Research Services USRA FAQs

Supervisors

Supervisors are no longer required to hold an active grant when applying to supervise a USRA student. Any faculty member authorized to independently supervise students may be eligible.

The NSERC USRA allocation is based on data from three previous funding years.

Yes, Adjunct Professors are eligible to apply.

A grant application number is no longer required so simply enter 9’s.

Yes, grants are considered active during the 1-yr extension period.

Yes, providing they can support them.

The supervisor must explain why multiple students are required for the same project on Form 202 Part II section “Outline of Proposed Research”.

Yes, a student can be co-supervised, however, one supervisor has to be the ‘primary supervisor’ and that supervisor completes Form 202 Part II. Only the primary supervisor is listed on the List of Submissions. The Department Coordinator communicates the split financial arrangement from the second supervisor on the form they have to forward to Jane Rogers, Research Accounting.

This is up to each department. All Form 202s must be submitted by the time Department Coordinators forward List of Applications to Research Services. After Research Services check for completion they will ‘Forward’ Form 202s to NSERC.

Students

A student can apply to more than one department or institution, but can hold only one USRA per competition year (May 1–April 30).

Yes, assuming the student hadn’t exceeded the maximum 3 awards over the course of their undergraduate program, yes they can because NSERC’s fiscal year (competition) year is April to March. Therefore, the summer competition is in a different fiscal year.

Yes, a Queen’s researcher can supervise a non-Queen’s undergraduate student. A non-Queen’s student must upload an official transcript and a transcript legend to Form 202.

Which school is the application submitted to? That depends on where the student will actually be working (or working most of the time). If the student will work equally at both schools, then the supervisor can decide.

Yes, a student is eligible but the award has to be held at a Canada institution.

Yes, a student can hold a USRA in either of the two terms immediately following the completion of all the requirements of their Bachelor’s degree. If a student meets the requirements for a Bachelor degree in April of the same year then he/she is still eligible to apply for a USRA.

Medical students are not eligible to hold a USRA. You are not eligible to apply for a USRA if you are currently enrolled in an undergraduate professional degree program in the health sciences (e.g., MD, DDS, BScN). The reasoning is that the USRA is meant to entice students to pursue graduate studies, and an MD wouldn’t normally be considered preparation for that.

Yes, however the supervisor must approve the working arrangement and the student has to make up the time if the job impacts the USRA hours.

Students need to upload a transcript (minus the legend) before the Department Coordinator submits the List of Submissions to Research Services. The students can consider themselves ‘successful’ when Department Coordinator’s submit the list to Research Services. ‘Unofficial’ transcripts will be accepted.

Administration

The Department Co-ordinator will not know if a student self-identified unless the student tells them. The student indicates this in Form 202 but it does not show up when the form is printed. Only the Research Services Liaison Officer can see if any student self-identified.

Yes.

No, all Research Services require is an email confirming the revision.

The value of the award has increased from $4,500 to $6,000 (2021). Universities must still contribute a minimum of 25% to the award value.

Supervisors are required to supplement the amount of the award by at least 25% of its value using other sources, such as university funds, NSERC grants, or any other research funds and is for the student’s personal use at their discretion. Students must not be expected to contribute to the costs of research, (equipment and supplies or travel) from their award.