askastudent

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Archive for the ‘grad school’

Mar27

don’t go

Hello! I’ve tried looking for this answer but I can’t seem to find it. Is there a limit to how many years you can do to complete your undergrad? I’m on my 5th contemplating doing a 6th. I’m also hoping to change 1 of my majors as well. My GPA is terrible and am very slowly reaching the minimum requirement to graduate but I’m really starting to wonder if I should take another year instead. I feel like I would really regret leaving the school with the bare minimum GPA required since it’s so final

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hello there!

there is no limit! you can take as long as you want to finish your undergrad. if you want to stay behind and boost your GPA, that’s perfectly fine. unless you’re an international student, then you’ll have to make sure you have the right visa allowances.

you can definitely change one of your majors if you meet the requirements, you just have to do in within the appropriate program switching period.

if you leave school with the bare minimum GPA, it might be hard for you to apply to grad schools (if that’s what you’re interested in). if you see more school in your future, it would be a good idea to stay behind to get a better GPA.

it’s very common to take longer than 4 years to do your undergrad, so don’t worry about it!

you got this!

peace and love,

aska

Mar23

askacanadiangradstudent?

What grades do grad schools usually look at? 3rd and 4th year grades? last 10 credits? last 10 credits with focus on senior level courses, etc… Also, is there any websites or resources that can explain the applying to grad school process to me (not just specifically uoft but Canadian grad schools in general)? I’m feeling a little lost as to what grades schools look at, where/when I should apply, what documents do i have to send in, what documents does uoft need to send in etc.

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hello,

grad schools normally look at your 10 most recent credits. they won’t necessarily focus on “senior level courses”, but they may pay more attention to courses that are more relevant to the program that you are pursuing. then again, i can’t speak for all grad schools because it really depends on each school. i wrote a post recently which answered a question very similar to yours: check it out here! 

in terms of online resources for grad schools, the only one i can really recommend is OUAC, which is useful if you are applying to law school, medicine, rehabilitation sciences, or teaching in ontario. if you are applying to a discipline outside of the aforementioned (or if you are looking for something outside of ontario), you’ll have to look into each individual school to see what the process is, since they all have different deadlines and requirements.

unfortunately, i haven’t come across any websites that i feel comfortable with endorsing on here. the websites i HAVE seen tend to only “feature” some schools while completely ignoring others. super frustrating.

it would be much better/ safer for you to just go directly to the source. trust- that’s the best advice i can offer you!

peace and love bruh,

aska

Mar22

summer grades matter

Is it true that grad schools don’t look at summer terms (grades)? I’ve taken a summer term every year since I started at uoft and that’s whats enabling me to graduate early in 3 years instead of 4

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hi,

not sure where you heard that…

but it’s not true. most grad schools will look at your most recent two years of schooling. if that includes summer school, you’ll be okay!

cheers,

aska

Mar10

should i stay or should i go

For the past 4-5ish years at uoft,lets just say I didnt work as hard.I thought a BA would get me pretty far in life,but sadly,I was told I needed a masters to get a decent job in my field. The issue is that most master programs in canada have the standard 3.0+cGPA requirement.I dont mind staying back to boost my cGPA but will it affect my application?do schools look at the #of years uve been in school?Not exactly sure what to do…
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hey,

while working hard is usually a good statement to live by, sometimes it just doesn’t happen for some of us (lol me) and that’s okay. there is always room for change!

because every school is different, i can’t say for sure that they won’t look at how many  years you’ve taken to get your degree. i do know that they will be looking at your most recent academic performance and because of that, it wouldn’t be a terrible to thing to boost your cGPA. however, if you are really far away from a 3.0 cGPA, you might want to reconsider staying behind. you may end up spending too much time (and a lot of dough) trying to get that 3.0 cGPA.

my feeling is that if you have experience with research in your field, it can definitely improve your chances of being accepted because it shows that you took the initiative to look for these opportunities. even if it isn’t a formal job, experience is always beneficial to your application.

remember that getting a 3.0 GPA doesn’t guarantee entry into a masters program! there are other factors that will be considered during the admissions process, so don’t put all your eggs in one basket.

if you haven’t already, check out the career learning network to see if there are any jobs open now that you are interested in!

