• first year,  seminars

    one never knows

    a lot of first year foundation seminars aren’t on the timetable or on acorn yet, but they’re in the academic calendar. will they be added later? or are the ones not there not being offered next year? it’s making me worried bc i really want to be able to be in at least one course with a smaller class size.


    hi hi,

    i’m not sure exactly which foundation seminars you mean. as far as i can tell, they’re all listed on the timetable– i looked up ‘tbb199’ and ‘pmu199’ in the box for course code and found pretty extensive listings up. there is a chance they will be adding more, but i have no clue how or when that would be, or even how likely it is. the timetable has a mind of its own. it’s still being updated every day. i feel like it’s more likely to fully stabilize around… the beginning of july? 

    anyway, the thing with the academic calendar is, i’ve found it’s not always the most up to date. at least when i was course planning last year, there were a crap ton of courses listed on there that just had broken links or were no longer being offered. this has just been my experience.

    if the first year seminars don’t work out, may i suggest the ones program? some of them need applications, like vic one or trin one, but plenty of others should be accessible to you at the time of course registration. like the seminars, these are small (25 students ish) classes with stellar instructors and interesting course material. i took both a seminar and a one my first year, and found them to be pretty similar in terms of difficulty and format– almost interchangeable in my head, although the course material was pretty different. i would say it’ll offer you a comparable experience, just as a backup if the seminars you want really aren’t being offered.

    and yes! take those smaller classes! they’re real nice to break your schedule up with, especially if you’ve got a crap ton of con hall lectures. i will never stop recommending them– i met some really cool people through those courses and got to do some fun stuff. lots of them have field trips too. do all that you can to fit one in your sched; you won’t regret it.

    over n out,


    EDIT 06/08/19: apparently there are actually issues with the current version of the timetable! particularly regarding first year seminars, i would advise you to hold on for a bit– some old courses are showing up, and current ones are missing. will update with info as i receive it. thanks guys.

    i would wait to start doing things on ACORN as well, as courses for next year aren’t up on there yet (or if they are, they’re not final). if you add anything to your cart at the moment, they may be be summer courses and i feel like you may not want that.

  • enrollment,  enrolment,  first year

    real q tho: is it enrolment or enrollment

    Hey, is there anyway to know when course registration is open? Like do they send you an email or is there anyway to check on the site?


    hello hello,

    course registration! still a couple months away– what a keener. that’s okay, i was one too.

    i went through my inbox to see if i ever got an email from the school regarding this. what i found was that sometime in the middle of july, my registrar emailed me with a reminder that course enrolment was about to open. last year, enrolment for first-years actually began on july 26– i’m not sure yet when this year’s date is, but hopefully that gives you some idea as to the timeline.

    a few days before enrolment starts (july 20, last year) you can check ACORN for your ‘start-time.’ if you’re not familiar, this is basically when course enrolment opens to YOU– it’s a staggered opening, i guess because the system can’t handle thousands of frantic log-ins at once. i’d recommend that you prep your enrolment cart sometime before your start time, so you can just check-out and save yourself the stress of adding courses then.

    anyway, the artsci website is still messed, but if you wanna read up more on this you can check out this link. innis college, that lovely mythical place, also has an academic orientation up on youtube if you need help figuring out the calendar and course selection.

    in short– keep an eye on your inbox in july for an email from your registrar! or you can stick to obsessively checking ACORN for changes like lil first year me did. your call, my dude.

    over n out,


  • breadth requirements,  first year

    pmu199 plug plug plug

    do you have updated suggestions for the math/science breadth requirement courses for first years who aren’t good at math or science? i think the offered courses have changed a lot this year, because i can’t find some of the old suggestions on the course list!


    hey there and warm welcome to u of t!

    not entirely sure where you’re looking, but it is quite possible that course offerings have changed from previous years. i can definitely run you through what i know about your options, though! because you didn’t specify, for the purposes of this post i’m gonna assume you’re a st. george kid.

