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Research Cost Fund


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 within their current program of study.

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

  • One full-time faculty member selected by the University
  • The Dean of Graduate Studies or designate
  • Two representatives of CUPE 3903

Value and Duration

  • Successful applicants may be allocated up to $1,600 per degree. The Research Cost Fund is available in both the Spring and Fall semester each year.
  • Once awarded, students have a two-year period in which to submit expense claims related to their application.


Eligible Applicants

  • Full–time registered York graduate students who are or were members of CUPE 3903 Unit 1 & 3 during their current program of study.
  • Applications from doctoral students are normally given priority, followed by applications from master’s students;
  • Students applying to the Research Cost Fund are eligible to receive a maximum of $1,600 per degree (once for Master, once for PhD research). The Research Cost Fund is available only to full–time registered York graduate students who are or were members of CUPE 3903 Unit 1 & 3 during their current program of study.
  • While an applicant’s MRP, Thesis, or Dissertation proposal may still be in development and pending approval at the time of application to the fund, it must have achieved all levels of approval (academic and ethics as appropriate) and be submitted to the appropriate office by the time the research is to be conducted. MRP proposals remain in the Program Office. Thesis/dissertation proposals are sent to FGS;
  • Only complete applications are considered.

Eligible Expenses

  • Student travel and/or accommodation necessary for research;
  • Incentive payments or token gifts to research participants—where an incentive is deemed necessary, a $5 to $10 gift certificate is recommended for survey and interview respondents;
  • Materials, supplies, photocopying and other services essential to the research; and,
  • Disability accommodation costs for participants (e.g., 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

  • Books;
  • Conference costs;
  • Subsistence costs;
  • Tuition and related fees;
  • Equipment and services considered a normal student expense including the cost of the researcher's intra-city transportation within the GTA (e.g., city taxis, TTC), laptops, internet and data; and/or,
  • Services deemed essential without a quote from a certified professional.

Please note: Research Cost Fund does not support student travel to present at conferences. However, 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.

How to Submit an Expense Claim:

Please submit an expense claim electronically via CONCUR: For instructions download the Student Guide to Claim Personal Reimbursement (.pdf)


  • There are two competitions each year—one in Fall and one in Spring. The deadline for the Fall term cycle is November 10, and the Spring cycle is March 10.
  • Incomplete and late applications will not be considered.

Graduate programs may be asked to review submitted files and confirm recommended applicants.

How to Apply

Application Process

The applicant completes the online application form. The application form will require the following info:

  • Personal information, including your student number and program details;
  • Your supervisor (or GPD if you do not have a confirmed supervisor) contact as they will be asked to complete the RCF supervisor form;
  • 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.

After you submit the application form, you will receive an email confirmation. Your supervisor will also receive a notification with a link to complete the supervisor form.

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, use Google Chrome as your browser.

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

Submitting Claims

  • Follow the instructions as specified in the notice of award.