Research Assistantships

2016 USRA recipients presenting their research

A research assistantship is a paid position offered by professors who could use the support of an undergraduate student to further their research. Professors add a dedicated member to their research team and students gain authentic exposure to research in an area of interest.

These term positions often take place during the spring and summer months. In addition to being involved in research directly, some students may also go on to co-author a manuscript or paper, create a poster and showcase it in a symposium, or give presentations. Some student research positions are listed through University of Saskatchewan's CareerLink.

What have undergraduate students thought about their experience in research assistantships? Check out these student stories!

Find Undergraduate Research Funding

Internal Funding

Open to all students:

  • Undergraduate Student Research Assistantships (USRAs): matching awards provided to faculty researchers interested in hiring undergraduate students as research assistants over the summer. The application website is typically active in March of each year. See rubric for how quality applications are evaluated.
  • Student Travel Award: provide financial assistance to students to participate in academic-related conference, competitions and other university activities

College/Department specific:

Canadian Funding

Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR)

  • Undergraduate Summer Student Health Research Awardfor undergraduate students in mathematics, physics, computer science, life sciences or a related field with minimum of 1 year post-secondary experience.  The trainee will work under the supervision of one faculty member who holds a CIHR and/or CIHR-NSERC partnered program research grant.

  • Canadian Blood Services Summer Research Scholarship Program: provides support to undergraduate students enrolled in a Canadian post-secondary institution to gain experience by contributing to biomedical research projects within Canadian Blood Services, for up to 16 weeks.

National Research Council (NRC)

  • NRC Co-op Program: provides practical career-related experience work terms to promising students in science, engineering, and technology. Work terms are also offered in the business, public relations, communications, library sciences, marketing and administration fields. Jobs are posted through the Student Employment and Career Centre.
  • NRC Student Employment Program: for students interested in gaining practical, industry experience in a range of disciplines. Applications are accepted throughout the year and placements are for 16 weeks; full-time in the summer, or part-time during the academic year.
  • Industrial Research Assistantship Program: for students from a range of disciplines to gain 16 weeks of work experience. Applications are accepted year-round.

Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC)


International Funding


  • Mitacs Globalink Research Award: supports research collaborations between Canada and international partner countries. Select destinations are open to senior undergraduates in all disciplines to apply.
  • RISE - Globalink Research Internship: provides summer research internships to North American and British students, and aims to promote student exchange to Germany in the fields of natural science, engineering, and life sciences, and to motivate undergraduate students to learn more about Germany’s research landscape and study opportunities.


  • German Universities of Applied Sciences (UAS7): offers an Internship Program, a Study Program, and a Study & Internship Program for undergraduates in the U.S. and Canada every year. Deadline to apply is February 15, 2018.
  • EuroScholars - European Undergraduate Research Opportunities: a research abroad program designed for advanced and talented undergraduate students from US and Canadian institutions looking for an international research experience. Offers these students to conduct research in almosty any discipline at one of the 9 internationally renowned European Research Universities.
  • The Kupcinet-Getz International Summer School: for undergraduate students in mathematics, physics, chemistry or the life sciences. Students participate in 8-weeks of research.
  • Society for Vascular Surgery Student Research Fellowship: for students to spend from 2 to 12 months on a project at an educational facility under the supervision of an Active Member of SVS.
  • CUR Biology Student Travel Award: travel fund provided by the Biology Divison of the Council on Undergraduate Research (CUR) for biology students presenting original research results at a regional or national discipline-specific meeting.
  • APA Summer Undergraduate Research Opportunity Grants: for psychology students. Will provide undergraduates who have little or no prior laboratory experience with the opportunity to gain first-hand knowledge of how scientific research is conducted. The grants are designed to enable psychology departments to hire undergraduates to work as research assistants in faculty members’ labs over the summer.
  • Summer Research Program for Undergraduate Life Science Students: a program offered by the School of Life Sciences in Lausanne, Switzerland, and is open to all undergraduate university students from anywhere in the world.
  • Research in Industrial Projects for Students (RIPS): a nine-week program emphasizes research and group work. It offers each undergraduate student with a travel allowance and a stipend of US $3,500 to work on research projects. This program is available in LA and Hong Kong.
  • Dobbin Atlantic Scholarship Programme: to support the development of links between Ireland and Canada. For research visits of 3 to 5 weeks.
  • German Studies Research Grant: undergraduates with at least junior (third-year) standing pursuing a German Studies track or minor may be nominated for the grant by their department and/or program chair. Applicants are expected to have completed two years of college German and a minimum of three courses in German Studies (literature, history, politics or other fields) at the time of nomination. The grant may be used for short-term research (one to two months) in Germany.
  • Microscopy Society of America (MSA): undergraduates with an interest in conducting a research project involving the use of any microscopy technique and who are sponsored by an MSA member may submit a project proposal for a chance to recieve up to $3,000 in funding
  • Shanghai Jiao Tong University Summer Research Internship Program: Offers current undergraduate students (with at least one year of undergraduate study completed) the opportunity to spend a summer studying at world-class research laboratories alongside prominent research professors in China.