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Archive for the ‘non degree’

Nov05

U of T, I miss you and want you to take me back

Hello there Aska,

First of all, I have to compliment you on your witty writing skills, and your ability to provide very entertaining answers for the readers 🙂

Now onto my question. I recently graduated this past year with a Bsc in Healthstudies and Medical Anthropology, with not so stellar marks… my ambition (as lowly as it sounds) was just to finish undergrad, get the heck out, and find a job.

Now that I am actually in the “working world”, I realize I totally screwed up my undergrad and having to pay for the consequences now. I want to pursue a Masters degree at Uoft in Public Health (MPH). I was reading on the program requirements, and it stated that I needed to have a mid B (2.7-3.0) GPA in my final year, a four year degree, etc etc…The program did not mention anything about a CGPA.

The issue is that my CGPA, let alone my GPA, is nowhere in the vicinity of a 2.7… Thus, I am thinking of going back as a non degree student and upgrading my marks for one year. Do you know if I can retake my previous courses? And if I do excel at them (which to be honest, is the only choice I have!), will UofT count those as new marks or will they average the 2 marks out (previous marks vs. new marks)?

Finally, are there any recommendations you can offer? I am planning to resume my volunteer activities, and despite my horrible marks, I do
have recommendations from 2 professors already. But is there anything else that I overlooked or need to focus on?

Please advise, and sincerely thank you so much !

– T (yes, I realize my ID is my email account)

———————————————

Hey There T (Pain?) …. Mr. T??

You officially receive brownie points for the compliment.

Here’s the deal, I have both positive and negative news … which do you want first?
Side bar: this reminds me of when people ask questions when leaving a message on the answering machine … they CLEARLY can’t respond

Good News first … your not totally screwed.

First of all this here are the requirements for the program (again, I know you looked at them) NOW on the same website they have a section on upgrading. This is what is says:

Many applicants inquire about their prospects of admission to graduate programs if they do not have the requisite academic standing of a mid-B. The following statement does not cover every possible case but should serve as a general guide.

“The School of Graduate Studies expects applicants who are in this situation to upgrade their standing by completing a further year of study and obtaining at least a B+ average. Such additional work:

  • need not be taken on a full-time basis but will be equivalent to a year of full-time study (say 4-1/2 to 5 full courses);
  • will comprise courses at senior undergraduate level (third or fourth year).
  • may be taken in any disciplinary area where the applicant has access to senior level courses (but will carry more weight with the admitting department if they are relevant to the proposed graduate degree program).

Successful completion of such an upgrading program cannot guarantee admission, because applicants must always compete with the others who happen to apply in a particular year for admission to programs with limited total enrolment. Persons who are interested in the possibility of upgrading would, therefore, be well-advised to discuss their situation with the Department before committing themselves to what can be an arduous and expensive undertaking.”

So I’m assuming other students have been in the same position as you have in the past.
Now for the bad news, the University of Toronto allows you to repeat a course up to 1.0 credits. BUT … it also states in the course calendar that, “The repeated course will be designated an “Extra” course: it will appear on the academic record, but will be marked “Extra” and will not be included in GPA calculations or in the degree credit count”

Non-Degree credits do contribute towards your CGPA, if you haven’t already taken the course previously

If your main goal is to raise your CGPA, then your going to have to take senior level courses that you have not previously taken. Saying this, confirm with the department for Public Health and make sure there are no specific course requirements for admission into their masters program.

Don’t give up help and you can go in and see your old registrar’s office for an academic advice as they will still make appointments for you.

Tender Thoughts,
Aska

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