Research Affiliate Program – Information for managers

Hire post-secondary students to advance your organization’s research agenda. They’ll bring enthusiasm, fresh perspectives and the latest expertise to research projects that can range from policy papers and briefs, to networking, to field and lab work. Access a diverse talent pool and hire employment equity groups to represent the population we serve.

How it works

Post-secondary students work part time (average of 25 hours a week) on your research project, following a work schedule that allows them to balance their work, studies and personal lives. Their placement can last as long as the research project requires, providing they remain eligible under the program.

To hire a student through this program:

  1. Work with your HR advisor to create an advertisement in the Public Service Resourcing System for your research opportunity.
  2. Assess, and communicate your results to all applicants.
  3. Hire your student!
To make an offer

Determine your student’s rate of pay based on Treasury Board Secretariats Student Rates of Pay.

Make sure your student meets the eligibility criteria:

  • they are a full-time student in a post-secondary institution
  • they are enrolled in an academic program that requires research as part of their curriculum
  • they meet the minimum age required in the province/territory of work

This includes students with physical or emotional disabilities deemed to have full-time status by their academic institution. Adult students registered in education and retraining programs at the secondary level may also be eligible for student employment programs. Learn more about student eligibility.

Note: Preference will be given to Canadian citizens and permanent residents who meet the job requirements.

See Annex B of the Appointment Policy for the information you need to retain.

Don’t forget!

  • Ask your student if they require accommodation
  • Provide your student with a great onboarding experience (this link is accessible only on the Government of Canada network) and constructive feedback throughout their work placement )
Re-hiring students

To re-hire students originally hired through the Federal Student Work Experience Program, Post-Secondary Co-op/Internship Program or Research Affiliate Program:

  • check that they continue to meet student eligibility criteria
  • contact your HR advisor for your organization’s requirements for re-hiring students
Options for paying your Research Affiliate Program student

Students under this program are to be paid a stipend, bursary or hourly rate of pay consistent with those of other paid student employment programs as per the Treasury Board of Canada Secretariat’s Student Rates of Pay.

The stipend should reflect the corresponding hourly, weekly or monthly rate established for other post-secondary students for their completed years in their current field of study. The bursaries are paid through installments.

If the student's Research Affiliate Program assignment is to complete a thesis or dissertation, the student should be paid up until they are ready for their defence. The write-up for either the thesis or dissertation should take no more than 2 months to accomplish after the research has been completed. For all other research activities, the student should only be paid for the time worked.

Intellectual property

The Crown retains possession of intellectual property related to material produced by the student while participating in the Research Affiliate Program. The issue must be addressed in the hiring organization's contractual agreement with the academic institution, ensuring that the Crown retains the intellectual property rights, while the student is granted the ability to publish their findings and research to fulfil academic requirements, or whenever necessary and appropriate.

Contact us

For more information about the Research Affiliate Program, contact us at

Related links

Student and graduate programs

Hiring students

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