The NSD-PFC Grant Award for Physiotherapy Research in Neurosciences was established in 2006 as a result of a joint effort between the Neurosciences Division (NSD) of the Canadian Physiotherapy Association (CPA) and the Physiotherapy Foundation of Canada (PFC). This award is for projects related to the practice of physiotherapy in neurosciences. The principal investigator must be a CPA member and a member of the NSD in good standing. 

Eligibility Criteria

1. Applicants may apply to multiple PFC awards, but will not receive more than one grant in a given year.

2. Relevance to the practice of physiotherapy in neuroscience must be demonstrated in the proposal.

3. Preference will be given to projects that are developmental in nature (i.e., not part of a larger project).

4. Principal investigator must be a physiotherapist who EITHER:

  • Does not currently hold, or has not held in the past 3 years, a national or large (i.e. in order of $50,000) provincial research grant. Applicant must demonstrate how the proposal could lead to further research on a larger scale.


  • Currently holds, or has held in the past 3 years, a national or large provincial research grant. Applicant must demonstrate how the proposal is a departure from their funded research and how the proposal could lead to further research on a larger scale.

5. Research grants are open to individuals who hold a degree in physiotherapy and who are Canadian citizens, landed immigrants, or people who reside in Canada (for the duration of the grant) with a valid work or student visa. The principal investigator must be a member in good standing of the CPA and the Neurosciences Division. If you are not a CPA or NSD member, please visit

6. Members of PFC and NSD committees may apply for the NSD-PFC Grant Award for Physiotherapy Research in Neurosciences, but cannot be involved in either the decision-making or in determining the disposition of the applications.


  1. Research grants are awarded by the PFC on the advice of its Scientific Awards Committee (SAC). The Board of Directors of the PFC reserves the right to approve or decline any application.
  2. Research projects must have a defined objective that is designed to further develop the art and science of physiotherapy. Research grants may be used to employ assistants (technical or professional) or student trainees, to remunerate professional advisors, to purchase materials and supplies, to buy and maintain equipment and supplies, and to support field travel costs related to research.
  3. Research grant funds may not be used for the remuneration of the investigators directing the project, nor to cover any indirect costs of research often known as overhead.
  4. The amount available for the NSD-PFC Grant Award for Physiotherapy Research in Neurosciences will be jointly determined and announced each year by the Executive of the Neurosciences Division and the Physiotherapy Foundation of Canada (PFC). Financial support from the NSD-PFC Grant Fund is intended for such items as the purchase or development of research specific software, consumables (including equipment of under $500), travel to collect data and research methodology and statistical assistance (personnel).
  5. Human and Animal Experimentation Ethical Considerations and Containment. If the application concerns experiments involving human subjects, research on somatic cell gene therapy and/or research involving pathogens and animal cells, then copies of the following certificates must be sent to by May 15, 2024:
    • Ethics certificate for research involving human subjects (include subject consent forms)
    • Requirement for containment (biohazards).
    • Consent letters from collaborating agencies (access to data, patients).
    • Certification for animal care.
  6. Investigators who are not associated with a university or hospital, and therefore may not have direct access to an ethics review committee, are advised to either establish a working relationship with an existing ethics review committee or to constitute a committee using the guidelines published by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, Ottawa. For further information contact the Canadian Council on Animal Care, Ottawa and/or the Office of Biosafety, Laboratory Centre for Disease Control, Health Protection Branch, Health Canada, Ottawa.


  1. Only projects that are directly relevant to the practice of physiotherapy in neuroscience will be considered. Priority will be given to research projects that are perceived to be of maximum benefit to the practice of physiotherapy and society as a whole


  1. Where more than one applicant is involved, a physiotherapist must be shown as principal investigator or co-investigator.
  2. Research grants are ordinarily made for one year, July 1st to June 30th.
  3. Research grants are not intended to cover the total cost of the research for which they are provided. Space and basic facilities at the institution concerned are prerequisite to an application.

Obligations of the Recipients

  1. The investigator must submit a final report on the work accomplished during the period of the research grant no later than 6 months after the end of the grant period (normally August 31). Please note that investigators who do not comply with this requirement will thereafter be ineligible for further funding from the Physiotherapy Foundation of Canada and the awards it administers.
  2. Within one year of completion of the award, disseminate the results to the NSD membership through (a) a presentation e.g. NSD AGM, NSD webinar and (b) write a summary of their research for the NSD e-newsletter.
  3. It is expected that the research will culminate in peer-reviewed publications or presentations at national or international conferences or an application for further funding to a national or federal agency. A reprint of any such publication should be furnished to the PFC and NSD. Publications arising from research supported by PFC must be acknowledged with the relevant sentence below:

    “This research was supported by the NSD-PFC Grant Award for Physiotherapy Research in Neurosciences and administered by the Physiotherapy Foundation of Canada.”

For verbal presentations (i.e. posters, oral presentations), the logos of the Neurosciences Division and of the PFC will be included.


  1. Applications are accepted only ONLINE through EventsAir and must be received by PFC by March 15th, 2024, by 11:59 pm EST. Notification on the outcome of applications will be provided in writing in May. Award disbursement will commence in July.
  2. Attachments should be typed single spaced and minimum font size 11. Illustrations should be drawn with clean black lines.
  3. Applications should be prepared in such a manner that they can be read and understood in a general way without reference to any further material that may be provided in the appendices.
  4. Applicants may not be part of any decision process relating to an application in which they have a vested interest.
  5. Applicants for the NSD-PFC Grant Award for Physiotherapy Research in Neurosciences will show how the knowledge and understanding of physiotherapy in the management of neuroscience problems will be enhanced through its applications.
  6. Applicants are invited to submit their application for funding in either official language.

Review Process

  1. Each application will be assessed by the SAC in relation to the priorities for research identified by the PFC and each particular award. It will be considered from the standpoint of its scientific merit and budget within the framework of the aforementioned regulations. A composite scoring scheme will be applied to each project based on defined criteria and funding will be recommended to projects achieving the highest composite scores while respecting the particular criteria of particular awards. In the event where there is a tie or two or more highly rated applications, priority will be given to the application that optimizes clinician collaboration.
  2. Written opinions and recommendations of reviewers will be made available to applicants upon request. Reviewers retain the right of anonymity.

Financial Administration

  1. When an application for a research grant is approved, PFC will make payments in trust for the project to the Designated Financial Officer (DFO) at the sponsoring institution. Grants will be paid in full at the beginning of the granting period.
  2. Unless the SAC deems otherwise, payment of the full amount of the award will normally be made at the commencement of the project (June). The recipient will provide an itemized account (with receipts) to PFC immediately following the period for which the funding was awarded. Unexpended monies during the period of the award will be returned to the NSD-PFC Joint Fund. 
  3. The total amount of the award to be made will be determined by the Neurosciences Division and the PFC. Monies which are not awarded in any one year will be added to the principal for reinvestment.
  4. Funds will be in trust to an institution where the research is to be performed. It is the responsibility of the principal investigator to provide detailed evidence in the budget portion of the application as to the proposed manner in which the funds are to be used. When applicable, the proposal must include written consent of the institution to administer the funds on behalf of the applicant. 
  5. Alterations to this procedure are subject to approval by the PFC. PFC reserves the right to withdraw or take back funding in whole or in part. All applicants are required to sign an agreement at the time of application that the funds will be used exclusively for the purpose stated in the proposal.