    the math/science breadth requirement, or breadth 5, can be one of those tough ones to get down if you’re not numerically inclined– which is something i totally sympathize with and had to navigate my first year as well. it’s good that you’re looking to get your breadth reqs out of the way early, because your freshman year really is the best time to do so. not only are there special courses you can only take during that one year, but you’ll also just not have to worry about them later on, particularly when you’re looking to graduate.

    the one breadth 5 course i took that i ended up really liking was one of the 199s, specifically the one called “astronomy at the frontier.” from what i can find, it’s still being offered. i took it with drs. drout and reid. they were both super supportive but also just really good teachers, as in they managed to get ME pretty into a SCIENCE. the class mostly revolves around learning how to operate and use this online telescope software to take pictures of the galaxy. then, you’re graded on a final ‘observing project’ where you develop a research question and use photos you took to illustrate your results. if you stay on top of your work and stick to the (pretty detailed) rubrics, it’s reasonably possible to do well in this course with no science background whatsoever.

    i’m not sure how much they’ll have changed the format based on the feedback my year gave, but when i took the course participation was worth 10 percent, and there was no final exam, just a three-minute oral interview worth another 10. the best part, at least where you’re concerned? absolutely no math involved. we were expected to familiarize ourselves with a good number of astronomical concepts, but not to the level of actual in-depth memorization, and never to the extent of learning any formulas or calculations. could not plug that course more.

    can’t fit it into your schedule, or does it still not sound like something you wanna take? for more, you can go to the timetable https://timetable.iit.artsci.utoronto.ca/ and search “pmu199” in the course codes box. you’ll get a bunch of listings for similarly oriented first-year-exclusive courses. these small seminars are your best bet for fulfilling your breadth requirements, as they’re just plain less likely to screw you over. they also have more interesting content than typical first year lectures: there’s a video game writing one that sounds kinda cool, and a biosensory tech course geared towards arts kids.

    another option you have is to take a regular first year science and credit/no credit it. that way, you fulfill your breadth requirement but only need to pass to do so. once again, astronomy! i’d recommend AST101 as i’ve heard it’s not too hard. i’ve heard good things about the ‘magic of physics’ first year course too. it’s on the small size for a lecture, and supposedly a breeze if you took high school physics, which i dunno if you did.

    it may be useful for you to know that you can’t cr/ncr any of those small first year seminars, because they’re considered ‘too easy’ for that. i didn’t really realize that before going into mine, but luckily it turned out fine.

    sorry for the novel. i have fun writing these and get a bit carried away sometimes, but i do hope my unnecessary levels of detail are helpful at some level. as always, keep in mind that anything i put forward here is just my personal experience and someone else’s take could be totally different.

    hope your first year is fantastic and you crush that breadth five req!

    over n out,


  • first year


    If I’m going into my first year and still pretty undecided about what I want to study, can the courses I take just be exploratory and unrelated to each other?? I’m a vague ~humanities~ person but am also really interested in environmental studies (even though I suck at math!!!! aaah!!!!) and so im worried my courses are gonna be alllll over the place before I figure out what I wanna do.


    hello there,

    it’s perfectly okay to still be undecided going into first year! a lot of people go into uni with a concrete four year plan they end up ditching anyway, so i wouldn’t say your lack of direction puts you at any particular disadvantage.

    u of t’s actually pretty great place to go if you’ve got a variety of interests. i’m not sure how familiar you are with the school’s requirements, but this university (for some reason unknown to me) pretty much only hands out honors degrees. a lot of students don’t realize this heading in. that means that you won’t actually be able to take a single major at this university: you’ll need a combination of either one specialist, two majors, or a major and two minors. we call these our programs of study, or POSts. i know kids doing double majors in things as unrelated to one another as Chemistry and Peace & Conflict Studies—cross-disciplinary study is easier here, i feel, than at other universities. so by all means, you could end up majoring in environmental studies AND a humanities program.

    the only thing you’ll want to be aware of is that you’ll need prereqs to get into those POSts. so it’s not exactly an ‘explore to your heart’s delight’ situation, unfortunately. on the bright side, from what i know, humanities and social science programs generally tend to have fewer prerequisites than science programs, so this might give you more leeway.

