Funding questions to ask your program

When discussing the issue of funding with the academic unit, there are many relevant questions you should consider asking. The following is not an exhaustive list, but a sample to guide you. Please note that not all questions may be applicable to the academic unit or program to which you are applying.

As with any institution offering you assistance, remember to record the name of the person you speak to and the date that you called them in case you need to follow up with them in future. You can download and print the McGill Funding Questions.

You should ask the unit:

  1. Is it best to ask you about funding questions over the phone, by email or is there a website containing this information?

    (When you reach the person responsible for answering funding questions):

  2. Whom should I speak with from this department to discuss funding opportunities for graduate students?
  3. What funding is available to me?
  4. Is there a minimum funding guarantee? If so, what is the amount?
  5. What might funding include within the department?
    • Teaching assistantships (TA)
    • Research assistantships (RA)
    • Graduate fellowships
    • Departmental and faculty awards
    • Stipends from McGill
    • faculty members’ research grants or research contracts
  6. How are funding amounts decided?
  7. Will I be automatically considered for all McGill funding opportunities? Are there any awards I have to apply to?
  8. If I have to apply, where do I apply? Who do I send my application to?
  9. Is multi-year funding available within this department? If so, how many years does it cover? Are there conditions to renewing the funding from year to year? Can it be terminated/revoked? If so, on what basis?
  10. How are fellowship decisions made?
  11. Are there stipends available, and how do they work? A stipend is support paid from the research supervisor’s research grant.
  12. Are teaching and/or research assistantships available in the unit?
  13. How are assistantships assigned?
  14. What happens if I’m starting at McGill with external funding already granted to me? What are the departmental policies around internal funding in this situation?
  15. If I come in with federal or provincial fellowships, will it be supplemented with additional funding?
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