askastudent

your student life specialists

Sep 15

fulfilling prereqs, prefilling fulreqs

Hello! I have a question that I cannot seem to find the answer to, hopefully you can help me out! If the prerequisites for a winter semester course are that 4 credits have been completed, can I take it if I have 4 credits completed by the end of the fall semester?

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hey there,

yes! two things, though:

1) make sure that you have completed 4.0 credits, as opposed to just 4 courses. there’s a big difference.

2) departments can pull people from courses who haven’t completed the prerequisites at any time. they shouldn’t pull people now from winter term courses, but just in case it does happen by accident, just contact the department that runs the course, explain that the prereq will be done by the time you start the course, and have them put you back in.

and that’s all! i hope you enjoy your class.

cheers,

aska


Sep 15

i’m on the line and i can’t see any courses?? darn this newflanged internets…

Hello :) Does UofT have online courses? How do they work? Are they likely to be held in the summer session? Thanks

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hey there,

uoft doesn’t have a lot of info up about their online courses (what SHAMS, they can’t even promote their ONLINE courses ONLINE). however, it seems like the online courses they do have listed are pretty random.

here is the full selection of courses offered this year. which of those will be offered in the summer, i’m not sure.

what i would do is browse that list, see which courses you’re interested in, and once you’ve picked some, call the departments that administer those courses. ask if they’re typically offered in the summer term, and if there will be an online option.

the more popular a class is, the higher the chances that there will be a summer and/or online option. i hope you have pretty mainstream taste in courses. keep in mind, though, that neither you or the department can be sure which courses will be offered until the summer timetable comes out. however, you can browse this past summer’s timetable to take a look at what was on offer then.

as for how online courses work, they’ve pretty much got the same course material as classes in brick-and-mortar classrooms, just whacked up onto the web.

however, i think that exams/term tests are in-class rather than online, so if you’re halfway across the world, an online course may not be feasible. don’t quote me on that, though – definitely ask the department about it before you sign up, as it may not be the same for all courses.

good luck,

aska


Sep 15

aww, you took all the fun out of it!

Have you heard of anyone being accepted to UTSG social sciences with an 83 average? Or is it always above 85 Please god no sarcastic answer back.

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hey there,

well now, i resent you taking away one my greatest pleasures in life – that is, being a sarcastic morale-ruiner to young teens everywhere. what am i even doing here if it doesn’t involve some healthy admissions-related cynicism?

alright, i won’t be sarcastic. but i still can’t really answer your question.

when you say “have you heard of anyone being accepted,” that implies that either 1) i discuss admissions averages with many people, and so can speak anecdotally about a wide range of them, or 2) i am somehow close to or affiliated with admissions, in which case i could overhear a lot of things related to admissions averages that a university layman might not know.

unfortunately, neither of these is true. when you got to uni (or at least, when aska got to uni), high school and everything relating to it was kinda brushed under the rug. people rarely talk about what they had or did to get in.

and as i have said time and again, i am – tragically – in no way affiliated with the lovely folks at admissions. trust me, no amount of begging for answers can change that.

so, i can’t answer your question. i can refer you once more to this page, which clearly states the cutoff for social sciences admissions as low 80s, not mid 80s.

but i can’t tell you how many people get in with an average in the low 80s as compared to people who got in with an 85% or above. you can contact enrolment services for more information, or talk to your high school guidance counsellor, who has probably amassed more anecdotal information than i have.

next answer’s gotta be super sarcastic to make up for this forced genuineness.

best,

aska


Sep 15

high school calculus…it’s all a blur…

Hi,
Im in the process of transferring from mata30f to mata30y. However i would like to get an opinion of the depth of mata30f. Can someone please advise
me whether 30f is similar to highschool calculus and vectors or if it goes in more depth than that (highschool).

Also is there a way that i could obtain past papers from previous 30f exams to get a knowledge of the difficulty.

Appreciate your advise on this at your earliest please

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Hey there,

Well, I think you can get a pretty good sense of how similar it is just from the course description. For example, take a look at this hunk of text: “Elementary functions: rational, trigonometric, root, exponential and logarithmic functions and their graphs. Basic calculus: limits, continuity, derivatives, derivatives of higher order, analysis of graphs, use of derivatives; integrals and their applications.

Does any of that ring a bell somewhere in the dusty corners of your brain? Do you remember doing trig? Exponential functions? Derivatives? (Hopefully you remember derivatives from Grade 12 calculus).

In fact, all of that stuff is on the MCV4U1 curriculum, except integrals. I can’t speak for high schools in other provinces or countries, but if you did high school in Ontario, you should expect a pretty significant portion of the course to be review from high school.

