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OISE Bursary Program

At the present time, the Office of the Registrar and Student Services (ORSS) is offering digital service to students. Please email us at studentservices.oise@utoronto.ca or call our office at the appropriate phone number listed here and we will be more than happy to serve you. If you need to meet with a member of the ORSS, we ask that you call or email us to request a virtual appointment.


The OISE Bursary Program provides financial assistance to full-time OISE students who demonstrate financial need. The bursary is non-repayable, and intended to assist you in financing your education. 

Students may apply for the OISE Bursary once per session as follows:

  • For teacher education (MT and MA CSE) students: fall, winter and summer session
  • For all other master's students and doctoral students: fall and winter session only
  • For all OISE students: If your employment income has been disrupted due to the COVID-19 situation and you are experiencing immediate financial hardship, you can apply for an OISE Emergency Bursary.  
    • The Government of Canada has announced in new supports for students and new grads affected by COVID-19. For more details see:  Canada Emergency Student Benefit.
    • OISE students who are not eligible for the Canada Emergency Student Benefit, but  whose income has been reduced or eliminated by COVID-19 related work disruption, illness, quarantine or forced to stay home to care for children may be eligible for the Canada Emergency Response Benefit and/or  Employment Insurance which has special COVID provisions .

The program adheres to the University of Toronto Policy on Student Financial Support. However, it is also sensitive to extenuating personal circumstances and may take these into account when assessing bursary applications. 


Eligibility Requirements

1. Registration status

  • Applicants must be registered as a full-time student in an OISE graduate program. 


2. Demonstrated financial need

  • Applicants must demonstrate financial need over and above what is identified through OSAP's (or other provincial/territorial government assistance) standard assessment.
  • Students are expected to rely on OSAP or other government assistance, up to the maximum OSAP loan.
  • Any assessed need which remains unmet above the OSAP maximum, is expected to be covered by a combination of non-repayable grants from the University of Toronto [depending on your program, either UTAPS or OISE's Professional Masters Financial Aid (PMFA)] and other forms of loans or lines of credit.
    • Full-time students who are Ontario residents and who are receiving OSAP are automatically considered for either UTAPS or the PMFA (depending on your program).
    • Full-time students receiving assistance from another province/territory must complete an application on the Enrolment Services website, in order to be considered for UTAPS or the Professional Masters Financial Aid grant.

3. International students

  • Are not normally eligible for support since they must demonstrate sufficient financial resources in order to be approved to study in Canada. 
  • Can access emergency assistance if their financial needs are the result of unanticipated circumstances (such as the impact of COVID -19 on expected income). Contact the Financial Aid Coordinator for more information.

4. Personal contribution

  • During their first year of study, students are expected to contribute a minimum of $2,500 to their educational expenses.

5. OSAP ineligibility

  • The University of Toronto funding guarantee referenced in the Student Financial Aid policy does not apply to students who are ineligible for government support for reasons such as defaults on previous government loans, the under-reporting of previous income, disqualifying credit histories, or reaching maximum lifetime OSAP limits.

    Students in this category should have a solid financial plan in place as the bursary program cannot and will not replace funds that OSAP and University of Toronto grants otherwise might have provided. Each application will be assessed on a case-by-case basis to determine the level of support that is appropriate and feasible.

Application Opening and Closing Dates

Fall applications

  • Opens September 15, 2020 and closes November 16, 2020.

Winter applications

  • Opens January 11, 2021 and closes February 26, 2021.

Summer applications

  • Opens May 4, 2020 and CLOSES JULY 26, 2020. (For full time students in the MT and MA CSE program and for other OISE students on an emergency basis.)


Please note: Fall applications are not processed until U of T Financial Aid (UTAPS) or Professional Masters Financial Aid (PMFA-OISE) information becomes available at the University. We expect to receive this information in early October. 

Application Process

Step 1: Complete and submit your application online

Carefully review the eligibility requirements above, then complete and submit your application. 

Please note: The bursary committee considers reasonable general expenses (based on the academic year) without documentation. These include: tuition and incidental fees, books and related costs, rent or mortgage, utilities, insurance, maintenance fees, property taxes, food, transportation, communication, household supplies, recreation and entertainment, clothing, and personal and health care expenses.

Step 2: Submit supporting documentation

Additional allowable expenses

If you are claiming additional allowable expenses, you must submit supporting documentation  within two weeks of submitting your application in order to clarify your eligibility. Beyond this two week period, applications will be assessed without additional allowable expenses.

For information on what counts as an additional allowable expense and what supporting documents are required, see below.

Out of province students

Out-of-province students will need to submit a student loan assessment from their home province.


All supporting documents should be submitted via email to oise.financialaid@utoronto.ca

Step 3: Application assessment

This takes four to six weeks, but can take longer during peak periods – typically at the beginning and end of each session. Assessments may also be delayed if OSAP, UTAPS and PMFA-OISE amounts have not been confirmed.

An e-mail response will be sent to each applicant once the application has been assessed.

Step 4: Bursary applied to fees

Bursaries are typically applied to fees first. However, OISE’s Financial Aid Coordinator will consider alternate arrangements if the student is facing extenuating personal circumstances.


Additional Allowable Expenses

Supporting documents for these additional allowable expenses should be submitted via email to oise.financialaid@utoronto.ca


1. Debt servicing

We allow expense claims of 50% of the monthly required interest payments on credit cards, to a combined maximum of $250.00/month. In addition, we allow claims for interest charges on previous loans or institutional lines of credit. 

If you are registered in a professional master's program and making use of non-OSAP or government loans to cover assessed need over the OSAP maximum, you can claim the full amount of this debt servicing cost. There is a line on the bursary application to record this expense. 

An example of a non-OSAP or government loans is a Scotiabank line of credit program arranged by the University of Toronto, or equivalent loan agreement negotiated by the student. 

Supporting documentation required: Most recent credit card, loan, and/or lines of credit statements showing an interest charge.

2. Child care

For students with children 12 years of age or younger, reasonable child care costs will be considered provided that the student's partner is working.

Supporting documentation required: Documentation from your child care provider 

3. Professional health care

Because students are automatically covered by University of Toronto's student health plan, all eligible costs should first be claimed against that plan. 

However, we consider reasonable assistance for professional health care services not covered by an insurance plan. 

Costs for individual professional services are limited to $500 per year, and $750 per year for all professional services combined.

Supporting documentation required: Receipts

4. Vehicle Insurance

Costs of vehicle insurance is allowed, to a maximum of $200.00 per month.

Supporting documentation required: Most recent statement



Ineligible Expenses

1. Debts (e.g., income taxes, unpaid tuition from previous years)

2. Obligations (e.g., court imposed fines/payments)

3. Vacations and gifts


Office of the Registrar and Student Services
Ontario Institute for Studies in Education

8th Floor, Room 8-225
252 Bloor Street West
Toronto, ON  M5S 1V6