Postdoctoral Training - Career Transition Award National Institutes of Health (NIH)-FRQS (Phase 1)


Competition year :



Deadline (application) :

October 17th, 2016, 4:30 PM


Amount :

US$44,000 to US$59,000 per year


Duration :

2 or 3 years


Announcement of results :

April 2017



This two-phase program is aimed at postdoctoral fellows seeking to perfect their training at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) before pursuing careers as independent researchers in Québec.

This career transition awards program aims to establish a long-term career path for postdoctoral fellows from Québec who possess exceptional scientific abilities and ensure that recipients receive the support required to pursue careers as independent researchers upon their return to Québec.

The program (5 to 6 years) involves two phases:

  • Phase 1 (2 to 3 years): Postdoctoral training/career advancement at the NIH;

Phase 2 (2 to 3 years): Salary support (career award) and operating grant to facilitate the recipient's return to Québec after training at the NIH and provide support as he/she embarks on a career as an independent researcher (faculty position in a Québec university or research centre). Phase 2 will be launched in Summer 2017.

Program rules that prevail are those of the PDF version.

Program rules

Important note: It is the responsibility of the applicant to choose the right program and the right form for the award application. No program transfer will be made following the file eligibility review.




Eligible applicants
  • Applicants with a doctoral degree (Ph.D.) Applicants must have obtained their doctorate no more than two years before October 15, 2016 (except for renewal applications).
    This period could be extended by a maximum of one year if the candidate has been on a parental leave after the doctorate.

  • Canadian citizens or permanent residents domiciled in Québec (see section 2.1 of Common General Rules)
    This status must remain in effect for the duration of the award.

Not eligible : incumbents of a university position.

Terms and regulations
  • Must pursue full-time postdoctoral training in human health sciences research

  • Supervisor whose laboratory or clinic is located on an NIH research campus (the location must be specified prior to submitting the application form)

  • Applicants unable to submit their doctoral thesis at the time of applying must provide, no later than September 30, 2017, an attestation that the thesis has been submitted.

Basic research ethics training

Basic research ethics training is compulsory for all FRQS awardees conducting research projects that involve human subjects.

Research that involves human subjects includes work on :

  • living human subjects

  • cadavers, human remains, tissues, biological fluids, gametes, embryos or fetuses, cells or genetic materials

  • personal information from files that enables a person to be identified.

Awardees must therefore successfully complete levels 1 and 3 of the Online Tutorial in Research Ethics developed by the Ministère de la Santé et des Services sociaux.

This training must be completed in the year following the receipt of a confirmation from the FRQS that the award was granted.

The FRQS encourages awardees to follow a one-credit research ethics training course in addition to the compulsory basic research ethics training, whenever possible.




By October 17, 2016, 4:30 pm

  • Documents sent via mail or e-mail will not be accepted.

  • Letters of recommendation will not be accepted

  • Transmission via the FRQS Web site only

  • Any missing document or document that is not in conformity with the program rules and forms may result in the ineligibility of the funding application.

  • Copies of all awards, honours and distinction notices, including FRQS awards

  • Acknowledgements from publishers for articles submitted or accepted for publication

  • Copy of a valid Quebec health insurance card or other official document confirming residency in Quebec

  • Copy of the applicant's permanent resident card or proof of its request (if applicable)

  • Copy of the applicant's "certificat de sélection du Québec" (if applicable)

Research supervisor (and co-supervisor, if applicable)

After October 17, 2016

  • E-mail transmission (PDF documents only)
    The e-mail transmission date will attest to the date on which the documents were submitted

Application update

Articles in journals with peer-review committees may be updated until November 30, 2016.

  • Include confirmations from publishers regarding articles submitted or accepted for publication.

  • All of the documents must be sent in a single PDF file to the program officer. The file name must include the applicant's name and application number.


Applicant will receive e-mail confirmation of receipt of application, including notice of eligibility, by the end of November.

