• admissions,  computer science,  international students,  scholarships/bursaries

    it is i, u of t student, a president of 80 whole clubs

    Hey! I am a international student who is in her 11th year in hell- ahem I mean school of course. I dont want to sound like STucK-uP student but I have pretty good grades and I am above the average. I want to attend Major in Computer Science in University of Toronto. Yes I have some good EC’s. But I do not have any national awards nor not a president of 80 clubs. I know acceptance rate is pretty low on computer science especially for international students. Is there any chance for me to get in U of T with a good amount of scholarships? Thank you in advance! ( I know it is stupid to ask you something like that. Since you are not a admissioner or something like that. But I am just desperate:(. So is there anyone you know in U of T who was in the same situation like me? )


    hey there,

    hahahaha bold of you to assume i know people at this school.

    just kidding, i have really mixed feelings about having made that joke because it perpetuates the stereotype that u of t is hella lonely and antisocial. it can be for some, but i don’t think that’s true across the board.

    anyway. not what you were asking. no, i don’t know anyone at u of t who was in your exact situation — i’m guessing in part because no one really talks about how they got in? nor do people regularly talk about how many admissions scholarships they got– if they do, that’s a lil red flaggy and they’re probably the kind of person i steer clear of anyway.

    your instincts were right that i can’t give you any definitive answers, seeing as i don’t work in admissions and don’t have any concrete info about you anyway. if you’re an international student, the school doesn’t seem to post any minimum grade range requirements, which actually really sucks why are things like this we don’t know??? @ u of t what’s up guys :/

    i don’t know what extracurriculars would make you competitive, either– i would say quality over quantity is usually the way to go, and i don’t think you need that much quantity at all. your extracurriculars are only relevant insofar as they apply to the computer science supplemental application, which (since it’s new) i know next to nothing about. my guess is that they’ll ask you to answer a few very focused questions, so try to play up your strengths and highlight the advantages of the extracurriculars you mentioned that you have. if you have questions about the supplemental, you can contact the department (maybe their academic advisors, since they don’t provide an admissions contact) and ask.

    in terms of scholarships, you will be automatically considered for some (mostly on the basis of academic merit/financial need, i believe) and can apply to others. i’ve filtered through the scholarship website to show the international undergraduate admissions scholarships you might be eligible for– linked here.  while i can’t say what your chances are, as that’ll depend on the pool of applicants (look at me, picking up that bureaucratic u of t lingo like a true cog in the machine), i’d encourage you to go for whatever you think you’re eligible for. sure, you might not ever hear back (like me and every scholarship i’ve applied for (haha cry pls fund my education) but if you do, it could take thousands of dollars off your back. kinda worth, tbh.

    best of luck with the applications process! aska is cheering for you. also, if you haven’t heard, the computer science program is kinda changing the way they do admissions this year. this varsity article will give you the low-down, and might be worth the read. 

    be Boundless,


  • admissions,  international students

    usa! usa! usa!

    Do u have any posts for international applicants, specifically from the US?



    while we don’t have a specific US international applicants tag, we do have a general international students tag. you could also check out our admissions tag for more info, though it is more generalized, so you’ll have to slosh through a lot of posts to get to ones that’re relevant to you.

    you can also check out this link on the u of t website that describes how to apply to u of t as a US high school student. they also have information on what to do if you have AP or IB credits.

    hope this helps! good luck!

    patriotic independence day GIF by Broad City


    a very canadian aska

  • admissions,  international students

    long question from far away

    Hey aska, I’m a senior student from Turkey and I want to study mechanical engineering in UofT. There is only one problem, and it’s obviously financial (yay for being an international student!). I talked to my family about this stuff, and they said that realistically, they can pay up to 40k CAD. Sooo the first question is about scholarships. I had 85 percent average last year, but I’m confident that I can get it up to 95 percent (let’s assume ok) because I’ve been studying this whole summer. I got 102 from TOEFL, worked at a rehab facility in summer, and joined a NASA contest but didn’t win anything so I don’t know if that last one counts. So what are the chances that I can get scholarship that’ll be enough? More importantly, what can I do to have a better chance? Also I’m willing to work while studying.

    The second question is, does taking SAT help? Everytime I ask this, the answer is different so I’m trusting you on this one!

