Competition year : 
2022-2023

Deadline (application) : 
October 7th, 2021 at 16:00

Announcement of results : 
End of April 2022

Amount : 
Master’s: $17,500 / Doctorate: $21,000

Duration : 
6 semesters / 12 semesters

IMPORTANT

Please consult the document “Information Guide Training award programs : New evaluation criteria” in the toolbox, 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 impact directives

In your application, you will be able to describe how the COVID-19 pandemic may have affected your research or training activities during the past few months, in order for this information to be considered in the evaluation of your application. Please refer to the document “Considering the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic in the evaluation of funding applications” for further information.

Program rules:  Master’s (B1X), Doctoral (B2X) and Re-entering the Research Community (A2X)

This program refers to the Common General Rules (CGR) of the Fonds de recherche du Québec (FRQ), which apply to all FRQ programming. Only rules specific to this scholarship program are indicated in this document, and these prevail over the CGR.

The link to the FRQnet Portfolio and the forms associated with this competition are available under the Portal Access tab of the website. More information is available in the About FRQnet section. It is the applicant’s sole responsibility to choose the correct application form. Should an error occur, the Fonds will not transfer the application from one program to another and the application will be deemed ineligible.

Refer to the Application presentation standards – FRQNT document available in the Portal access tab of the website.

AN APPLICATION SUBMITTED TO THE FONDS AFTER THE COMPETITION DEADLINE OF 4 P.M. ON OCTOBER 7, 2021 WILL NOT BE ACCEPTED BY THE FONDS.

1. Objectives

The Fonds de recherche du Québec – Nature et technologies (FRQNT) scholarship programs have the following objectives:

  • Help support a new generation of scientists working in various research environments in natural science, mathematics or engineering fields,
  • To foster student interest in research;
  • To support excellence in research by providing financial assistance for top applicants to undertake or continue a master’s or doctoral research program.

In keeping with its Knowledge Mobilization Strategy, the FRQNT encourages funding recipients to carry out such activities (sharing, valorization, dissemination, etc.) for the general public, whenever such activities are relevant in the context of their research.

Master’s (B1X) and Doctoral (B2X) Research Scholarships:

Are intended for applicants who wish to undertake or continue a graduate university program in a field covered by the FRQNT.

Scholarships for Re-entering the Research Community (A2X):

Are intended for applicants who have had an undergraduate or master’s degree for at least five years and who wish to re-enter the research community through master’s- or doctoral-level studies or the equivalent in a field covered by the FRQNT.

2. Eligibility requirements

Applicants must meet all the eligibility requirements at the competition deadline of 4 p.m. on October 7, 2021. Applicants and scholarship holders must meet all eligibility requirements in effect at the time of application, the program rules and the CGR for the entire period covered by the scholarship.

2.1 Eligibility period and target group

The conditions for determining the scholarship eligibility period take into account semesters (master’s and doctoral level) completed before May 1st, 2022, whether funded or not.

The FRQNT considers part-time or unregistered semesters in calculating the eligibility period, provided the registrar’s attestations are included with the application.

The FRQNT also takes into account the number of semesters during which the applicant received financial assistance from all recognized funding agencies (e.g. SSHRC, NSERC, CIHR, Fonds de recherche du Québec, etc.) to ensure that total funding does not exceed 18 semesters.

Master’s Scholarship eligibility period

To be eligible for a Master’s Scholarship, an applicant must not have been enrolled at the master’s level for more than 3 full-time semesters (1 year) before May 1, 2022.

An applicant is eligible for a Master’s Scholarship during the first six semesters of his/her master’s degree (or equivalent). The semesters completed in a master’s program (or equivalent) prior to the effective date of the scholarship will be deducted from the duration of the funding. In all cases, no funding will be granted after a student’s sixth semester in a master’s program.

Scholarship holders who go on to the doctoral level without having used all the instalments of their master’s scholarship can use them to begin their doctoral program. However, they must successfully apply to the Doctoral Scholarship competition in order to receive subsequent scholarship payments.

Eligibility period for students who proceed directly from a bachelor’s to a doctoral program and for students who fast-track from a master’s into a doctoral program

An applicant admitted into a doctoral program from a bachelor’s program or who fast-tracks into a doctoral program without writing a thesis is eligible for a Master’s Scholarship (B1X) during the first six semesters of his/her graduate studies program. As a result, these first six semesters can only be funded by a Master’s Scholarship. In this case, the value of the Master’s Scholarship will be increased to be of the same value as the Doctoral Scholarship. The scholarship holder must apply to the Doctoral Scholarship competition (B2X) to fund subsequent semesters. In all cases, no funding will be granted after the fifteenth (15th) semester of doctoral studies.

