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Graduate Studies

CUPE 3903 Research Cost Fund

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Application deadlines

There are two competitions each year—one in Fall and one in Spring.

The online portion of the Spring 2014 RCF application will be available from Monday, February 3, 2014 until the deadline of Monday, March 3, 2014.

Completed and signed paper applications must be submitted to the relevant graduate program office by Monday, March 3, 2014.

The Office of the Dean strongly advises applicants to complete the online portion of the application well in advance of the deadline to give adequate time to obtain the required signature and comments from their supervisor.

Graduate program offices must submit ranked application packages to the Office of the Dean, Graduate Studies, by 4:00 pm on Monday March 17, 2014.

Applications received incomplete or after the published deadlines will be deemed ineligible for consideration.

Fund description

The Research Cost Fund (RCF) assists with the costs directly connected to research undertaken by registered full-time York graduate students who are or have been members of CUPE 3903.

Applications for the RCF are accepted twice per year—once in Spring and once in Fall.

Applications are reviewed and allocations are determined by a four–person committee, consisting of:

  1. 1 full-time faculty member selected by the University;
  2. The dean of Graduate Studies or designate; and,
  3. Representatives of CUPE 3903.

Eligible applicants

  • Full–time registered York graduate students who are or were members of CUPE 3903 Unit 1 & 3.

Conditions include:

  • Applications from doctoral students are normally given priority, followed by applications from master’s students;
  • Applicants may apply more than once for the same research (in separate competitions); however, ongoing annual trips which do not produce significantly different progress will not be supported. In a case of re–application, applicants must submit a sound rationale for additional research and a recommendation from the program director;
  • Successful applicants may be awarded a maximum of two allocations in a year (May 1 to April 30) to a maximum of $1,500;
  • Only complete applications are considered; and,
  • Applicant’s thesis/dissertation proposal must have been approved by the Office of the Dean, Graduate Studies prior to submission of the application.

Eligible expenses

Eligible expenses may include:

  • Travel and/or accommodation necessary for research;
  • Incentive payments to research participants;
  • Materials, supplies, photocopying and other services essential to the research; and,
  • Disability accommodation costs (e.g., attendant care, medical equipment costs, accessible transportation, interpreters, note takers)

Allocated funds are provided to successful applicants by reimbursement after eligible expenses are incurred and original, detailed receipts are provided (including incentives payments).

Reimbursement claims must match the budget line items approved by the Committee.

Ineligible expenses

The RCF generally does not cover:

  • Books;
  • Conference costs;
  • Subsistence costs;
  • Tuition and related fees;
  • Equipment considered a normal student expense; and/or,
  • Similar items considered normal student expenses.

The Committee may, if it deems appropriate, award funds for such budget items if the expenses are demonstrated to be essential for the completion of the research, and a less expensive alternative is unavailable.


If research plans include travel to a conference site for the specific purpose of interviewing experts presenting there, the applicant must provide evidence that interview appointments were arranged in advance of travel.

Amount of allocations
Successful applicants may be allocated up to $1,500 per year. Due to an increasing number of applications, funds are generally allocated in amounts of $500 or less.

Allocation process
After the RCF Committee determines allocations, all applicants are notified by email of the committee’s decision(s). Successful applicants receive notification of the maximum value of the allocation, the budget line items approved for reimbursement and the process for filing claims for reimbursement.

Claims process

Claims must be submitted:

  • Within six (6) months of an expense; and,
  • Within two (2) years of funding allocation or within one year of the date of convocation, whichever is earlier.

Submitting claims:

  • Complete and sign a Reimbursement of Expense Claim form;
  • Attach original, detailed receipts and a list of items and/or services purchased, the method of payment and total cost;
  • Attach a detailed list of expenses corresponding to the submitted receipts and the expenses approved by the RCF Committee; and,
  • Credit card or bank statements, and/or credit card or debit payment confirmation slips are not original detailed receipts and cannot be used in this claim.

You are required to print this application form immediately upon completion of the online portion.

Ensure you are able to print before beginning the application. This application cannot be saved for access at a later time. You will be sent an email confirmation after submission of the online portion of the application.

The following elements are required to complete the on–line portion of the application:

  • Personal information, including your student number and program details;
  • Information regarding destination and duration of research travel;
  • Information regarding previous applications to the RCF;
  • Detailed research budget; and,
  • Information on additional sources of funding.

Application process

  1. The applicant completes, prints and signs the online application form.
  2. The applicant submits the printed application form to the relevant graduate program office, with:
    1. A one–page (250–word maximum) description of the thesis/dissertation project; and,
    2. A supervisor’s statement/letter of support from their principal supervisor (may be written on actual application form or on separate page).
    3. After graduate program directors review and rank applications for submission, graduate program offices deliver approved and ranked applications along with the cover sheet to the Office of the Dean, Graduate Studies.
    4. Important technical note:
      It is recommended that you complete the online portion of the application on a computer using a Windows operating system. If you are using an Apple computer, useGoogle Chrome as your browser.

      This fund is provided is accordance with section 15.15 of the CUPE 3903 Collective Agreement:

      15.15 Research Cost Fund
      The employer shall maintain a fund to defray research costs incurred by full–time graduate students who hold or have held a position in the bargaining unit. In 2011–2012 the amount allocated to the fund shall be $80,000. Effective September 1, 2012, the amount allocated to the fund shall be $100,000. Any unexpended monies shall be retained in the fund.
      The Research Costs Fund shall be administered by a four person committee consisting of two members of the bargaining unit selected by the union, one full–time faculty member selected by the employer, and the Dean of Graduate Studies or designate, using criteria and procedures approved by the Labour/Management Committee. All Research Costs grants shall be in varying amounts up to $1,500 per academic year. An annual report on the disbursement of monies shall be submitted in writing to the Labour/Management Committee.

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