Competition year : 
2022-2023

Deadline (application) : 
October 5th, 2021 at 16:00

Announcement of results : 
April 2022

Amount : 
$21 000 per year

Duration : 
4 years

New evaluation criteria

Please consult the document “Information Guide – New Evaluation Criteria for Training Grant Programs“, which aims to provide you with the tools you need to prepare your application and to facilitate the understanding and interpretation of the newly added criteria for this competition.

COVID-19

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.

Reminder

It is the applicant’s responsibility to read the Common General Rules (CGR) of the Fonds de recherche du Québec, which apply to all FRQS programs, in addition to these program rules. The particular conditions of the current program are detailed here and take precedence over the CGR.

Objectives

This program aims to support students seeking to gain health research training as part of a doctoral degree program. Eligible topics cover all aspects of human health, regardless of methodology or model.

1. ELIGIBILITY REQUIREMENTS

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Applicants and eligibility period
  • have completed or intend to complete a undergraduate or master’s degree;
  • are currently enrolled in a doctoral research program on a full-time basis or intend to enrol in a doctoral research program on a full-time basis before January 15, 2023, and whose research project has a direct bearing on human health. To be considered research-based, the doctoral program must consist of at least 36 credits related to research and lead to a thesis;
  • were enrolled in a Québec university for at least two (2) full-time semesters (or the equivalent) in the three (3) semesters prior to the competition deadline. The competition semester is excluded from the calculation of the 2 full-time sessions among the 3 sessions preceding the closing date of the competition;

OR

  • have a health insurance card from the Régie d’assurance maladie du Québec (RAMQ) that is valid at the competition deadline or proof that an application for a health insurance card was filed with the RAMQ and that the card will be valid at the competition deadline (see Section 2.1 of the Common General Rules);
  • on April 30, 2022, will have completed no more than fourteen (14) semesters of their doctoral degree program (the number of registered sessions is calculated from the first date of enrolment in a research-based doctoral degree program in human health). The summer semester is calculated as a matter of course, even if the student is not registered.

These requirements shall remain in effect for the tenure of the award.

IMPORTANT NOTES

  • Health professionals with a license valid in Québec will benefit from applying to one of the following award programs:
    • Doctoral Training for Applicants with a Professional Degree (see program rules)
    • Professional Postgraduate Training in Research (Fellowship) (see program rules)
  • Individuals who began doctoral training after completing an undergraduate degree or professional master’s degree and individuals who are fast-tracked to a doctoral program without completing a master’s degree would benefit from applying to master’s competition if they are eligible to do so (up to three semesters on April 30, 2022).
  • Individuals who enrol in France in a master’s of advanced studies (diplôme d’études approfondies) or the equivalent must submit their applications to master’s degree competitions.
Supervision of research projects
  • be university researchers or clinical university researchers (see definitions section of the Common General Rules).*

*When an applicant’s research supervisor is located outside of Québec, the supervisor must still meet the requirements of the university researcher or clinical university researcher status in terms of university affiliation and autonomy (see definitions section of the Common General Rules)

Training location

The training location may be a university located in or outside Québec. To use a training award outside Québec, the awardee must:

  • have a health insurance card from the Régie d’assurance maladie du Québec (RAMQ) that is valid at the competition deadline or proof that an application for a health insurance card was filed with the RAMQ and that the card will be valid at the competition deadline (see Section 2.1 of the Common General Rules). The name and expiry date must be legible. Proof of private insurance shall not be accepted;

AND

  • be a Canadian citizen at the time of filing the application.

Individuals who do not have a valid health insurance card from the Régie d’assurance maladie du Québec (RAMQ) or proof that an application for a health insurance card was filed with the RAMQ and individuals who are not Canadian citizens at the time of filing the application must follow training in Québec (see Section 2.1 of the Common General Rules).

Awardees must be physically present at the training location to carry out their research training. Distance learning is not permitted.

