• course conflicts

    the fault in our timetables

    If a course has two tutorial sessions in a week, would I have to go to both? I am fine with going to one of them, but the other one overlaps with another lecture I have to attend…


    hi there,

    i apologize for the late reply and hope that at this point you’ve figured things out… but usually if there are multiple tutorial sessions for a course, you’d sign up for one time slot on acorn and that’s the one you go to. i’ve never heard of a course that requires you to attend more than one mandatory tutorial per week, so you should probably check the acorn thing or ask your instructor to see if you just need to attend one tutorial session.

    if it turns out that youΒ do need to attend two tutorial sessions per week AND a lecture that takes place at the same time…

    well, that honestly sounds quite hectic, i’d say β€” but you might be able to pull it off if your lecture or tutorial is recorded, and attendance isn’t marked. you could also try fiddling around on acorn some more to see if there’s any way to switch your lecture section.

    hope things worked out and that you were able to get some reasonable arrangement of courses this semester, but if not, i wish you the best of luck getting into better time slots next semester/year~

    hope that helps,

    aska

  • admissions

    a (late) reply about early admissions

    If I applied between mid-Nov and early/mid-Dec would that be considered early admission? Also what are the usual circumstances around someone getting a conditional offer? Thanks a lot πŸ™‚


    wellll this is slightly embarrasing β€” sorry to be answering your question during late november, we’re really cutting it close here.

    hopefully you’ve been able to gather more info on this by now, but if not, all the important dates for early admissions should be here. although admittedly, that webpage gets pretty convoluted with all the different programs and applications and documents, so i’ll try to break it down a bit here.

    first of all, the deadlines are going to be a bit different depending on if you’re currently attending an ontario high school (OUAC 101) or not (international applicants, OUAC 105 i.e. canadians not at an ontario high school, or internal applicants). if you’re at an ontario high school, you’re in luck: applications this round are due january 13, 2022 for you, and the only faculty that has an early consideration deadline for applications is the faculty of applied science and engineering, on december 1, 2021. there are also early recommended dates for submitting supplementary applications and other supporting documentation, and the earliest dates for those are in mid-december, but they vary for different programs.

    it’s a bit more complicated for other applicants: a bunch of programs have a recommended application deadline of november 7, 2021 for early consideration. some also have early recommended dates for supporting documentation in mid-november, but it really depends on your program.

    hopefully you’ve already figured this out but if not, then go go go!! good luck πŸ™‚

    EDIT: oooops i totally skipped over your question about the conditional offers… luckily, the answer for that is pretty simple. most offers for students applying from high school will be conditional because uoft won’t have all your final marks yet. so the offers are made on the condition that you maintain “acceptable academic standing“. just make sure your grades don’t drop too much, and you’re good.

    aska

  • academic offense

    what even is an academic offense

    I posted some of my assignment questions questions to chegg, and have received answers. I did not submit the assignment, and I did drop the course. Will I still be seen as guilty of academic misconduct, even if I never utilized the chegg answers?


    hey there,

    thanks for reaching out. your case is a bit tricky because technically, using or possessing any kind of unauthorized assistance for academic work would be considered an academic offence (u of t’s code of behaviour on academic matters has lots of info on this). but since you didn’t submit the assignment, your instructor doesn’t really have any reason to suspect that you’ve used chegg or conduct an investigation into it.

    so chances are, you won’t be found guilty of academic misconduct. but this is a bit of a grey area, so if you have any concerns about this i’d recommend speaking to your registrar β€” they have a ton of experience with these cases and anything you discuss with them can’t be held against you in an academic misconduct case. they could also provide strategies and resources to support you in future courses.

    hope that helps!

    aska

  • wait list

    a little patience

    Hi! I’d like to ask a question about waitlist. I am currently waitlisted on two MAT133Y5 classes, one is at #10 out of 150 class size and the other class is at #37. I kinda of prefer the latter since the teacher seems to have a better rating. But I’m not sure if I should give up my #10 spot just in case I can’t get in the latter class. But I’m also afriad that once I reach #1, I’ll automatically lose the spot for the favorable professor since I’ll be enrolled in a class already. Should I wait?