hope all of the above makes sense, i’m sorry i couldn’t give you an absolute answer since they do handle each application on a case by case basis. your best bet is calling the schools directly. (or emailing their askastudent) 🙂

Distractify the clash

(click on the .gif for the song. its a classic)

peace and love,

aska

Jan16

with a grain of salt

hi.

i am a sixth-year student, hoping to finally begin grad school next year
(fall 2017). i have heard that grad schools assign more weight to
undergraduates’ later academic performance than their earlier; however, i
was wondering if this is supposed to indicate that higher-level courses are
more heavily weighted, or if it is rather simply because they are looking
for how well the student is doing closer to the time of the application.
so, for example, say you left a bunch of required courses to the end of
your degree, and they are 100- and 200-level courses, and you do
significantly worse in them than you did in 300- and 400-level courses that
you took much earlier –– would the lower-level required courses be
overlooked in favour of high marks in the upper-year programs? or is it
really that it is about whatever courses were most recently taken, and so
the lower-level courses would be given greater weight.

thanks,
‘non

———————————————

hey,

this is a really good question. each school is different in their process of assessing your transcript. to get more program-specific information, i would highly recommend that you contact the school yourself and take what i am saying with a grain of salt.

sorry. i had to.

however, typically, they DO look at your last two years to get an accurate idea of your most recent academic standing. with this in mind, they will still have access to your whole transcript, meaning that if there are certain courses that you took earlier on that were more relevant to the program you are pursuing, they won’t necessarily be ignored.

so, no. higher level courses (300-level or 400-level) courses aren’t weighted differently.

capisce?

peace and love,

aska

 

Jan11

don’t lose hope, youngling

Hello,

I am a life science student in the second year. After completing the fall term studying, I feel that it is very difficult to get a high GPA. I wonder if I get 3.0 cumulative GPA after graduation, what can I do? what school accept me? what work opportunities do I have? Thanks.

Best,

———————————————

hello,

*as askastudentuoft, i hope you understand that i am knowledgeable about all things U of T, and that’s about it, so this post will be very U of T centric*

while a 3.0 GPA is great, many of the life science graduate programs available at U of T require averages which range from B+ to A- (with the exception of the occupational science and occupational therapy program which looks for mid B’s). but, keep in mind, these are just life science programs available at U of T. there are plenty of other schools which offer similar programs which may require different averages.

you’re only in second year, which means you don’t ACTUALLY know if you’re going to end up with a 3.0 average. you seem to have already lost hope in yourself. don’t stress out right now about what your work opportunities will be and just try your best to get the best grades you can. i can’t really tell you what kind of work opportunities will be available when you graduate because we don’t even know what program you’ll be pursuing for grad school!

a good place to start is the career learning network. it’s a great tool for current students and recent graduates. you can use it to find research positions (i hear the life science people like those) and postings by companies looking for recent U of T graduates. logging onto the career learning network website is definitely the first step you should take when looking for work opportunities for students like you!

for now, focus on school and building up your resume with work and volunteer experiences. they can be relevant or irrelevant to your field, but having experience is definitely an asset when applying for any kind of job. volunteer at a hospital from time to time or make some money tutoring kids grade 10 science! whatever it is, just make sure you work hard and build up a good collection of references in case you need them for grad school.

in all seriousness, i’m graduating later this year and i don’t even know what work opportunities will be available to me! i can’t even see into my own future, let alone yours!

anyways, hope this was somewhat helpful!

good luck, work hard, and try your best at everything you do.

peace and love,

aska

Dec16

i hate you people (dentists)

Hi there!

I’m from Latin America and I applied to the MSc in Oral Pathology
(dentistry). My application was rejected. I thought I had a strong letter
of recommendation and a solid background (although maybe not enough
research experience), which leads me to believe my undergraduate GPA wasn’t
high enough (3.2, minimun for my country to apply was 3.0) and was the
primary reason of my rejection.

I would like to ask if any of you is currently accepted in the program,
with what GPA did you get in, and if you recommend for me to reapply.

Thank you!!

