Connaught International Scholarship

Award Holder’s Information

Award Overview

Value & Duration

  • The scholarship is provided as a $10,000 top-up, in addition to the program’s normal funding package (base amount + tuition and fees), to a combined total of no less than $35,000 annually;
  • Where a unit’s funding package is less than $25,000, the Connaught top-up will be increased to bridge the difference in the unit’s normal funding package so the combined total is $35,000;
  • The graduate unit is responsible for providing recipients with the program’s normal level of funding, which may consist of various internal and external funding sources, including awards, such as a University of Toronto Fellowship (UTF), on-campus employment (e.g., teaching assistantships), and/or research assistantships;
  • The cost of UHIP (University Health Insurance Plan) coverage is in addition to the cost of tuition and incidental fees and should be factored into the program’s funding for Connaught Scholars; and
  • The Connaught is renewable on an annual basis in accordance with the program’s normal period of funding (i.e., for a total of 4-5 years*, up to a maximum of 5 years) provided the student remains eligible, in good academic standing, and meets the terms and conditions of the award.  *A 5th year is available for programs that have a 5-year funding commitment.


The Connaught International Scholarship for Doctoral Students is a cost-sharing initiative designed to assist graduate units in recruiting and supporting top international students by providing a top-up scholarship to each recipient, which will be paid in addition to the program’s normal funding package provided by the graduate unit.


Nominees must:

  • Be international applicants (Citizens and permanent residents of Canada are ineligible);
  • Not be currently registered in a degree program at the University of Toronto at the undergraduate or graduate level;
  • Have been or will be offered admission to a full-time doctoral program* with a funding commitment beginning September of the upcoming academic year​; and
  • Have achieved an A- average in each of the last two years of full-time study.​

Application Process

Nominations are made by graduate units in the Winter session based on admission applications that are completed and submitted by or before the graduate units’ admission application deadline. Admission application deadlines are set by U of T’s individual graduate units and can be viewed on the graduate units’ websites.

Applicants interested in being considered for the Connaught International Scholarship for Doctoral Students are encouraged to contact their prospective graduate unit when applying for admission to the University of Toronto. ​

Award Holder Information

Terms and Conditions:

When accepting the award, recipients must:

  • Be international applicants (Citizens and permanent residents of Canada are ineligible);
  • Not be currently registered in a degree program at the University of Toronto at the undergraduate or graduate level; and
  • Have been offered admission and are intending to pursue a full-time doctoral program* with a funding commitment at the University of Toronto.

* A recipient who is first registered as a master’s student (in a doctoral-stream program) must successfully transfer, without obtaining a master’s degree, to the graduate unit’s doctoral program within the standard reclassification time period (max. 24 months). Such master’s students will be charged the equivalent of the program’s domestic rate tuition prior to reclassifying, after which time the student will be registered as a doctoral student and receive the normal doctoral funding package for international students. If a program transfer / reclassification does not occur within the program’s standard reclassification time period, the terms and conditions listed below will apply and the appropriate master’s tuition will be assessed for the program. The Connaught does not support the attainment of a master’s degree.

After accepting the award and throughout the duration of the Connaught, failure to meet any of the below terms and conditions will result in: 1) forfeiture of the award and any future instalments; and 2) cancellation of the scholarship and ineligibility for renewal the following academic year.

Each Award Holder must:

  • Be an international student when the first instalment of funding is distributed;
    • Recipients transitioning to permanent residency after the first instalment of funding will continue to be eligible for the balance of their renewable scholarship. Transitioning after this point does not affect the awardee’s eligibility to continue holding the award;
  • Register and remain registered as a full-time graduate student at the University of Toronto (U of T). Repayment of the award in part or full will be required if the student is in full-time attendance fewer than 14 weeks in any session; and
  • Maintain an A- average, and be making satisfactory progress toward the completion of their degree (as determined by their graduate unit).

Acceptance or Decline of Award:

Award payments must be initiated by completing an SGS Award Payment Activation form (PAF) through the SGS Forms Tool. For detailed instructions, please review the SGS Award Payment Activation Instructions.

To decline an award, respond to the award offer email stating your intent to decline and the reason for the decline.

Deferment of Start Date:

Before activating the payment of award, the start date may be deferred due to medical, parental, or study permit/visa delay reasons and with graduate unit approval. The award value and duration will not be affected by the deferment. An award can be deferred for a period of up to 3 sessions (12 months) starting from September of the awarding year.

For example, a Connaught Scholarship received for the program year 2023-24 with a September 2023 start date, could be deferred to September 2024.


  • The Graduate Awards Office at the School of Graduate Studies (SGS) will distribute the top-up portion of the Connaught International Scholarship in two equal instalments, each of $5,000.
    • Once registered for the fall session, recipients can expect their first instalment within the first few weeks of September.
    • The second instalment will be issued within the first few weeks of the winter session and automatically applied to tuition and/or any outstanding balance on the student’s invoice. Any remaining funds will be refunded to the student.
  • Award payments are processed through ACORN. The method of distribution (direct deposit or a mailed cheque) depends on the information students enter into their ACORN accounts.
    • Upon registration and arriving in Canada, we strongly recommend that students set up direct deposit by logging into ACORN and adding their Canadian banking information. Direct deposit will ensure that payment(s) are issued quickly.  Cheques issued to international addresses are not mailed and instead are held by the University Registrar’s Office.  The How to Activate & Maintain Your Award section of SGS’ website contains more details on this process.
    • Recipients may submit a request to register without payment (fee deferral) which can be done through ACORN or by submitting a Request to Register without Payment Form to the graduate unit before the submission deadline.
    • Please note that Research/Teaching Assistantship payments are processed through HRIS (U of T’s Human Resources Information System) and cannot be viewed through ACORN.
  • Graduate units will distribute the program’s normal level of funding according to their normal practice as outlined in the student’s funding letter; questions about the funding package or registration process should be directed to the student’s Graduate Administrator or Registrar.

Interruption of Award:

An award may be interrupted after it has been activated and held for a minimum one session, if the award holder is taking a leave of absence and the following conditions are met:

  • Leave of absences must be approved by the graduate unit before notifying the GAO
  • a copy of the completed SGS Leave of Absence form must be provided to the GAO including any supporting documentation
  • the end date of the award will be extended by the duration of the leave

Interruption requests will be considered only for the reasons outlined below for a period of up to 3 sessions (12 months):

  • Parental or family-related responsibilities: An interruption can be requested should the award holder be required to take a leave of absence due to parental leave or family care responsibilities including child care and primary-care giver responsibilities. Documentation required
  • Medical: An interruption can be requested if an award holder is experiencing medical issues and must take a leave of absence. Documentation required, e.g., note from a doctor or health care professional
  • Relevant Work Experience: An interruption can be requested to gain relevant work experience through full-time employment or internship. Documentation required, e.g., letter from employer

Note: Should a deferment or interruption need to be extended, it may be approved one session at a time with the graduate unit’s approval of the extension.

Reinstatement of award:

One month prior to returning from a leave of absence, it is the award holder’s responsibility to inform the GAO in order to re-instate any remaining terms. If award holders do not inform the GAO of their return, they may experience a delay in receiving the instalment for their first session upon their return.

Contacts & Resources

Please direct all questions about this competition to:

Debbie Chau, Graduate Awards Officer
Graduate Awards Office
School of Graduate Studies