An applicant who holds a master’s degree when beginning his/her doctoral studies must apply to the Doctoral Scholarship competition.

Doctoral Scholarship eligibility period

An applicant is eligible for a Doctoral Scholarship for twelve (12) consecutive semesters of doctoral studies (or the equivalent) during the first fifteen (15) semesters of the doctoral program. However, the eleventh (11th) and twelfth (12th) semesters of funding are contingent on the submission of the doctoral thesis before the end of the twelfth semester of funding. In all cases, no funding will be granted after the fifteenth (15th) semester of doctoral studies.

2.2 Exceptions in calculating eligibility period

Exceptions to the rules governing the eligibility period for scholarships are considered only in circumstances beyond the applicant’s control, such as serious illness or major family obligations. In such a case, the applicant must provide the FRQNT with a notice describing the nature of the requested interruption and, if necessary, a medical certificate stating the duration and reason for the interruption.

Applicants who interrupt their studies for maternity or parental leave can request an extension of their eligibility period for a maximum of 12 months. Supporting documents must be included with the application.

When the student is a person with a disability as stipulated in the Act to secure the handicapped persons in the exercise of their rights with a view to achieving social, school and workplace integration (L.R.Q. c. E-20.1), the rules pertaining to the eligibility period do not apply. The duration of the scholarship is unchanged at two years at the master’s level and three years at the doctoral level. Supporting documents must be included with the application.

The Fonds reserves the right to refuse any request for eligibility period exceptions that is not sufficiently justified.

2.3 Citizenship and residence

To be eligible for a Master’s or Doctoral Scholarship, applicants must have been enrolled at a Québec university on a full-time basis (or equivalent) for at least 2 of the 3 semesters prior to the competition deadline, OR have a Régie d’assurance maladie du Québec (RAMQ) card that is valid at the competition deadline or proof of application for a RAMQ card and that the card will be valid at the competition deadline.

To be eligible for Master’s or Doctoral Scholarship, the place where the research or studies will be carried out must be in Québec. However, the place where the research or studies will be carried out can be outside Québec if the applicant has a Régie d’assurance maladie du Québec (RAMQ) card that is valid at the competition deadline or proof of application for a RAMQ card and that the card will be valid at the competition deadline AND is a Canadian citizen.

Applicants who do not have a valid RAMQ card or proof of eligibility for RAMQ at the time of application, or who are not Canadian citizens, must pursue their research or studies in Québec. Their continuous physical presence in Québec is required for the duration of the scholarship, apart from break periods listed in the university calendar. Those under co-supervision (cotutelle) are also subject to this rule. In their case, co-supervision (cotutelle) with a study period outside Québec is not permitted.

If the scholarship holder’s citizenship, RAMQ eligibility or residence conditions change during the scholarship period, the scholarship cannot be used outside Québec.

2.4 Restrictions

Applicants cannot apply for a scholarship to carry out preparatory studies.

An applicant with a Ph.D. is not eligible for a master’s scholarship.

Applicants who have already received financial assistance from a recognized funding agency, (e.g. SSHRC, NSERC, CIHR, Fonds de recherche du Québec, etc.) over a period totaling 18 semesters (master’s and doctoral level combined) cannot apply for the current competition to start or continue a master’s or doctoral program.

Applicants may hold an award or scholarship from only one Fonds.

2.5 Minimum cumulative average

Applicants for a Master’s Scholarship must have an average equal to or greater than 3.55 or the equivalent for their undergraduate degree. Applicants with a lower average are not eligible.

In the case of applicants who are changing careers, grades from courses unrelated to the program of study for which the scholarship is being sought are not considered. However, grades for courses used as the basis for admission to a master’s or doctoral program are deemed relevant in calculating the average and must be included with the application.

2.6 Choice of evaluation committee

Applicants are responsible for choosing their evaluation committee. No changes can be made after the competition deadline. This choice must be based on the research topic. Other factors to be considered are the applicant’s field of study and research program.

Once awarded, the scholarship cannot be used for research on a subject in a field not covered by the committee that evaluated the application.

