Scholarships and Awards

Program Completion Awards

These awards are for students who have completed or are nearing completion of their graduate degree program.

Governor General’s Gold Medal
CAGS/PROQUEST - UMI Distinguished Dissertation Awards
WAGS/UMI Distinguished Master’s Thesis Awards

Governor General's Gold Medal

The Governor General's Gold Medal is awarded for academic excellence at the graduate level. At the University of Alberta, the award recognises the doctoral graduate who achieves the highest academic standing.

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  • Value
    Each recipient is awarded a Gold Medal.
  • Eligibility
    While selection of the winner is primarily based on academic excellence, attention to the dissertation and cumulative scholarly achievement during the doctoral program will also be considered.
  • Application Procedures
    There is no application form; eligible students will be considered automatically by their home department and nominated to Faculty of Graduate Studies and Research (FGSR) for final selection.
  • Nomination Procedures

    For Graduate Departments:

    A memo with detailed instructions for departments can be found here.

  • Adjudication Procedures
    The FGSR Graduate Scholarship Committee adjudicates the competition and FGSR notifies the winner(s) accordingly. One medal is presented at the Spring Convocation and two medals are presented at the Fall Convocation.

CAGS/Proquest - UMI Distinguished Dissertation Award

The CAGS/PROQUEST - UMI Distinguished Dissertation Awards recognize Canadian doctoral dissertations that make unusually significant and original contributions to their academic field. They were established in 1994 and are presented annually. 

There are two awards:

  • One for engineering, medical sciences and the natural sciences; and 
  • One for the fine arts, humanities and social sciences. 

The Awards are granted by the Canadian Association for Graduate Studies (CAGS) and are sponsored by PROQUEST-UMI (University Microfilms International).

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  • Value
    $1,500 prize, a Citation Certificate, and travel expenses of up to $1,500 to attend the annual CAGS conference.
  • Eligibility
    The following dissertations are eligible:
    a) A dissertation in any discipline in engineering, medical sciences and natural sciences completed and accepted by the FGSR between January 1, 2016 and December 31, 2016.
    b) A dissertation in any discipline in the fine arts, humanities, and social sciences completed and accepted by the FGSR between January 1, 2016 and December 31, 2016.
    In interdisciplinary domains or in fields that overlap the two broad areas in which the prizes are given, the dean of FGSR must decide for which prize it is appropriate to submit the dissertation.
  • Application Procedures
    There is no application form; eligible students will be considered automatically by their home department and nominated to the FGSR for final selection.
  • Nomination Procedures

    For Graduate Departments:

    A memo with detailed instructions for departments can be found here.

  • Adjudication Procedures
    The FGSR Graduate Scholarship Committee adjudicates the competition and forwards one nomination for each award to the CAGS National Office by the applicable deadline. Successful nominees will be notified directly by CAGS.

WAGS/UMI Distinguished Master's Thesis/Innovation in Technology Awards

The WAGS/UMI Distinguished Master’s Thesis Award for the Biological Sciences, Mathematical and Physical Sciences, Life Sciences and Engineering and the WAGS/UMI Distinguished Master’s Thesis Award for Humanities, Social Sciences, Education, and Business recognize distinguished scholarly achievement at the master’s level. 

Nominations will be accepted in any of the above-listed disciplines in which the institution offers a master’s degree.

The WAGS/UMI Innovation in Technology Award recognizes the innovative application of technology to scholarship. The award may be given either to a master’s thesis or to a doctoral dissertation for the development of an innovative technology and its utilization for the creative solution of a major problem.

The Awards are granted by the Western Association of Graduate Schools (WAGS) and are sponsored by UMI (University Microfilms International).

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  • Value
    $1,000 for the Distinguished Master’s Thesis Awards; $1,500 for the Innovation in Technology Awards. The awards also consist of a certificate of award and travel expenses for the student and the student’s advisor to receive the award at the annual meeting of the Association.
  • Eligibility
    The scholarly “product” eligible for these competitions is a formal written thesis. If a nominating department offers both a thesis option and a project option, only the thesis is acceptable for consideration for this award. The nominee must have earned the master’s degree within the period July 1, 2015, through June 30, 2016.
  • Selection Criteria
    Initial screening will be based on four criteria:
    1. Originality,
    2. Significance of the study,
    3. Overall quality, and
    4. Outcomes and accomplishments from the thesis.
    Finalists will be asked to provide three complete copies of the thesis.
  • Application Procedures
    There is no application form; eligible students will be considered automatically by their home department and nominated to the FGSR for final selection.
  • Nomination Procedures

    For Graduate Departments:

    A memo with detailed Distinguished Master's Thesis instructions for the departments can be found here.

    A memo with detailed Innovation in Technology Awards instructions for the departments can be found here.

  • Adjudication Procedures
    The FGSR Graduate Scholarship Committee adjudicates the competition and FGSR submits one nomination (per award, if applicable) to the WAGS National Office by the WAGS deadline. Successful nominees will be notified directly by WAGS.