    i don’t know what humanities programs you were looking at specifically, but i took a look at the environmental studies major for you. the one i’ve linked is the arts version of it, which interestingly enough doesn’t require anything from you as a first year. they recommend you take ENV100, but it’s by no means a requirement. doesn’t look like there are any math courses required for this major, either, so this might be a good option for you! there is an environmental science major, which does seem to be quite a bit more intensive with required first-year chem and bio. you can take a look at it if you want, just to know what your options are.

    in short– yes, you can and should explore! just be aware of what you might need to get into the programs you’re interested in. welcome in advance to u of t and all the best for your first year, my friend. hope you figure out what it is you wanna do!

    over n out,


  • campus,  first year,  UTM

    the BAchelor


    I am in my first year and I am deciding what my major and minor is going to be. I know I want to major in Eng and minor in Soc. However, I want to take courses in Mississauga because I live closer. I can’t find rules or regulations that can help guide me on choosing my course.

    And can I take a minor in Mississauga campus? The minor is only offered in Mississauga (however a similar minor is offered in St. George). I would like to take the minor Education Studies in Mississauga. But I don’t know if I am allowed.

    And if I wanted to change my campus from St George to Mississauga how would I go about that? Is there a certain link that I can apply through?



    you are allowed to take courses at another campus and have them count towards your POSt (program of study). however, you can’t take a minor that is only offered at UTM; your POSts must be at your home campus (in your case, st. george).

    to take a course at UTM, all you need to do is add it on ACORN during the course enrollment period, just as you would for any other normal course. just make sure that you have all the prerequisites and enrollment controls. take a look at the faculty calendar for more info.

    to make sure that the courses you wanna take will count towards your majors/ minors, you should take a look at the transfer explorer. it’s a really nifty tool that allows you to see what the equivalents are at st. george. it’s also probably a good idea to speak with someone from the department(s) involved to make sure that those credits will actually transfer and that they will accept them. so, for example, if you wanted to take an english course at utm, you should get in contact with someone from st. george’s english department to make sure that they’ll accept it in their program.

    colton underwood GIF by The Bachelor

    (but like, the rose is the course)

    in terms of the education studies minor, as i said earlier, your POSts must be at your home campus. so, if you decide to stay at st. george, i suggest that you take a look at the education and society minor that they offer at vic (i think that’s what you’re referring to in your question).

    if you wanted to switch campuses, that’s called an internal transfer. you can check out this link for more info. i also suggest talking to someone at your registrar’s office about your internal transfer (should you decide to go that route).

    i hope this helps! good luck!



  • engineering,  first year,  probation

    post holiday slump


    I’m a firsts year engineering student and I’m currently having a pretty bad first semester in terms of grades. I’ve already dropped 2 courses and I know that I most definitely failed one of the remaining 3. I’m guessing my overall sessional average will fall between 40 to 45 percent which I know is really bad. Although I’ve learned some useful lessons in that i need to work on my time management skills and not falling behind, I’m unclear as to whether I’m going to be able to move on to the next session. I was wondering if they’ll put me on probation or if I have to restart all together or if I’ll be kicked out entirely.

    Thanks for your response.



    first of all, apologies for the super late response. it was exams and then the holiday and then the requisite two days of getting over the holidays etc etc etc. you know how it be. i’m not sure how relevant this response will be for you now that the semester is over, but hopefully this will help another student in the future or provide some clarity for you.

    according to the faculty calendar, if you are a first year student with a session average of 45%, you will be put on probation and you must withdraw for 8 months. then, you will have to retake the fall session. because of my late response, you should know your session average at this point. take a look at the calendar and see which average you fall under and what your situation is.

    i highly suggest that you get in contact with your registrar’s office or the engineering first year office to discuss your case. especially since this is a late response and your situation could’ve changed, i think it would be for the best if you talked with someone who can pull up your file and give you the most accurate info possible (even more accurate than me, your dear aska!).

    shocked gina rodriguez GIF

    i hope this helps!



