askastudent

your student life specialists

Mar 26

summer study, having a blast. summer study, happened so fast

Hi,

How much does 1 course worth 0.5 credits (Statistics I) cost at UTSG? Is there any financial assistance i can get (as OSAP will only cover it if i take 1.5 credits) Also, i may have to work full-time during the summer (probably shift work). DO you think taking an F course would be doable or would you advise against it?

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hey there,

the Summer 2015 timetable isn’t out yet, but you can take a look at what 0.5 FCEs cost in Summer 2013 here (it was just over $700). it likely won’t deviate too much from that number this summer.

as for financial assistance: if you were a part-time student this Fall/Winter, you are eligible for part-time OSAP and the Noah Meltz Program of Financial Assistance, so you should go ahead and apply for that. if you weren’t part-time in Fall/Winter, then unfortunately you’re not eligible for either of these.

what i would recommend is that you talk to your college registrar’s office about bursaries that may be available through the college.

finally, i think taking 0.5 credits in the summer and a full-time job is totally doable academically. it won’t be easy, as summer courses do move along pretty quickly, but it’s not impossible. if you dedicate yourself and work hard, it can be done. YOU CAN DO IT!!!

cheers,

aska


Mar 26

strike that credit/non-credit!

If you already CR/NCRed a year-long course before the strike, will it be influenced by the new policy (ie can I use it for program requirements and do I still have 2.0 courses to CR/NCR)?

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hey there,

OK, IMPORTANT STRIKE UPDATE STUFF BELOW. READ CAREFULLY AND STOP BUGGING YOUR REGISTRAR’S OFFICE ABOUT IT K LOVE YOU FAM.

basically, what the university will be doing is real easing a web page that will allow students to request credit/non-credit themselves, or reverse any previous cr/ncr designations they made have made earlier. this applies to any S or Y courses, regardless of whether they were affected by the strike. that means that even people who’ve already selected a course as credit/non-credit this semester will have a chance to see their final mark in all their classes before making a final decision about whether they’d really like to CR/NCR the course.

and yes, these CR/NCRs will count for your program requirements, and won’t count as part of the maximum 2.0 courses you’re officially allowed to credit/non-credit.

you can find all this info on the faculty of arts & science website here.

good luck y’all, and try not to burst a blood vessel from this strike business, alright?

xoxo,

aska


Mar 26

i just love mac n cheese. better than engineering, definitely.

hey aska
im extremely upset today because i just did very poorly on a very important test and midterm marks are due in about three weeks. basically im a grade 12 student. i know u guys hate admissions questions but please try to answer me truthfully so i can mentally prepare myself for failure if it’s to come. i was sure that i can get low 90s in physics and calculus but i think i’ll be getting high 80s (like around 88) in both of them (this is the most likely case, there is a chance of me getting a 90 on the dot). i had a low 80 in advanced functions so i was trying to make up for it with my calculus and physics marks but that’s not happening. i had a low 90 in chemistry and biology and have high 90s in english and my elective. what are my chances of getting into uoft engineering (chemical or civil)? my average should be around 89 at the lowest, 91 at the highest. i would say i did well on my video interview and i have very strong extracurriculars – i think i have a strong student profile form.

please help me sorry i cant sound happier

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hey there,

aww man – we don’t actually hate admissions questions, y’all. it’s just a bit of teasing. if you guys stopped sending us questions, where would aska be? at home in a big t-shirt and no pants, probably, eating mac n cheese and watching totally spies on netflix.

which, yes, sounds pretty great, but it likely wouldn’t be good for my general well-being in the long run.

firstly: i can’t guarantee that you’re going to get in. i can never guarantee that, especially for engineering, which just gets more and more competitive every year.

however, there is really not that much difference between an 89% and a 91%. like, regardless of how good those marks are, 3% is not going to make or break your chances. secondly (and most importantly), that’s a very good average. that is a competitive average, no question about it.

like i said, i can’t guarantee admission because i have literally zero influence on anything that actually happens at this university, BUT i do know that an 89% is nothing to panic about.

“but aska,” i hear you saying, “you have no credibility. all your posts are in lowercase and you started your answer by talking about wearing no pants while eating mac n cheese. you’re constantly talking garbage and it rarely makes sense. why should i trust you?”

well, you can take a look at the admission grade range for engineering students in 2012 for proof. the admission grade range then for chemical and civil engineering was low-80s. granted, that number may have gone up a little since 2012, but not by much. so you’re solidly above the grade range of students who are accepted. that doesn’t guarantee you will be accepted, but it bodes well.

cheers,

aska


Mar 24

i’m a permanent resident of tim’s and a nomad everywhere else

Hello aska,

I am currently an international student at U of T. I am planning to apply for permanent residency since I qualify. It’s gonna take some time for me to get it, so I might still have to pay international student fees this year before the first semester starts. But if I did get PR this fall, would I get a refund from university as I would be exempt from international fees?

Thanks!