    Lastly, sorry this took way longer than I expected but if I can’t get that scholarship, are student loans a bad idea? And there are not many for international students so is there a one that you can recommend?

    Thank you soooooo much, this is my second time asking here after almost a year and you can’t believe how much your answer helped! I’m grateful that you’re doing this voluntarily, have a nice day!



    i’m not 100% sure what the requirements are for a lot of the scholarships, as i think they fluctuate every year based on the applicant pool. i’m also not sure what scholarships u of t offers for international students– most of the scholarships i’m seeing are for domestic students. check out this link that has a scholarship sorter tool that lets you filter through the various scholarships in order to find ones that you would qualify for. they have an option for international and domestic students as well as admission and in-course scholarships. i can’t really say what your “chances” are or how to have a “better chance”. sorry, but my (in)finite knowledge doesn’t go that far. get in contact with enrollment services who will have way more information about scholarships, financial aid, and grants.

    i’m not sure if taking the SAT would help. according to this link, the only thing that you need in order to be considered for u of t are “excellent results overall” in math, physics, and chemistry in the grade 12 year. there aren’t any requirements beyond that, so unfortunately, i can’t give you an easy or direct answer. just know that the SAT is not required and would therefore, not affect your application either way. if i were you, i wouldn’t take the SAT (since you don’t have to) and focus on getting great marks in your grade 12 year.

    if you can’t get a scholarship, student loans are definitely an option! unfortunately, i don’t know much about international loans. but this link is filled with emails and contacts of people who do know tons about them. hit them up and ask away! they are definitely the ones who know the most and would able to help you the most.

    i’m really sorry for this super delayed response. i hope it still helps out. good luck!

     excited luck good luck GIF



  • admissions,  international students

    too many acronyms

    Hi 🙂

    So im planning to apply to U of T and want to study criminology. To do so, I need to take an English Proficiency Test, like TOEFL or ?ELTS, because i went to high school in germany and english is my second language. And my question would be if i, as an international student, would have to take the SAT? Or would it be enough to show my high school diploma from germany and the results of the english proficiency test?



    yes, you’ll need to do an english proficiency test and then have the results sent to the university. as for another standardized test (like the SAT), you don’t have to send those results in unless you took them. if you did take the SAT, you’d have to have the results sent electronically from the testing authority. you can check out the specific admissions requirements here.

    i hope this helps!



  • commerce,  gap year,  GPA,  international students,  rotman

    i want a 9 CGPA

    Hey there,
    I have currently completed my 12th from India. I would like to join
    university of toronto,Mcgill university, York university or university of
    British Columbia for undergraduation in business or finance. But due to
    certain circumstances I have missed this year’s application deadline. So,
    if I take a gap of a year and apply again next year, will the colleges
    consider me or not due to the year off. I am an student with
    With around 86% in 12th and 9 CGPA In 10th.

    Regards from India



    taking a gap year after your last year of high school will not affect your chances of getting into U of T. most of my friends that i’ve met at U of T took gap years before first year!

    with regards to your GPA, i’m not familiar with the GPA scale in India since it is very different than the 4.0 scale we use here, but i would recommend that you look at this link which tells you the minimum requirements for students applying from India. GPA calculations are already quite tricky and since we are only familiar with the U of T scale, i think it’s best that we don’t try to convert/ translate your CGPA and let the pros at admissions do it.

    the link says you will need: “All India Senior School Certificate (awarded by CBSE) or Indian School Certificate (awarded by CISCE).  Year 12 State Board Exams with excellent results will also be considered on an individual basis.”

    … none of that made any sense to me but i hope it made sense to you!

    “excellent results”, of course, is super vague, and since you’re trying to get into rotman commerce, the admission requirements may be slightly different. here’s a link to rotman commerce’s admission requirements- make sure you scroll to the part about apply from high schools outside of canada! hope this helps!

    have a wonderful gap year and make the most out of your time!

    good luck with your application and we hope to see you here soon!

    peace and love,



  • admissions,  enrollment,  getting into U of T,  international students

    which curriculum though?

    Hi, first I would really really be happy if you could answer my question
    and help me find a solution to my problem… I really appreciate the
    efforts you do to help clueless students like me.