At the starting date of the award and annually thereafter

When the award comes into effect and annually thereafter, the awardee must submit :

  • A written confirmation of the beginning or the continuation of your project from your research supervisor by email to the program officer

Before the start of the second year of the award

To start the second year of the award , the awardee will have to provide :

  • Ethics training certificates (levels 1 and 3) , if necessary (by email in a single PDF document)




Choice of training location

National Institutes of Health laboratory or clinical centre

Partner (training location) obligation

The NIH will:

  • Appoint the award recipient as a Supplemental Visiting Fellow, fulfilling the requirements as described in the NIH policy manual;

  • Provide assistance in obtaining the appropriate work-authorized immigration status required by the research fellow;

  • After obtaining the scientific supervisor's approval, provide each Fellow with laboratory and/or clinical space as well as access to databases, computers and other relevant scientific resources available as provided to similar trainees;

  • Ensure that the award recipient and his/her mentor are aware of NIH guidelines regarding oversight and progress review of each Fellow in the program.




Effective date 

Between May and October 2017, first day of the month


2 years and possibly 3 years, conditional upon the evaluation of a renewal application. (renewal may be requested only once)

Parental leave

In accordance to section 6.13 of the Common General Rules, the awardee may benefit from an award payment deferral during parental leave (maternity, paternity or adoption) for a maximum period of 12 months. In addition, during this deferral period, the awardee may obtain an award supplement for the parental leave for up to six months, provided that the awardee held the FRQS award for at least 4 months, unless that the awardee is already holding another FRQS award.

The awardee must inform by email the FRQS of his/her intention to take advantage of such deferral for parental leave. Statements from the research supervisor confirming the training interruption for parental leave and a doctor's confirmation of the approximate date of birth have to be joined to the email.

Paternity leave cannot begin until a week after the child's birth. The award holder must attach the birth certificate to his/her request.

Sick leave or other reasons

The awardee may defer his/her award due to illness or other reasons provided by the Loi sur les normes du travail as described in section 6.14 of the Common General Rules. The awardee has to inform by email the FRQS of his/her intention to take advantage of such deferral. Payments will be suspended during this period.





US $44,000 to US $59,000 per year

Up to six awards (phase 1) will be granted.


The award will be paid to the awardee by installments sent to the address of his/or her institution.

Income Tax

The awardee is responsible for paying the income tax due on amounts received from the FRQS. No taxes are withheld at source by the FRQS on amounts disbursed during the tax year in question.

The date the amount is granted determines the year in which the awardee must declare the amounts received as income for personal tax calculations.

Revenu Canada's T4A form and Revenu Québec's form 1 are sent to the awardee's mailing address (the one shown in the Module My funding (Gérer mon financement) in the FRQS Electronic Portfolio) in February of the following year of taxation.

The details provided in this form are for information purposes only. The FRQS is not responsible for the validity of the information given about income tax.

Indirect Costs of Research

This program does not benefit from the amount paid out by FRQS to cover indirect costs of research of the institutions.




Concurrent funding

Holding several scholarships is not allowed. Awardees who obtained an award from another public agency or a foundation recognized by the FRQS must notify the FRQS and decline the FRQS funding as soon as the award is offered. However, if the amount of the other award is lower than the FRQS' one, the awardee is eligible to receive the difference.

Relocation and travel expenses

The awardee will be reimbursed for any relocation expenses at the start and end of the first phase of the award, up to US $3,000.

In addition, every year, the awardee will be reimbursed for travel expenses (economy class) to Québec upon the presentation of supporting documents (up to two return trips per year).


Standard health insurance coverage provided by the Foundation for Advanced Education in the Sciences (FAES)-NIH for the awardee and his/her family (if applicable) will be paid for by the FRQS.





All applications are reviewed by committees of experts representing various disciplines and institutions.

Criteria and weighting
First application


Quality of the research project
- Clarity and conciseness of the research topic
- Clarity and consistency between the hypotheses and objectives
- Relevance of the methods and analyses
- Feasibility
- Originality of the project and contribution to the advancement of knowledge


Skills and experience
- Publications
- Lectures, presentations and internships


Quality of training environment
- Justification of the candidate's choice
- Quality of supervisor's publication record related to student training record


Excellence of academic record
- Awards, honours, and distinctions


Criteria and weighting
Renewal application

Research project's state of advancement since the start of postdoctoral training
- Level of completion of the project in view of the methodology
- Justification for renewal and potential for successful outcome
- Research supervisor's evaluation



Achievements since the start of postdoctoral training
- Lectures and presentations
- Publications





By submitting an application, the applicant must:




The supervisor and co-supervisor must:




The FRQS encourages awardees to conduct and participate in knowledge mobilization activities (transfer, sharing, development, enhancement and dissemination) with practice settings and the general public, where such activities are relevant. Please read the document Knowledge Mobilization in the toolbox.