Funding & Fees

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Our Commitment to Graduate Education

In our pursuit of scholarly and research excellence, Western is committed to graduate education. Western places great importance on helping graduate students finance their education, and we will continue to ensure that the university community is fully aware of all the funding opportunities available to help students succeed.

Graduate students are critical to the research and teaching missions of the university. In turn, through the education of graduate students, Western makes a significant contribution to national and international social, cultural, financial, scientific, and knowledge economies.

Research-Based Graduate Student Funding Support Packages

Western recognizes that students who choose to undertake full-time graduate studies are choosing to delay their entry into the full-time workforce. To help off-set the cost of full-time graduate enrolment, Western provides funding support packages for eligible research-based Master’s and PhD students.

Our graduate funding support packages rank as some of the most competitive packages in Canada – they help to reduce the cost of undertaking full-time graduate studies, and reduce financial barriers for students who otherwise may be unable to pursue an advanced degree.

Funding support packages can be comprised of funds from a variety of sources and can differ from student to student. Funding sources include research grants, scholarships, and part-time employment such as teaching or research assistantships.

Funding support packages do not replace full-time employment income.

Average Annual Funding

As one of Canada's leading research institutions, Western places great importance on recruiting exceptional graduate students.  The following chart illustrates the average funding Western graduate students receive from all sources.

Degree Type 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019
Doctoral $30,579 $32,065 $32,858 $33,271 $32,299
Master's $22,696 $23,060 $23,202 $23,154 $23,352

We offer competitive funding support packages to help achieve this goal, allowing graduate students to focus on their research and development.

Western's Doctoral Funding Guarantee

While at Western, you will want to devote your full energy to the successful completion of your studies, so we want to ensure that stable funding is available to you. Western guarantees minimum annual funding for doctoral students, from all sources, of $13,000 plus tuition.

For doctoral students who start in September 2019 (September 1, 2019 – August 31, 2020), the Doctoral Funding Guarantee for domestic and international students is $19,360.

In addition to the financial support available from federal and provincial sources and research grant support, Western offers a variety of internal awards that are among the best available to outstanding scholars in Canada. Full-time Western graduate students are eligible for support from the School of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies, provided they meet the appropriate criteria.


Fees and Tuition

Western releases Fee Schedules to itemize the fees and tuition rates associated with your studies.  



These fee schedules can be accessed via the Office of the Registrar.


There are two main categories of funding available to graduate students at Western:

Western Funding

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Western funding is generally agreed upon at the time you are admitted to your graduate program.  At that time your program will decide what amounts and sources can be offered to you.  These levels can vary by your degree, program or faculty.

External Funding

External funding is generally obtained by the student via an application for grants and fellowships offered by provincial or federal governments, foundations or other agencies.  These applications may be accepted prior to a student beginning their studies or during their graduate studies.  


Financial Assistance

Graduate students who find themselves in financial need have access to a full range of bursary programs, loans and financial aid counselling at Western.


International Funding Opportunities

The following are featured funding opportunities that support international students applying to graduate research degrees at Western.

International Student Awards

The following are featured funding opportunities that support international students applying to graduate research degrees at Western.

International Sponsorship and Partnership Programs

A ‘sponsored student’ is an international student who has full or substantial funding provided by a third party of the student’s home country, to cover tuition and living expenses during the student’s studies at Western.

Desiring to promote, develop and strengthen the relationship between Western and other countries and recognizing the contribution international graduate students bring to the university, Western has entered into a number of partnership agreements with government organizations and programs around the world to bring in qualified international students to pursue their graduate degree at Western on scholarship and/or grant. Please refer to the list and links below for scholarship and sponsorships opportunities in your country.

If you are sponsored or potentially sponsored applicant please email Teri Hern, Manager, Graduate Admissions at thern2@uwo.ca so that she can guide you through the application process.

Below is a listing of our formalized partnerships:

Frequently Asked Questions

I am a potential sponsored student and I am interested in a Western graduate program. Can you help me find a supervisor?

Yes, we would be very happy to guide you in the process of finding a supervisor. A list of faculty and their research areas is provided under program pages. For example, if you are interested in the graduate program in Electrical and Computer Engineering, you will find the faculty list here http://www.eng.uwo.ca/electrical/people/faculty/index.html . Since you know best the research that you want to conduct, it is recommended that you look through the list of faculty and identify one or two potential supervisors based on your area of interest.

What is the best way to contact a supervisor?