2.7 Paid leave

Applicants who are on a sabbatical or study leave with remuneration that exceeds 50% of their regular salary are not eligible. However, those receiving deferred remuneration are not subject to this restriction.

2.8 Additional eligibility requirements for Re-entering the Research Community Scholarship (A2X) applicants

At the competition deadline, applicants for a Re-entering the Research Community Scholarship (A2) must have had an undergraduate or master’s degree for at least five years and not have been subsequently enrolled in a university program. However, applicants may be enrolled for their first semester on the date they apply.

Rules governing the duration of funding for master’s- or doctoral-level studies under the Scholarships for re-entering the Research Community program are the same as those for the general programs (B1X-B2X).

3. Contents of the funding application and required documents

Applicants may not submit simultaneous applications for a Masters Scholarship (B1X) and a Re-entering the Research Community Scholarship (A2X1).

Applicants may not submit simultaneous applications for a Doctoral Scholarship (B2X) and a Re-entering the Research Community Scholarship (A2X2).

Applicants may submit simultaneous applications for a Master’s Scholarship and a Doctoral Scholarship if, during the allotted period for beginning to use the scholarship (see Terms of the Scholarship), the Master’s Scholarship eligibility period ends and the Doctoral Scholarship eligibility period begins

The applicant must create a user account in order to complete the scholarship application form. The form is available on the FRQNT website. It must be completed and submitted electronically by the competition deadline. Once completed, applicants can print the form and keep a copy for their records.

The applicant must also update his or her profile by completing the self-identification questionnaire in the FRQnet portal.

An applicant who chooses the multidisciplinary committee (14) must attach a one-page document to the form, in the “Other documents” section, explaining the multidisciplinary aspect of the program of study (Section 3).

The form may be completed in English or French. Applicants who submit the form in English must provide a French title and abstract for their project.

Required documents:

Required documents must be submitted electronically in the appropriate sections of the application form. Any documents that are illegible or of a poor resolution will be rejected.

Applicants are responsible for their application, which must include all required documents and attachments to be considered eligible.

Applicants must supply the following supporting documents:

TRANSCRIPTS (mandatory – any missing, incomplete, unofficial or out-of-date transcripts, as well as the absence of any other required document listed below, will render the application ineligible):

A copy of all transcripts is required, for all university studies pursued by the applicant, whether completed or not. This includes transcripts from exchange programs or courses (equivalencies), where applicable.

Transcripts must be up-to-date and include all completed semesters and grading scales (back of transcript).

Transcripts sent to the Fonds must be official. What makes a transcript official may differ from one academic institution to another. Nonetheless, to be deemed official by the Fonds, each transcript must:

  1. be issued by the institution in question; and
  2. include elements indicating that it is an official transcript for that academic institution. This may be the seal or stamp of the issuing institution AND/OR the registrar’s signature AND/OR the notation “Official Transcript”, etc.

THE PRESENCE OF A WATERMARK will not render a transcript unofficial, as long as it meets the requirements specified above.

Any transcript that does not meet the requirements specified above or is not a certified copy of the original will be considered UNOFFICIAL and will render the application ineligible. If there is any doubt about the authenticity of a transcript included with the application, the Fonds reserves the right to verify with the applicant or the institution concerned.

A transcript delivered in a sealed envelope by the registrar’s office can be opened and its contents scanned. Opening the envelope to scan the transcript will not render it unofficial for the purposes of the Fonds.

PLEASE NOTE: For a current program of study, the transcript must include the last semester completed before the competition deadline, including the summer session, if applicable.

Other documents to attach, if applicable, in the file with the transcripts:

  • Document explaining the grading system for transcripts from institutions outside North America. This letter must clearly explain the grading system used, so that the transcripts can be properly understood;
  • Letter of explanation from the institution (registrar’s office or equivalent administrative body) if no transcript is issued. The letter must state the reasons for the missing transcript;
  • If no transcript is issued but the applicant is unable to obtain a letter from the university, a letter of explanation written by the applicant, endorsed by the department director at the host institution, justifying the absence of the transcript.

