School of Environmental Studies


Environmental Studies


Environmental Studies

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PhD Funding

PhD: The minimum guaranteed funding is $20,000 per year for 48 months.

MES Funding

MES: The minimum guaranteed funding is $14,000 per year for up to 24 months.


Funding will come from a combination of Graduate Teaching Assistantships (GTA), Graduate Research Assistantships (GRA), Queen’s Graduate Award (QGA), and/or other internal awards.

For the levels of funding the assumption is made that students will GTA in ENSC undergraduate courses in their funding eligible years (both years for MES and 4 years for PhD), or GRA when a suitable GTA position is not available.

GTA assignments will be made according to the four level preference system outlined in the Collective Agreement for PSAC Local 901 which covers Teaching Assistants and Teaching Fellows. ENSC courses offered and details about the number of GTA positions available in each course will be posted on the Job Opportunities page and Queen's Human Resources.

Explanation of Terms

Term Explanation
Queen's Graduate Award (QGA): Full-time graduate students are eligible to receive Queen's Graduate Awards as part of their funding packages in funding eligible years of their program. This funding is administered by the School of Graduate Studies based on departmental recommendations through the Graduate Assistant. QGA allocations are made to departments based on the number of funding eligible graduate students each year.
Graduate Teaching Assistantship (GTA):

Our department engages graduate students to work as Teaching Assistants, helping with ENSC undergraduate teaching and tutorial work. Students will be assigned 2 TAships (100 hours) per academic year except for major external scholarship holders who will be assigned 1 TA.  No student will be required to do more than 2 TA ships in an academic year but students may request additional TA work if the hours worked do not exceed 10 hrs/week/term.

The Graduate Assistant works in consultation with the Director, graduate students and course instructors to assign GTAships according to need and interest. 

Since 2011-12 -  GTA assignments are made according to the four level preference system outlined in the Collective Agreement for PSAC Local 901 which covers Teaching Assistants and Teaching Fellows.

A Teaching Assistant Form (TAF) is completed at the beginning of each term to outline the duties and responsibilities of the graduate student and course instructor.

Students who decide to opt out of GTA duties, must make their request in writing to the Graduate Chair and discuss options with their supervisor/advisor and the Graduate Chair for alternate funding arrangements.  

Graduate Research Assistantship (GRA): GRA positions support faculty research endeavours or SES engagement/outreach activities, and they foster graduate student's scholarly capacity and professional development skills. Each position involves 100 hours remunerated at the current GTA rate and will fulfill graduate funding packages for those students who do not receive a GTA position.
Research Assistantship (RA):

Although not required, it is recommended that supervisors and advisors consider raising the minimum stipend of their students by RA support from their research grants.

From time to time, financial support from the School of Environmental Studies is provided through an RA contract where needed.

Queen's Internal Fellowships and Bursaries and Ontario Graduate Scholarships (OGS):

Fellowships are established by university benefactors to lend additional financial support to our graduate students. Most fellowship nominations are adjudicated by the Fellowship Committee of the School of Graduate Studies through annual competitions. Fellowships are based on academic merit and do not require an application from a graduate students.  Applications to the MES program received on or before March 1 and meet the academic requirements of the awards are considered for this funding.  Current students must show application for external funding if they qualify to be considered for the internal competitions.  

Fellowship awards range in value from several hundred dollars to $15,000 for one or two years. In all cases, students with high academic qualifications receive preferential consideration.

Ontario Graduate Scholarships (OGS) are now administered through the Universities.  Information will be posted when it becomes available from SGS.

International Student Tuition Award (ITA): Each academic year all International PhD students will receive $5,000 by deposit into their tuition account with the University. This is in addition to the guaranteed minimum funding.  There is no need to apply.  MES students will receive this tuition award if available.
Graduate Entrance Tuition Award (GETA)  Our department is allocated one GETA per academic year.  The value of the award is equal to domestic tuition fees for one year and is administered to an incoming domestic MES student by the School of Graduate Studies based on a recommendation from the department through the Graduate Assistant.  The recipient must have achieved an average of at least 80% in the last two years of study.  As this award is not used to offset higher tuition fees paid by International students, it acts as a bonus amount to the recipient's stipend for the year. It can be held in conjunction with other awards up to $10,000 in value.

Other Sources

Check the individual agencies listed blow for information about the various funding opportunities

OGSCIHR IRSC think Research think Queen'sNSERCIDRCSSHRCInternational Association for Great Lakes Research