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Scholarships & Awards

McMaster University is proud to offer a variety of opportunities for scholarships and awards, bursaries and work study programs for our students. To find out more about these exciting opportunities, visit McMaster’s Office of Student Financial Aid Scholarships site.


These prestigious awards enable undergraduate students to spend the summer months (16 weeks) working with a research group in Biology. If you are interested in spending “Summer 2024” at McMaster and you have a 10.0 Cumulative Average (or above), we invite you to apply provided you find a prospective NSERC-funded supervisor in Biology willing to sponsor your application.

Deadline is Friday, March 1st, 2024 to

The awards have a total stipend as follows for the 16 weeks.

NSERC stipend(s) (minimum):

$6,000* NSERC award + $2,400* Biology researcher contribution = $8,400 total

*approximate value, final value will be announced soon.

Applications are invited from all qualified Level I, II, III, IV students. Applicants must be Canadian citizens, a permanent resident of Canada or a Protected Person under subsection 95(2) of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (Canada) and must be currently registered in a bachelor’s degree program.

Biology Application Procedures

Step 1

Visit the NSERC website to determine if you are eligible for the award.

Step 2

Contact a Prospective Supervisor (you apply through the Department of the proposed supervisor).

Click here for a list of eligible Biology Faculty. Individual Supervisors can only take on one student per year. Faculty who will not be accepting students will be noted on our website.

Step 3

Submit an unofficial transcript (to include December 2023 results). If you are chosen for an NSERC you will need to order an official McMaster University transcript through the Registrar’s Office to submit with your Part II form.

Step 4

All NSERC forms must be completed on-line initially. No exceptions will be made.

Follow the instructions for completing the application here.

Form 202 – Application for an Undergraduate Student Research Award

  • Complete Part 1 – Personal Data Form (completed by student on-line). (Part II is not required at this time)*
  • Tips:
    • Degree = Bachelor’s
    • Name of Discipline = name of your program (i.e. Honours Biology)
    • Department = Biology
    • How many academic terms when award is held = if you’re completing Level 2, Type 4; if you’re completing Level 3, type 6; if you’re completing Level 4, type 8
  • Scan and upload a copy of your official transcript (which should include one copy of the back page of your transcript which details McMaster’s grading scheme).
  • Print out a copy of the NSERC USRA Part I form for submission to the Department of Biology.

Step 5

Complete the Supplemental Information Form

Step 6 – Documents To Submit To Biology

Submit to by Friday, March 1st, 2024

  • Copy of completed Part 1 only (do not complete Part II)
  • Original of Supplemental application
  • An official transcript that includes December 2021 grades


Applications will be reviewed and ranked by the Biology Undergraduate Studies Committee and by the Faculty of Science.

*Part II – Proposed location of Tenure and Reserach Project will be completed by the proposed supervisor after the applications have been ranked within the Department.

NSERC insists that students work for a full 16-week period and will not accept shorter periods of employment.

Award decisions to be made late March. All applicants will be contacted regardless if they receive the NSERC USRA or not.