    I am a 12 grader high school student living in Saudi Arabia and I’m
    currently studying in a Saudi

    -supervised American Diploma school section where I study both Saudi and US
    subjects. MY PROBLEM IS, I don’t know which system requirement should I
    follow. I checked the requirement for US system and they just require too
    much.. (2 SAT subject test, SAT, IELTS+)

    I can’t do all of that before the deadline of 1 Feb 2017! In my country
    people start applying in summer after graduation and not during school. ????
    However the Saudi curriculum requirements are so easy they only require
    Students who study in such merged schooling systems have to ask the MOE for
    a “certificate equivalency” where their transcripts get completely adjusted
    to the Saudi system so they get into colleges (Some Saudi schools don’t
    recognize foreign certificates). My question is; will I be able to get
    admitted as a “Saudi student” if I applied with a “legally” equalized

    I hope you are able to help me



    first of all, thank you for your kind words! i wish i knew all the answers to your questions off the top of my head but sometimes these questions take time to figure out.

    in regards to your question: WOW this is so complicated. this question made no sense to me so i decided to consult a registrar! they know everything. this is what they said.

    “if you are following the saudi system and if the school is recognized by the ministry of education in saudi arabia as eligible to offer the saudi diploma, then applying as a saudi student is okay.

    the “legally” equalized certificate is not the issue, it’s whether or not you are following the saudi system (which it sounds like you are following both saudi and US) and if the school is recognized by the ministry to offer the saudi high school diploma, then applying as a saudi student is fine.

    if your school is only accredited to offer the US diploma, then you must apply as a US student.”

    hope this makes more sense to you than it does to me!

    if you have any more inquiries, enrolment services would probably be the best place to contact!



  • international students,  med school

    OMSAS is awesome

    I’m an International student from India.
    Currently I’m a final year student in the undergraduate medical course in India- MBBS (Bachelor of Medicine & Bachelor of Surgery).
    After finishing my graduation, I’m aspiring to pursue my Post-Graduate in Medicine in the U of T.
    How can I get a detailed information about the admission procedure to the University, admission criteria, etc.?
    One additional question I wanna ask is:Are there any arrangements for International students to take a tour of the University & are any counseling services provided to International students for their admission process??Thank you


    hey there,

    unfortunately, there isn’t a great deal of information on how an MBBS is assessed at u of t. in fact, there’s pretty much nothing.

    assuming that “post-grad” means you want to pursue the MD program at U of T, this page outlines the requirements that you would need to fulfil as an international student, however, they state that you require a “Completion of a non-medical bachelor’s degree equivalent to a four-year bachelor’s degree in Canada with WES transcript assessment”.

    the WES transcript, fyi: is a” transcript from studies undertaken at universities outside of Canada or the USA which needs to be submitted to World Education Services (WES) for assessment.” the u of t site states that: “for admission consideration we require a course-by-course evaluation which includes an overall GPA calculation.”

    since your MBBS would be considered “medical” AND from an international institution, you might encounter an issue applying to the program. the best thing to do would be to contact the md program directly.

    if you’ve somehow already figured out that you’re eligible to apply, you can go ahead and look at the Ontario Medical Schools Application Service site; which has detailed information regarding how to apply to each medical school in ontario! it’s super informative and includes tons of information on each school. check out this link on applying to U of T’s med school. OMSAS pretty much has the answers to all your questions regarding medical school!

    in terms of advising for international students, there is always the centre for international experience (CIE) which is a great place on campus that welcomes international students and help them with international student-specific questions. contact them here: http://www.studentlife.utoronto.ca/cie/contact-us and you may even be able to ask them questions about how your degree transfers!

    hope this helped, best of luck to you!



  • admissions,  international students,  UTM

    math is hard

    Im an international student going to UTM for commerce. I did my AS levels and got As in Accounts and Economics but somehow my math grade slipped from a 100% in school to a C in final grade. Will UTM take back my offer of admission or not allow me in the commerce program?


    hey there,

    to be honest, that seems like quite a significant drop in your grade so it may be possible that they will rescind your offer. however, we really have no idea and it would benefit you to check with admissions at UTM to ask about your own unique situation.

    i know we say “ask us anything” but this is one of those situations where we really have no idea of knowing, simply because we don’t work for admissions. however, if you do have any other questions regarding student life or other academics throughout your time at U of T, feel free to send them to us and we’d be happy to answer them for you!

    regardless, i wish you all the best in your upcoming semester! i hope it all worked out for you!



