Funding Graduate Studies | Graduate & Postdoctoral Studies

Funding Graduate Studies

Financial Planning

Making plans for financial support is very important as you plan for the next stage of your education as a graduate student. How do you handle your financial concerns? Financial planning for graduate students is a must. You will want to make sure that you know your income and your expenses. To assist you in your financial planning please consult

Funding & Employment

As a graduate student you will have received a funding package made up of a number of components.   The options may be one or more of the following:

  • Graduate Teaching Assistantships (GTA);
  • Graduate Research Assistantships (GRA);
  • Graduate Service Assistantships (GSA); and
  • Scholarships and Awards (external and/or internal).

Combined with bursaries provided to students in need, in 2019/20 graduate students at the University of Guelph secured just under $57.9M in total funding through these supports.

Each of the seven Colleges has established a minimum funding level for PhD students, some of which are exceeded by departmental minimum funding levels.  At the Masters level, funding levels are more variable, and, indeed, some programs expect students to self-fund their programs.  Be sure to investigate funding opportunities through College and Departmental websites or by reaching out to the Graduate Program Assistant for the program of interest.

Employment as a Graduate Teaching Assistant (GTA), or a Graduate Service Assistant (GSA), is regulated by CUPE Local 3912 - Unit #1.  A copy of this collective agreement will be supplied to you by the department in which you are employed. 

Most Graduate Research Assistantships (GRAs) are paid to graduate students in support of their scholarly activity/research and in the preparation of their thesis/major paper (a Type 1 GRA).  In other cases, a GRA may be paid in support of a research project that is not directly related to one’s thesis/major paper (a Type 2 GRA).  Funds to pay the GRA may be from research grants or contracts received by faculty members from external agencies or governments. In these cases, the student's research would contribute to the research of the faculty member under whose direction it is conducted and the dollar value of GRA stipends may depend on the external granting agencies' guidelines on support of graduate students through research operating grants. Alternatively, funding for the GRA may be from the University. In either situation the GRAs must be approved by the department chair or school director on the recommendation of the advisor.

Financial Aid and Counselling

Whether you need to apply for OSAP assistance, or require some assistance to determine your financial situation, there are resources available to you.