  • first year,  seminars

    seminars, first year, exams, oh my!


    I am currently enrolled in VIC108H1 it is a VIC first-year course. I am enrolled in VIC110H1 in the winter term, I am also enrolled in a first-year seminar course (CCR199H1) in the winter term. I just wanted to make sure I am allowed to take these courses. I read somewhere that said you have a limit. Hopefully, you guys answer before the winter term! also, when is the December exam schedule coming out? Will it be emailed to everyone?

    Thank you so much!



    surprise, a relatively quick response!

    according to this link about the first year seminars, you can take both first-year seminars and vic one hundred courses, but you can only take up to one full credit (1 FCE) of either. since each of the courses you’ve listed above is worth 0.5 FCE, you’re currently in a total of 1.5 FCE. this means that you need to drop one of the seminars you’re enrolled in for the winter term so that you are only in 1 FCE total.

    the december exam schedule is usually posted online on the faculty of arts and sciences’ website. i’m not totally sure when it’s posted, but it’s usually around sometime soon-ish? don’t quote me on that.

    don’t worry about missing it, though. profs will usually highlight in class when and where the exam is, if there is one. if your prof doesn’t bring it up, i’m sure SOMEONE on facebook or whatever will share the link. people always freak the eff out when the exam schedule is posted.

    the muppets panic GIF

    hope that helps, good luck!



  • breadth requirements,  first year

    a breadth of breadth courses

    I’m a first year student and having a hard time choosing a simple Breadth requirement course that doesn’t involved Math under the 4-5 category. I’m worried if I don’t do it during my 1st year it will be too hard 2nd, 3rd, and 4th year…
    Any suggestions would be really appreciated!



    ah, the time-honoured tradition of avoiding math. i know it well.

    i got moved you never seen comedy central GIF by Broad City

    a great way to look for courses is the faculty of arts and sciences’ timetable. you can click on “advanced search” and look up courses based on which breadth requirement they fulfill. you can also see other course information such as when and where the course is held, any enrollment blocks that may be on the course (priorities, exclusions, etc), how many people are in the course or on the waitlist, and who teaches the course. since you’re looking for courses to fulfill breadth 4 and 5, you could filter your search by that and look through the courses and see if there’s anything that interests you.

    you mention that you’re worried about doing breadth in the upper years. though it’s true that a lot of students fulfill their breadth requirements in the first year, it won’t be “too hard” to do it later on. first year is transitional, and the transition can be difficult. if something in the sciences is super out of your comfort zone, there’s no harm in waiting until you’re more comfortable with university life to do breadth.

    and since you asked for suggestions… here is my PERSONAL (and i greatly emphasize, PERSONAL), suggestions for breadth courses that look interesting that still have space:

    this is a survey course designed for non-scientists and assumes that students have no background in math or science at all, so this sounds perfect for what you’re trying to do. the course outline also mentions that the course explores popular scientific topics, so it might be stuff that you’ve heard of before. also, the course title itself sounds pretty dope.

    these are astronomy classes designed for students with no background in science. they explore “our place in the universe.” i feel like everyone i know has taken these before for breadth; it’s super popular. i mean, tons of people take it and they manage to fill con hall every semester so… it’s gotta be aight, right? plus, space is pretty cool.

    a course about ancient civilizations and how they responded to where they lived. if you’re a history buff or want to learn about the truly stark environmental crisis we are currently in (compared to the environmental changes that the ancients experiences)… then this is the course for you!

    the title is a tad misleading, and i promise you (and your concerned parents) that this isn’t a class about narcotics. this is a class about pharmacology and the creation of pharmaceutical drugs. it looks like it could be super interesting, especially if you’re interested in the health sector or how pharmaceuticals are made but not necessarily the SCIENCE and CHEMISTRY behind it.

    breadth can be really daunting, i know that the thought of having to take a university-level course outside of my comfort zone terrified me– in fact, i didn’t do breadth until my second year.

    meryl streep hunter GIF

    that being said. i hope this helps!



    PS- don’t forget that the last day to add F or Y courses are september 19th! 

