The Fonds de recherche du Québec – Nature et technologies (FRQNT) is responsible for managing the program. It was commissioned by the Ministère de l’Éducation et de l’Enseignement supérieur du Québec (MEES) which provides the funding. The program has a component open to students of all countries and six specific components reserved for students from Brazil, China, India, Israel, Mexico and Wallonia. These specific components arise from agreements concluded between Québec and foreign governments.
The objective of the Merit Scholarship Program for Foreign Students (PBEEE) is to support the internationalization of research activities in Québec’s institutions of higher education, to attract top foreign researchers and students, and to promote international recognition of Québec universities and College Centres for the Transfer of Technologies (CCTT).
The program covers higher education as a whole by giving to the CCTT researchers and administrators the opportunity to participate.
More generally, the awarding of scholarships for foreign students aims at creating cultural links and allowing the setting up of possible common scientific research projects.
The program also represents an instrument for the MEES to support the Government of Québec’s scientific policy.
These scholarships are intended for foreign students or researchers from all research sectors (health, humanities and social sciences, arts and letters, natural sciences, and engineering) preselected by a Québec university, Synchronex (a CCTT), the China Scholarship Council (CSC), the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Mexico (SRE) or the National Council on Science and Technology of Mexico (CONACYT) who wish to begin or continue studies or research activities in Québec. No research sector is given preference.
Features of the scholarships
The Merit Scholarship Programs for Foreign Students has three components:
- Doctoral research scholarships (V1, 1B, 1C, 1I, 1IS, 1M, 1W)
- Postdoctoral scholarships (V2, 2B, 2C, 2I, 2M)
- Short-term research or professional development scholarships (V3, 3B, 3C, 3I, 3IS, 3M, 3W)
Doctoral research scholarships (V1)
Postdoctoral scholarships (V2)
Short-term research or professional development scholarships (V3)
Québec-Brazil Doctoral research scholarships (1B)
Québec-Brazil Postdoctoral scholarships (2B)
Québec-Brazil Short-term research or professional development scholarships (3B)
Québec-China Doctoral research scholarships (1C)
Québec-China Postdoctoral scholarships (2C)
Québec-China Short-term research or professional development scholarships (3C)
Québec-India Doctoral research scholarships (1I)
Québec-India Postdoctoral scholarships (2I)
Québec-India Short-term research or professional development scholarships (3I)
Québec-Israel Doctoral research scholarships (1IS)
Québec-Israel Short-term research or professional development scholarships (3IS)
Québec-Mexico Doctoral research scholarships (1M)
Québec-Mexico Postdoctoral scholarships (2M)
Québec-Mexico Short-term research or professional development scholarships (3M)
Québec-Wallonia Doctoral research scholarships (1W)
Québec-Wallonia Short-term research or professional development scholarships (3W)
Value of scholarships
In addition to the scholarship, MEES offers all scholarship recipients an exemption from paying the higher tuition fees required for foreign students and the medical insurance coverage offered by the Régie de l’assurance maladie du Québec (RAMQ).
Value of scholarships for each component:
Doctoral research scholarships (V1, 1B, 1C, 1I, 1IS, 1M, 1W): $25,000 a year. The maximum duration of the scholarship is three years (nine semesters) with a possible extension of up to 12 months (monthly allowance of $1,000).
Postdoctoral scholarships (V2, 2B, 2C, 2I, 2M): $35,000 for one year (cannot be renewed).
Short-term research or professional development scholarships (V3, 3B, 3C, 3I, 3IS, 3M, 3W): $3,000 a month for a period of up to four months.
Eligibility requirements, citizenship and residence
- Must meet all eligibility requirements at the closing date of the competition (a different closing date to be confirmed for students preselected by CSC);
- Must have been preselected by a university or Synchronex (a CCTT);
- For the Québec-China scholarship, must be preselected by the CSC;
- Cannot have already received a Merit Scholarship for Foreign Students from MEES, FRQNT or the Fonds de recherche du Québec – Société et culture (FRQSC);
- Cannot be a Canadian citizen or a permanent resident of Canada;
- Cannot have applied for permanent resident status under Canadian immigration law.
