Hi! So I’m not entirely sure if I want to apply to social sciences or life sciences next year. I’m leaning more towards social sciences though. Question is, if I get accepted into social sci and end up deciding I want to go into life sci can I make that switch? And if I decide to stick it out until the end of first year in social sci and decide that it’s not for me will I be able to easily change programs? Or will other students get priority? Thank you!
it’s very normal to be uncertain about what you want to apply to!
if you get accepted into social sciences and end up deciding you want to go into life sciences, you can certainly make that switch. the nice thing about u of t is that you don’t need to put another application in to switch faculties, the way you might need to at another school where there are separate faculties for arts and science.
really what you’re applying to when you apply to ‘social sciences’ is an admissions category. i believe it may give you priority enrollment for social sciences courses, but it’s not a program per se — programs are your majors, minors, and specialists, which you’ll apply to after first year.
so it should be quite straightforward to switch between admissions categories, at least within the faculty of arts and sciences. if you decide to switch relatively early on, for example before you register in your first year courses, then you could just avoid selecting prerequisite courses intended for social science students (like SOC100, for example). instead, you could select prerequisite courses for the life science programs you’re interested in. to find those prerequisites, consult the artsci calendar.
if you want to keep your options open, you can try registering in prerequisites for both social science and life science programs in first year. then, you’d be able to apply to any of those programs during the program selection period that begins near the end of the academic year. for more information on applying to programs, you can check out this webpage.
if you commit to social sciences in first year and then decide closer to the end of the year that you want to switch, that’s a bit more complicated. you’ll need to pick placeholder programs in order to be eligible for second year registration, and in your second year, you’ll need to take those life science prerequisites. then, at the end of your second year, you can apply to life sciences programs. you might be wondering if entering your programs so late might be considered abnormal, but it’s actually quite common — lots of people decide to switch!
i hope this helped, and feel free to send me another question if any of this isn’t clear. i realize the system can be quite confusing!
@ U of T,