Restrictions
  • individuals enrolled in a professional master’s or doctoral programs;
  • individuals enrolled in certain psychology programs (see the page: Eligibility of psychology programs to FRQS training grants) to verify the eligibility of your program;
  • individuals who have already completed a doctoral research program in human health;
  • individuals who received funding from a recognized agency (e.g. SSHCR, NSERC, CIRH, FRQNT, FRQS, FRQSC, etc.) over a total period of six (6) years (or 18 semesters) (see section 6.1 of the Common General Rules).
Basic research ethics training

Basic research ethics training is mandatory for all FRQS awardees whose project or research program involves humans.

Research involving humans implies:

  • the participation of humans;
  • the use of human biological material (parts, products, tissues, cells, human genetic material from a living or deceased person);
  • assisted human reproduction activities and/or the use of resulting embryos 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 humans.

Developed by the Ministère de la Santé et des Services sociaux (MSSS), the program includes levels 1 and 3 of the research ethics courseware.

Awardees must complete the training program to receive the first payment of the second year of their FRQS funding (see Required documents section).

IMPORTANT NOTE!

It is the applicant’s responsibility to select the right program and application form. Once the eligibility review is complete, the application shall not be transferred to another program.

The form and required documents must be submitted through the electronic portfolio (ePortfolio). Documents received by email or courier shall not be accepted.

Required documents that are missing or invalid shall not be requested, and the application shall be deemed ineligible.

Unrequired documents (e.g. letter of recommendation, published article, etc.) included in the application shall be removed prior to review.

Elements received after the competition deadline shall not be considered. Applications shall not be updated.

Official documents submitted in a language other than French or English must include a certified translation of the original document. Other documents submitted in a language other than French or English must include a basic translation.

2. REQUIRED DOCUMENTS

TIP: Take the time to read the tips to improve the quality of your application page. Without being exhaustive, this information is based on recurrent comments from reviewers and therefore includes elements considered critical in the application review process.

Documents required at the time of filing

Applicants

  • Doctoral training application e-form PDF version – for information;
  • Copy of a health insurance card from the Régie d’assurance maladie du Québec (RAMQ) that is valid at the competition deadline or proof that an application for a health insurance card was filed with the RAMQ and that the card will be valid at the competition deadline. The name and expiry date must be legible. Proof of private insurance shall not be accepted;

OR

  • Proof of full-time (or equivalent) enrolment in a Québec university for two (2) of the three (3) semesters prior to the competition deadline. The semester of the competition shall not be used to calculate the two full-time semesters of the three prior to the deadline;
  • Copies of official transcripts (unofficial transcripts in electronic format not accepted) for all years of study (completed and incomplete):
    • For an ongoing study program, the transcripts must be the most recent
    • The transcripts must be complete and include the rating scales (back of the transcript), for both Quebec and foreign applicants
    • Transcripts obtained outside of North America must be accompanied by a letter explaining the grading system in effect at the institution concerned
    • Transcripts issued in a language other than French or English must be accompanied by a professional translation certified as true to the original
  • Attestation from the registrar confirming enrolment in each full-time semester that does not appear on the transcript, as well as for each part-time and/or unregistered semester;
  • Acknowledgements of submitted articles and notifications from editors for accepted articles;
  • Required documents for exceptions, as the case may be (e.g. medical certificate).

RESEARCH SUPERVISORS (AND CO-SUPERVISORS)

  • Supervisor’s (or co- supervisor’s) e-form, as the case may be – PDF version – for information

Applicants shall be notified of their eligibility by December 15, 2021.

Documents required throughout the tenure of the award

AT THE START DATE OF THE AWARD AND IN EVERY FOLLOWING SEMESTER

  • official proof of enrolment (only for applicants enrolled in universities outside of Québec)

Applicants who are pursuing their training in Québec are not required to provide proof of enrolment, since universities send confirmations to the Fonds directly.

AT THE START OF THE SECOND YEAR OF THE AWARD

BEFORE THE END OF THE 12TH SEMESTER

  • Proof of initial submission (required to receive payments no.11 and no.12)

Read the awardee’s guide (document menu, ePortfolio blue banner) to learn where to find the required documents and attach them to the ePortfolio.