In addition to the requirements mentioned above, candidates must take note of the following restrictions and administrative requirements:
Restriction on programs of study
Québec-Wallonia scholarship candidates must have previously studied in a French-language university-level institution in Belgium at the time they are awarded their scholarship.
Doctoral research (V1, 1B, 1C, 1I, 1IS, 1M, 1W) scholarship recipients must:
- Have a Certificat d’acceptation du Québec (CAQ) issued by the Ministère de l’Immigration, de la Diversité et de l’Inclusion du Québec and a study permit issued by the Canadian Consulate valid for the duration of their studies in Québec.
Postdoctoral scholarship (V2, 2B, 2C, 2I, 2M) recipients must:
- Have a work permit issued by the Canadian Consulate for the entire duration of their stay in Québec.
Short-term research or professional development scholarship (V3, 3B, 3C, 3I, 3IS, 3M, 3W) recipients must:
- Have a temporary resident visa or electronic travel authorization to come to Canada.
Doctoral research component (V1, 1B, 1C, 1I, 1IS, 1M, 1W)
- The doctoral research scholarships are intended for post-graduate students.
- Candidates are eligible for doctoral merit program scholarships from MEES in the first nine semesters of their doctoral studies. All doctoral semesters, funded or unfunded, completed before the scholarship takes effect, are subtracted from the eligibility period.
- A candidate admitted into a doctoral program from a bachelor’s program and one who fast-tracks into a doctoral program without writing a thesis must apply to the doctoral scholarships competition (V1, 1B, 1C, 1I, 1IS, 1M, 1W) to obtain the scholarship during the 3rd, 4th, and 5th years of his/her graduate studies (semesters 7 to 15).
- The maximum duration of the scholarship is three years (nine semesters), with a possible extension of up to 12 months.
Postdoctoral component (V2, 2B, 2C, 2I, 2M)
- Postdoctoral scholarships are intended for researchers who have obtained their PhD no more than two years before the competition deadline or who submitted their doctoral dissertation by January 15, 2023.
- The postdoctoral research must be conducted in an institution other than the one that granted the PhD degree. The candidate’s doctoral supervisors and co-supervisors may not act as his/her postdoctoral supervisor, even if they have changed institutions.
- The maximum duration of this scholarship is one year. This scholarship is not renewable.
- A scholarship of lesser duration can be granted if the duration of the research is less than 12 months.
Short-term research or professional development component (V3, 3B, 3C, 3I, 3IS, 3M, 3W)
- Short-term research or professional development scholarships are intended for technical and university students (option A) or researchers who have completed a doctorate no more than five years before the deadline for the competition (option B).
- The short-term research or professional development must be conducted in an institution other than the one at which the student was enrolled when he or she applied.
- The duration of this scholarship is four months. The scholarship is not renewable. A scholarship of lesser duration can be granted if the duration of the research is less than four months.
Exceptions in calculating the eligibility period
The only exception to the rules governing the eligibility period concerns circumstances beyond the candidate’s control.
Candidates who suspend their studies due to maternity or parental leave can request an extension of their eligibility period for a maximum of 12 months. The FRQNT reserves the right to refuse any request that is not sufficiently justified.
Required supporting documents
A) Documents to include in the electronic form (PDF)
The documents listed below must be attached to the electronic form in the “Other documents” section of the application form. The student must ensure that the documents are not protected by a password.
Documents submitted in a language other than French or English must be accompanied by a translation of the original.
