2017 University of Toronto Excellence Awards (UTEA)


Purpose: To provide opportunities for research experience at the undergraduate level in the natural sciences and engineering (NSE) or social sciences and humanities (SSH); to augment the formal research courses offered by the University of Toronto; to give undergraduate students opportunities to experience different approaches to research in various fields; to help students learn and appreciate the investigative methodology of areas of particular interest; and, to provide students with an experience that will allow them to make informed decisions about pursuing careers in research.

Award Value: UTEA-NSE: $6,000 ($4,875 provided by the University to be matched by a minimum of $1,125 by the student’s supervisor and/or department). Any supplement above this level may be set at the supervisor's or department's discretion.

Application Forms: Part 1 - StudentMicrosoft Office document icon2017 UTEA appl part 1.doc (41 KB) Part 2 - Supervisor Microsoft Office document icon2017 UTEA appl part 2.doc (38.5 KB)

UTEA-SSH: $6,000 provided by the University. Any supplement above this level may be set at the supervisor's or department's discretion.

Award Duration: 14 full weeks in the summer term, between May 1 and September 30, 2017.

Eligibility of Students for a UTEA


  • Canadian citizen, permanent resident of Canada, or foreign student with valid student visa for the full summer work term.
  • Registered (at the time of application) as a full-time student in a bachelor's degree program at the University of Toronto (and not holding higher degrees in NSE or SSH).
  • Must have obtained a cumulative average of "B+" or higher. For students in higher years, this average can be applied to the best two years of study.
  • May already hold a bachelor's degree in any discipline and be studying towards a second bachelor's degree in NSE or SSH.
  • Registered full-time throughout his/her program, except for the final session, during which he/she was only required to register part-time in order to complete his/her degree. The award must be held in the session immediately following his/her final session.


  • Currently enrolled in an undergraduate professional degree program in the health sciences (e.g., M.D., D.D.S., B.Sc.N.). Note that CIHR Undergraduate Health Professional Awards and the University of Toronto’s Undergraduate Research Opportunity Awards are available to students enrolled in these programs.
  • Holds higher degrees in the NSE or SSH.

To hold an award, students must:

  • have been registered full-time in the term immediately before holding the award unless only part-time study was required to complete degree requirements;
  • not have started a program of graduate studies in NSE or SSH; and
  • be engaged on a full-time basis in research and development activities in the NSE or SSH under the direction of an eligible supervisor during the award tenure.

Please also note the following:

  • A student may only be nominated in one department under one supervisor, and may not apply to both UTEA-NSE and UTEA-SSH in the same year.
  • A student may not concurrently hold a UTEA and a NSERC Undergraduate Student Research Award (USRA).
  • Preference will normally be given to second and third year students.
  • A student may hold only one UTEA per fiscal year (i.e., April 1 to March 31).
  • A student may hold a maximum of 3 UTEAs throughout his/her university career, although priority will be given to applicants who will be first-time holders if selected.
  • Graduating students may hold an award in the term immediately following the completion of their undergraduate program requirements, as long as they have not started a program of graduate studies.

Eligibility of Supervisors

  • There is a maximum of 2 UTEA applications per eligible supervisor.
  • A supervisor must hold an active NSERC or SSHRC research grant (either as the principal investigator or the co-investigator ) at the time his/her student holds the UTEA award (i.e. May 1 – September 30, 2017) or is actively seeking funding under the eligible NSERC or SSHRC programs as defined in this guideline document.  In the latter case, an application must have been submitted to an eligible NSERC or SSHRC program by the supervisor at the time the student applies for a UTEA with the result of the NSERC or SSHRC application pending.

Eligible NSERC and SSHRC Programs

NSERC Programs
UofT Faculty who hold the following NSERC Research Grants are eligible to supervise students applying for a UTEA-NSE:

Grants Programs

  • Climate Change and Atmospheric Research
  • Discovery Grants (Individual, Group and Subatomic Physics (SAP) Project, Northern Research Supplements, Frontiers, Accelerator Supplements, Ship Time)
  • G8 Research Councils Initiative on Multilateral Research Funding and Belmont Forum
  • CREATE (Collaborative Research and Training Experience Program)
  • Brockhouse Canada Prize for Interdisciplinary Research in Science and Engineering
  • NSERC John C. Polanyi Award
  • NSERC/NRCan/AECL Generation IV Energy Technologies Grants

Partnerships Programs

  • Automotive Partnership Canada (APC)
  • Strategic Network Grants (SNG)
  • Strategic Project Grants (SPG)
  • Chairs in Design Engineering (CDE)
  • Collaborative Research and Development (CRD) Grants
  • Engage Grants (EG)
  • Industrial Research Chairs (IRC)
  • Innovation Frontiers (IF)
  • Interaction Grants (IG)
  • Idea to Innovation (I2I) Grants

Chairs and Faculty Support Programs

  • Chairs for Women in Science and Engineering (CWSE)
  • Northern Research Chairs Program (NRCP)


UofT Faculty holding only NSERC Research Tools and Instruments, or Infrastructure Grants are not eligible.

SSHRC Programs

UofT Faculty who hold any SSHRC grant (with the exception of the grant programs as noted below) are eligible to supervise students applying for a UTEA-SSH.

  • Aid and Attendance Grants to Scholarly Associations
  • Aid to Scholarly Publications
  • Canadian Initiative on Social Statistics (CISS) Data Training Schools
  • Connections – Canadian Federation for the Humanities and Social Sciences
  • Queen's Fellowship - SSHRC Fund
  • International Space University Fellowship
  • John G. Diefenbaker Award
  • Knowledge Impact in Society
  • Parliamentary Internship Programme
  • Presidential Fund for Innovation and Development
  • SSHRC Doctoral and Postdoctoral Fellowships
  • SSHRC Postdoctoral Prize
  • William E. Taylor Fellowship
  • Canada Research Chairs
  • Canada Excellence Research Chairs
  • SSHRC Connection Grants (including other grants solely for research communication and dissemination)
  • SSHRC Institutional Grants (SIG)

Research Environment and Field Work

It is expected that provisions will be made for alternative supervision of the student during absences of the supervisor, and that any additional costs related to field work (e.g. travel expenses) will be covered by the supervisor or the department.

Activity Report

An Activity Report on the research experience is to be submitted by each UTEA award holder, no later than October 1, 2017, to Michael Hussey, Research Funding Officer, Office of Research Services, at m.hussey@utoronto.ca. The purpose of this report is to provide information on how well the UTEA program is meeting its objectives.

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