    β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”

    hey there,

    thank you for waiting for this answer!

    the general rule of thumb for waitlists is that, if you’re in the top 10% of the waitlist, you have a good chance of getting into the class. in other words, for a class of 150, you’d want to be somewhere from 1-15 on the waitlist.

    this is a bit of a tough case here, in the sense that you’re deciding between two different waitlists. all i’ll say about that is, for me, it’s typically a red flag for a class if a waitlist moves too quickly β€” once, i got into a class of 30 after being 7th on the waitlist, and the professor ended up being really difficult. so if you end up getting into a class of 150 after being 37th on the waitlist, that may actually not be a good thing.

    so, personally, i’d stick with the class in which you’re #10. but you’ll need to weigh the factors you’re looking at and see how you feel about the situation. i don’t feel comfortable definitively telling you what to do, since this decision may have a significant impact on your experience of the semester.

    i hope that my explanation makes sense, and i trust that you’ll make the best decision for yourself!

    be Boundless,

    aska

     

  • colleges,  prospective student

    words of wisdom? from me?

    Do social science students have to choose a college like life sci students? Also, any words of wisdom for the incoming high school seniors?

    β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”

    hi there,

    i hope you’re enjoying the last of the summer, and thank you for your patience with this answer.

    yes, social science students do need to choose a college! all students under the faculty of arts and science get sorted into colleges β€” u of t is so big that it only makes sense, administration-wise.

    as for words of advice, it’s been a quick minute since i’ve been in high school. honestly, the piece of advice that most readily comes to mind is this: in most people’s cases, your senior year of high school is your last chance to be a kid, so enjoy the heck out of it. life comes at you fast during university, and most of my friends needed to grow up real quick to deal with the realities of rental housing, international student immigration hoops, and student loans.

    i know there are a lot of stressors attached to university applications and figuring out your future when you’re in the 12th grade, but personally, i wish i had slowed down a bit and savored where i was a little more.

    i don’t know if that’s the kind of wisdom you’re looking for, but that’s all i’ve got for ya today. best of luck completing high school, and you know where to go if you have more questions!

    be Boundless,

    aska

  • subject POST

    i’m lovin’, i’m livin’, i’m switchin’ it up

    Im a prospect student and was wondering how hard it is to switch from Psychology to Life Sciences since I received an alternate offer. Thanks!

    β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”

    hi there,

    i’m not really sure what you mean regarding the alternate offer.

    if you’re a prospective student, you should know that you’re not really a psychology student until after your first year, at which point you’d apply to the psychology POSt and hopefully get accepted.

    if you wanted to switch from a psychology major or specialist to a life sciences program like biology, you’d be able to do that after your second year, since the program request periods take place in the late spring/summer. essentially, you’d need to make sure that you have the appropriate prerequisites for admission to the program, and then you’d need to go through the POSt application process again. to find out what those prerequisites are, you’d check the appropriate entry in the artsci calendar. if you’re successfully admitted to the program, then you could drop your psychology program and accept your admission to the new lifesci program.

    but all of that switching trouble could be averted by simply taking the prerequisites for whatever lifesci program you like in first year, and then applying directly to that program. at u of t, you don’t really commit to a program when you apply β€” i believe you indicate a program of interest, but no one’s going to hold you to that.

    i hope this helped!

    be Boundless,

    aska

  • breadth requirements,  courses

    give me a class with no math, stat(s)

    I was scrolling through your blog and I noticed that you recommended a course called DTS300 to someone. It sounds really interesting but I can’t find a lot of people talking about it online. Could you tell me more about it, if that’s okay with you? Thanks ?