Documents required for all components of the program (V1, 1B, 1C, 1I, 1IS, 1M, 1W//V2, 2B, 2C, 2I, 2M//V3, 3B, 3C, 3I, 3IS, 3M, 3W):
- A photocopy of the identification page of a valid passport from the candidate’s country of origin or of any official document that enables the candidate’s citizenship to be determined;
- Transcripts for every year of all university studies, whether completed or not (certificates, diplomas, Bachelor’s, Master’s, Ph.D. etc.). You do not have to include a copy of the diplomas unless it shows academic grades. Transcripts for equivalences granted for courses taken at other institutions or for previous programs must be included. For transcripts from outside North America, candidates must enclose a letter explaining the grading system used by the institution concerned. The FRQNT reserves the right to verify with institutions the authenticity of any information given by candidates. Transcripts must be organized chronologically from newest to oldest.
- Acknowledgements of receipt from the editor for all articles submitted and notices received from editors for articles accepted for publication (acknowledgements of receipt for articles already published are not sent to the evaluation committee).
Additional documents: Doctoral research component (V1, 1B, 1C, 1I, 1IS, 1M, 1W)
- If applicable, an attestation from the registrar’s office identifying part-time or unregistered semesters;
- If applicable, an official attestation of interrupted enrolment and, if necessary, a medical certificate indicating the duration and the reasons for the interruption.
Additional document: Postdoctoral scholarship component (V2, 2B, 2C, 2I, 2M)
- A copy of the Ph.D. diploma (or attestation of the first reading of the dissertation). If these documents cannot be provided, a copy of the doctoral transcript is required.
B) Letters of reference (online)
For all components of the program, two letters of reference from referees should be transmitted to the program manager. To allow the referee to complete the reference letter, the candidate must enter the referee’s account information in the FRQnet form. The referee will then have access to the letter through his or her Portfolio in the “As a referee” section.
Candidates for the Postdoctoral and the Short-term research or professional development scholarships must also provide a letter of acceptance from their supervisor in Québec.
C) Letter of acceptance (online)
For the Postdoctoral and Short-term research or professional development components (V2, 2B, 2C, 2I, 2M, V3, 3B, 3C, 3I, 3IS, 3W), a letter of acceptance from the supervisor should be sent to the program manager. To allow the supervisor to complete the letter of acceptance, the candidate must include in his FRQnet form the information related to the supervisor’s account. The supervisor will then have access to the letter of acceptance through his or her Portfolio in the section “As a Director, Supervisor or Mentor”.
The supervisor who writes the letter of acceptance cannot complete a letter of reference.
Procedure for submitting the required supporting documents
It is the candidate’s responsibility to verify that the documents attached to the electronic form (PDF) include all of the required information for the application to be considered eligible. No document requested in the electronic form that is be sent by email or by mail will be accepted.
The candidate must ensure that his or her referees and supervisor have sent, if applicable, the letters of reference (all components) and the letter of acceptance (postdoctoral and short-term research) no later than the competition deadline.
Prior to the competition deadline, candidates must submit the required documents in the “Other Documents” section of the application form. No reminder will be made and no document can be added after the competition deadline.
Should it be impossible to attach one or more documents within the prescribed period, the candidate must include a justification for each missing document. The Fonds reserves the right to refuse any requests for extension insufficiently justified.
Acknowledgement of receipt
Candidates will be emailed an acknowledgement of receipt in December. A candidate who has not received this notice must contact the program manager before December 15th (a different closing date is to be confirmed for students preselected by CSC).
Evaluation of applications
Excellence of university record
The following indicators are used:
- Cumulative average obtained
- Progression of studies
- Duration of studies
- Prizes and distinctions
Aptitude for research and relevant research experience, where applicable
The following indicators are used:
- Reason for the application;
Candidate’s experience and achievements;
- Leadership skills;
- Referee’s letters of reference;
- General presentation of the file
Scientific quality and interest of the research project and the proposed research environment
The following indicators are used:
- Quality of the supervision provided by the environment;
Clarity of the scientific objectives;
- Relevance of the methodology for the objectives sought;
- Originality of the project;
- Contribution to the advancement of knowledge in the concerned field;
- Compatibility of the proposed project with the supervisor’s field of research
Announcement of results
Results are announced by e-mail at the beginning of April 2022. Each candidate is informed of his/her ranking in the letter of announcement.