RAMQ card:

  • An applicant who was not enrolled in a Québec university for at least two of the three semesters prior to the competition deadline must provide a photocopy of a Québec health insurance (RAMQ) card that is valid at the competition deadline or other official document from the Régie de l’assurance maladie (RAMQ) confirming residency status in Québec under the meaning of the Québec health Insurance Act. If such a document is not available, proof of application for a RAMQ card and that the card will be valid at the competition deadline;
  • An applicant who is a Canadian citizen and who wishes, or may wish, to use a training award to undertake studies outside Québec must provide a photocopy of a Québec health insurance (RAMQ) card that is valid at the competition deadline or other official document from the Régie de l’assurance maladie (RAMQ) confirming residency status in Québec under the meaning of the Québec health Insurance Act. If such a document is not available, proof of application for a RAMQ card and that the card will be valid at the competition deadline;
  • An applicant who does not have a RAMQ card and who was enrolled full-time in a Québec university for at least two of the three semesters prior to the competition deadline must provide a letter from the registrar’s office identifying the full-time semesters completed if they are not listed on the transcript.

Acknowledgement of receipt from publishers:

  • Acknowledgements of receipt from the editor for all articles submitted and notices received from editors for articles accepted for publication (acknowledgements of receipt for articles already published are not sent to the evaluation committee).

Additional document for applicants who studied part-time for at least one semester since first enrolling for graduate studies:

  • A letter from the registrar’s office identifying any part-time or unregistered semesters.

Additional documents for applicants seeking eligibility period exceptions:

  • An official document indicating the duration of the parental leave or sick leave or the nature of the disability, such as a medical certificate or copy of the child’s birth certificate.

Only the electronic forms for the 2022-2023 financial year and the other required documents are accepted. No appendices or other unrequested documents will be forwarded to the evaluation committee. Files cannot be updated after the competition deadline. It is, however, important to update your contact information in your FRQnet portfolio.

The FRQNT reserves the right to verify with institutions concerned the authenticity of any documents and information provided with the application. Additional documents may be required.

Any official document submitted in a language other than French or English must be accompanied by a professional translation certified as a true copy of the original. Any other document submitted in a language other than French or English must be accompanied by a basic translation.

4. Submitting the funding application

The funding application must be completed using the form available in the FRQnet Portfolio.

  • The funding application must be submitted to the FRQNT before 4 p.m. on October 7, 2021.

Applicants must attach all required documents in the appropriate tabs of the application form and submit the application before the competition deadline. No reminder will be made, and no documents can be added after the competition deadline.

Important: Incomplete applications will be deemed INELIGIBLE.

Eligibility of applications

The program manager and members of the evaluation committees verify the eligibility of each application according to the requirements set out in the program rules (Section 2).

Acknowledgement of receipt

You will receive a preliminary decision regarding the eligibility of your application by e-mail in December at the latest. Applicants who have not received this notification should contact the program manager before December 15.

5. Evaluation of applications

5.1 Evaluation criteria

Applications are assessed based on the following criteria and weighting:

Criteria – Master’s

Academic recors

  • Transcripts;
  • Honours (awards, distinctions and scholarships);
  • 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.).
Weighting

30 points

Criteria – Master’s

Research interest and potential

  • Relevant experience (participation in research projects, training internships, assistantships, etc.);
  • Scientific achievements (conferences, presentations, publications, etc.);
  • Proposed research (originality, clarity and coherence of the research problem, relevance of the methodology, feasibility and, if applicable quality of supervision).
Weighting

50 points

Criteria – Master’s

Social mobilization

  • 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*.

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

Weighting

15 points

Criteria – Master’s

General presentation of the application

Weighting

5 points

Criteria – Master’s

TOTAL

Weighting

100 points

Criteria - Doctorate

Academic record

  • 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.).
Weighting

30 points

Criteria - Doctorate

Research project

  • 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.)
Weighting

45 points

Criteria - Doctorate

Social mobilization

  • 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*.

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

Weighting

20 points

Criteria - Doctorate

General presentation of the application

Weighting

5 points

Criteria - Doctorate

TOTAL

Weighting

100 points

5.2 Evaluation procedure

Role of evaluation committees

Eligible applications are submitted to evaluation committees composed of three or four university faculty members. A committee may also include representatives from the private sector or government.

The evaluation committees compare the submitted applications according to the evaluation criteria in effect. Their job is to rank all the applications on merit. Contacting members of the committees, who are subject to rules of confidentiality, is strictly prohibited.

Role of the Board of Directors

The Board of Directors of the FRQNT receives the recommendations of the evaluation committees and makes 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 committees comply with the program rules and rules of ethics in effect at the FRQ.

