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Graduate Research Trainee

Revision, December 2012. Start of revision.


If you are enrolled in a graduate program at another university and would like to attend McGill for a limited period of time (up to 12 months*) to conduct research only, you must apply as a Graduate Research Trainee. Research trainees are not permitted to register for courses. This category of registration is for students registered in graduate programs in other universities to conduct PART of their thesis research at McGill under the supervision of a McGill professor. The purpose of the training period at McGill must be described. Acceptable reasons include: the student is engaged in collaborative projects between professor(s) at McGill and the student's sponsoring institution; the student wishes to take advantage of specific expertise, academic resources, or technical capabilities at McGill to enhance the thesis research being conducted at the sponsoring institution; the student is spending a stage at McGill under a specific Memorandum of Understanding between McGill and the sponsoring institution; the student's thesis supervisor has relocated to McGill, but the student remains registered at the former institution to complete his/her graduate degree. The category of Graduate Research Trainee cannot be used to conduct the majority of thesis research at McGill under the supervision of a McGill professor.

* Extensions may be granted under exceptional cases with prior consultation and approval by Management of Academic Records, Enrolment Services.


Students applying to be a graduate research trainee:

  • must be registered in a graduate degree program at another university;
  • must have permission from the sponsoring institution and include a letter of permission with the application;
  • must have the approval of a McGill professor and graduate program to supervise the research;
  • may apply for a start date at any time throughout the academic year, but for administrative reasons, must reapply at the beginning of the formal academic year (for Fall term admission) if remaining at McGill; for example, if you begin a 12-month visit in January, you must reapply for the Fall term (September). A trainee may spend up to a total of 12 months at McGill, but the time does not have to be consecutive. The trainee can apply for multiple stages over a longer period of time.
  • must include copies of transcripts as part of the application package;
  • must demonstrate adequate proficiency in English to function in the University environment, including any required safety training and understanding of policies and procedures. Assessment of written and verbal language skills is the responsibility of the supervising professor;
  • are not charged fees for any term of registration including Summer;
  • are not charged any Student Services or Ancillary fees and thus do not have access to these services (including health insurance). Membership to athletics services may be purchased. Graduate Research Trainees do have access to McGill libraries, email, and required training in research ethics and safety;
  • must arrange for basic health insurance coverage prior to arrival at McGill and may be required to provide proof of coverage.

To submit an application refer to: www.mcgill.ca/gps/students/graduate-research-trainee.

Revision, December 2012. End of revision.

Programs, Courses and University Regulations—2012-2013 (last updated Nov. 22, 2012) (disclaimer)