Graduate Scholarship Evaluation Process

The School of Graduate Studies (SGS) appreciates the importance and prestige that graduate level scholarships have on graduate students’ academic careers and research. The School of Graduate Studies’ scholarship evaluation processes come from the direction of the scholarship governing body to which the student is applying (i.e. Tri-Agency, the Ministry of Colleges and Universities, Boards of Trustees, etc.). The School of Graduate Studies has internal policies and procedures in place as well to ensure the confidentiality and integrity of the scholarship evaluation process.

The Graduate Studies Committee

The Graduate Studies Committee (GSC) is the body that directs and oversees the administration of graduate education. GSC defines what constitutes graduate education at Nipissing University, maintains equity in program and degree standards across all academic disciplines, provides quality control over all aspects of graduate education, and maintains equity and fairness in the treatment of graduate students.  GSC consists of the following members:

  • Dean, Graduate Studies and Research (Chair)
  • Graduate Program Coordinator, Master of Arts in History (Voting)
  • Graduate Program Coordinator, Master of Arts in Sociology (Voting)
  • Graduate Program Chair, Master of Education/PhD in Education (Voting)
  • Graduate Program Coordinator, Master of Environmental Science/Studies (Voting)
  • Graduate Program Coordinator, Master of Science in Kinesiology (Voting)
  • Graduate Program Coordinator, Master of Science in Mathematics (Voting)
  • Dean, Arts and Science (Non-Voting)
  • Dean, Education and Professional Studies (Non-Voting)
  • Executive Director, Library Services (Non-Voting)
  • Registrar (Non-Voting)
  • Secretary, Office of Graduate Studies and Research (Recording secretary, Non-Voting)

The Awards and Funding Committee

GSC appoints a subcommittee - the Awards & Funding Committee (A&F Committee) – to evaluate graduate level scholarships for Nipissing University’s graduate programs.  Members of the A&F Committee serve two year terms on a rotational basis to allow for succession planning.  The A&F Committee members must be current members of the Nipissing University Graduate Faculty. SGS also insures that these committee members are multidisciplinary and represent both faculty offices of Nipissing University (Arts and Science, Education and Professional Studies) in addition to spanning multiple research areas.  The A&F Committee evaluates applications based on the selection criteria and scholarship governing bodies’ policies (outlined below).

Conflict of Interest and Confidentiality

In the event of a conflict of interest, a given A&F Committee member will not evaluate the set of applications where the conflict of interest exists. For example, if a student applies for a Canada Graduate Scholarship-Masters (CGS-M) SSHRC award and Dr. Smith is the student’s supervisor and also sits on the A&F Committee, Dr. Smith would not participate in the CGS-M SSHRC evaluation. There are sufficient A&F Committee members and alternate committee members, if needed, to ensure that an application is properly reviewed in the event of a conflict of interest.

To maintain the integrity of the scholarship evaluation process as well as the confidentiality of the applicants, scholarship deliberations occur in camera.  SGS remains the point of contact to the A&F Committee. Please contact sgs@nipissingu.ca if you have questions about the scholarship evaluation and allocation processes outlined below.

Scholarship Evaluation and Allocation

Tri-Agency Awards – Doctoral:

The Canada Graduate Scholarships-Doctoral dictates the Selection Process by which Canadian institutions must abide.  That Selection Process as it pertains to Nipissing University is as follows:

  1. The institution appoints an internal selection committee (A&F Committee).
  2. Applicants currently registered at a Canadian institution (i.e. Nipissing University) apply to the appropriate agency via the online portal by the institution’s internal deadline.
  3. SGS retrieves the applications from the online portals.
  4. SGS posts the applications to an internal, secure Sharepoint site along with resources (Selection Criteria, scoring system) where the A&F Committee can review the applications.
  5. The A&F Committee recommends 3 applications per research agency (CIHR, NSERC, and SSHRC) to submit to the national competition.
  6. The Tri-Agencies communicate the results of their decision to SGS.
  7. SGS submits the recommendations of the A&F Committee to the Tri-Agencies.
Tri-Agency Awards – Masters:

The Canada Graduate Scholarships-Masters dictates the Selection Process by which Canadian institutions must abide. That Selection Process as it pertains to Nipissing University is as follows:

  1. The institution appoints an internal selection committee (A&F Committee).
  2. Applicants apply to the university which they plan to pursue their Master’s degree using the Research Portal.
  3. SGS retrieves the applications from the Research Portal and sorts them by agency (CIHR, NSERC, and SSHRC).
  4. SGS posts the applications to an internal, secure Sharepoint site along with resources (Selection Criteria) where the A&F Committee can review the applications.
  5. The A&F Committee evaluates the applications and assigns 1 x CIHR, 1 x NSERC, and 3 x SSHRC awards along with a list of alternates for each, in the event a student is deemed ineligible by the Tri-Agency or the student declines their offer from Nipissing University.
  6. SGS submits the results of the A&F Committee decisions on the Research Portal.
Ontario Graduate Scholarship:

There are currently 14 OGS Awards available at Nipissing University (this number is subject to change each year, without notice). They are evaluated internally based on the following criteria:

50% Academic Excellence
30% Research Potential
20% Interpersonal Skills (i.e. reference letters)

The process for assigning the OGS awards is:

  1. Applicants submit their applications directly to sgs@nipissingu.ca
  2. SGS forwards eligible OGS applications to the respective Graduate Program Committee
  3. The Graduate Program Committees rank their respective OGS applications
  4. The Graduate Program Committees submit rankings to SGS
  5. SGS forwards the rankings and all OGS applications to the A&F Committee via the internal, secure Sharepoint site along with resources for evaluating applications.
  6. The A&F Committee evaluates the applications and assigns 1 x OGS per program* (7 total, top ranked by program), 1 x International OGS*, 2 x Indigenous OGS*, and 4 x Top Ranked OGS (across all graduate programs)

*Where eligible applications exist.

Other Awards:

Other scholarships that require an internal selection committee to review and nominate applications before submitting to a governing body (i.e. Board of Trustees), such as the Mackenzie King Memorial Scholarship, the Senior Women Academic Administrators of Canada (SWAAC) graduate scholarships, etc., follow the process below:

  1. Scholarship applications are submitted directly to sgs@nipissingu.ca.
  2. SGS collects the applications and posts them on the internal, secure Sharepoint site along with corresponding resources.
  3. The A&F Committee evaluates the applications based on relevant selection criteria and submits nominations to SGS.
  4. SGS forwards the nominated application(s) to the corresponding scholarship governing body.
Nipissing University Graduate Scholarships and Graduate Assistantships:

Nipissing University Graduate Scholarships (NUGS) and Graduate Assistantships (GA) are internal scholarship awards that do not require the student to submit an application. Students are considered for an award based on merit and eligibility (i.e. minimum average requirements, full-time status, etc.). SGS is given an annual budget for NUGS and GAs each year. They are assigned as follows:

  1. SGS allocates a budget of NUGS and GA funding to each graduate program based on student enrollment and eligibility.
  2. The Graduate Program Committees assign NUGS and GA funding based on eligibility, merit, and program based funding allocation policies.

Contact Us:

If you have questions about GSC, the Awards and Funding Committee, scholarships, or the School of Graduate Studies, please contact sgs@nipissingu.ca.