6. Awarding of scholarships and announcement of results

6.1 Announcement of results

Applicants are evaluated and ranked on merit by the evaluation committees. For each committee or group, scholarships are offered according to the available budget. When allocating its budget, the FRQNT reserves the right to change its scholarships in keeping with objectives chosen by the Board of Directors. The decisions of the Board of Directors of the FRQNT are final and cannot be appealed.

Following the decisions of the Board of Directors, the Fonds informs each applicant of the outcome of the evaluation of their application and the funding decision that has been made. The results are announced through an official communiqué on the Fonds website and the announcement letter is placed in each applicant’s portfolio. This information is usually available by the end of April following the close of the competition.

Successful applicants must accept or refuse the scholarship within 30 calendar days after the scholarship offer was sent, in the “Manage my funding” section of their E-portfolio. An applicant who fails to accept the scholarship before the deadline is considered to have refused the scholarship (CGR, Section 5.2).

6.2 Value and duration of the scholarship

The FRQNT Board of Directors may modify the value of scholarships at any time, without notice, notably in accordance with the funds allocated annually by the Québec National Assembly, its strategic priorities and its budget process.

Master’s scholarship

The maximum value of a Master’s Scholarship is $17,500 per year. The scholarship holder may receive a maximum of six instalments totalling $35,000 within the eligibility period (six semesters or 24 months). Each instalment of up to $5,833 covers a period of four months, or one semester.

Doctoral scholarship

The maximum value of a Doctoral scholarship is $21,000 per year. The scholarship holder may receive a maximum of 12 instalments totalling $84,000 within the eligibility period (12 semesters or 48 months). Each instalment of up to $7,000 covers a period of four months, or one semester. The 11th and 12th instalments are contingent on submission of the doctoral thesis before the end of the 12th funded semester. These 11th and 12th instalments will only be paid after the initial thesis submission.

Supplement for studies outside Québec

The supplement for studies outside Québec aims to help top students to undertake or pursue graduate studies outside Québec.

These supplements are exclusively intended for Master’s Scholarship (B1X) and Doctoral Scholarship (B2X) applicants.

These supplements are reserved for scholarship holders who choose to study outside Québec, as indicated in their scholarship application. The supplements are awarded to the ten top-ranking applicants across all evaluation committees. All applications indicating a place of study outside Québec are automatically considered.

At the time the supplement is received, the applicant must be enrolled full time in a university institution located outside Quebec.

The maximum annual value of the supplement is $1,500. The supplement is added to the Master’s or Doctoral Scholarship amount.

7. Terms of the scholarship

To retain the scholarship, the scholarship holder must satisfy the following basic conditions throughout the duration of funding:

  • Respect the conditions relating to citizenship and residence. Scholarship holders who are using their scholarship outside Québec must provide a copy of their RAMQ card in May of every year.
  • Be enrolled full time in a program of study.
  • Respect the rules relating to concurrent funding.
  • Respect the rules relating to paid employment.

Scholarship holders who are enrolled in a program outside Québec must ask their university for official proof of enrolment at the beginning of each academic term and send it to the Fonds. In the case of Québec universities, proof of enrolment is sent directly to the FRQNT by the institution.

Scholarship holders are required to inform the Fonds immediately if they cease to satisfy any of these conditions. Should any of these conditions no longer be met, the Fonds will be obliged to withdraw the scholarship and could request reimbursement.

7.1   Scholarship period

The scholarship period must begin between May 1, 2022 and January 15, 2023.

The scholarship cannot be carried over from one year to the next.

The scholarship is not retroactive, and months of research completed prior to May 2022 cannot be funded. For applicants who have already begun their program of study, the period of use begins on May 1, 2022.

Scholarship start date

The scholarship start date refers to the semester during which the first payment can be requested.

Scholarship holders whose program has not yet started:

May 2022 (summer semester)

September 2022 (fall semester)

January 2023 (winter semester)

Scholarship holders whose program is already underway:

May 2022 (summer semester)

7.2   Scholarship payments and progress reports

Payment must be requested at the beginning of each academic term via the E-portfolio.

A progress report is required after each full year of funding indicating the progress of your research. This report is required at the time of the 4th and 7th instalment requests, where applicable, and must be submitted via the E-portfolio. Entitlement to the scholarship will be maintained if your progress is judged satisfactory by the Fonds. You must submit a final report to the Fonds at the end of your scholarship.