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hey there,

the rule of thumb in 2014-2015 was that if you submitted sufficient documentation (i.e. if you’d already gotten the permanent residency or you were really, really close to getting it) to the registrar’s office before november 1st, then your fees were altered for the entire Fall/Winter term. so if you already paid some international fees for that term before that date, that would result in a refund.

that’s a pretty good guideline for this year as well, but make sure to keep an eye on the fees website just in case there are any updates/changes in the process. ’cause the university sure does love to make those.

cheers,

aska


Mar 24

the career centre is candy and glitter and magic

Are there resources available at UofT where someone can find help with editing any scholarship applications? Or are we essentially expected to write things up ourselves and hope for the best lol. Thanks in advance :)

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hey there,

there aren’t any services specifically geared towards writing/editing scholarship applications, at least that i know of – which kind of makes sense, ’cause scholarship applications can pretty much ask you to do anything and everything.

scholarships are funded by all kinds of different people and institutions, so they’re allowed to ask you whatever they dream up. i’ve answered questions on scholarship forms ranging from “describe a time when you overcame a difficulty to contribute to your community” to, “send us a picture of how you would use Our Great Product TM in your everyday life at university.”

since more traditional scholarship applications tend to require resumes or ask similar questions that might be asked of you when applying for a job, your best bet might be to attend a workshop put on by the career centre.

if the scholarship has an interview portion as part of the selection process and you’re feeling nervous about that, you may want to attend a mock interview, for example. if you need help specifically in writing your application, you may consider a resume-writing workshop. or you can visit the CLN for the gazillion other workshops and events the career centre offers.

peace & love,

aska


Mar 24

MAT133 *shudders*

Hey! So, I’m a first year commerce student at UTM and I’m going to apply to the accounting specialist Subject POSt. The prerequisite courses for this POSt are ECO100, MAT133, MGM101, and MGT120, but I’m failing MAT133. I think I’m going to withdraw from this course, rather than failing, and take it during the summer. Will the LWD on my transcript affect my admission into the POSt, or anything else?

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hey there,

well, you won’t be able to get into the POSt if one of the prereqs has an LWD on it. however, i can’t see anything on the requirements for an accounting specialist that says that they will give preference to people who tried the course more than once.

SO if you LWD the course, take it again and do really well, and your marks in the other three prereqs + CGPA are competitive, then you’d still be competitive for the POSt.

otherwise, LWDs do have some impact on graduate school applications, but this is one LWD in your first year, so honestly, i wouldn’t stress too much about it. if you think you can do significantly better in the course by LWD’ing it now and taking it again, then go on over to your registrar and make an appointment to discuss putting through a request.

good luck with it, my friend,

aska

P.S. make sure you follow updates related to the strike, as they may affect the rules related to LWDs. HOW they might be affected, i can’t say. it’s all part of the THRILL AND EXCITEMENT of labour disputes! whoo!


Mar 23

friends & frosh

I’ve heard from people 2 things about uoft that im not sure are true and I would like them clarified. 1) if you are a commuter on frosh week you won’t enjoy it/make any friends. 2) it is incredibly hard to find friends at uoft as there isn’t the best clubs/groups to meet others.

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hey there,

1) listen, any experience can suck – frosh week is no exception. some people go to frosh and it just isn’t fun. also, commuting to frosh is kind of a pain. so that’s a bummer.

BUT i would say that the general attitude towards frosh week at uoft is positive. the great thing about frosh is that all the disparate schools, colleges and offices at the university come together during frosh to explain who the h*ck they are and what the h*ck they do.

here is a list of orientation events put on by student life last year. as you can see, it’s pretty comprehensive. that page also links to the orientation schedules of most of the colleges and faculties last year. peruse those if you want to have a better idea of what you can expect from frosh week.

it’s also important to note that residence and commuter students don’t have a separate frosh, so there’s plenty of opportunity to make friends with people on- and off-rez.

also, commuter students vastly outnumber residence students at this university, so it’s not like you’re going to be in some sort of friendless minority. in fact, most colleges’ frosh weeks have events specifically for commuter students to get together and socialize. if you go in with an open mind and you’re willing to participate, you’ll probably leave with at least a friend or two.

2) friends will not just come to you. you do have to actually talk to people if you want to make friends, and when you spend a significant part of your time sitting silently on a bus/train/subway, that might not come as easily to you once you get to school.

however, if you are willing to talk to people, you’ll find friends cropping up everywhere – in your classes, in clubs that you may be involved with, at jobs you may take on-campus, etc. not every club will be what you’re looking for, but if you look widely and early, you’ll soon find the place or places that are a fit for you.

here is a list of organizations on campus if you want to start exploring now. as well, i’d encourage you to hang out in your college’s commuter lounge and talk with people there (most colleges have one, or equivalent).

all in all: yes it’s hard to make new friends in a new, unfamiliar environment, but i wouldn’t say this is harder to do at uoft than anywhere else. the university has a lot of opportunities for new students to connect with the community on campus, so don’t be afraid to try out different things!

cheers,

aska


Mar 23

possible or allowed? an important distinction.