———————————————

hello,

first of all, i’m really sorry to hear that you didn’t get into the program. i’m sure you worked very hard, but don’t lose hope. there are definitely plenty of career paths you can pursue with your grades and educational background!

i’m actually not a dentistry student, but in posting this, i hope you’ll get feedback from other applicants in the comments!

i’m going to try to answer this question while ignoring the fact that dentists are the bane of my existence…

unfortunately, i can’t tell you exactly why you didn’t get in. that’s a question you’ll have to ask admissions.

however, in regards to your GPA, while it is true that a 3.0 GPA is the minimum, it seems that most applicants who were invited for interviews had higher GPAs. to quote the one of the answers given on the dentistry website:

“A minimum current grade point average of 3.0 (4.0 scale) is required to apply to the Doctor of Dental Surgery Program (DDS). However, a grade point average of 3.0 (i.e. B) at the time of application does not guarantee selection. It should be noted that the 170 domestic applicants invited for an interview had a GPA of at least 3.85 and the 10 international students invited for an interview had a GPA of at least 3.75.”

this may explain why your application got rejected, but again, we will never know for sure. if you have any further questions about admissions, you could always talk to dentistry student services, but it is highly unlikely that they will be able to speak to you about your application specifically.

it’s completely up to you if you feel like reapplying! you should really think about whether or not you want to continue pursuing dentistry. if you do feel like reapplying, maybe consider taking some non-degree courses in order to boost up your GPA for an even stronger application. i believe in you!

good luck with your future endeavours!

peace, love, and don’t forget to floss,

aska

Nov20

no experience with labrador retrievers necessary

Hello!

On the psych grad school page it states that applicant have to have lab experience. Could you please clarify what this means?

Thanks!

Another psych student

———————————————

hi,

when you say another psych student, are you implying that i am also a psych student, or are you implying that you are yet another psych student that is asking me a question about lab experience?

lab experience pretty much means you have to find placements in labs to help conduct research. having experience in these labs will definitely come in handy when you’re in grad school.

i did a quick google of “lab experience u of t psychology” and it showed me this link, which i found very informative.

you are responsible for finding lab placements yourself, but the link i’ve attached has plenty of resources which you can seek out, whether it’s the career centre, the career learning network, or even the psychology students association! they will be able to provide you with all the available opportunities as well as how to go about applying for them. they’ll probably even know more about how many hours you need / what kind of positions qualify!

hope you find a good placement! good luck!

sincerely,

not a psych student

Oct17

legally blonde is a prereq for law school

If i want to go to law school after ungrad, preferably osgoode or uoft; is it better off to go to york and not uoft for undergrad? because apparently uoft marks a lot harder which makes it harder to get into law school

———————————————

hey,

first, please keep in mind that i am currently doing my undergrad at U of T, not york, so my perspective may be slightly skewed. since you came to aska, i feel that you probably wanted an opinion from a U of T student anyways.

yes, U of T does mark very hard and you may not end up with the golden 4.0 GPA you had envisioned yourself getting, but then again, you may also find york challenging. who knows?

i’m sure you’ve browsed the rankings for both undergrad and law school for both schools so i won’t get into that, but it really depends on what kind of education you want for yourself. both schools have very different reputations. you may feel that U of T marks harder, but maybe that’s a good thing! if you are challenged at school, maybe you’ll be more ready for law school. at a different school, you might get higher grades, but will you be ready for law school?

going to another school may seem like the “easier” choice, but if you work hard now, it’ll pay off. if you don’t work hard now, you’ll have to work hard later on.

another thing to consider is, lets say you do an undergrad at york. do you think it would be more convenient/ familiar if you went to osgoode for law school? maybe you’ll be more used to being at the same campus.

it’s great that you’re thinking ahead, but i feel like this question is a little premature. your first year may change your perspective on all of this. perhaps you’ll decide that you don’t want to go to law school, and that you’ll want to become a teacher!

anyways, definitely think long and hard about this.*

 

*but come to U of T

also, if you want to go to law school and haven’t seen legally blonde, you really should. it’s practically a pre-requisite.

cheers,

aska

Aug26

elevate that gpa

Hi there askastudent,

I have a couple questions that have been bothering me for a while. I am currently a fourth year student, and I would like to take a couple more courses to elevate my cgpa, though for all intents and purposes at the end of Winter 2017 I will be eligible to graduate.

