Current Graduate Students

Physics Graduate Scholarships and Awards

Awards Incorporated Into the Physics Graduate Stipend

Special Graduate Entrance Scholarship

All students entering SFU Physics graduate programs are awarded entrance scholarships for the following amounts:

  • MSc Students: $6000 (effective Fall 2015)

Entering students are automatically nominated by the Department for this award, and will typically receive this award if they meet the minimum entering cumulative grade point average (CGPA) requirement of 3.50 (SFU).

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Graduate Fellowships

Physics PhD students will receive a 0.5 Graduate Fellowship worth $3500.00 (effective Fall 2020) each year between years two through four of their PhD program. Receipt of this part of the Physics annual graduate stipend is subject to maintaining a cumulative grade point average (CGPA) requirement of 3.50.

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President's PhD Scholarship

The President’s PhD Scholarship (PS) rewards PhD students who have made excellent progress in their degree, and who have demonstrated academic excellence, substantial scholarly output and leadership early in their PhD program relative to their peers. The award is intended to provide PhD students with a semester to concentrate full-time on their research.

PhD students must have completed fewer than 12 terms of enrollment to be eligible for this award. In the Department of Physics, the President's Scholarship is typically awarded to a student who plans to defend at the end of the term of the award.

This award is not awarded in addition to the Physics annual graduate stipend, but is offered as an alternative to TA and RA funding to allow the recipient to focus on writing their thesis.

At a Glance

President's PhD Scholarship

Amount: $7,000 CDN
Tenure: 1 semester

Awards Offered in Addition to Regular Stipend Funding

Travel and Research Awards

Travel and Minor Reseach Award (TMRA)

Travel and Minor Research Awards are primarily intended to support the travel component of the scholarly activity of graduate students related to their research. Graduate programs are encouraged to promote and enhance their students' graduate experience by supporting their attendance and active participation in conferences in their field of study through the use of these funds. Direct costs of doing research may also be supported.

Funds for Travel and Minor Research Awards have been allocated to each graduate program for internal administration. Interested applicants should read the Terms of Reference to ensure they are eligible. This is a merit-based award and students typically need a 3.50 or higher CGPA to be eligible to receive this.

To be eligible for this award, travel must take place during the current academic year (September though the end of August). You may apply for a TMRA during any of the competitions that year either before or after travel takes place. Unsuccessful applications will automatically be considered in later competitions.

The Physics Department requires a Reference Letter from your Senior Supervisor (entered into the Reference Section on GA3) and a current, Official or Unofficial SFU Transcript with your TMRA application.

Graduate International Research Travel Award (GIRTA)

The Graduate International Research Travel Award provides support to MSc and PhD students who must travel in order to undertake research for their degree requirements. Effective Fall 2015, the award is valued to a maximum of $6,500 and is tenable only in the term in which the travel is occurring.

Interested applicants should read the Terms of Reference to ensure they are eligible.

For GIRTA applications: Eligible students apply using the Graduate Award, Application, and Adjudication System (GA3) and submit all required documentation to their department of enrollment. Departments should advertise their own deadlines for receiving applications. Students should be aware that not all departments hold competitions for this award.

For Fall 2015 onwards: Paper applications are no longer accepted for applications starting in Fall 2015. GIRTA applications can only be done via the new online award system. 

Departments: the funds for the Graduate International Research Award comes out of your BASS/TFA (Annual Funding Allocation). Departments should send their recommendations to the Graduate Studies Office in the same annual cycles as the GF, SGES and TMRA. Annual Cycles are in Spring (for fall payments), Fall (for spring payments) and Spring (for summer payments).

At a Glance

Graduate [International] Research Travel Award

Amount: varies to max $7,000
Tenure: 1 semester

Michael Smith Foreign Study Supplement (MSFSS) [For TriCouncil Grant Holders]

This travel award opportunity is provided by the TriCouncil granting agencies to holders of NSERC CGS, SSHRC CGS or CIHR CGS awards only.

The value of the CGS-MSFSS award is up to $6,000, based on the information and budget justification provided in the application. Supplements are non-renewable. The related research study period must be between three to six months.

Donor Awards

General Information About Donor Awards

Donor Awards Specifically for SFU Physics Students

Donor Awards for Facutly of Science Students (including Physics Students)

Scholarships for All Graduate Students

We encourage Physics students to apply for the William & Ada Steele Memorial, the Micheal Stevenson, and the IODE Seaman Morley Scott Memorial scholarships.

External Awards

Ebco/Eppich Graduate Scholarships in Intelligent Systems

For a list of awards with links to the terms-of-reference for each Ebco-Eppick Award, please visit the SFU Graduate Studies Ebco/Eppich page.

Dissertation Awards

Dissertation Awards

Awards Resulting in Customized Stipends

Major External Awards


NSERC Canada Graduate Scholarships - Master's Program (CGS-M)

NSERC Graduate Scholarships - Doctoral Program (CGS-D and PGS-D)


To be considered eligible, as of October 15th, each applicant must:

  • be a Canadian citizen or a permanent resident of Canada;
  • hold, or expect to hold (at the time they take up the award), a degree in science or engineering from a university whose standing is recognized by NSERC. If you have a degree in a field other than science or engineering, NSERC may accept your application at its discretion.
  • intend to pursue, in the following year, full-time graduate studies and research at the doctoral level in an eligible program in one of the areas of the natural sciences and engineering supported by NSERC; and
  • have obtained a minimum first-class average: a grade of "A-" (CGPA of 3.67/4.33) in each of the last two completed years of study (full-time equivalent); and
  • not be applying for graduate funding to this year’s SSHRC Doctoral or CIHR funding programs

Eligibility Window (Eligibility Should Be Calculated as of December 31, 2016

  • 0-24 months of studies in doctoral program for which funding is requested; OR
  • 4-36 months of studies in doctoral program for which funding is requested if admitted directly to PhD from Bachelor's

Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarship

Other External Awards

Graduate Student Bursaries

Bursaries are a supplemental source of funding for students with demonstrated financial need; that is, they should not be treated as your primary source of funding.

Bursaries are available to Canadian and International students.  You should be aware that you may not be awarded a bursary every term. Due to the high volume of applications received each term, payment of funds may not occur until the middle of the term of application.  We encourage you to plan accordingly.

Curzon-Digman Bursary

Available to graduate students in physics or for majors or honors undergraduate students in physics, mathematical physics, chemical physics, biophysics or other joint programs with physics. These bursaries are subject to demonstrated financial need and good academic standing. Nominations will be made by the chair of the Department of Physics in consultation with Financial Aid and Awards.

Please search the Curzon-Digman bursary on the Scholarship, Awards and Bursaries Database for more details.

For general eligibility requirements and application procedures visit the Financial Aid and Awards Graduate Students Bursaries page.


TSSU Member Childcare Bursary

Visit the Financial Aid and Awards Graduate Students Bursaries page and scroll down for details about the TSSU Childcare Bursary.