Funding and Awards

Graduate funding is provided for all full-time graduate students and is described in the offer of admission, provided through Quest. Normally, graduate students receive funding in the form of Teaching Assistantships and scholarships from the University. Funding is conditional on maintaining an average of 80% in graduate program courses. Information on awards and funding is available from the Graduate Studies and Postdoctoral Affairs Office.  Typical funding packages are as follows:

Program Length

MA Coursework

3 Terms (~$6000/term)

MA Major Research Paper

4 Terms (~$6000/term)

MA Thesis

4 Terms (~$6000/term)


4 Years (~$27000/year)

For information on scholarships, awards and bursaries check out Student Awards.

Graduate awards payments

If awards have been processed through the GSO they can be viewed in the Finances - Account Summary and/or the Financial Aid - View My Financial Aid on Quest.

The GSO begins disbursing award payments the first Wednesday or Friday of each term (Spring Term - May 1, Fall Term - September 1 and Winter Term - January 1) and continues every Wednesday and Friday for 3 weeks. After the 3rd week, disbursements continue weekly on Fridays.

  • Scholarships and bursaries paid through Waterloo are first applied to the student tuition accounts.
  • Only amounts exceeding fees will be refunded. See Finance's web site for information on Refunds for Scholarships, Bursaries & Awards.

We encourage our graduate students to be set up with Human Resources for direct deposit. This ensures that any refunds for your awards are sent directly to your bank account. If you do not sign up for direct deposit, a cheque will be mailed to your current address in quest. To be set up, please visit the HR website and complete the direct deposit form.

Awards terms and regulations for payment

  • Waterloo awards are tenable only for full-time study for the assigned academic term and graduate program held at the University of Waterloo.
  • A change of enrolment status to part-time or inactive, or for a program completion or withdrawal will require repayment of the award. Repayment amounts are calculated based on the University of Waterloo's tuition refund policy (see Calendar of Events and Academic Deadlines). Any change in enrolment must be reported to the GSO.
  • Some awards have specific immigration status conditions. Any change in immigration status must be reported to the GSO by submission of appropriate documentation.
  • Recipients will be issued the appropriate T4A forms by the University in February each year.
  • If you are applying for government assistance (e.g., OSAP), you must report any scholarships as income as it could reduce your aid entitlement.

See the Graduate Studies Calendar - Fees Section for further information on fees, degree completion/withdrawals/refunds, and promissory notes, etc.

Sociology students may contact the Department Graduate Coordinator, Quinn Smith, for general information about funding opportunities.