Graduate Stipends

Fundamental Immunology Program (2017-2018)

The University of Toronto policy is that doctoral graduate students must receive minimum stipends during the normal graduate degree program duration, as outlined in the Graduate Unit's Funding Policy. If such support is not derived completely from external and internal fellowships or awards, then it is expected that the supervisor will provide the balance of support.

The Immunology Department has the policy that all fundamental students are to be supported at the level prescribed by the Faculty of Medicine (see below). Payment of the stipend is the responsibility of the supervisor. The stipend is usually derived both from external awards to the student and from grants to the supervisor. Effective September 1, 2012, it will be structured as a living allowance plus tuition and incidental fees (see below for fee information).

Stipend Totals


Domestic Stipend

International Stipend




(post-qualifcation / reclass Exam)



Please note: Starting in Fall 2018, all international PhD students will be subject to the domestic tuition rate. Therefore, stipends for international PhD students will be that of domestic PhD students. International MSc students will remain subject to international tuition rates and therefore, their stipends will not change.

Stipend Breakdown

For a detailed breakdown of the components of the graduate stipend, please click here.

Top-up Practices

A student who receives $15,000 or more, as a major, competitive, external award, will be provided with an additional $4,000 top-up in recognition of receiving an external award. In such cases, the student will be paid the amount of his/her award plus the difference between his/her award and the total stipend plus a $4,000 top-up. 

Payment of top-ups will occur for the duration of the award. Thereafter, payments to the student will revert to the graduate student funding package amount. 

Awards eligible for top-up, must be major, competitive, external and not restricted to a limited group of students, such as those at a hospital-based research institute. They may, however, be restricted by topic area. Eligible awards include: CIHR, NSERC, Canadian Cancer Society, Heart & Stroke Foundation, Canadian Diabetes Association and other national and international funding agencies. Additional awards that meet these criteria may also be eligible for top up.


Please note that OGS is not considered an external award in the Faculty of Medicine. Although it is valued at $15,000, only $10,000 is provided by the Ontario Government as a scholarship; therefore, it is not eligible for the $4000 top-up. OGS recipients will receive a $2000 top-up.

Also, please note the Queen Elizabeth II Graduate Scholarships in Science and Technology is ineligible for any Top-Ups. This is an OGS related award but is considered a Faulty of Medicine internal competitive award.

Students who receive an award of greater value than the total stipend plus $4,000 (e.g., Doctoral or Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarships) will be ineligible for a further top-up.

Ontario Student Opportunity Trust Funds (OSOTF) Awards

Students who receive funding from needs-based/merit awards, such as OSOTFs are required to consider such funds as part of their total stipend.


Bursaries, such as the SGS Emergency Grant, which assists students with sudden and unexpected financial need are not part of the total stipend outlined above. A student is, therefore, eligible to retain the entire amount of such an award. 

Funding Term

In general, provided that he/she remains “in good standing”, a student will be funded for the duration of his/her program. Funding is guaranteed for 2 years for MSc students. For PhD students funding is guaranteed for a minimum of 5 years, which includes 1 year as an MSc student. 

As appropriate, once the supervisory committee has agreed that the student has completed all necessary experiments needed for writing his/her thesis, an MSc student will have a maximum of 4 months and a PhD student a maximum of 6 months in which to prepare the thesis and schedule a defense. The student will continue to be paid the total stipend during this period. If the defense is not scheduled within the four or six months, respectively, as described above, the student must apply to the Chair and/or Graduate Coordinator for an extension. 

If the thesis writing phase is very prolonged, the continuation of funding is not guaranteed, but is at the discretion of the supervisor and Department.

  • Funding will be pro-rated to the number of months the student is registered in the 12-month academic year. 
  • Salary earned as a Teaching Assistant is not part of the Graduate Student stipend in the Faculty of Medicine. 
  • In the case of a VISA student, the supervisor agrees to provide or ensure that the student is paid a foreign fee differential. 
  • It is strongly recommended that supervisors not employ their own students for duties related or unrelated to thesis research as conflict of interest between employee and employer falls outside the mandate of the student-supervisor relationship. 
  • Students are expected to compete for all relevant awards from external agencies such as CIHR, OGS, NSERC, SSHRC, charitable foundations, as well as awards internal to the University including QEII-GSST and OSOTF awards. Indicate the awards applied to for the current academic year.

Applied Immunology Program (2016-2017)

Students in the Applied Immunology program are not part of the funded cohort, and are responsible for covering all academic, incidental and living expenses. A $5,000 stipend, provided by the Department, will be given to all Applied Immunology students at the commencement of the required IMM1550Y course.

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