3. TENURE OF THE AWARD

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Tenure of the award

The award may begin in May 2022 (summer semester), September 2022 (fall semester) or January 2023 (winter semester) depending on the start date of the study program.

However, if a doctoral program is already underway in May 2022, the award must begin in May 2022 (exceptions apply).

The award covers a period of up to four (4) years (12 semesters*) or until the doctoral program is completed (final submission), whichever the earlier. The award is non-renewable. If the awardee submits the final thesis before the end of tenure of the award, the remaining amount shall not be transferred to another program.

* When applicable, the payments for the 11th and 12th semesters are conditional upon the initial submission of the awardee’s thesis before the end of the 12th semester (proof of submission required).

The period during which doctoral award payments may be made is limited to the first 15 semesters in which the awardee is enrolled in the doctoral program for which the award was granted (see Section 6.1 of the Common General Rules). The initial calculation of the tenure of the award is based on the number of doctoral program semesters completed by the applicant on April 30, 2022. In cases in which the award does not begin in May 2022 and the study program is already underway, a reduction will be calculated based on the number of sessions completed at the actual start of the tenure of the award.

The table used to calculate the potential tenure of the award based on the number of completed semesters on April 30, 2022, is available in the Toolbox.

4. AMOUNT OF THE AWARD

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Amount and award management

Up to $21 000 per year* based on the number of eligible semesters (see tenure of the award section)

*Exceptions apply (see partnership awards section)

5. OTHER FUNDING

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Employment
  • In addition to their doctoral degree training, awardees may undertake up to 225 hours of paid work per semester (45 hours per semester for a course assignment). One semester is equivalent to four months.
  • The employment must be approved by the research supervisor, and the work must not have a negative impact on the awardee’s research activities
  • The hours worked must be reported to the Fonds with each request for payment through the ePortfolio.
Award supplement

The institution or research supervisor may grant an award supplement, which should not be reported in the ePortfolio.

It is the FRQS awardee’s responsibility to determine if the award supplement is allowed by the institution or research supervisor.

Concurrent awards

Awardees may not hold concurrent awards.

  • FRQS awardees who sought and received an award from another public funding agency or foundation recognized by the FRQS must inform the FRQS and decline the Fonds’ award when it is offered, except in the case of a supplement from the Institut de recherche Robert-Sauvé en santé et sécurité du travail (IRSST).
  • However, if the other award has a lesser value or shorter funding period, the recipient is eligible to receive an amount to cover the difference.
Research internship

FRQS training awardees may hold a concurrent research internship award that is not part of their study program from another organization provided certain conditions are met.

For an internship valued at $5 000 or less, the awardee must inform the FRQS by email prior to the start of the internship.

For an internship valued at $5 000 or more, before the start of the internship, the awardee must obtain approval from the FRQS by completing the internship authorization form. When approval is granted, the awardee may:

  • receive the training and internship awards payments concurrently

OR

  • defer the amount of the FRQS award for a period equivalent to the internship period, up to six months.

6. CHANGES TO THE TRAINING LOCATION, RESEARCH PROJECT, PROGRAM OR SUPERVISOR

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Requests for changes

Awardees who seek to change their research project, supervisor, program or training location must submit the request for changes form and required documents in a single PDF file (see awardee’s guide).

Any changes to an awardee’s status must be reported in the funding management module of the ePortfolio, as specified in Section 6.5 of the Common General Rules. Read the awardee’s guide for further details on informing the FRQS of any changes.

In the interest of fairness, the Fonds shall ensure the requested change does not challenge the outcome of the scientific review and meets all eligibility requirements and program rules. The request shall be reviewed by the Fonds, which may decide to pursue, reduce, suspend or terminate the payments. The Fonds may also require that the amounts paid be reimbursed. The decision shall be communicated by email.

The FRQS reserves the right to reject any incomplete request.

7. EVALUATION

Process

All applications are reviewed by expert committees that balance expertise and institutional representativeness. To be recommended for funding, an application must obtain a minimum overall score of 70%.

