CSSHE sponsors an annual award for the outstanding Masters thesis or project in Canadian universities in the area of higher education. Nominated works should focus on topics in higher education relevant to Canada, including the societal context, access, organization and governance, teaching and learning, institutional studies, or education and employment.

CriteriaThe overall criterion for selection is scholarly excellence, readability, and contribution to increased understanding of the dynamics of higher education.
EligibilityCandidates must have completed the requirements for a Masters degree at a Canadian university during the calendar year prior to the award. The candidate must have passed the final examination and the supervisory committee must have accepted the thesis or project by December 31 of the year prior to the award.
Nature of the AwardThe recipient will be invited, as a guest of the Society, to present a paper on the thesis or project during the annual CSSHE conference and will be presented with a Certificate of Merit as well as a complimentary CSSHE membership for one year.
SubmissionsFaculty members who are graduate advisors are invited to submit a maximum of two nominations, using the Nomination Form (click here). Individuals who intend to submit a nomination are asked to consult and coordinate with their colleagues in their Faculty so that no one Faculty forwards more than five nominations to CSSHE. Each submission must include an expanded abstract of not less than 1,000 and not more than 1,500 words (including references, if any). The expanded abstract should contain the problem statement, remarks on the significance of the study, methodology, major findings, and recommendations. A separate file with the full text of the thesis or project is also required.
DeadlineE-mail the submissions no later than 31 January each year to:

Mr. Tim Howard, CSSHE Secretariat

Past Recipients

2021 (tied)Audrey Bujold,
Université du Québec en Outaouais
Le vécu expérientiel des étudiantes au baccalauréat en sciences infirmières lors de leur stage en milieu psychiatrique: Comprendre pour mieux former
2021 (tied)Emily Gregory,
University of Alberta
Employability skill development in higher education: Students’ and faculty members’ perspectives
2020Andrew Hartman,
University of Saskatchewan
The Role of Shame in Student Persistence and Help-Seeking
2019Catherine Macala,
The University of British Columbia
Bridging the rural divide: An exploratory study of a medical school’s rural applicants
2018 (tied)Julie Mooney,
McGill University
Emergent professional learning communities in Canadian postsecondary education: Experiences of faculty, educational developers, support staff, and administrators
2018 (tied)Colleen Webb,
University of Manitoba
After the adult learning centre: Rural women: Decisions and transitions to post-secondary education
2017Brandon Sabourin,
University of Windsor
Identifying student approaches to learning: Undergraduate student perceptions of teaching and learning at the University of Windsor
2016Not awarded
2015Erica Jung
University of Manitoba
International graduate students’ perceptions of academic learning
2014Kathryn Hansen
Western University
College instructors’ preparedness to teach students with learning disablities
2013Janine Jongbloed
University of British Columbia
Happiness, well-being, and post-secondary attainment: measuring the subjective well-being of British Columbia’s high school graduate class of 1988
2012 (tied)Rhonda Friesen
University of Manitoba
Canadian internationalization: selective perceptions of five faculty members
2012 (tied)Isabelle Skakni
Université Laval
Les représentations de la carrière professorale des doctorantes et doctorants québécois
2011Not awarded
2010 (tied)Monique Bourgeois,
Memorial University of Newfoundland
The Significance of Post-Secondary Education in Newfoundland: A Comparison Between the Provincial Government’s White Paper on Public Post-Secondary Education (2005) And Rural Women Enrolled In Liberal Arts Undergraduate Degrees
2010 (tied)Albert Johnson,
Memorial University of Newfoundland
Students’ perceptions of effective teaching in higher education
2009Not awarded
2008Not awarded
2007Blanca Minerva Torres-Olave,
University of British Columbia
“If I didn’t have professional dreams maybe I wouldn’t think of leaving”: Student Identity and Imagined Communities in a Mexican Lengua Inglesa Major
2006David Vincent Ruffolo,
University of Toronto
Queering the “I” in academic discourse: Re/visioning agency for an equitable future
2005Michelle H-Duke,
University of Lethbridge
The chemistry of education: B.C. young men and women.
2004Maria Adamuti-Trache,
University of British Columbia
Post-secondary paths in science for B.C. young women and men.