    β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”

    hi there!

    thank you very much for your patience with this answer β€” i know it’s been a while!

    sure, i’m happy to tell you more about DTS300 if it’s still relevant. i had to dig up the syllabus to answer this well, which is why the delay. the year i took the class, attendance counted for a chunk of the grade, and then the rest of it was just three short papers and one longer one. the material was very conceptual β€” rather than delving into statistical techniques or mathematics the way you would in a regular breadth 5 class, we focused more on how quantitative and qualitative research function in the social world. for example, we looked at how statistics bolstered systemic racism against Black people in the united states.

    i personally really enjoyed the readings and the vibe of the class. despite being a fairly large group (i think 200-300 students), the instructor, kevin o’neill, ran things with a very interactive vibe. each lecture had a bit of an argument, in the sense that there was a conceptual realization o’neill wanted us to arrive at by the end. it was an intellectually challenging course, and i found it very worthwhile.

    keep in mind that all this could change, but that’s what DTS300 was like in my experience. i would definitely recommend it as a breadth 5 course!

    i hope this provided some more insight into what you might expect if you choose to take it.

    be Boundless,

    aska

     

  • courses,  writing

    if only i could take every single course u of t offers

    hi! i wanted to ask if you know anything about creative writing courses at u of t. cre275 (formerly known as vic275) sounds really interesting but i’m not sure if it’s gonna be good i know it’s subjective but i guess i wanted to ask if you know anything about it/know ppl who have taken it !

    β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”

    hello!

     

    thank you for your patience with this answer β€” i guess if you were planning to apply to cre275, you’ve already done it, but i’ll answer this anyway.

    i unfortunately haven’t taken cre275, but i do know people who have taken it with kuitenbrouwer and enjoyed it. that kind of assessment is, as you acknowledged, very subjective and my guess is that the course will probably be what you make of it.

    in terms of what i know about creative writing courses at u of t in general, i know that the cre program has some fantastic ones β€” but so does innis college’s writing and rhetoric program. i’ve taken a class with sharon english, and i would highly recommend anything she teaches. she’s a fantastic instructor who gives incredibly thoughtful feedback. if you’re interested at all in creative non-fiction, simon lewsen’s classes are also really enjoyable.

    sorry i couldn’t be more helpful β€” there are, after all, limits to what i can speak about from personal experience! but if you want to ask people who have taken cre275 and similar courses, feel free to drop your email and a quick note back in the tumblr ask box, and i can email you the link to a discord server where these kinds of discussions take place.

    be Boundless,

    aska

  • academic offense

    greyer than dumbledore’s beard

    Is asking someone who already completed a test how hard it is, and comparing it with previous exams WITHOUT revealing the exam details an academic offense?

    β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”

    hi there,

    good question! here’s what the code of behaviour on academic matters says (i’ve bolded the clause that’s relevant here):

    1. It shall be an offence for a student knowingly:

    (a) to forge or in any other way alter or falsify any document or evidence required by the University, or to utter, circulate or make use of any such forged, altered or falsified document, whether the record be in print or electronic form;
    (b) to use or possess an unauthorized aid or aids or obtain unauthorized assistance in any academic examination or term test or in connection with any other form of academic work;
    (c) to personate another person, or to have another person personate, at any academic examination or term test or in connection with any other form of academic work;
    (d) to represent as one’s own any idea or expression of an idea or work of another in any academic examination or term test or in connection with any other form of academic work, i.e. to commit plagiarism (for a more detailed account of plagiarism, see Appendix “A”) ;
    (e) to submit, without the knowledge and approval of the instructor to whom it is submitted, any academic work for which credit has previously been obtained or is being sought in another course or program of study in the University or elsewhere;
    (f) to submit any academic work containing a purported statement of fact or reference to a source which has been concocted.

    what you’ve described feels sliiiightly grey to me, but only slightly. as far as i know, it’s perfectly okay to ask someone who’s already taken a test how they found it β€” their assessment of how it went is going to be so subjective that you can’t really obtain an unfair advantage from it.Β that is, as long as they’re not divulging details about the test, and just telling you whether it was easy or hard.