That said, it won’t be the exact same as high school calculus. The material will definitely go into more depth, and concepts will be introduced here and there which you’re not familiar with. Integrals, which likely come at the end of the course, you probably haven’t encountered at all.

But the aim of the course is definitely not to fling you into the deep end.

As for past papers, the prof will usually let you know if they’ll be providing past papers as practice. You can also ask if he/she has them. Since most people don’t get to keep their exam papers, getting them directly from the prof is pretty much the only way to get your mits on them, so I wouldn’t go around any shadowy corners of the internet begging for them off strangers.

If the prof decides not to provide past papers, though, I wouldn’t worry. Study questions, assigned textbook work, and weekly problem sets are all regularly employed (and SUPER FUN!!) ways of providing students with plenty of practise for the exam.

Cheers,

Aska


Sep 09

relative to what

are sciences relatively hard to get into? chem in particular

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hey there,

i dunno man. i guess that depends on how smart you are, doesn’t it? and how smart everyone else who applies this year is.

unfortunately, i don’t know how smart you or anyone else is. i don’t know a lot of things. i’m not very smart, myself.

the only thing i can do is direct you to this year’s anticipated grade ranges for people admitted to uoft in 2014. i’m tempted not to give this link out for the umpteenth time, but i’ll do it, ’cause i’m kind. you can use those numbers as a rough guide to figure out how you measure up to the pack.

chemistry is not something you can apply to out of high school at uoft. if you wanted to get into chemistry, you could apply to the life science or physical/mathematical sciences streams out of high school.

from there, you could apply to a chemistry specialist/major/minor after first year. if you want to know how difficult it is to get into those programs, you can read about them on the course calendar.

here’s a tip: look up whether the specialist/major/minor is/are type 1, 2 or 3. type 1 is automatic admission, type 2 has certain prerequisites for admission, and type 3 has requirements, plus the program only has a limited number of spots.

here’s hoping uoft has a positive REACTION to your application! get it? get it?

cheers,

aska


Sep 09

sign me up for the next war!

I missed the club fair this week at UTSG and I was wondering where I can go or what I can do to sign up! :))

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hey there,

missing the clubs fair is no big deal. it’s a really helpful and awesome resource for discovering new clubs (while also having a nice lil walk), BUT now that we’re all cyborgs and we’ve sold our souls to the internet, most clubs are active and very easily findable online.

if you know you want to get involved but you’re not sure where to do it, ULife’s list of all campus groups is ground 0. it lists pretty much every organization at uoft alphabetically, and scrolling through just one letter on there is likely to give you a coupla leads.

hart house is another cool hub of extra-curricular activity at the school. they’ve got everything going on, from musical groups to athletic facilities to a class on how not to be self-conscious (seriously). i honestly can’t praise hart house enough. it’s like a rec centre, but more beautiful, cheaper, and with more diverse classes. stay awesome, hart house.

you can also look into getting involved with some student societies on campus, with your own college’s student union, or with the student union associated with a program you may be interested in applying to after first year (assuming you’re a first year student), like the Association of Political Science Students, for example.

finally, searching through askastudent’s extracurricular tag is also a great way to find new opportunities (not our clubs tag; that’s something different).

once you’ve found some things you might be interested in, just track down some contact information for that group and ask how you can sign up. usually, it’s as simple as just coming to the first meeting.

none of the clubs want you to know it, but they actually get really excited when new people join them. don’t tell them i told you that, though – it’ll totally ruin their cool, aloof image.

hoping you find some super stuff to do out there in the big, open ocean of uoft,

aska

P.S. also, i think there are some clubs outside right now (2pm on september 9th) outside sydney smith?? i saw a huge crowd there on the way to Aska HQ ©. just in case you’re in the area right now.

P.P.S. the title of this post is a reference to Disney’s enduring classic, Mulan. askastudent is non-partisan in all issues related to the army, enlisting and our current, global military situation. hashtag stop kony.


Sep 08

retroactive POSt changes, not nearly as fun as retro music

Hey aska, 
I go to the downtown campus and I’m starting my third  year as an English/ anthro double major. One small problem. When I enrolled, ant 372 wasn’t categorized as group a b or c within the anthro department. This year, however, it’s in group c. Nonetheless, degree explorer keeps telling me it’s not a group c credit, and that I’m short a group c credit. 
Log story short, is this happening because I have to stick to how the course was catagorized in my first year calendar?

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hey there,

degree explorer should be sticking to what the POSt requirements were in the year you entered the POSt. however, things can get head-achingly confusing when the department shifts courses around too much. so there’re a few things i’d advise you to do:

1) never take what degree explorer says at face value. though it should recognize the year that you entered the POSt (and it should list that year, actually), there is a possibility it hasn’t been updated, or some bit of data was input incorrectly, or a million other things that could’ve messed up the system.

