Frequently Asked Questions—SSHRC Postdoctoral Fellowships

For the latest and most up-to-date information regarding the SSHRC Postdoctoral Fellowships funding opportunity, including any Upcoming Deadlines, please see the funding opportunity description.


  1. Is my proposed research eligible for SSHRC funding?
  2. Where can I find information on how SSHRC supports Indigenous research and researchers?
  3. Is it possible to hold a SSHRC Postdoctoral Fellowship if I have already held a Banting Postdoctoral Fellowship?
  4. With which institution should I affiliate?
  5. Can I apply if I wish to hold my SSHRC Postdoctoral Fellowship at the same university that awarded my PhD?
  6. How do I affiliate with an institution?
  7. Can I affiliate with two institutions or have more than one supervisor?
  8. Will I need to reside in the vicinity of the institution with which I am affiliated?
  9. What constitutes a “completed” PhD?
  10. Can I submit an application if I am missing one of my appraisal letters?
  11. What constitutes a teaching appointment, and what type of letter does SSHRC require from my university regarding my appointment?
  12. Should my conference presentation be listed as a refereed or non-refereed contribution?
  13. Can I include a publication in my bibliography and citations if it has been accepted for publication, but has not yet been published?
  14. What do I put in the Funded Research section?
  15. Do I need to send you my transcripts?
  16. Does SSHRC offer other funding opportunities that may be of interest to postdoctoral researchers?
  17. If for any reason I am unable to submit my application in time for the deadline, will I be able to submit it at a later time?
  18. My application is complete! Why can’t I submit?
  19. Can I update my application after I have submitted it?
  20. Who evaluates the applications?
  21. On what criteria will my application be evaluated?
  22. Can I receive feedback from the committee about my score?
  23. Whom can I contact for help if my question is not answered by these FAQs?


Submission process

1. Is my proposed research eligible for SSHRC funding?

We advise you to review the subject matter eligibility guidelines (particularly related to health and psychology research) to ensure that you are applying to the appropriate agency. If upon reviewing the guidelines you are still unsure, you may submit a one-page summary of your program of work to fellowships@sshrc-crsh.gc.ca to enable SSHRC staff to provide a preliminary assessment of its eligibility. Your summary should provide an outline of your research question, context, objectives, methodology and contribution to the advancement of knowledge, and a short justification of why your application is eligible at SSHRC. Please note, however, that a final decision on eligibility can only be made following submission of a full proposal.

2. Where can I find information on how SSHRC supports Indigenous research and researchers?

SSHRC is committed to supporting and promoting research by and with Indigenous Peoples. Please visit the Aboriginal Research page and the Aboriginal Talent Measures page for more information on SSHRC’s commitment and related initiatives.

3. Is it possible to hold a SSHRC Postdoctoral Fellowship if I have already held a Banting Postdoctoral Fellowship?

If you have previously held a Banting Postdoctoral Fellowship, you are not eligible to apply for a SSHRC Postdoctoral Fellowship. However, the reverse could be possible. Please visit other eligibility restrictions on the Banting Postdoctoral Fellowships website for more information.

4. With which institution should I affiliate?

Choose the institution that is best suited for your research and your academic career. Both the appropriateness of the institution and the supervisor will be taken into account in the evaluation of your application.

The Consortium of Humanities Centers and Institutes is a great resource, where you can explore the possibility of organizing a residency with one of the consortium’s centres or institutes. Consortium member residencies can help SSHRC Postdoctoral Fellowship holders strengthen their research, and can provide them with new research training and career development opportunities. For further details, please consult the Eligibility section of the SSHRC Postdoctoral Fellowships funding opportunity description.

5. Can I apply if I wish to hold my SSHRC Postdoctoral Fellowship at the same university that awarded my PhD?

Yes, but, as one of the major goals of the fellowship is to develop and expand personal research networks, such circumstances are expected to be rare. If applicable, you should provide a tenure location justification for remaining at the same institution.

6. How do I affiliate with an institution?

Research, contact and negotiate with your proposed supervisor and institution before completing your SSHRC Postdoctoral Fellowships application. This can be done by telephone, email, visits, etc.

7. Can I affiliate with two institutions or have more than one supervisor?

When completing the application form, you must identify only one place of affiliation and one supervisor. If you propose to affiliate with an additional institution or supervisor, please indicate this in your program of work.

8. Will I need to reside in the vicinity of the institution with which I am affiliated?

SSHRC does not have a residency requirement; however, please keep in mind that among the goals of the fellowship are the development and expansion of personal research networks and the broadening of teaching experience. Your relationship with your institution and supervisor should be consistent with the needs of your project and the goals of the fellowship. You may want to consult the institution of affiliation, as it may have residency requirements.