Do all courses taken after the minimum 20 required for graduation count as extra courses?

And is you diploma CGPA different from your over all CGPA? What I mean to say is does your diploma GPA count the cumulative GPA of 20 credits only, satisfied by subject post and breadth requirements? Or is every course taken in your time at an undergraduate institution count?

———————————————

hi!

if you take over 20 credits, these classes will still count toward your cgpa, however, there are exceptions that you need to consider. for example, if you take over 6.0 credits in 100 level courses, the extra courses you take will not count towards your GPA.

another thing to consider is if you are trying to get a higher GPA for grad school, every grad school has a different procedure in terms of looking at your grade. some will just consider your 10 most recent credits.

in terms of your diploma CGPA and your normal CGPA, it will be the same. i hope this answered your question!

cheers,

aska

Jun21

all or nothing

Hi aska! I graduated with a BA last year and am looking into applying for a MA program at UofT that doesn’t require prerequisites. I’d like to take certain recommended undergrad courses for my own benefit in preparation for the program, but I’m concerned whether they’d be counted toward my undergraduate GPA. Does UofT automatically count courses you take after graduation towards your undergraduate GPA?

———————————————

hey there,

i have the weirdest feeling that i’ve already answered this question, but i don’t have any evidence that i did, so i’m just going to go ahead and answer it again (potentially?) – just in case.

the short answer to your question is: yes. courses you take as a non-degree student count towards your CGPA. there’s no way to get around that, unfortunately, since non-degree students can’t credit/non-credit courses.

the best way to mitigate this risk is to be sensible about your own abilities and time restrictions right now. if you’re working a full-time job right now, you probably don’t want to be in more than one or two courses at a time. try and find courses that make sense with your schedule. if you work a day job, courses in the evening probably make more sense. et cetera.

cheers,

aska

Jun02

the final countdown

Hello Aska,

I am a student going into my fifth year of undergraduate studies in Honours Life Sciences that is hoping to apply to the UofT Psychology Graduate Program.

I had a question pertaining to the details of one of the admission requirements. It states A- in the last two years and I was wondering if that meant my fifth and fourth year marks, or my last 20 courses up to the deadline (December)? So, that would mean my last semester of third year, fourth year, and my first semester of fifty year.

Basically, how much can my fifth year effect what the school may take into account? My fourth year was pretty great GPA-wise and I’m confident for fifth, but my third year was a mixed bag, so I’m hoping that my fifth year will be considered.

I am working on making the rest of my application stellar, I’ve done a research practicum, I will be doing a thesis in the fall, and I’m going to work hard for the GRE. If the last part of third year is taken into account my average will be B+ instead of an A-, even if I get the highest marks possible in my fifth year first semester courses, but I can get it to an A- if my whole fifth year will be considered, so the distinction is important to me.

Thank you for any insight you can provide!

———————————————

hello!

i made a quick call to the psychology grad department and they let me know that they will be looking at your 10 most recent credits, which is technically good news because that means your last two years will actually count, but i would call them just to ask exactly WHEN in the year they would be looking at these grades. each grad school varies greatly; some schools look at everything before december of your last year and others do it differently.

good luck with your applications, it seems like you’re preparing very well! you got dis.

cheers,

aska

Apr25

fail, retry, tail, refry

What happens if I failed a course that is not part of my program, but a course I needed to get into a program? Can I retake it? Also do graduate programs look at overall grade-point average, or do they mostly look at 3rd and 4th year?
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hey there,

if you failed a prerequisite to get into a program, you can absolutely retake it in order to try and achieve the mark needed to get in. it becomes trickier when you passed the course but didn’t get the mark you needed to get into your program; in that case, you would need to go to your registrar’s office and have them enrol you in the course. in this case, the second attempt at the course would be marked “extra”: that means that the course won’t count towards your 20.0 degree credits or GPA, but it would count towards breadth/program requirements.

regarding grad school, most graduate schools (that i’m aware of) look mainly at your upper year courses. the thing is, there are a LOT of grad programs at many institutions across the world. they have different requirements, and some are more competitive than others. it’s always good to look into the requirements for any graduate program(s) you may be considering in order to have a better idea of what you’re looking at.

cheers,

aska

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