2) ultimately, the people who decide whether or not you’ve completed the requirements for a POSt are the department. so contact anthropology, explain which credit you have and when you entered the POSt, and ask where you stand in terms of POSt requirements. they’ll be able to tell you if you’re still ok, or if there’s another course you need to take.

good luck with it,

aska


Sep 08

i always hate doing this

hey aska! hope university hasn’t started to crush your soul in indescribable ways! i was wondering if there is any recommended number of volunteering hours to get into uoft? i hear a lot of horror stories where a guy has practically perfect marks, but doesn’t get in because of the absence of those hours. thanks much!

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hey there,

class hasn’t started at the time of writing this, though the anticipation/anxiety of going back is probably doing me some serious psychological damage. thanks for asking, though.

about your question: trust me, i take no pleasure in doing this. it’s no fun having to crush the rumours that run rampant through high schools across the country, spread by well-meaning do-gooders who just want more people to volunteer for stuff.

however, the fact is that extra-curricular and volunteer experience almost never affect your admission to uoft. if you’re an ontario high school student, you’ll apply to university using ouac’s 101 form. the 101 form takes your grades and some clerical information (name, address, etc.) but does not require a resume or summary of volunteer hours or anything like that.

your volunteering experience may be helpful if you apply to one of the colleges within uoft that needs a supplementary application (trinity, victoria), or for certain programs (rotman commerce, for example, has certain additional application requirements), but extra-curricular and volunteer experience has no bearing on whether your’re admitted into most programs at this university.

generally speaking, the only thing every program requires is good marks in your top 6 4U/M courses including prerequisites. (though i encourage you to look up specific requirements for your area of interest on this handy-dandy admissions site).

those people telling you horror stories? yeah, they’re probably lying. at the very least, they’re distorting and confusing the facts to freak people out unnecessarily. sorry about that. that is not a cool thing to do. aska disapproves.

best,

aska


Sep 08

suspend your academics, not your drive

Hi,

So… I’ve been put on suspension after my first year here at utsc. Its safe to say I screwed up. I screwed up reaaal bad. I didn’t even recognize the probation warning until it was too late and I couldn’t do anything about it. and the course i took during my semester at probation was one that I had been struggling with throughout the summer semester. I don’t know what’s wrong with me. I don’t know what to do during these four months. WHAT AM I SUPPOSED TO DO? I’m completely freaking out and my parents lost hope in me and lost all trust as well. I’ve been lying to them and myself. I can say that I don’t “know” how to study, but at the end of the day, now that i look back at it, i was lazy. I was so incredibly and stupidly lazy. this is the first time that i’m coming clean. I kept telling myself during all these classes. “Oh, I can do this. it’s no big deal. I can deal with this work load. I won’t fail at all.” I did pretty well throughout the semester, maintaining a B+ or A- for course work, but in the final exam, especially the study period.. I had no motivation at all. I think there’s something wrong with me. like, i don’t think while you’re reading this, will be able to relate to this at all. I bet you’re thinking, “wow, she’s so lazy. how could she do this to herself.” Well, you’re right. i don’t know WHY i did this to myself. I guess at the time, I was just convincing myself that it would all be fine and not let the fear of possibly failing if i didn’t study get to me. I thought I knew the stuff. I was paying attention throughout the semester, how could i not know my stuff? I’m such an idiot. Please, don’t sugar coat it. I AM SUCH AN IDIOT. A FOOL. And currently writing a self-pity letter it seems. I’m sorry. most people on this forum say, they’ve been suspended bc of depression/anxiety. I can’t even say that about myself. This is nobody’s fault but entirely my own. 

tl;dr… i’ve been suspended and now i don’t know what to do with my life. i don’t even know if they’ll take me back in the winter bc my gpa is so damaged and SO horrible. Its damaged beyond repair. Its going to take forever to get back to the program of my choice and complete my degree. my program of choice is limited and needs a certain gpa to get in. a 2.5+ to be exact. I can’t achieve that gpa now unless i get straight 4.0s in like, 10 courses. Do i just spend 3 sessions taking electives to boost up my gpa after i comeback until i finally get a chance to choose the subject post of my choice and complete my degree? I don’t even know if i’ll get a job after I graduate. I completely ruined my future. 

Please, what do i do? I’m so lost right now. Also, I wanted to know. Can i still work on campus even though i’m temporarily not a student? Thanks.

