The Mathematics Undergraduate Research Award (MURA) Program is an undergraduate research award program sponsored by the Faculty of Mathematics. This award provides experience that nurtures an interest in research careers and mathematics experience for undergraduate students with financial support during a full-time, on-campus or remote position for 16 weeks.

Application deadlines | Length of project | Compensation | Eligibility | How to apply

Meet ClaraPicture of Clara Xi

Clara worked with Professor Xi He, where she investigated and designed novel techniques to support differentially private analysis of graph data during the Winter 2022 term.

“One thing I appreciated a lot about my research assistantship under Dr. He was the amount of independence and ownership I had over my project. This autonomy and level of trust between my supervisor and I was unlike anything I had never experienced before in my previous co-ops.

I would absolutely recommend other undergraduate students to pursue a research assistantship if they're curious about research or graduate school at all. It's hard to know what research is really like until you do it!” Clara Xi, BCS candidate

    Application Deadlines

    Competitions for MURA are held three times each year. Deadlines are as follows:

    Term Due Date
    Spring 2024 Closed.
    Fall 2024 Sunday, June 9, 2024
    Winter 2025 TBD (early September)

    Length of Project

    • Full-time (35 hours per week) for 16 consecutive weeks (80 working days).
    • Can be counted as a co-op work term but you do not need to be a co-op student to be eligible for this award.

    A student is not allowed to be taking courses full-time or working on another project/job while holding the MURA as it is considered a full-time job.


    MURA recipients will receive a minimum of $9,640 / term:

    • The value of the NSERC USRA: $6,000
    • The supervisor’s contribution: $3,640 (minimum)

    Additional Funding Sources

    Students/supervisors may supplement their MURA with the Undergraduate Research Fellowship (URF) valued at $7,500.

    Students admitted with the President’s Scholarship of Distinction can claim the President’s Research Award ($1,500) to supplement the supervisor's contribution.


    Student Eligibility:

    • Must be registered in at least one of the two terms immediately before holding the award in a bachelor’s degree program in the Faculty of Mathematics at the University of Waterloo.
    • Must have completed all the course requirements of at least the first year of university study (i.e. must be in their 2A term or higher).
    • Must be a Canadian citizen or permanent resident of Canada or an International Student with a valid study/work permit, as of the application deadline.
    • Must have a cumulative average => 80%.
    • Cannot have started a program of graduate studies in a field of mathematics at any time.
    • Cannot hold more than one MURA per fiscal year (May 1 to April 30).
    • Cannot hold more than three MURAs during their undergraduate degree.
    • Cannot hold both USRA and MURA in the same term.

    Supervisor Eligibility

    • Must hold a faculty appointment in the Faculty of Mathematics, preferably with an appointment in the School of Computer Science.
    • Must be eligible to administer NSERC funds.
    • Must be authorized to independently supervise students.
    • Must propose a research project that falls under NSERC’s mandate.

    How to apply

    After finding an eligible supervisor that has agreed to work with you and deciding on a research project that clearly defines your role and responsibilities with the supervisor, the following steps must be completed.

    1. Complete the online form yusing your WATIAM sign-in information.
    2. Your supervisor will have to complete the following online form
    3. When both application forms are complete, email Daniel Huab, CC your supervisor, and include the following:
      1. A recent copy of your unofficial transcript.
      2. The date you expect to complete your degree (month/year).