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Guidelines for Masters and Doctorate Studentship Awards


At the time of application, candidates must be Canadian citizens or permanent residents of Canada, registered in a full time Masters or Doctorate level program at an Ontario University.  Consideration will be given to applicants awaiting acceptance. 

Applicants must be under the supervision of at least one researcher (preferably their supervisor) who has a full-time academic appointment at a University.  The applicant’s research may be from any discipline, provided the research proposed is substantially related and relevant to problem gambling.

Applicants must be free from tri-council (SSHRC/NSERC/CIHR) or University sanction for financial or research misconduct.

Application Instructions

  1. Create and/or Log-in to your account.
  2. Follow the link above to the Studentship Award Application page.
  3. Complete the Contact Information page online.
  4. Send Transcripts by Mail
    • The applicant must submit original transcripts of both undergraduate and graduate work  in sealed envelopes. Transcripts must arrive by the application deadline. Send to:

    Attention: Erika Veri Levett
    Ontario Problem Gambling Research Centre
    150 Research Lane, Suite 104
    Guelph ON N1G 4T2

  5. Complete the Proposal Information on-line:
    • Title of Research Proposal
    • Abstract- (maximum 500 words):
      • Describe the proposed project in language that will be intelligible to a lay reader.
      • Summarize the questions posed in the research and how the project is organized to answer them.
    • Describe how the proposed project will make an important contribution or add value to the problem gambling field.
  6. Upload Required Attachments:
    (Documents must be in one of the following formats: .doc, .docx, .xls, .xlsx, .pdf). Any other format will be rejected upon review.)
    1. Signature Page (use downloadable template available by clicking here)
    2. Confirmation of Enrollment
      • Letter from the University (Department head or Registrar’s office) confirming registration and length of time in the Masters or Doctoral program.  If you are not yet registered at the time of application, your formal acceptance letter is acceptable.
    3. Research Proposal (including references & appendices)
      • Proposal cannot exceed four (4) single-spaced pages (81/2 ” x 11”, excluding references and appendices.
      • Use font sizes of no less than 11 points and leave margins of 1” on all sides.
      • Include your name and title of research proposal in the header of each page, and the page number in the footer.
      • The proposal must include the following headings:
        • Research questions/Hypotheses
          • Describe the objective(s) of this proposed project
          • Describe the significance of this project to the problem gambling field
        • Literature review and rationale
          • Provide a brief review of relevant literature on the research topic
          • Describe how the literature supports the hypotheses and the importance of the research questions
          • Describe how how this project might address gaps or inconsistencies in the current literature
        • Research Design and Methodology (including Ethical Considerations)
          • Describe and justify your choice of research design and methodology
          • Describe the measures included in data collection and the statistical and/or qualitative techniques for data analysis
        • Timeline
          • Describe the schedule for data collection, analysis, and write-up
        • References
          • List all references cited in the proposal
          • References are not included in page limits
        • Appendicies (if applicable)
          • Appendices are not included in the page limits of the Research Proposal and may include: study instruments, tests, and/or questionnaires and figures/tables.
    4. Curriculum Vitae (maximum of 5 pages each)
      • CV’s should include education, employment, and lists of publications and conference presentations.
          1. Applicant Curriculum Vitae 
            • Include a list of scholarships and awards held, indicating their duration and amount (if applicable) and whether they were competitive awards.
          2. Supervisor Curriculum Vitae
            • Provide the following information for any currently held peer-reviewed research funds (i.e. grant funds where you are a Principal Investigator or Co-Investigator), other grants and awards you hold currently or have held within the past four years, including OPGRC funding:
              • Name of PI
              • Project Title
              • Funding Agency
              • Year(s) of Award
              • Award Amount
  7. Ensure Online Submission of Letters of Reference
    • The referees and supervisor will be granted confidential system access to the electronic reference letter template (by assignment of a user ID). They will receive an email with login information as they are added to the application.
      1. Two (2) referee submissions (other than the applicant's supervisor)
        • Designate two (2) people capable of making an informed assessment of your research ability and potential.
      2. Reference from Supervisor
        • The supervisor is expected to review the applicant's proposal and submit a testimonial on the applicant's abilities and promise as a researcher. The supervisor will be asked to comment on:
          • The applicant's abilities and promise as a researcher.
          • Whether the applicant's project is contributing directly to the supervisor's research program? And ifyes, to specify the applicant's role and responsibilities in the research.
          • Details of the facilities and research support including any funding available to the applicant to carry out the proposed study.
  8. Review Application for any errors or omissions
  9. Check the online Application Checklist for completeness
  10. Submit your Application electronically by clicking the Submit My Application to OPGRC button
  11. You will receive a confirmation e-mail that your application has been received. If you do not receive an e-mail within 2 hours, please contact Erika Veri Levett at erika@opgrc.org.

NOTE: you will receive e-mail confirmation indicating your application has been forwarded to the review committee once your application is COMPLETE.

This includes receipt of:

  • Online Submission of Application
  • Online Submission of Three (3) Reference Letters
  • Mailed Transcripts

Evaluation & Scoring

Applications for Studentship Grants are evaluated by a scientific review panel comprised of two external reviewers and one internal reviewer for demonstrated research ability and potential for future research contribution according to the following:

  • Academic Record - 30%
    • scholarships and awards held
    • letters of reference/ academic referrals
  • Research Proposal - 70%
    • quality of proposed research and program
    • demonstration of a supportive research environment
    • contribution to knowledge in the problem gambling field
    • overall fit with the Centre's mandate and objectives
    • contribution to building problem gambling research capacity in Ontario


NOTE: The decision of the Centre is final, with no provision for appeal.

Unsuccessful applicants may request feedback regarding their applications and should contact the Centre for such requests.


Studentship recipients are permitted to hold other awards up to a combined maximum of the value of the Masters or Doctoral fellowship plus $10,000. Maximum levels for combined support are as follows:

  • Masters applicants $17,500 (per year for two years) plus $10,000 = maximum $27,500
  • Doctoral applicants $20,000 (per year for two years) plus $10,000 = maximum $30,000

When a successful applicant has already been awarded financial support from another organization, the Center will provide top-up funding to this maximum. If other funding organizations have set combined support at a maximum lower than the Centre's, the Centre will top up funding to the designated maximum.

  • Example 1: A student receiving a grant of $17,700 from another agency may receive a pro-rated studentship from the Centre of $9,800 at the Masters level, and $12,300 at the Doctoral level.
  • Example 2: The Ontario Graduate Scholarship (OGS) program awards $15,000, and allows up to $10,000 in additional funding. The Centre will provide top-up funding to this $10,000 maximum.


Candidates who transfer universities must receive written approval from the Centre for continued financial support. Please contact the Centre for more information.

For Assistance

Applicants or potential applicants may request advice or assistance at any time by contacting Erika Veri Levett at erika@opgrc.org or:

Toll-Free: (877) 882-2204
Telephone: (519) 763-8049