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hey there,

let me make this very clear: if you’re on suspension, or probation, or you messed up at school in any way, you are not an idiot. that is not me sugar-coating – it’s a fact. besides, i’m not in the business of judging. mild teasing sometimes, but not judging.

everyone makes mistakes. frankly, very few people at university have got it right. either they’re sacrificing things they shouldn’t be to do well in school, or they’re not doing well, or they’re doing well but they’re not doing what they really want to be. this time of your life is not about doing well – you’ll have time for that when you’re forty and trying to outdo your neighbours’ lawns and incomes and choices of spouse.

the point is, you or me or anyone judging you is counter-productive. if you want to be helpful to yourself, you need to start thinking about some possible next steps.

these questions you have about whether you should take electives when you come back, how to boost your GPA, and how to go about enrolling in a subject POSt, are very particular to your situation and not questions i can answer (though they’re not UNANSWERABLE by any means – so don’t think that you’ve ruined your future or career, because that’s not just not true).

i’d recommend you meet with an academic and learning strategist and a study skills peer coach to prepare for your next term of school, should you decide to come back for one. you can also speak with your registrar’s office to get advice about which courses to take after your suspension, and that kind of thing. they’ll be much more helpful than i can be, trust me.

generally speaking, all i can say is that if you return to your studies after a suspension, you will be returning on academic probation, meaning you’ll want to do everything you can to try and get off probation.

overloading on very difficult courses is not a good idea (there’s a course load limit for a reason). overcommitting to things is not a great idea. anything you can do to make sure your GPA improves when you come back, is a good idea. but like i said, the registrar/learning strategist/peer coach are the killer combo who can give you specific tips about how to do that.

finally, you can work on campus, but you won’t be eligible for any work-study jobs because you won’t be enrolled in classes.

cheers,

aska


Sep 05

whoa, there

I started university and I hate it how would I go about dropping it now that I am here

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hey there,

i’m sorry to hear that you feel that way. i know how awful it can feel to hate something that everyone around you seems to be loving (especially during this week of insufferably optimistic enthusiasm).

however, do keep in mind that it is only frosh week right now. if you’re entering into your first year at uoft, i’d urge you not to make any serious decisions like dropping out this early on in the game.

frosh week is not what the rest of university is like. it’s just a week of shouting and excitement before everyone buckles down to try and study for four years. if you didn’t like frosh, that just means you didn’t like frosh.

i’m not gonna try to tell you what to do. and hey, maybe you didn’t attend orientation, and you’re basing this decision off of something completely different. however, it is still very early on in the game to make this kind of decision.

if i were you, i’d give it some time – at least a week, and then, if you don’t like your courses, you can go to your registrar’s office and make an appointment to talk about your options.

you can discuss the possibility of dropping out entirely, changing your courses around, changing programs, transferring universities, taking time off, or doing whatever it is that’s right for you.

to sum up, this is how you drop out: 1) stick around a bit and 2) go to your registrar’s office.

cheers,

aska


Sep 05

don’t carry your textbooks to class for the love of backs everywhere

For two courses, I have the tutorials scheduled before the lectures.  Do I have to attend the tutorials during the first week of classes, even though I haven’t attended the first lecture yet? Also, do I need to bring my textbooks to classes or are they mostly for studying? Thanks!

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hey there,

i have never heard of a tutorial that starts before a lecture. i think it’s safe to say all your tutorials will be starting during the second week. (if this is not the case, they may make a note of it in the timetable, as they did for a few first-year mathematics courses, for example, so it might be worth double-checking your courses on the timetable, just in case).

secondly, please don’t bring your textbooks to lecture.

if you need to bring any course readings to class (likely to a tutorial rather than any lecture), your prof/TA will tell you. 90% of the time though, nothing is needed besides a notebook or a laptop, and it’s really not worth the backache.

cheers,

aska


Sep 05

tfw ‘aska’ is autocorrected to ‘asks’

Hello! I was wondering if you knew when the university inputs the money from entrance scholarships? I was offered the $5000 entrance scholarship but I didn’t see it in my ROSI account yet. Thank you asks ^_^

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hey there,

you’re looking at late september/early october, so you’ve still got a bit of waiting to do.

and hey, good for you for getting such an amazing entrance scholarship! make sure to savour it now, ’cause there probably won’t be another time in your life when someone gives you $5K for being smart.

cheers,

aska


Sep 04

course space, course time (continuum)

Hi Im thinking of shifting to mata30y from mata30f and I was wondering what times are available to switch into mata30y.

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hey there,

you can find all the available times for MATA30H3 F, S and Y here. MATA30H3 Y has only one lecture section, which is full, but the waitlist is only one person long at the moment. if you get on it now, you’ve got a good chance of getting in.

this, by the way, is info i’m reading directly from ROSI. if you want to see that info for yourself, it’s real easy.

all you have to do is type the course code into the search bar under ‘course enrolment,’ and it’ll tell you everything you need to know. so try that next time, k? i’m sure you can do it. i believe in you.

best,

aska


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