9. What constitutes a “completed” PhD?

A completed doctoral degree means that you have met all requirements for the degree, including the successful defence and submission of the corrected copy of your doctoral dissertation. The date of completion is the date on which all degree requirements were completed, not the date of graduation.

Should you be awarded a SSHRC Postdoctoral Fellowship, you must, before activating your award, submit official documentation from the university at which you completed your PhD, confirming that you have completed all the degree requirements for your doctoral degree.

10. Can I submit an application if I am missing one of my appraisal letters?

No. All third-party components must be completed and submitted prior to the deadline date before you can submit your application. We suggest verifying that your referees have submitted their letters (and that the letters, therefore, have been uploaded to your application), to ensure your application is complete in advance of the deadline for submission.

Note: Under no circumstances will SSHRC accept any applications or components after the deadline.

11. What constitutes a teaching appointment, and what type of letter does SSHRC require from my university regarding my appointment?

If you are currently teaching any courses at a university, you must upload a letter from a university official confirming that you do not hold a tenure or tenure-track position.

Please note that we will also accept a scanned copy of your contract. Neither the letter nor the contract will be shared with committee members.

12. Should my conference presentation be listed as a refereed or non-refereed contribution?

It can be listed as a refereed contribution only if it meets the criteria for being refereed. Refereed contributions have gone through the merit review process before publication or presentation. A refereed work has been assessed in its entirety (i.e., has not been assessed merely on the basis of an abstract or extract).

13. Can I include a publication in my bibliography and citations if it has been accepted for publication, but has not yet been published?

Yes. You may list accepted publications along with their intended publication date. Please do not list publications that have been submitted but have not yet been accepted for publication.

14. What do I put in the Funded Research section?

The Funded Research section is intended for grants and funding specifically for research, as opposed to general awards, such as scholarships. It is not uncommon for emerging researchers to leave this section blank.

Scholarships, including SSHRC-funded scholarships such as the SSHRC Doctoral Fellowship, should be listed in the Credentials section.

15. Do I need to send you my transcripts?

No. Applications to the SSHRC Postdoctoral Fellowships funding opportunity do not require transcripts.

16. Does SSHRC offer other funding opportunities that may be of interest to postdoctoral researchers?

To see a complete list of funding opportunities available to postdoctoral researchers through SSHRC, you can use the Funding search tool and select “Postdoctoral researchers” under Type of Applicant.

17. If, for any reason, I am unable to submit my application in time for the deadline, will I be able to submit it at a later time?

No. Under no circumstances will any applications be accepted after the deadline.

Note: SSHRC strongly encourages applicants to submit applications in advance of the deadline date. Typically, there is a very high volume of users in the online system on the last day, which may create delays and put timely submission at risk. Applicants requiring assistance while preparing their application are encouraged to communicate with SSHRC’s Research Training Portfolio well in advance of the application deadline.

18. My application is complete! Why can’t I submit?

A complete application includes all of the required components (including two letters of appraisal, a research appraisal and a completed Institutional Nomination form). If your referees have not completed and uploaded these components, you will not be able to submit. It is your responsibility to encourage your referees to complete their letters well in advance of the deadline, and to ensure that all required application components (including all attachments and letters) have been submitted.

SSHRC’s online application system will not accept applications if it does not recognize the information as valid. Preview and verify each of your pages and address the issues identified by SSHRC’s online system. Note that the online submission system will only accept writing in the “other” field if you have selected “other” from the drop-down list.

19. Can I update my application after I have submitted it?

Once submitted, applications cannot be updated. We do, however, encourage you to update your personal contact information as needed, by emailing fellowships@sshrc-crsh.gc.ca.



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Selection Process

20. Who evaluates the applications?

Your application will be screened by SSHRC program staff for eligibility. Eligible applications are evaluated by members of a multidisciplinary and bilingual selection committee of academics in an independent merit review process.

21. On what criteria will my application be evaluated?

Your application will be evaluated on the evaluation criteria listed in the SSHRC Postdoctoral Fellowships funding opportunity description.

22. Can I receive feedback from the committee about my score?

In view of the large number of applications, feedback is not provided. Committee members are not asked to provide written appraisals of individual applications, nor is a record kept of consensus judgments about the strengths or weaknesses of individual applications.

23. Whom can I contact for help if my question is not answered by these FAQs?

For more information about SSHRC Postdoctoral Fellowships, contact:
Research Training Portfolio
Email: fellowships@sshrc-crsh.gc.ca
Tel.: 613-943-7777

For help with technical questions, contact the Helpdesk:

Email: webgrant@sshrc-crsh.gc.ca
Tel.: 613-995-4273