  • first year,  friends,  international students

    f is for friends who do stuff together

    Hi I’m starting at uoft soon and I’m an international student so I will literally not know anyone when I start! Any tips on how to make friends?



    first of all, welcome to canada! i hope you love toronto as much as i do.

    “how do i make friends” is a question we get a lot on askastudent, so if it feels like i’m repeating stuff i’ve said in the past, i apologize. since you’re asking this question, i assume you haven’t read those entries. no worries!

    orientation week (or the less politically correct ‘frosh week’) is a place where you’ll be bombarded by hundreds of people from your college. even if some events seem lame, i highly recommend you attend orientation week. people will be talking about it for years and you’ll feel like you missed out on an important aspect of the university experience. this is your opportunity to take your pick. play the field, mingle, and be cool. if you aren’t cool, don’t be cool. just be yourself so the friends you make will know who you are as opposed to who you’re trying to be. after frosh week, if these friends stick, they’ll probably be the ones who will stick around for a while.

    if they don’t, that’s okay, it just wasn’t meant to be. here comes option 2 if frosh friends are a no-go.

    if you live in residence, attend res events. take advantage of floor bonding activities because they’re literally there for you to meet friends. bond with them.

    if you aren’t living in residence, that’s okay too!

    participate in an extra-curricular activity or two! u of t has clubs for everything you could possibly think of. join a choir, throw a frisbee around, or play chess! you’re bound to find a club that you’re interested in.

    lastly, don’t be afraid to talk to people in class. it’s always good to have a friend in a class in case you decide to sleep in for one of your 9am classes. But you know, aside from using these people for notes, you can actually try be friends with them!

    personally, i make friends with people when i find out we dislike the same things. ‘dislike’ is a strong word and emotion but i feel like it’s very easy to make friends if you complain about the same things. but that’s just me. maybe don’t do that. love one another and be kind, like ellen.

    not to be a debbie downer, but remember that friends are easy to make but hard to keep. it’s going to take some effort to keep some of these friendships going, just like it’ll take time for you to get used to having long distance friendships with people back home. don’t forget to make an effort to reach out or see each other some time. let them know you care! soon enough, you’ll have a squad, if that’s your kind of thing.

    peace and love,


  • admissions,  international students

    i’m not sure what happened here

    Hi i’m an international student hoping to come to uoft after graduating in december this year! i was wondering when uoft intakes are? is there only a fall intake?


    hey there,

    unfortunately, if you’re applying for admission to uoft as an international student, you can only apply for the Fall session, i.e. the session beginning in September 2017. the application process starts in late September/early October 2016 though, so make sure to read up on how to apply so that you don’t miss any deadlines!

    assuming you get in, you’ll have like nine empty months between graduation and coming to uoft, and unless you’re diligent at keeping yourself busy, you run the risk of becoming very, very bored. in the interest of combating that, i have compiled a list of potential activities for you:

    1. make a humongous house of cards. as you build, think about how it symbolizes he precariousness of your life at this moment in time, floating between two schools, two realities, two versions of yourself. the card house crashes down. you become someone else.

    2. go on a trip. if you can’t afford to go on a trip because you’re saving all your money for university, fantasize about going on a trip.

    3. make candles with a bro – even though it’s a cliche.

    4. commune with the spirit of aska’s lost motivation. i’ll pay you $10 if you can convince it to come back to me.

    5. transcend time and space. dance with Jupiter, which is only the size of a thimble in your massive, loving, purple palm. stare at yourself in a mirror. you can see yourself at every age, simultaneously. you understand that you are infinite. time is not frozen but you exist outside of it, and you watch it melting slowly like an ice cream sundae. you open your mouth to laugh, and a flock of swallows come out of your throat. they freeze on impact with space, hanging amongst the stars like a cosmic mobile.

    6. kick back with a couple of beers. no wait. you’re probably like 17, aren’t you? apple juices.



