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Tri-Agency Info

Tri-Agency is the umbrella term used to describe the three Canadian Government research funding agencies:

  • Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR)
  • Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC)
  • Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC)

The Tri-Agency Guide on Financial Administration (TAGFA) is in effect for all eligible administering institutions on April 1, 2020. This Guide streamlines and simplifies the administration and use of grant funds by creating a ‘principles-based’ guide that promotes efficiencies, reduces administrative burden, and provides greater flexibility to administering institutions and grant recipients in ensuring the appropriate accountability and use of grant funds.

This principles-based guide will foster a balance between control and flexibility, and it will also take into consideration existing administering institutions’ policies, processes, and internal controls.

Get Topped Up

All graduate students, who have been awarded a Tri-Agency scholarship and who come to USask for a master’s or doctoral program, will receive an additional $6,000 annual top-up scholarship sponsored by the SIOS (Saskatchewan Innovation and Opportunity) and administered by the College of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies for each year that they hold the Tri-Agency award. Many departments also provide a supplementary matching value scholarship. Students should ask their Graduate Chair about this possibility.


Watch the Vanier Tutorial designed with you in mind. Peggy walks you through the steps to complete your scholarship application.

Both the SSHRC Doctoral Fellowships and the Canada Graduate Scholarships—Doctoral Scholarships (CGS-D) are offered through one annual national competition. Applicants need to submit only one application to be considered for one or both awards. As each award has notable differences, applicants must read the descriptions for each award carefully to determine if they are eligible to apply and hold each award. Applicants eligible for both the SSHRC Doctoral Fellowships and CGS D Scholarships will automatically be considered for both awards.


Tri-Agency Master's

Canada Graduate Scholarships are available in all disciplines and administered jointly by Canada’s three federal granting agencies (CIHR, NSERC, & SSHRC). To be considered, your graduate program must have a significant research component (i.e. original, autonomous research that leads to the completion of one of the following:  thesis, major research project, dissertation, scholarly publication, performance, recital and/or exhibit that is merit/expert reviewed at the institutional level as a requirement for completion of the program). Master’s programs that are based only on course work are typically not eligible since they do not include a significant research component. Please review the program instructions for other eligibility criteria:

USask receives an annual quota for the number of students it can nominate for the national competition. Applicants who have not yet started their Master’s program at the time of application may apply through the quotas of up to three eligible institutions in Canada.

Awards are valued at $17,500 over 12 months. CGS-M holders at USask also receive an additional $6,000 top-up. 2021 USask deadline: December 1, 2020, 7:00 PM CST in Research Portal


I’m not sure which Tri-Agency my research falls under.
If it seems like your research could fall under more than one Tri-Agency mandate, visit the Selecting the Appropriate Federal Granting Agency website. If you’re still not sure, speak to your supervisor or Graduate Chair. You can also forward a copy of your Research Proposal to Vanier. If you choose to do this, make sure you give Vanier plenty of time to review your proposal and reply.

Do I really need to provide all of my transcripts?
Vanier requires that you supply all transcripts from all institutions where you have taken courses for credit. This includes transfer credits that have counted towards any degree program.

I supplied by transcripts from previous universities as part of my degree program application package. Can those be used or do I have to order new ones?
We should be able to use the ones from your degree application. If you send us an email with your name and BID or NSID, we will see what transcripts we can access and use. When you send the email, please put “Requesting transcripts for scholarship competition”.

This is my first term at the university and I have no grades in my courses. Do I still need to provide current University of Saskatchewan transcripts?
Yes, Vanier wants to see the registration status in your current degree program.

But since on-campus offices are closed because of COVID-19, I’m not sure if I’m going to be able to get my current USask transcripts. What now?
Vanier is allowing us to submit unofficial transcripts for this competition only. We will download your unofficial transcripts and include them in the transcript package when we attach it to your application.

My reference isn’t able to log in using the link he was provided. What do I do?
Go into your application, delete the reference’s information, then re-enter it. This will trigger a new e-mail to your reference, which should allow them to access the reference section. If they still have trouble, they will need to contact ResearchNet for assistance.

It’s almost time to submit and one of my references hasn’t completed their portion and I can’t get in touch with them. What should I do?
You’re going to need to find another reference and quick, so you might want to think about who that would be, just in case. Delete the previous reference’s information from your application, enter the new reference’s information, send them the invitation e-mail, then think about a nice gift to get for the new reference for helping you.

I’m getting an error message when I try to upload my attachments.
Make sure your attachments follow the attachment standards required by Vanier. Even a small deviation in page size or file size can render your attachments invalid.


I still have questions!

Program information

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