  • english,  first year,  programs,  sociology,  UTAPS

    good luck, young one


    I am a first year student. I plan on majoring in English and Sociology. I have a couple of questions:

    What is Type 1,2,3 program?  From what I understand type 1 program does not have any requirements. And does English and Sociology fall under any of those programs?

    If English and sociology does fall under type 1 program that means that I do not have to worry about anything hopefully.

    Can I enrol in my english or sociology major now or in second year?

    Also how fast can i graduate? I am currently enrolled in 5 course. I plan on taking however much courses I am allowed in the summer.

    Lastly, one of my friend told me about UTAPS. I will be receiving OSAP this year. Will i be eligible for UTAPS. And (if so, i hope so) when will I know if i am getting UTAPS?

    Thank you


    hello eager first year!!!

    since your question is in multiple parts, i will be answering in multiple parts.

    1. program types

    the program type basically indicates what the entry requirements are for that specific program. type 1 programs have no special requirements. type 2 programs require specific courses and/or grades in those courses and type 2L programs are programs with a limited amount of spots. type 3 programs require specific courses and have a limited number of spaces. some type 3 programs might require additional information (an application, an interview, etc). check out this link for more info.

    according to the program listings, english is a type 1 program and sociology is a type 2L program.

    2. enrolling in the majors

    you don’t need to enrol in a POSt (program of study) until you’ve earned at least 4.0FCE (full credit equivalents). this is usually at the end of your first year.

    for english, you will just need to add the program during the program enrollment dates and you will automatically be added to the major–easy peasy lemon squeezy.

    for sociology, you will need to have a minimum of 65% in SOC101Y or an average of 65% in a combination of SOC102 + SOC103, SOC102+SOC150, SOC103+150, or SOC100+150. once you’ve completed that requirement, you will request the program on ACORN during the request period, and then wait for the response. if you are accepted, you will see an “invitation” to the program that you will need to accept to be officially in the major. keep in mind that because sociology is a 2L program, it means that just meeting the minimum requirement may not get you into the program.

    check out this link for more detailed information about enrolling in programs.

    3. how fast can you graduate

    if you take 5.0FCE every year, you should graduate in 4 years (5 FCE x 4 years= the 20 FCE needed to graduate). if you take the maximum number of summer courses (2.0FCE) every year, you could graduate a little earlier (ie. if you were supposed to graduate june 2022, you can graduate november 2021). basically, that would look like this:

    5FCE (fall/winter 2018-19) + 2FCE (summer 2019)

    + 5FCE (fall/winter 2019-20) + 2FCE (summer 2020)

    + 5FCE (fall/winter 2020-21) + 1FCE (summer 2021)

    = 20 FCE needed to graduate for november 2021.

    keep in mind, however, that summer courses move super super quickly and it isn’t a really good idea to take the max amount of summer courses– especially since you’ll be coming straight from a full year’s worth of school. personally, i can’t fathom the idea of three years straight of school– i need my downtime!

    tropical grim reaper GIF by Dark Igloo

    another option that you could look into is taking 6.0FCE (the absolute maximum amount of credits) per year. again, keep in mind that u of t courses are super intense and a lot of students actually take less than 5.0 because of how heavy the workload can be. it might be a good idea to see how first year goes and then decide if you wanna take a heavier course load (either in the summer or in the year after).

    4. UTAPS

    if you’re receiving OSAP, you will be automatically assessed for UTAPS. you can use their online estimator to see if you’re eligible and how much you could potentially receive.

    according to the financial aid website, UTAPS is first applied to your balance on ACORN and any extra is sent to your bank account. it doesn’t say when you will receive the UTAPS if you are eligible.

    i would get in touch with enrolment services, the financial aid office on campus, for more information.

    phew, that’s a TON of information.

    elaine benes relief GIF by HULU

    i hope this helps! good luck, young one.



