There are two types of Postdoctoral Fellows at SFU: External PDFs and Internal PDFs, related to their funding source. It is vital that staff and faculty members who assist PDFs administratively understand the difference between the two types, as the administrative procedures for the two types of PDFs are different. Please see Postdoctoral Fellows Policy R.50.03

  1. External PDF's who have secured funding from an external funding organization or a fellowship program which is external to the University and whose salary is paid wholly from such funding will be appointed as an External PDF.

    An External PDF is not an employee of the University. Faculty Relations will isssue a Letter of Invitation to begin the SFU administration of these PDFs. Use of the University's facilities to manage and account for an External PDF’s funding, including processing of payroll and administration benefits, does not alter the status of an appointment as an External PDF.

    External PDF earnings are not insurable. Canada Pension Plan and Employement Insurance will not be deducted. However, External PDF earnings are subject to Canadian income tax deductions. A T4 will be generated at year end.

  2. Internal PDFs whose salary is paid in whole or in part either from funds held by a University faculty member or from the University’s financial resources or a combination of the two will be appointed as an Internal PDF. An Internal PDF is an employee of the University. Faculty Relations will issue a Letter of Appointment to begin the employement relationship with SFU. Grant-funded PDFs are subject to Canadian Pension Plan, Employement Insurance and Canadian income tax deductions and may be eligible for benefits. A t4 will be generated at year end. 

SFU Postdoctoral Fellows Policies

At SFU, postdoctoral fellow appointments are governed by Postdoctoral Fellows Policy R.50.03

Policy R. 50.03 outlines the following appointment procedures for all Postdoctoral Fellows:

  • Definitions
  • Terms and Conditions of Appointment
  • Problem Resolution
  • Recruitment, Appointment/Invitation Procedures

The full policy and procedures can be viewed here

Please see the SFU Policy Gazette for a complete listing of all SFU research policies.