of the institutions.


Additional funding

Awardees may accept additional funding from the institution or from their research supervisor. 

It is the responsibility of the FRQS award holder to check whether this kind of additionnal funding is allowed by the institution or the research supervisor.

Concurrent funding

Holding several scholarships is not allowed. 

Awardees who obtained an award from another public agency or a foundation recognized by the FRQS must notify the FRQS and decline the FRQS funding as soon as the award is offered.

However, if the amount value of the other award is lower than the one given by the FRQS, the awardee is eligible to receive the amount needed to make up the difference between the two scholarships.


Awardees who wish to change their research project, supervisor, program or training institution must submit to the FRQS the Change of research project, supervisor or training location form  (see Toolbox) and the required documents in a single PDF file.

For the sake of fairness, the Fonds ensures that the requested modification does not call into question the scientific evaluation of the original application and that it complies with the eligibility conditions and the rules of the program. The modification request is analyzed by the Fonds for approval, if applicable. The Fonds may decide to continue, reduce, suspend or terminate the payments. The Fonds may also require the reimbursement of the sums already paid to the candidate. The decision is shared by email.

The FRQS reserves the right to reject any request that is not properly justified or relevant.

As stated in section 6.5 of the Common General Rules, any change in an award holder’s status must  be reported in the Manage My Funding module of the ePortfolio.



Under the responsibility of the FRQS, all applications are evaluated by committees of experts so as to ensure a subject area and institution balance.

Criteria and WeightingQuality and scientific value of the research project   
– Clarity of the research problem and concordance of the hypotheses and

– Relevance of the methods and analyses
– Feasibility
– Originality of the project and contribution to the advancement of knowledge
Quality of the training environment
– Justification of the applicant’s choice
– Quality of supervisor’s publication record as it pertains to student training
Excellence of the academic record
– Excellence of academic record
– Scholarships/fellowships, honours and distinctions
Skills and experiences
– Publications
– Lectures and presentations
– Research projects and research training programs


A final report is required at the end of the payment of the award, approximately one month after the last funded term. Award holders are notified by email of the availability of the form to be completed in their FRQS electronic portfolio. It is required to fill out and submit this form with respect to the mentioned deadline. Further funding in other FRQS programs is conditional to the reception of the duly completed report.


Any application submitted to this program is subject to compliance with the conditions set out in the FRQnet electronic portals and forms.


In accordance with the Fonds de recherche du Québec Open access policy for the dissemination of research, all funding recipients must agree to make their publications freely available in open access within 12 months of publication. For further information concerning FRQ requirements on the subject, please consult our Open science Web page.


The FRQS encourages awardees to conduct and participate in knowledge mobilization activities (transfer, sharing, development, enhancement and dissemination) with practice settings and the general public, where such activities are relevant. Please read the document Knowledge Mobilization in the toolbox.


The Fonds de recherche du Québec wish to contribute to supporting a research ecosystem based on equity, diversity and inclusion. Measures have been put in place to strengthen the integration of these principles. Funding recipients are also encouraged to consider them in the context of their research activities. For more information, see our statements on equity, diversity and inclusion.


  • Eligibility requirements

  • Required documents

  • Duration of the award

  • Amount of the award : Cancellation of an installment or the scholarship

  • Change of training location, research project, study program or supervisor


The FRQS offers a number of awards in collaboration with partners. The share of funding from the FRQS and the partner may vary according to the agreements in effect.

Eligible applicants are selected through a three-step process:

  1. The applicant selects, in the Partnership [Partenariat] section of the application form, one or more partners whose targeted research areas correspond to the theme of their application.

  2. The FRQS sends to the partners a list of candidates and useful information for them to assess the relevance of the request according to their research priorities and strategy.

  3. After evaluation of the applications by a committee of experts or peers, applications having obtained the scientific excellence rating of 70 % and which have been deemed relevant by one or more partners, may receive a partnership award offer.

As with all the awards offered by FRQS, the awards granted in partnership are based on merit following a scientific evaluation by a committee of experts or peers. 

Note that by choosing to be considered for an award in partnership, and that you obtain such an award, you agree that the partner communicates with you for activities related to the award.

Childhood diseasesFoundation of Stars

Training awards in the Pediatric research field, primarily in the area of childhood diseases.