  • first year,  philosophy

    is it philosophical to be ambivalent

    Hi, I’m going into Life Sci this fall and I was wondering if Philosophy will be a heavy elective to take in my first year?



    oh god, i hope i’m not too late with this one, since first year course selection is TODAY!!!

    scared wreck-it ralph GIF by Walt Disney Studios

    i’m really bad at answering these kinds of questions, ‘cuz i think that how “heavy” a course is is totally subjective. like, i’m reeeeeeealllllllly bad at math, so even a “bird” math course would feel like a huge feat to me.

    in my very humble opinion, the most important part of deciding whether or not a course is a good elective is whether or not you’re interested. personal anecdote: when i was a wee first year, i took a science course as an elective that i wasn’t all that interested in (i just wanted to fill up my timetable and i thought fulfilling my breadth requirements would be a good idea). unfortunately, because i had no interest whatsoever in the subject material, i ended up doing really badly in the course. womp womp.

    so, i can’t really say whether or not philosophy would be too “heavy,” that is really a judgement call that only you can make. think hard, potential future philosopher.

    interesting batman GIF

    good luck!



  • academic standing,  first year,  probation

    0 to 100 real quick

    last year, as a first year, I took three courses a semester. I failed all of them. current gpa is 0.00 and cpga each sem is obviously 0.00. I’m now on academic probation. My question is do i just redo first year then? take all those courses again? or am I screwed beyond help?



    from what i understand, you currently have less than 4.0 FCE completed, meaning that you are still considered a first year student. in that case, you’ll need to take the first year courses that’re required for your intended POSts. so, you are sorta kinda “redoing” first year.

    being on academic probation, you do have to get your cgpa up to 1.50 and sgpa up to 1.70 by the end of the year in order to be back in good standing. hopefully someone will have already explained to you what being on academic probation entails, but in case they didn’t (and also just as a brief refresher!) being on probation basically means that you are restricted to 5.0 FCE in the fall/winter term and 2.0 FCE in the summer term. it also means that if you don’t get your sgpa up to 1.70 at the end of the next school year, you will be suspended.

    i highly suggest going to see an academic adviser at your registrar’s office if you haven’t done so already. they’ll be able to tell you more about being on probation, give you some great advice to help you do better in the future, and direct you to other on campus resources that’ll help you out. i also suggest making an appointment with a learning strategist at the academic success centre who can help you learn better, which should (hopefully) help you do better in school. you can also attend workshops and access peer support through the academic success centre. all really good stuff.

    i hope this helps. school is really hard, and paired with the other stuff that happens in life (family, friends, jobs, mental health, etc etc etc) it can feel impossible at times. but with a little bit of support, i’m sure you’ll be ok. as the patron god of toronto would say, go from 0 to 100 real quick. i’m rooting for you!

    started from the bottom drake GIF



  • ccit,  first year,  newly admitted,  UTM

    sorry for shia

    I’m an incoming freshman and I am COMPLETELY lost about which courses I’m allowed to take, in which campuses, which faculties, basically everything.
    I’ve been accepted to CCIT and I know there are two prereqs I need to take in my first year. Other than that I know nothing, zero, nada. Please help.



    first, i want to apologize for how late this answer is. i was on vacation for the last month and a half! even aska deserves some time off.

    second, welcome to uoft!

    so, based on your question, you’d be enrolled at the utm campus (which is the only campus that offers the ccit program). however, you aren’t TECHNICALLY in ccit. ccit is a limited enrolment program that you have to apply for after your first year at utm. according to this link, you need to have completed at least 4.0 FCE (full credit equivalents) and have achieved at least a 65% in CCT109 and CCT110 (which are the two prereqs you already know about).

    as for other courses you’re “allowed” to take, the world is yours! however, you should look into what other programs you are interested in apart from ccit. ccit only offers a major program, which means that you need to take another major or two minors in conjunction with ccit in order to fulfill the requirements of a u of t degree. just remember that all u of t students must be enrolled in either a specialist, two majors, or a major and two minors. for more info on degree requirements, check out the academic calendar. it’s a good idea to check out all the programs that utm offers and see what you may what to do with your ccit major and then take the required first year courses so that you can apply for the program in your second year. for a list of all the programs and their requirements, check out the academic calendar.

    another thing that i 100000% suggest is making an appointment with an academic adviser at the registrar’s office. they can answer more specific questions that you may have and give you some great advice on anything academic-y. do it. i promise you that you won’t regret it. DO IT.

    just do it GIF

    good luck!