An unclaimed payment may be cancelled at the end of the period it covers, without advance notice.

7.3   Presence at the host environment

To retain the scholarship, the scholarship holder must be present at the host environment for the duration of the scholarship and devote himself/herself full-time to his or her research activities. Failure to comply with this rule could result in the cancellation of the scholarship. If, under exceptional circumstances, these conditions cannot be respected, the Fonds must be advised as soon as possible and will determine whether the scholarship should be maintained or cancelled.

In all the following cases, the Fonds reserves the right to refuse any request with insufficient justification.

Major family obligation

A scholarship holder who is unable to pursue full-time studies for reasons arising from major family obligations has the possibility of enrolling part time and receiving partial scholarship payments (50%) if the university allows part-time enrolment and upon presentation of a medical certificate or other official document justifying the situation.

Person with a disability

A person with a disability who is unable to pursue full-time studies has the possibility of enrolling part time and receiving full scholarship payments provided the university authorizes the part-time enrolment and upon presentation of a medical certificate or other official document justifying the situation. This exception is in accordance with the Act to secure handicapped persons in the exercise of their rights with a view to achieving social, school and workplace integration (CQLR c. E-20.1).

7.4   Convertibility of the scholarship

Scholarship holders who go on to a doctoral program without having used all the instalments of their Master’s scholarship can use them to begin their doctoral program. In this case, the value of the Master’s scholarship will be increased to be of the same value as the Doctoral scholarship. However, you must successfully apply for the Doctoral competition to obtain subsequent payments.

You will need to complete and submit a “Manage my finding form”.

You must also submit a copy of the offer of admission to the doctoral program.

7.5   Concurrent funding

The following table summarizes the rules for concurrent funding and partial concurrent funding.

RULES FOR CONCURRENT FUNDING

Type of scholarship / Scholarship program
Concurrent funding
Type of scholarship / Scholarship program

Merit scholarships from federal granting agencies such as the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC), the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC), and the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR)

Concurrent funding

Concurrent funding prohibited OR Partial Concurrent funding*

Type of scholarship / Scholarship program

Merit scholarships from Québec government granting agencies such as the Fonds de recherche du Québec – Santé (FRSQ), le Fonds de recherche du Québec – Société et culture (FRQSC), the Conseil de recherches en pêche et agroalimentaire du Québec (CORPAQ)

Concurrent funding

Concurrent funding prohibited

Type of scholarship / Scholarship program

Scholarships from Canadian and Québec government departments and agencies, other than those mentioned above

Concurrent funding

Concurrent funding allowed

Type of scholarship / Scholarship program

Co-supervised international mobility scholarships and scholarships for an internship outside Québec

Concurrent funding

Concurrent funding allowed

Type of scholarship / Scholarship program

Private sector and internal university scholarships

Concurrent funding

Concurrent funding allowed

*Partial concurrent funding

Partial concurrent funding with a federal agency scholarship is possible when the FRQNT scholarship is of a higher value or longer duration than the scholarship for which concurrent funding is prohibited. In such cases, the scholarship holder must accept the federal scholarship. However, he or she may also accept the Fonds scholarship, where appropriate:

  • When the Fonds scholarship is of a higher value than the other scholarship, the Fonds scholarship amount will be adjusted to make up the shortfall.
  • When the Fonds scholarship is of a longer duration than the other scholarship, the Fonds will provide funding to make up the shortfall once the other scholarship has expired.

It is not possible to defer a payment or the start of a scholarship in order to receive another scholarship for which concurrent funding is prohibited.

Note that you can not delay the start of another scholarship for which concurrent funding is prohibited. The other scholarship must be started as soon as permitted, even retroactively when possible.

Reimbursement will be required for any payment received in a situation where concurrent funding is prohibited.

STUDIES OUTSIDE QUÉBEC

Concurrent funding is permitted with scholarships from federal and provincial granting agencies if, when the Fonds scholarship comes into effect, the scholarship holder is attending a teaching establishment outside Québec and his/her annual tuition fees are equal to or greater than the annual value of the award offered by the Fonds. In evaluating annual tuition fees, the Fonds does not include enrolment fees, membership fees for student associations, etc. The tuition fees must not be reimbursed by any other organization.

7.6   Paid employment

You must carry out your research project on a full-time basis.

