PhD Awards Policy

The University of Toronto offers a PhD Funding Guarantee.

Funding is for four years from date of entry to the PhD program (five years for direct entry students), or until the student obtains full-time employment (or equivalent), whichever comes first. Full-time graduate students are defined according to government regulations and university guidelines that are set out in the current SGS Calendar.

Support is from a variety of sources and may include external awards from federal or other granting agencies; research assistantships (RA); teaching and/or teaching assistant (TA) appointments; as well as other U of T and departmental funding.

  • PhD students in all years, including incoming students, must apply for all available TA positions for which they are eligible.
  • PhD students who do not apply for or decline TA (or RA) positions that are included in their total financial support package will have their funding level reduced by the equivalent amount.
  • Continuing PhD students must apply for the OGS awards program if their grades are eligible.
  • Continuing PhD students must apply for an SSHRC award upon consultation with their supervisor or the graduate coordinator.

Award Payments

  • Awards for PhD students begin September 1, have a term of 12 months, and are paid in three instalments (September, January and May). Depending on the source of the award(s), these instalments maybe of equal or unequal amounts.
  • Award Payment Procedures are discussed on the SGS website and includes information about the Direct Deposit Option which is available on ACORN in the personal information section. Note that you must be registered before you can activate this feature.
  • January and May award instalments are posted to the student’s fees account and automatically applied towards outstanding tuition and other charges. The balance will be provided via direct deposit or a cheque will be mailed. Be sure to keep both your permanent AND mailing address updated on ACORN since ACORN will NOT deposit or mail an award payment unless the “mailing address” is active.

Other PhD Awards

PhD students at the CIRHR will also be interested in additional sources of financial aid including Doctoral Completion Awards and PhD Travel Grants.

Applications can be found on the CIRHR Forms Page.