  • admissions,  international students

    patience, padawan

    Hey there,
    I am a first year engineering student at university in Washington and currently hold a 3.7 GPA (9.2% grade). I did really well in high school as well. I already applied for a transfer I UofT for mechanical engineering and I really need to know when I can expect to hear a response? I really want to find a place to live and also apply for a student visa. Also do they look at international transfers differently?


    hi there,

    i can’t tell you when you’ll hear back from uoft. not only do i not know when you, specifically, will hear back, i don’t even know when different rounds of offers are given, or to whom. it’s very likely that you’ll hear back in May, but again, i’m really not in a position to be able to give specifics.

    i know that it’s frustrating to be in this limbo, because you need to get a move on with visas and residence. i wish everyone heard back early, with plenty of time to figure out everything else relating to university; unfortunately, it takes time, and i have very little influence over that. (or anything else, really – like, i barely have influence over my own sleep schedule).

    competitive transfer students to the faculty of applied science & engineering generally have at least a 3.2 GPA, and you need to have completed the prerequisites at the high school level as well. if you meet (and even exceed, as you seem to) those requirements, then – congrats! you’re a competitive applicant. being international does not necessarily hinder your application; your grades will be valued holistically to determine your suitability for the program.

    of course, i can’t by any means guarantee that you will be accepted. transferring is a competitive process, especially in engineering. there are few spots and lots of hopefuls. but i will say that meeting and exceeding standards published by uoft is never a bad sign.



  • admissions,  international students

    international fees *sips tea*

    Hello! I have several questions to ask you, being an international student looking to transfer to U of T. First of all, why does the application fee cost so much? It is $100 more than the cost of applying to an university in the US.
    Also, is it normal to pay the fee before turning in all the needed documents? It asked me to pay for it right after I filled out the online information portion.
    Lastly, I accidentally pressed something that said ‘thanks for submitting your application, please send pay your fee by mail’. Can I pay online instead?
    Thank you for your help!! 🙂


    hey there,

    it costs so much because you’re an international student. it costs $150 to apply to up to three universities for Ontario residents. for you guys, it costs $165, plus the extra $90 fee from uoft. you’ll have to get used to paying more as an international student if you want to come here, because canada is VERY UNFAIR and the universities love to money-grab wherever they can.*

    you’re supposed to send the fee online, according to the bottom of this page on the OUAC site. i’m not sure if maybe the uoft fee can be sent separately – as per usual, the university website is of absolutely no help with that.**

    if you want to pay online and you’re not sure how to do so, what i would do is call enrolment services. they can help you out.



    * although, to be fair, U.S. universities do this, too. but i’m not here to judge.

    **or maybe it is and i just can’t find the right page. it wouldn’t be the first time. though i do have to say that trying to find information on the collection of disparate websites that make up uoft’s online presence is like being dropped in the middle of a foreign continent and being told, “Okay, we need you to get to Billy’s Burger Shack. It’s a favourite around here! You’ll find it in no time!” meanwhile, you’re panicking because you have no idea where this place is. who’s billy? where is his shack? what country are you in? is that an ocean or a sea in the distance? you don’t know. you may never find out.

  • fees,  financial aid,  grad school,  international students

    (Ph)enomenal (D)ollars

    Hello ! I’m an International student that wants to go to UofT for gradschool (phD). I’m academically okay for the program (I have an overall A and all that jazz) but…. Where can I start looking for scholarships to live and study at UofT during those years? I’m a bit lost since I don’t know a thing about scholarships for international students that wants to go to Canada – Thank you !!


    hey there,

    the major scholarships that fund postgraduate study in Ontario are the NSERC and OGS scholarships. unfortunately, those are only available to domestic students. what i’d recommend is taking a look at your home country’s opportunities, if any, that are available for students travelling abroad. most countries have some form of financial aid for postgrads.

    we do have some scholarships available for international students, and i’d strongly encourage you to apply to as many as you’re eligible for, but they do not provide nearly as much funding as is probably ideal.

    the good news is, as a PhD student, the university is committed to funding you. all the information about how financial support works for a physics PhD is available on page 29 of this document provided by the department of physics. it shows that if you don’t have access to any scholarships, the university will still be able to support you through RA and TA-ships, and internal scholarships.

    here is a breakdown about how much physics PhDs were funded depending on their year, and where the money came from. the aid hovers around $40k per student, depending on the year of your PhD. which is totally liveable.

    if you have further questions about how this all works, i’d recommend contacting the financial counsellor at the School of Graduate Studies.

    best of luck,