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How to pay less for a PhD in Canada

PhD in Canada
As the borders of Canada for non-essential travel reopens, the already multicultural country can be expected to be a more lively environment for future students. Source: Geoff Robins/AFP

Getting a PhD in Canada means you’ll get the chance to work with leading experts at top international unis. At the same time, you’ll be taking advantage of the country’s modern high-tech facilities and also have an opportunity to apply for the post-study work visa scheme. 

First, however, you’ll need to afford the high tuition fees charged to international students. A PhD in Canada’s University of Manitoba, for example, costs around $10,240 Canadian dollars. 

The good news is there are several scholarships and grants to help international students fund their PhD in Canada:

*** If you’re looking for scholarships to fund your bachelor’s or master’s degree in Canada, check out our list of “Scholarships in Canada you can still apply for before 2021 ends.”

Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarship

The government of Canada launched this in 2008 to offer world-class doctoral students a financial award for their studies. This scholarship is worth CA$50,000 a year for up to three years. 

To apply, you have to make sure you’re only nominated by one Canadian institution, the same place you’re pursuing your first doctoral degree. You have until November 3 to apply. 

Pierre Elliott Trudeau Foundation Doctoral Scholarship

Full-time students in a social sciences and humanities programme are eligible for this generous programme, which includes leadership training and alumni network opportunities. 

Recipients get up to CA$40,000 per year for three years and up to CA$20,000 to learn languages (English and French), pay for travel and accommodation, and conduct research three times over three years. Early January is the cut-off time for the application.

 

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Connaught International Scholarship

This programme helps international doctoral students with a scholarship top-up of CA$35,000 a year. The nomination process is conducted by the University of Toronto during the winter admission session and is renewable for up to five years (depending on the terms).

One thing to note is that this is only applicable to international candidates who are about to begin their PhD in Canada. The deadline here varies according to the uni’s individual graduate units. 

President’s Academic Excellence Initiative PhD Award

Approximately CA$4.3 million a year is awarded to PhD candidates at the University of British Columbia. International students can get CA$1,500 a year, even if their programme has started. Application is still open.

University of Alberta Graduate Recruitment Scholarship

For eligible starting their PhD in Canada next January, you will be considered on the recommendation of the admitting department. No application is involved here. The award is given in increments of CA$5,000.