Is it possible to take a specialized program and still do a minor? Thanks!! :)

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hey there,

if you do a specialist, you’re not required to take on another subject POSt. however, if you want to do a minor, then no one’s gonna stop you.

i mean, it might be difficult, but hey, if you can pull it off – knock yourself out.

xoxo,

aska


Mar 23

what is this magical “uni experience” everyone keeps talking about

I’m strongly considering attending UofT (UC) in the fall. What’s not appealing about a reputable, highly academic school? But i’ve been hearing that the social life is non existent. I’m a very socially inclined person and enjoy having fun and partying. I want to get that “university experience” and enjoy the school i’m at apart from getting a good education. Is it true there’s no parties? Am I going to get that type of experience there? Thx!!

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hey there,

listen, man, the university of toronto had over 68 000 undergraduate students in 2014-15. that’s 68 000+ 20-somethings all living together in the city. you really think there are no parties?

if anything, toronto is the absolute best place to be for parties, because if there’s nothing happening on campus (which is rare) something will be happening in the city, guaranteed. i’d recommend following blogTO to get a feel for the millenials’ favourite haunts in the city.

the big problem, of course, is how much time will you actually have to party? most students at university don’t want to fail whatever they’re studying, and that means they’ll need to dedicate a certain amount of time to – you know – studying. the number of hours you’ll be putting in will depend on your program of study and also you as an individual.

putting that aside though, there is definitely the opportunity to party. if you get even a little involved with college life or student life generally, you’ll have no shortage of opportunities to go out and be young. formals, pub nights, club nights – it’s all there, but it’s up to you to find them and strike the proper balance between having fun and passing your classes.

i guess the tricky part is that since uoft is so big, there are few university-wide party traditions. usually, you need to look a little deeper. social and community events tend to happen on the college/school/department level, so that’s where you need to be looking.

so no, i wouldn’t say that there’s no opportunity here to be social – but at the end of the day, it is a university, so expect to keep your nose in a book more often than halfway down a Solo cup.

cheers,

aska


Mar 19

aska felt a pie

Does it cost to join a sorority ?

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hey there,

yes, it does. there are seven different sororities on the uoft campus*, and annual costs are between $400 and $1000, depending on the sorority.

if you really want to join a sorority but the financial commitment is a bit much for you, you may want to look into what scholarships are available at the chapter you’re interested in. the Toronto Area Alumna Panhellenic also offers a scholarship that you may want to look into.

it’s also good to note that sororities or fraternities on campus are not officially recognized by uoft, so any questions about details of their operation etc. are probably best directed to them.

good luck on your sorority journey!

xoxo,

aska

* why is everything at uoft in groups of seven? seven undergraduate colleges. seven faculty of theology colleges. seven sororities. what is this, a harry potter novel?


Mar 19

is uoft ever serious??? hmm

My conditional acceptance says to maintain a 75 average. Is uoft being serious or will they take it away if I drop from a 90 to a 75. Is there something cryptic in the conditional offer?

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hey there,

they may revoke your admission if you drop below a 75, but if the wording is “maintain a 75% average,” then i’m guessing a 75 or above is ok.

but yeah, no, there’s nothing really more cryptic than that. just do your best to meet the conditions of your offer, and everything will go smoothly. there’s nothing to overthink on this one. promise.

if there’s anything else about your offer that’s unclear, feel free to call enrolment services for clarification. they’re the people who issue the offers, so they’re the ones who know best.

cheers,

aska


Mar 19

i can’t believe you did well in first year i mean who does that

Hello! I transferred “internally” from UTM to to UTSG (A&S) after 1st year. I’m almost done 3rd year but am wondering whether or not I can graduate w/ “high distinction’ (cGPA greater than 3.5) or be on the Dean’s list b/c my cGPA differs depending on whether my first year GPA is included. So, will my (good) 1st year GPA (from UTM) be included in the calculations for cGPA (like on ROSI), so I can graduate w/ high distinction? If not, I might not be able to graduate w/ high distinction. Thanks!

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hey there,

if you are a uoft student and you transfer to a different uoft campus, your marks from the other uoft campus will be included on your transcript. i guess that’s just a quirk of the tri-campus system.

so yes, your first year will be included in your CGPA calculation. whoo!

enjoy buying outrageous frames for your high distinction certificate,

aska


Mar 12

aska is the hottest job on the block

Hey aska!

Aska seems like a cool group of people. I’m going into my 4th and final year and I totally wanna get involved with ya’ll. How can I?

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hey there,

thanks for the compliment! we are a pretty rad group, if i do say so myself.

every aska gets the job a different way. my personal recommendation – if you really want to increase your chances of getting it – is that you spend a month or so serenading me. any genre of music will do; i’m not picky. just make sure that you’re at my beck and call and ready to sing at any time of the day or night – of course, i can’t sing for myself. that would be absurd.

also, if you want to spontaneously bring me coffees and treats, i wouldn’t mind that at all. compliment my hair. replace the flowers in the vases at my place. carry me on a litter from class to class, enjoy some white-water sports with me  – just little things, y’know?

or you can just keep an eye on the CLN and apply online, since askastudent is a work-study position. but like, whatever. it’s your decision.

xoxo,

aska


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