The salary that you receive from your supervisor to work exclusively on your research project is considered a scholarship for which concurrent funding is permitted.

However, within the limits outlined below, you may accept a lectureship, a paid internship or employment (one of the 3, regardless of how much time you spend on it). This rule does not apply to paid parental leave, during which working is not permitted.

7.6.1 Lecturer or teaching assistant

You may accept a position as a lecturer or teaching assistant for one course per semester. Please note that the same course given to two groups is equivalent to two lecturer positions and that, in this situation, the scholarship holder is not eligible to receive a scholarship payment.

7.6.2 Internship

You may receive a scholarship payment during a paid or unpaid internship, provided your research supervisor does not object. It must be indicated in “Manage my funding” (“Statements – incomes and academic status” section) of your instalment request form.

Please note that when carrying out a mandatory internship as part of your academic program and for which you do not receive research credits, you may register as a part-time student if the internship is full-time.

7.6.3 Other employment

You may accept a position that does not exceed the maximum hours per semester allowed by your institution, provided your research supervisor does not object and that these activities do not hinder your postdoctoral training.

If you exceed this limit while remaining in the program full-time, your scholarship payment will be cancelled.

7.7   Payment deferral or suspension of the scholarship

7.7.1 Deferral for acquiring relevant experience

For each full year of funding by the Fonds, you may request the suspension of your scholarship for one semester to enable you to acquire relevant experience (work with a research team; teaching experience in your field of study or research, language training, etc.).

If your request is accepted, this instalment is carried over to the end of your eligibility period. You are not required to enrol full-time in your program for this semester, provided the rules of the institution allow this.

To take advantage of this measure, simply complete the “Statements – situation and required documents” section in the “Manage my Funding” form.

You must also submit, in your Portfolio, a short supporting letter from your research supervisor confirming the relevance of the paid activities you intend to carry out.

For a scholarship beginning in January, you cannot use this provision for your first instalment because funding must begin by January 15 following the scholarship offer.

Note that you cannot use this provision to accept another scholarship for which concurrent funding is prohibited.

7.7.2 Sick leave or leave for family obligations

In addition to the suspension of studies for health reasons, the Fonds allows temporary suspension of studies for up to two years (unpaid) for scholarship holders with serious family obligations (informal caregiver, education of children, etc.) if permitted by your university and if your supervisor is duly informed.

However, once your university stops authorizing this leave, the Fonds will stop deferring your scholarship payments. To receive the remaining payments, you must meet all scholarship conditions.

In all cases you must complete and submit a “Manage my Funding” form (“Statements – situation and required documents” section) indicating the length of the suspension of studies and the reason for your request, and attach a medical certificate, where applicable.

The Fonds reserves the right to refuse any requests that it deems insufficiently justified.

7.7.3 Parental leave

If your interrupt your studies for the birth or adoption of a child, you may request parental leave. The maximum period for parental leave is 12 months (the equivalent of three semesters). Parental leave can begin during the semester when the birth or the adoption is expected to occur and end no later than one year after the birth or adoption of the child.

Paid parental leave is available for a period of eight months. Note that to be eligible for this benefit, you must not be enrolled in a study program, nor have paid employment. Furthermore, in the case of a complementary scholarship, paid parental leave from the Fonds cannot be granted to scholarship holders who receive parental leave from a federal granting agency. These scholarship holders must take the paid leave offered by the federal agency. You may extend this paid parental leave by an additional four months without pay if permitted by your university.

Parental leave is authorized by the Fonds if permitted by your university and if your supervisor is duly informed.

It is important to note that only one parental leave is granted per child. Parents are free to organize the unpaid parental leave at their discretion.

To request parental leave, complete a “Manage my Funding” form (“Statements – situation and required documents” section) and provide a copy of the medical certificate attesting to the pregnancy and, when the time comes, the child’s birth or adoption certificate as well as proof of suspension of enrolment from your university.

The Fonds reserves the right to deny any request that is not adequately justified.

The parental leave offered by the Fonds can be combined with Québec’s parental insurance plan (RQAP).

7.8   Discontinuation of studies

If you discontinue your studies or decide to pursue them on a part-time basis, with the exception of the cases described in the “Presence at the host environment” section, you are no longer eligible for the scholarship and you must reimburse the current instalment. You must notify the Fonds by submitting a “Manage my Funding” form (“Statements – incomes and academic status” section).