    PS- sorry, i really really couldn’t resist the shia gif.

  • english,  first year,  newly admitted,  polisci,  programs

    double double (major) toil and trouble

    Hey aska!
    I’m going to uoft St. George for an English undergrad in the fall of 2018. I’m also interested in doing a double major in political science. I’m a bit confused about how to choose courses (how to take ones that interest me, fulfill my program requirements, and are also are prerequisites to upper-year courses)  and am worried about the workload if I do go for a double major. (I think I heard somewhere that it would take an extra year?) Also, I know I’m not outstanding in English and the main reason why I want to study it is because I want  to improve in it. Since my highschool graduation is drawing closer, I’m beginning to have doubts about whether or not I can succeed regardless of how much effort I put in because it’s a world class program and I’m only average at best. In your experience, was there a huge step-up from  highschool English to university English? Were can I find information on courses available to me?
    Thanks so much!



    at u of t, in order to complete your degree, you have to do a combination of programs of study (or, POSt). you have to complete either: a specialist, two majors, or a major and two minors. so, your desire to do a double major is actually pretty common at u of t. being worried about the workload is valid, you ARE moving from a high school workload to a university workload. however, like i said, doing a double major is extremely common at u of t, with some students even piling on a minor with their double majors! i don’t think you will have any issues doing a double major. however, if you do, that’s ok too. and it’s ok to consider taking a reduced course load (less classes per semester) and take longer to graduate in order to work at a speed that works for you.

    god, if i could, i would grab every incoming first year student by the shoulders, give ’em a good shake, and scream “YOU CAN TAKE MORE THAN FOUR YEARS!!! TAKE YOUR TIME!!!!”

    listen to me omg GIF

    but… i digress.

    now to address the question of course selection. most students take 5.0 FCE (full course equivalents) in a year. 5.0 credits is considered the standard for a full time student and it’ll allow you to graduate in 4 years (5.0 FCE times 4 years = 20 FCE needed to graduate). because first year is general and you can take anything you want, it’s a good idea to check out the required courses for your intended programs of study. so in your case, if you want to do an english and polisci double major, you’d want to see what the required courses are to get into those programs as well as what first year courses are offered in those programs.

    for english, there aren’t any prereqs to get into the major. however, you should probably take a first year english course anyways as most second year courses and other upper year courses require the completion of a first year course. check out this link for all the first year english courses that would count towards an english POSt.

    for polisci, you need to have achieved at least a 67% in POL101Y or POL200Y or one POL FCE or equivalent in half courses. so it would probably be a good idea to take one of those courses in your first year so that you can get into a polisci major after first year.

    you 100% should get in contact with your college registrar’s office and set up an academic advising session. they will be able to go more in-depth with you and discuss all your options. you can also get in contact with the program advisers of english and polisci respectively. check out this link for their contact info.

    as for whether or not you can succeed “regardless of how much effort [you] put in”… well, like i said earlier, the transition between high school and university can be difficult, but it isn’t impossible. if you find yourself struggling academically, don’t hesitate to make an appointment with the academic adviser at your registrar’s office, or to contact your prof/ TA, who are also great resources and can really help you if you’re struggling in a course. you should also look into the academic success centre, where you can make appointments a learning strategist who can help you learn more about how you learn.

    another great resource at u of t, especially for kids in programs like english and polisci, are the writing centres. you can book an appointment and bring your assignments to them before the deadline, and the people who work at the writing centre can go through the assignment with you and provide insight on how you can write a better assignment. they’re awesome. they’ve saved many a paper of mine.

    joe jonas relief GIF

    ok, phew! that was a LOT of information. i really hope this helps. if you have more questions, please get in contact with the people i’ve linked above (especially your registrar’s office, they’re super helpful and a great first contact point for anything academic).

    good luck, see you on campus in september!