    however, i do wonder what you mean by “comparing it with previous exams.” i’m not quite sure what that entails, since (to me) you’d need to know details about the exam to make a meaningful comparison. also, how do you have access to previous exams? that’s a bit sketchy, unless your instructor/department provided that access.

    but that’s just my take, as a fellow student who happens to have an above-average understanding of academic offences. you can try contacting your registrar’s office to ask someone who’d be able to give you a more authoritative answer on this. i don’t think they can hold it against you β€” and you don’t even really need to give them your name if you contact them via the phone.

    i hope this was helpful!

    be Boundless,

    aska

  • Transferring

    i do not know!

    hello! if i transfer from york biomed to utm life sci, I understand not all of my credits will transfer, or will either transfer as half a credit. I read somewhere that i may need to take an extra year to compensate for my missing credits, however i really want to avoid doing so and would love to complete my undergrad in just 4 years! are there ways i can complete all my credits in time?

    β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”

    hi there,

    thank you for your patience with this answer!

    unfortunately, it’s a bit tough for me to gauge your situation because i don’t have access to your academic history. i don’t even know what year you’re transferring out of!

    i’d recommend that you try getting in touch with both an academic advisor at york and an admissions officer at UTM. they’d likely be better able to answer your questions β€” i’m sure other prospective students have been in your situation.

    but in terms of strategies to keep your degree within four years, you can always take summer classes if that’s something you’re open to. at u of t, you can take a maximum of 2.0 FCEs over the summer (four courses). if you have a high enough CGPA, you can also petition for a course overload, which will allow you take more courses than the usual limit (6.0 FCEs in the fall/winter, 2.0 FCEs in the summer). i can’t say for sure whether these strategies will allow you to complete your degree within four years, though β€” that’s something you’ll need to do the math on yourself.

    i hope this provided a bit of clarity! good luck with your decision.

    be Boundless,

    aska

  • subject POST

    we live in a society

    hello!!! i wanted to ask if you know some info about the sociology major? such as how big the classes are and what subjects you’re required to take in the senior years of high school to get into this course

    β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”

    hi there!

    you’re in luck β€” i do know things about the sociology major.

    apart from the standard social science admissions requirements, you don’t really need to take anything specific in the senior years of high school to get into the sociology POSts. instead, your first-year prerequisites will be considered when you apply to the program after second year. basically, you need to get a certain grade in both SOC100 and SOC150 to be admitted to the soc major. that grade cutoff changes year to year, so unfortunately i can’t be more specific about it.

    those first-year classes, SOC100 and SOC150, are really big. in non-covid years, they’re held in con hall. if i recall correctly, i think the enrollment is usually anywhere from 1000 to 1400 students. don’t quote me on those exact numbers. basically, it’s a crowd.

    as with most programs, as you become an upper year, the class sizes will shrink. the standard second-year sociology requirements are probably around 200 to 300 students large, and once you hit fourth year, you’re looking at 15-person classes.

    if you want to know specific class sizes as they are right now, you can look the sociology courses listed on this page up on the timetable and check the “space availability” section.

    the last note i’ll make is that you’ll need to take at least one statistics class to graduate with a sociology major. a lot of students don’t realize that when they request it as a POSt, and they end up dropping down to a minor to avoid that pesky stats requirement. switching POSts around can be inconvenient, so if you want to avoid math and statistics at all costs, the sociology major may not be for you! but if you’re willing to take that challenge on, it’s really just one course, and i’m sure you can get through it.

    i’m not sure what else you want to know about the sociology major, so drop me another question if there’s any specific information you’re seeking and i can try to find it for you. hope this was helpful, and thank you for waiting for this answer!

    be Boundless,

    aska

  • covid-19

    back to school, for real this time!

    Hi! I’m an incoming second year student who basically feels like a first year because everything was online during my freshman year LOL

    I guess I wanted to ask if you have any general tips for in-person classes in university. I also wanted to ask if you could let me know how to attend an online class before an in-person class (back to back). I saw some people on reddit talking about study rooms, but I also don’t really know how that works/how to book it? I’m in Victoria College studying English and BMS if that helps at all :]

    Thank you so much in advance !!!

