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The Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) provides Undergraduate Student Research Awards (USRA).

This is a perfect way to get research experience and a full-time a summer job. It could also be a full-time Fall semester or Winter semester position. The U of R Biology Dept. has had great success with the USRA program, and over the years many of our undergraduates have used the USRA program to fund a position in a research laboratory.

Deadline for 2016 applications through U of R is Feb 8, 2016

The U of R Faculty of Graduate Studies & Research will be offering two identical workshops (in NR 110.3) about the program:

  • Tuesday, January 19, 2016 from 2 to 3 pm.
  • Wednesday, January 20, 2016 from 10 to 11 am.

A Power-Point Presentation will be posted in the Announcements section of the FGSR web-site after the workshops (mid-January).

    Do I qualify?

    To qualify you must:

    • be a Canadian citizen or permanent resident of Canada;
    • have a minimum CGPA of 80
    • work under the supervision of a faculty member who holds an active NSERC research grant
    • be registered in a bachelor's degree program at the time you apply
    • be registered in the term immediately preceding the award
    • have completed at least 2 academic terms (at the time of the award)
    • have not previously held 3 USRAs

    What are the pay rates?

    These awards have a value of at least $6300 for a 16-week period.

    How do I apply for an NSERC USRA?

    1. Find a faculty member to supervise your summer research, preferably one who conducts research in an area that interests you. See the faculty pages for complete descriptions.
    2. Contact the faculty member (e-mail is usually best). Explain your interest in his/her research program, provide a résumé, and if possible, identify a project or research area that you might wish to explore.
    3. Once you have identified a supervisor, you are ready to apply for the USRA.

    2016 Application Process - deadline Feb. 8

    Please start this process early, as you need to leave yourself some time to contact potential supervisors and to arrange for references.

    Students and their proposed supervisors must fill out the electronic form Form 202. This form has 2 parts;

    Form 202 – Part 1 – to be completed by the student
    Form 202 – Part 2 – to be completed by the proposed supervisor

    Forms and additional information can be found at NSERC Undergraduate Student Awards.

    NSERC On-line Systems Login

    NSERC Research Subject Codes


    Students must upload their transcripts to the NSERC web-site before an application can be considered complete. For the USRA competition, NSERC will allow students to use transcripts ‘issued to student’ provided that they are up-to-date – i.e. show the most recent semester’s marks. For the U of R competition transcripts should be ordered in January as soon as the Fall semester marks have been posted. Web transcripts will not be accepted.

    For additional information, contact:

    U of R contact: Tianna Yaskow – USRA Liaison Officer (LO) or 306-337-2236

    NSERC email contact:

    Who is NSERC?

    NSERC is the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council. This is a federal scientific granting agency that provides funding for non-medical research in Canada. A full description of NSERC's mandate and activities is available at the NSERC Website.