Canada Graduate Scholarship - Michael Smith Foreign Study Supplement (CGS-MSFSS)

This foreign study supplements program is open to eligible master's or doctoral Canada Graduate Scholarship (CIHR, NSERC, SSHRC CGS) holders or Vanier CGS holders who wish to undertake research outside of Canada for a defined period of time. There are multiple rounds in a year; refer to the deadline section for more information.


The value of the CGS-MSFSS award is up to $6,000, based on the information and budget justification provided by the applicant. Supplements are non-renewable. The related research study period abroad normally lasts between two to six months, but must be for a minimum of two months.


To be eligible to apply for this funding opportunity, students must:

  • Be a Canadian citizen, permanent resident of Canada, or Protected Persons under subsection 95(2) of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (Canada) who hold a Canada Graduate Scholarship (CGS) at the master’s or doctoral level, or a Vanier CGS at the doctoral level. Undertake the proposed trip abroad no earlier than the competition deadline date.
  • Be traveling for a minimum of two months and a maximum of six months
  • Not hold or have held any other CGS-MSFSS during the course of their graduate studies
  • Have accepted or currently hold a CGS (master’s or doctoral) or eligible Vanier CGS
  • NSERC Postgraduate Scholarship - Doctoral Program (PGS D), SSHRC Doctoral Fellowship, and CIHR Doctoral Research Award - Priority Announcement holders are ineligible for this funding

To remain eligible during the research study period abroad, students must:

  • Hold an active CGS award at the time the research study period abroad starts
  • Be registered full-time in the graduate program at the U of A for the duration of the research study period abroad
  • Take up the award within one year of receiving the notice of award for the CGS-MSFSS
  • Return to complete their degree in Canada
For complete eligibility requirements and program details, consult the CGS-MSFSS website (hosted on NSERC’s website).
Application Procedures

This is a direct application, whereby students apply directly to GPS. Departments are not required to collect applications for internal review and for nomination to GPS. It is the student's responsibility to read all instructions and be familiar with the application process before applying. Review the 2024 CGS-MSFSS Memo to Students & Departments – June 2024 Competition and the CGS-MSFSS program details and requirements.

Each agency (CIHR, NSERC, and SSHRC) has its own application form and instructions; care should be taken to ensure that the appropriate form is used.

Applicants are to contact the respective granting agency if they are unsure about the eligibility of a particular host supervisor or host institution.

Eligible applicants must complete the appropriate web-based application form online; a printed copy of the form, and all other required documentation is to be submitted, as one combined PDF, to GPS by email ( . A complete application includes the following:

  • Applicable (CIHR, NSERC, or SSHRC) application form, which includes a budget proposal (available on the online application portals of the respective granting agencies)
  • A description of the student’s intended research activities during the research study period abroad (including objectives, methodology, timelines and expected outcomes) and how they relate to their main graduate research topic, and a description of the potential benefits they will derive from the host institution in relation to their current research objectives (maximum two pages).
  • Letter from the student’s current research supervisor detailing their support for the research study period abroad and confirming that their proposed research aligns with the research from the CGS award (maximum one page)
  • Letter from the host supervisor detailing their support for the student’s research study period abroad and the resources they have available—financial (if any), supervision time, equipment, library access, etc.—to support the planned research activities (maximum one page)
    • Note: non-academic host supervisors must demonstrate they have
      experience supervising graduate student researchers.
  • The following consent form; refer to Application Procedures hosted on NSERC’s website for links to each form:
    • Terms and Conditions of Applying Form (NSERC only)
    • Consent to Disclosure of Personal Information Form (SSHRC and CIHR)
    • Applicant Consent form for Use and Disclosure of Personal Information Provided to CIHR for Peer Review (CIHR only)

GPS will facilitate any revisions to student's applications if they occur following the submission of their application. Winners must apprise GPS of any changes to their outlined itineraries.

Adjudication Procedures
Once received at GPS, nominations are reviewed for eligibility and completeness and are adjudicated. Recommended applications are forwarded to NSERC/SSHRC/CIHR for consideration. Once the granting agencies complete the review processes, they will announce the results to candidates, and to each institution by posting the list of all successful applicants by institution on the Tri-Agency Awards Extranet.

June 2024 Competition

Deadline for students to submit their applications (as one combined PDF) to GPS via Thursday, May 23, 2024.

U of A deadline to submit recommended applications to Tri-Agencies: Monday, June 10, 2024.

October 2024 Competition:

Deadline for students to submit their applications (as one combined PDF) to GPS via TBA

U of A deadline to submit recommended applications to Tri-Agencies: Thursday, October 10, 2024.