    β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”

    hello there,

    this is a great question!

    Joel Mchale Wow GIF by ABC Network

    here’s what i can come up with off the top of my head for in-person classes. it’s been a quick minute since i’ve done one of those, so i expect we’ll all need to adjust.

    • use the U of T map to look up building codes when you plan your classes out. whenever possible, i like to avoid registering in back-to-back classes that will require me to run from corner to corner of campus. you canΒ technicallyΒ make it from con hall to vic within the ten-minute window between classes, but it may require some jaywalking and some awkward walk-running.

    penguin running GIF

    • note down the location of each one of your lecture halls before the first day of class!! and then check them last-minute to make sure they haven’t changed, as sometimes that happens. one of the worst feelings is running around a building looking for the right lecture room, only to find that the class recently moved across campus.
    • make sure you bring snacks! there won’t be any more running to your fridge during lecture breaks if you get hungry.
    • familiarize yourself with the underground tunnels at vic, since they’ll keep you warm and dry when you’re going between buildings in the winter. plus, remember to use the museum subway tunnel to cross queen’s park between the faculty of law and emmanuel college. it’s much safer than jaywalking if you’re in a rush.
    • sit close to the front of your classes! i can imagine that if you have to talk with a mask on, you won’t need to struggle as much to be heard if you’re closer to the instructor.

    other than that… i’ll be learning how to juggle online courses with in-person courses the same as you, as i’ve never done that before. i can imagine online courses that don’t require voice participation will be a lot easier to manage, as you can just pick a quiet study space on campus and take your class from there. just make sure you bring your laptop charger and headphones.

    season 8 restraining spongebob GIF by SpongeBob SquarePants

    let me know if you need study space recommendations, as i do have a few favourites, but i think part of the fun of uni is trying all the spaces out and figuring out which ones you love!

    if you do need to participate by turning on your camera and/or mic, it may make sense to book a study room. information about that will be available on this page when u of t reopens the booking system.

    i hope this was at least a little helpful! i’m struggling to wrap my head around the concept of returning to campus myself, so i expect we’ve all got a learning curve just up ahead. remember to be gentle with yourself, stay hydrated, and plan things out well. you’ve got this!

    be Boundless,

    aska

  • friends

    you’ve got a friend in me

    what’s the easiest way to make friends freshman year?

    β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”

    hello hello,

    glad you asked! it’s really important to seek friends out during your first year, as they will 100% make your university experience so much better.

    having fun GIF

    here are some of my thoughts on that:

    • take small classes, like the ones programs or the first year foundations seminars. i made some of my closest friends by taking courses like this when i was new to u of t! these classes tend to be more discussion-based and resemble high school classes in size, so they’re the ideal place to meet fellow first-years.
    • join extracurriculars that you think you’ll enjoy, which will help you meet people that share your interests! you can find club listings over at ulife, and most student groups also have an instagram or facebook presence if you have questions.
    • get an on-campus job that’ll require you to interact with fellow students on the regular. i personally recommend work-study jobs. you can find out more about those on CLNx.
    • engage in orientation β€” take advantage of all the bonding and activity opportunities, and do your best to open up to the people you meet. lots of people are looking for new friends during o-week, so it’s a great time to socialize in hopes of finding your tribe.
    • go to events held by your college or faculty! pub nights, if those will be running next year, are always great.

    honestly, above all that, the best way to make friends is to put yourself out there. say hi to the person sitting next to you in class, and make small talk β€” what year are they in? why are they taking this class? do they want to trade contacts and perhaps study together sometime? u of t can be a lonely, lonely place, and of course you’ll come across some people who aren’t interested in connecting, but i think you’ll be surprised how receptive people are to meeting new people.

    i’m fairly introverted, so that’s the best i can do, but i hope you got a few ideas from this! best of luck during the upcoming school year.

    be Boundless,

    Happy Season 3 GIF by Friends

    aska