Department of Nutritional Sciences - University of Toronto

Graduate Funding Opportunities

MSc & PhD Degree Program – Funding Information

Assured Funding Policy: Funding Terms and Stipend Levels

Applicants are strongly encouraged to seek external support if they wish to be admitted to this department. Usually this means that applications to funding agencies must be filed about a year before planned entry into graduate programs.

Funding Information

1. Total Base Funding

A “stipend” is the total amount that a student receives as financial support during their graduate program.  Stipends are paid as T4A income and are obtained through one or more of the following:

  • the supervisor’s research grant; and/or
  • competitive scholarship/fellowship programs, internal or external to the University; and/or
  • departmental cohort funds (U of T Fellowships)

2018-2019 Student Base Funding for doctoral-stream Masters and PhD

The student living allowance is increased by 2.0% in 2018-2019:










Living Allowance

18,635.00 20,706.00 18,635.00 20,706.00

2018-2019 Tuition Fees

8,489.52 8,489.52 24,229.52 8,489.52


N/A N/A 624.00   


Total (Base Funding)

27,124.52 29,195.52 43,488.52 29,819.52


2. Top-up Practices 

All awards that require student applications are eligible for a top-up from their supervisor or graduate unit excluding. 

The top-up amounts are as follows: 


Award Amount                                                                     



$0.00 to $2,00.00

There will be no top-up but the sutdent gets to keep award(s), up to a combined maximum of $2,000.00. The amount of the award will not be deducted from the base funding.      

Between $2,001.00 to $15,000.00 (cummulative awards)

Award goes towards the base funding and the student receives a $2,000.00 top-up over their base funding.       

over $15,000.00 (cummulative awards)

Award goes to towards the base funding and student receives a $4,000.00 top-up over their base funding.       


  • Within an academic year, the total cumulative to-up maximum is $4,000.00. That is, if a student holds an award between $2,001.00 to $15,000.00 and also an award over $15,000.00, their total top-up is $4,000.00.
  • Top-up eligibility excludes University of Toronto Fellowship (e.g., UTF Open), Doctoral Completion Awards, and bursaries.
  • Payment of top-ups will occur annually for the duration of the award. Thereafter, the student will revert back to the appropriate base graduate student funding package amount.
  • A student, who receives award(s) exceeding the amount equivalent to the base funding and top-up, will not be eligible to receive a top-up for that award(s).

Please note the Queen Elizabeth II Graduate Scholarships in Science and Technology is ineligible for any Top-Ups.  This is an OGS related award but is considered a Faulty of Medicine internal competitive award. 

3. Ontario Student Opportunity Trust Funds (OSOTF) Awards

Students who receive funding from needs-based/merit awards, such as OSOTFs are required to consider such funds as part of their base funding. See above for top-up policy for such awards. 

4. Bursaries

Non-repayable grants, such as the UTAPS and SGS Emergency Grant, which assists students with sudden and/or unexpected financial need, are not part of the total stipend outlined above. A student under these circumstances is therefore eligible to retain the entire amount of such an award.

5. Funding Terms

In general, provided that he/she remain “in good standing”, a doctoral stream student will be funded for his/her thesis-based program.  There are four basic principles that guide these funding terms, as follows:

  1. MSc students are guaranteed funding for their first 2 years.   
  2. PhD students admitted with completed master's degree are guaranteed student stipend funding for a minimum of 4 years.
  3. Transfer students (i.e., transfer from MSc to PhD students), are guaranteed minimum funding for their first 5 years, which includes 1 year as an MSc student.
  4. Direct-entry PhD students admitted with a bachelor's degree are guaranteed student stipend funding for a minimum of 5 years.

Fellowships Awarded by the University

Financial support is available to highly qualified graduate students, on the basis of academic excellence, from various sources at the University of Toronto. All international PhD complete applications for full-time studies received in the Department by January 15 are automatically considered for the following awards, for which there is a very small quota:

  • Connaught International Scholarship – Valued at $35,000 including tuition fee 
  • Ontario Trillium Scholarship – Awarded to International PhD students. The award is $40,000/annum

Fellowships Awarded by Government Agencies

Financial support is available to Canadian citizens and permanent residents from the following federal and provincial government programs. These awards are competitive and are based on academic standing and letters of recommendation. Application forms are available in early Fall preceding the year of admission.

  • Canada Graduate Scholarship CGS M (NSERC/ SSHRC/CIHR) – $17,500
  • Ontario Graduate Scholarship (OGS) – $15,000
  • NSERC Doctoral Scholarship – $35,000 (CGS), $21,000 (PGS)
  • Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR D) – $35,000 per year
  • CIHR/NSERC/SSHRC Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarship – Awarded to outstanding PhD students.  The award is $50,000 per year for three years.

Major Canadian Scholarships/Awards Deadlines

Teaching Assistantships

Students accepted and registered in the Department are eligible to apply for a teaching assistantship. These are fee-for-service contracts and not student awards. Ten hours per week is the maximum number of hours a full-time student can work. Further details can be obtained by writing directly to the Chair of the Department, giving full particulars of your academic training and experience.

Visit Financing Your Graduate Education for further information on financial support.