Financial support

Financial Support Overview

The School of Computing Science provides generous support to thesis based Ph.D and MSc. students. Minimum funding levels are as follows:

  • Ph.D - $24,000 per year for four years
  • MSc. - $21,000 per year for two years

Financial commitments are made on an individual basis and the terms of funding support will be set out in the offer or admission letter that students receive.

Students must make satisfactory progress in their programs to maintain their eligibilty for funding.

Professional Master's students are not funded by the School. Students should arrange their own financial resources for both living and educational expenses.

Financial support provided to funded graduate students comes from a combination of sources that include, but are not limited to:

Research Assistantships (RA) and Teaching Assistantships (TA)

RA support comes from research grants held by the student's supervisor(s). The amount and duration of this support is determined between the supported students and their supervisor(s).

TAs are assigned to computer science courses. TAs for these courses are expected to perform duties such as grading, supervising labs, and/or giving tutorials. The amount of pay depends on the number of base units (BUs) assigned. TA requirements are annouced to graduate students each term, and interested students are to complete an online TA application during the application period. Questions regarding TA applications should be directed to cmptappl@sfu.ca.

Graduate Fellowships

The following are used by the department to meet funding minimums by an internal nomination process. A student is eligible to receive only one SFU GF or CS GF per academic year. 

SFU Graduate Fellowships (SFU-GF)

SFU GFs are available throughout the academic year and are typically in the amount of $6,500 per semester.  Eligible funded students will be notified after an internal nomination process by the School of Computing Science whereby they will be reviewed by the Graduate Program Committee who will make recommendations to the Office of Graduate Studies. More information can be found at the Office of the Graduate Studies website: SFU GFs.

Facutly of Applied Sciences Graduate Fellowships (FAS-GF)

The Faculty of Applied Sciences (FAS) also awards GFs, typically for $6,500 per semester. Eligible students will be notified. FAS GFs are funded on a matching basis; half of the fellowship is funded by the Dean of the Faculty of Applied Sciences and the other half (in the form of an RA) is funded by the student's supervisor(s).  More information can be found at the Office of the Graduate Studies website: FAS GFs.

Computing Science Graduate Fellowships (CS-GF)

The School of Computing Science offers its own graduate fellowships. CSGFs are used by the School of Computing Science to meet funding guidelines for all students. This, like the SFU GFs, follows the same internal nomination process, whereby students are notified once funding is allocated.

Major External Awards

Please visit the Office of the Graduate Studies website for information on major external scholarships including those offered by NSERC. Applicants who hold NSERC postgraduate scholarships can expect competitive top-ups.

For all information on financial support available to SFU graduate students, including various internal scholarships, minor travel and research awards, etc., please visit the Office of the Graduate Studies website on Scholarships and Awards.

Other Funding Sources

Industrial Internships

The MITACS Accelerate Internship Program is a potential source of support.  A company, an academic supervisor, and a graduate student form a collaborative team so that research can be conducted on behalf of the employer.  Typical total funding is $15,000 per internship with 50-50 contributions from MITACS and the participating company, with the student receiving a minimum of $10,000 for a four-month internship.

President's PhD Scholarships (PS)

The PS rewards PhD students who have made excellent progress in their degree completion. The key eligibility criterion is that students must complete all degree requirements, except for the thesis defence, within 12 terms of full-time registration. The scholarship is valued at $6,500 and awarded a maximum of once per student. For more information, refer to the Office of Graduate Studies website: President's Ph.D. Scholarship.

Sessional Appointments

Sessionals teach undergraduate courses in place of regular faculty members when there is demand. Availability is posted prior to start of the semester.