When you apply for research grants and awards from external organizations and institutions, the Office of Research Services can support your efforts and ensure the process runs smoothly. All applications for external research funding must be reviewed by the Office of Research Services and approved by the provost before submission.

Internal deadlines for external applications

Eight weeks before application deadline

Notify the Office of Research Services, your department chair and your dean to let them know you are applying for the award. Begin writing the application and putting together your research team.

Three to five weeks before deadline

If required by your Faculty or School, submit the draft application to your chair and dean at this time. As well, if you would like external editorial review, email a draft of the application, as a Word document, to the Office of Research Services. The Online Grant Application System should not be used at this stage of the process.

Two weeks before deadline

Submit your grant application using the Online Grant Application System by following these steps.

1. Log in to PeopleSoft.

2. Choose the Research tile.

3. Navigate to the My Grant Application page and select External Grant from the list of awards. Choose Start a New Application to begin a new application. Applications that have already been started can also be accessed from this screen. 

4. After the application has been submitted, the system will automatically seek review and approval from your department chair and dean.

External Grant Application Guide

About approvals: Approvals are required to ensure workload, personnel, space, equipment and support needs are addressed. During this phase of the process, your application may be returned to you for editing; if so you must submit your application again. After your dean has approved the application, the Office of Research Services forwards it to the provost for institutional approval. You will be notified when approval has been granted. Your application may then be submitted to the granting agency. The application may not be submitted without these approvals.

Two to five days before deadline

Submit the application to the granting agency following their guidelines.

One to two days before deadline

Office of Research Services completes the application process as required by the funding agency (e.g., Tri-Agency).

Tri-Agency Funding

The university has a signed Memorandum of Understanding with the Tri-Agencies, the three primary sources of research funding in Canada: Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC); Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC); and Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR).

Requirements of the agreement include the specific obligations of the university and the researcher.

Tri-Agency Policies and guidelines

Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC)

Key Programs Annual deadlines (subject to change)*
SSHRC Insight Grants October 15
SSHRC Insight Development Grants February 1
SSHRC Partnership Grants Stage 1 February 15
SSHRC Partnership Development Grants November 30
SSHRC Connection Grants February 1, May 1, August 1, November 1
SSHRC Partnership Engage Grant March 15, June 15, September 15, December 15


*Deadlines may change from year to year. Consult the SSHRC website for current program information.

SSHRC Website

SSHRC Institutional Grant

SSHRC Institutional Grants (SIG) help eligible Canadian post secondary institutions fund, through their own merit review processes, small-scale research and research-related activities by their faculty and students in the social sciences and humanities.

Application and information


Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC)

Key Programs  Agency deadline (subject to change)*
NSERC Discovery Grants Notice of intent: August 1
Application: November 1
NSERC Engage Open
NSERC Connection Open
NSERC Idea to Innovation January 9; April 3, July 4


*Deadlines may change from year to year. Consult the NSERC website for current program information.

NSERC Website

NSERC Resource videos

NSERC Application webinars

Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR)

Key Program Annual deadlines (subject to change)*
CIHR Project Grant Registration February 6; Application March 6


*Deadlines may change from year to year. Consult the CIHR website for current program information.

CIHR Website