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The ISS Masters Training Program

This page is currently being revised.  Some details may change before the next application period.

Masters students accepted into the Integrated Sensor System Training Program are working on an existing multidisciplinary and collaborative research project on integrated sensor system development at one of the four participating universities. They have a strong interest in developing additional experience and skills to support this research and to develop a career in manufacturing, research and development and/or academia.

The ISS Masters Training Program take the equivalent of 2-3 credits (~120 hours) in non-credit professional and technical workshops which are designed to ease the student’s transition into the job market.

Program Eligibility

The NSERC CREATE Masters Training Program in Integrated Sensor Systems is open to students registered as masters students at McGill, Sherbrooke, Ecole Polytechnique or INRS.  At the time of application, students do not need to have been accepted into the program of choice, but the student must have a supervisor at one of the schools willing to sponsor them in an eligible project to start in the upcoming September, January or May.

Masters students within the ISS Training Program should be working on an existing (or proposed)Thesis research project under a research supervisor at one of the Partner Universities. This project should be within the scope of the Integrated Sensor System program and involve time spent at least 2 partner laboratories in different disciplines or schools.

Masters students should have enough time left in their degree to complete all program requirements (a minimum of 1 year including summer).  Students expecting to complete the program in less than 2 years should discuss how they will complete all the course requirements and the exchange/internship in their application in the time available.

Please see the Program Guide for full details on eligibility requirements

Program Requirements

1. Take two (2) of the following intensive hands-on workshops usually held in the summer semester (2-5 days each).

  • Introduction to Silicon Microfabrication
  • Introduction to Surface Chemistry
  • Hands-on Workshop in Micro and Nanobiotechnology (an introduction to soft lithography and microfluidics) [winter semester]
  • Introduction to Surface and Materials Characterization
  • Sensor Integration

2. Take seven (7) of the following  9 short courses on professional skills held throughout the year (1-4 days each)

  • Basic Business Skills (FALL/WINTER 8/10 evening sessions)*^
  • Project Management*
  • Intellectual Property*
  • Academic Integrity *^
  • Learning to Teach Day^
  • Leading Effective Discussions: Facilitation Skills for Graduate Students^
  • Captivating an Audience: Public Speaking/Communicating your research to non-scientists^
  • Entrepreneurship
  • Process Control
  • Others as available

*required topics    ^a Skillsets offering

3.  As well as participating in:

  • A monthly seminar series (At least 50% each year) on sensor research
  • The CREATE-ISS Sensors Summer School
  • Other industry and research professional networking and social events

4. AND undertake an industrial internship in technology development OR a research exchange in an international partner university (some funding available)#

5. ISS Masters students are also encouraged to take at least 2 relevant courses of their choice and are invited to other industry and research professional networking and social events.

# Required for ISS Masters Award holders, optional for non-Award holders

Although the duration of the Masters ISS Training Program is somewhat flexible Masters students must have at least 1 summer semester and 2 fall/winter semesters to complete the program course requirements.  Students expecting to complete the program in less than 2 years should discuss how they will complete all the course requirements and the exchange/internship in their application in the time available.

  • To be eligible for the ISS Masters Scholarship Awards, students may not be current holders of any NSERC or other federal granting agency scholarships.
  • Preference will be given to students enrolled in natural science and engineering fields.
  • Please note that internships/exchanges are required for ALL ISS Scholarship Award holders.
  • NSERC Scholars may apply for the ISS training programs and may receive sponsored participation and exchange or internship travel funding, but not ISS Masters Awards or ISS PhD Fellowship Stipends.  Based on the recent revisions to the Tri-COUNCIL award guides, the possibility of “top-ups” for NSERC Scholars is currently being evaluated, but this may take until after the application date.  If this is revised, applicants will be offered these automatically if they qualify.
  • If you do not wish apply to join the training program, you may still attend those events open to the public at your own expense, when space is available.  These are listed on the ISS website we are happy to add you to the network email list.
  • Cost compensation for selected travel and accommodation expenses assumed as a result of participation in the ISS program is available.
  • Application for travel funds will be assessed based on need for funding during the program application process.
  • Please see the Program Guide for full details on eligibility requirements

The ISS Training Program is funded in part by Funded in part by the National Science & Engineering Research Council of Canada and by the Participating Universities:  

  Training program activities hosted by McGill University     ISS hosted in concert with Universite de Sherbrooke          ISS hosted in concert with Ecole Polytechnique       ISS hosted in concert with INRS