Once you've identified one or two potential supervisors, you should contact them by email. Here are some items to consider to include in your initial email introduction to your potential supervisor:

  • Your name
  • Whether you are a sponsored student and your sponsoring agency
  • Program you are applying to and the start date (Fall, Winter or Summer Term)
  • Your academic background (your GPA must be over 3.0, or equivalent)
  • TOEFL/IELTS scores (if applicable)
  • Academic awards or highlights
  • Research background, including publications if you have any
  • Reasons for applying to graduate school
  • How the faculty member's area of research will match with your research goals (cite the faculty member's publications if relevant)
  • Make it known that you are familiar with their work and how their research interests align with your own
  • A research proposal, if appropriate
  • Ask them if they are accepting new graduate students for the coming academic year
  • Mention to them that you are a sponsored student or planning to apply for sponsorship and include the Financial Guarantee letter from your sponsor, if available.

Advice for the First Contact Email

  • Address your letter carefully. For example, if you are sending a letter to "John Smith, PhD", address as "Dear Dr. Smith" or "Dear Professor Smith." (Salutations such as "Respected sir" or "Dear Mr. Smith" will demonstrate that you haven't done enough research to find out their gender or professorial rank)
  • Try to keep it as brief as possible. For example, in your first contact, you probably don't need to include your transcript, but do mention your GPA
  • Make sure to proofread your letter and have someone else proofread it for you. Poor grammar and spelling errors will reveal quite a bit about your academic abilities and attention to detail.

Your relationship with your supervisor forms the foundation of your graduate school experience. It's best to start building it even before you begin the application process.

Does my program require a supervisor?

Most thesis-based graduate programs require a supervisor. However, to check whether your program requires securing of a supervisor prior to applying online for admission, visit the program’s website (a list of all graduate programs and program contact information are listed here https://grad.uwo.ca/admissions/programs/index.cfm) and/or contact the graduate program advisor/program assistant to inquire further.

Professional and course-based programs do not require a supervisor.

Is it important to mention to my potential supervisor that I am a sponsored or potential sponsored student?

Yes, please mention this in your first point of contact with the potential supervisor. Include information about your sponsor and if you have a Financial Guarantee letter from your sponsor, please also include it as an attachment in your email. If you are planning to apply for sponsorship, mention which one it is. Western has formalized a number of agreements with government organizations and programs around the world.  If your sponsor is not listed above, please email Teri Hern, Manager, Graduate Admissions at thern2@uwo.ca for further information.

I contacted a potential supervisor, however, I haven’t heard from them, what should I do?

If two weeks have passed since you sent the email and you haven’t received a response, please send a reminder email gently prompting the faculty member to see if they have had a chance to read your email. If you don’t hear from them again, please email Teri Hern, Manager, Graduate Admissions at thern2@uwo.ca and she will be happy to guide you further.

Once I have secured a supervisor what are my next steps?

Once you have a supervisor, you should apply to Western University online. Instructions on how to apply can be found here https://grad.uwo.ca/admissions/apply.html

In order to apply for sponsorship in my country, I need an official offer of admission from the University. What do I do in order to get the offer letter of admission from the University?

If your program requires a supervisor, you would likely want to secure a supervisor prior to submitting your application online. After you apply and submit your online application for admission, it will go through a review by the graduate admissions office, prior to being submitted to the program for their final review.

My sponsor requires an unconditional offer of admission, can I obtain one?

Most sponsors will allow an offer with admission on condition that the student obtains the scholarship and/or in some cases meet the program’s English Language requirement.

In order to apply for my sponsorship, in addition to the offer of admission from the University I am required to provide my future supervisor’s academic CV. How do I go about getting one?

You can inquire regarding the professor’s academic CV by directly emailing them to request this information. Please ensure to mention that this is required as part of your application by the sponsoring agency.

Is there a place on the application for admission where I can notify that I am a sponsored student?

Yes, you can identify yourself as a sponsored or potential sponsored student on the online application for admission.

What are tuition costs and approximate living expenses?

For detailed breakdown of tuition and living expenses please visit https://grad.uwo.ca/finances/index.html

My sponsor will be paying for my tuition and would like the university to invoice tuition directly. Is this possible?

Bev Zupancic, Financial Advisor at the Registrar’s Office at Western University, is responsible for invoicing the agencies. For more information please do not hesitate to contact her directly at bzupanci@uwo.ca.

If I have any questions about sponsorships, who do I contact?

Please email Teri Hern, Manager, Graduate Admissions at thern2@uwo.ca.

Are there sponsored student testimonials about their studies at Western University?

Please click the links above to read testimonials from our students who are sponsored by different agencies.

How do I go about applying for housing?

You have an option to live on or off campus. For on-campus housing options please visit http://residenceatwestern.ca/exchange_international.cfm. Residence living at Western was rated #1 by students for the 2017 Maclean’s University Ranking.

As a graduate student you have many on-campus housing options. Both residence accommodations and University-owned apartments are available (furnished and unfurnished). For more information please visit http://residenceatwestern.ca/beyondfirstyear.cfm.