7.9   Thesis submission

If you have submitted your initial master’s or doctoral thesis but have not yet defended it, and are awaiting corrections, you remain eligible to receive your scholarship. During this time, and with the exception of the cases described in Presence at the host environment, you must still be registered full-time in your program. However, funding cannot be extended beyond your eligibility period and the duration of funding.

During that period, if your research supervisor agrees and confirms it by e-mail, you may accept employment with no restriction on hours of work. This exception with regard to work hours is only valid for one semester.

7.10 Changing the conditions of your scholarship

To make any changes in the conditions of your scholarship, you must first submit a request to the Fonds by completing a statement in the “Manage my Funding” section of your Portfolio.

In the interests of equity, the Fonds and its partners must ensure that such a change does not affect the evaluation you received or your eligibility for the program. The following situations are the most frequent:

7.10.1 Deferring the starting date of the study or research program

Funding cannot start until you are registered full-time in a master’s or doctoral program. Your program may begin no later than the winter semester (January 15) following the award announcement.

7.10.2 Changing your study or research program

Scholarships are not transferable from one committee to another. However, if your new program is in the same field and falls under the same committee as your initial program, the change is generally authorized.

Here are a few examples:

  • Changing the program of study

If you receive a chemistry scholarship (committee 03A) and you now want to undertake a program in material engineering (committee 05C), your application will be refused because it involves a different committee.

If you receive a scholarship in animal biology and veterinary medicine (02C) for studying animal reproduction and you want to switch to veterinary medicine, the change will be authorized because the same committee (02C) evaluates applications in both these disciplines.

  • Changing department

If you keep the same topic of study/research as described in your original application but for administrative reasons you enrol in a department that usually forwards its applications to another Fonds evaluation committee, your scholarship will be maintained if the subject of research remains the same. For example, if your topic of study/research is molecular and cellular biology (02B) but your program is offered in the department of environmental science (04B), your scholarship will be maintained because your project is still in the original area of research, namely, molecular and cellular biology (02B).

7.10.3 Changing the place of study/research

Changing the place of study and research is permitted as long as it complies with the “Citizenship and residence” section.

7.10.4 Changing your research supervisor

If you are still studying in the same program and your research project remains the same, the change will automatically be authorized.

7.10.5 Changing your study/research project

You must submit your new project and demonstrate that its scientific quality is equivalent to that of your initial project. Before making a decision, the Fonds must ascertain that the change will not affect the evaluation you received. It is important to specify whether you will remain in the same field, in the same department, with the same research supervisor and at the same university or research environment.

8. Scholarships in partnership

The FRQNT offers scholarships in collaboration with partners.

Eligible applicants are selected through a three-step process:

Applicant must select, in the Partnership section of the application form, one or more partners whose research areas correspond to the theme of their application.
The FRQNT sends the partners a list of interested applicants and the information needed to assess the relevance of the applications based on their research priorities and strategy.
After evaluation of the applications by a committee of experts or peers, those that obtain a scientific excellence score of 70% and are deemed relevant by the partners concerned will be considered for partnership funding.
As with all other awards offered by the FRQNT, scholarships awarded in partnership are based on merit following scientific evaluation by a peer committee.

Note that by choosing to be considered for a scholarship in partnership and on obtaining this type of funding, you agree that the partner can contact you for activities related to your research project.

Partner:

Patient-oriented research
Québec SPOR Support Unit (Unité de soutien SRAP du Québec)

The Québec Strategy for Patient-Oriented Research (SPOR) Support Unit is a provincial unit of the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) national SPOR network. Nestled at the heart of a learning health system, it supports and catalyzes the continuous improvement of Québec’s health system by mobilizing the research, health and social services communities, with and for the population.

The scholarships offered in partnership with the Unit allow recipients to hone their skills, gain valuable POR experience, network, and work in an interdisciplinary manner with the various actors and stakeholders of a learning health system.

9. Effective date

These rules apply to the 2022-2023 financial year.

10. Contact person

Michel Garceau
Program manager
Scholarship programs
Fonds de recherche du Québec – Nature et technologies
Phone: 1 418 643-8560, ext. 3459
Email: bourses.nt@frq.gouv.qc.ca

Applicants who contact the FRQNT via email must provide a telephone number at which they can be reached. Priority is given to email enquiries.

Please note that the FRQNT does not accept collect calls.