Criteria and weighting

Academic record – 30 points

Sub-criteria:

  • Transcripts and honours (awards, distinctions and scholarships)
  • Relevant experience (teaching, supervision, assistantships, etc.) and scientific achievements (conferences, presentations, publications, etc.)
  • Applicant’s ability to present his or her background in an integrated manner (relationship between experiences and interests and career and education choices, trajectory, etc.)

Research project – 45 points

Sub-criteria:

  • Originality of the project and contribution to the advancement of knowledge
  • Clarity and coherence of the research problem
  • Relevance of the methodology
  • Feasibility (realism of the time frame, quality of supervision including the environment available to the applicant for his or her development and the realization of the project, etc.)

Social mobilization – 20 points

Sub-criteria:

  • Ability to facilitate dialogue between science and society (outreach activities or participation in events intended for the general public, etc.)
  • Capacity for engagement (volunteering, community projects, civic and non-profit involvement, event organization, etc.)
  • Consideration of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, including equity, diversity and inclusion*

General presentation of the application – 5 points

* SDG and equity, diversity and inclusion considerations can be integrated in the proposed research or through science-society communication or engagement activities.

8. FINAL REPORT

Awardees must submit a final report at the end of the semester of their last payment. Awardees will be notified by email when the final report form is available in the FRQS ePortfolio. The form must be completed and submitted by the deadline. The granting of further funding under another FRQS program is conditional upon the submission of the duly completed final report.

9. UNDERTAKING

All applications submitted to the program must comply with the requirements set out in the FRQnet portals and e-forms.

10. OPEN ACCESS

In accordance with the FRQ’s open access policy (Politique de diffusion en libre accès des Fonds de recherche du Québec), all awardees will make their scientific publications available in open access in the twelve months after they are published. Go to the FRQ’s open science page for more information.

11. KNOWLEDGE MOBILIZATION

The FRQS encourages awardees to lead and contribute to knowledge mobilization activities (transfer, sharing, development, outreach and dissemination) with practice settings and the public. More information is available in the knowledge mobilization document.

12. EQUITY, DIVERSITY AND INCLUSION

The Fonds de recherche du Québec seek to support a research ecosystem based on equity, diversity and inclusion. Measures have therefore been implemented to ensure greater account of these principles is taken. The individuals who receive funding are also encouraged to prioritize these principles within the context of their research activities. Further details are available in the FRQS’s statements on equity, diversity and inclusion.

13. IMPORTANT CHANGES SINCE THE LAST COMPETITION

  • Eligibility Requirements
  • Required Documents
  • Evaluation

14. AWARDS IN PARTNERSHIP

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.

Foundation of Stars

Childhood diseases

Training awards in the Pediatric research field, primarily in the area of early childhood diseases. Amount of the award: $25 000 per year.

Parkinson Canada

Parkinson’s disease

Training Awards in the Parkinson’s Disease research field. Candidates must also submit an application to Parkinson Canada. Amount of the award: $21 000 to $25 000 per year.

Alzheimer Society of Canada

Alzheimer’s disease
Candidates must also submit an application to the Alzheimer Society of Canada. Amount of the award: $22 000 per year.

Multiple Sclerosis Society of Canada

Multiple Sclerosis

Training Awards in the Multiple Sclerosis research field. Candidates must also submit an application to the Multiple Sclerosis Society of Canada. Only physicians are eligible. Amount of the award: from $22 000 per year.

Unité de soutien SRAP du Québec (SPOR Support Unit in Québec)

Patient-Oriented Research

The Strategy for Patient-Oriented Research (SPOR) in Québec is to engage the various stakeholders involved, including patients, caregivers and the public, in the development and delivery of patient-oriented research projects (POR). The SPOR Support Unit in Québec contributes to capacity building and professional development in POR of these stakeholders. The awards offered in partnership with the Unit allow award recipients to hone their skills and develop or consolidate valued expertise in POR, and to expand their network of collaborators and mentors in this area.