• courses,  math

    course space, course time (continuum)

    Hi Im thinking of shifting to mata30y from mata30f and I was wondering what times are available to switch into mata30y.


    hey there,

    you can find all the available times for MATA30H3 F, S and Y here. MATA30H3 Y has only one lecture section, which is full, but the waitlist is only one person long at the moment. if you get on it now, you’ve got a good chance of getting in.

    this, by the way, is info i’m reading directly from ROSI. if you want to see that info for yourself, it’s real easy.

    all you have to do is type the course code into the search bar under ‘course enrolment,’ and it’ll tell you everything you need to know. so try that next time, k? i’m sure you can do it. i believe in you.



  • failing,  math,  stats,  summer

    your status on summer stats

    hey, so I most likely failed my MAT137 course. I was only required to take the 135/136 combo but for some reason I opted for the full year harder 137 option. Anyways, too late now. My question is, if I retake the course in summer school, what does my transcript look like? And also I was planning on doing STA247 over the summer which has MAT135Y1/MAT137Y1/MAT157Y1 listed as prereqs. (Though there must be some error as MAT135 is an H course). Can I still take STA247?? I was really hoping on taking it so I can lessen my course load for next year. STA247 is “Probability with Computer Applications” so maybe because I got a good mark in my CSC165 Mathematical Expression and Reasoning for Computer Science course that may somewhat void my MAT137 fail?? Thanks.


    hey there,

    if you’ve taken a course and you fail it, then you take the same course again, both marks will appear on your transcript and be weighted equally. the passed course wouldn’t cancel out the mark of the previous, failed course.

    as for STA247, if you were to take and pass MAT137 in the ‘F’ term of the summer, and STA247 was offered in the ‘S’ term of the summer, then you would theoretically be able to take it. however, i’m taking a look at the timetable for stats and it looks like STA247 is offered in the ‘F’ term of the summer. so no luck on that one.

    CSC165 isn’t listed as a prereq for STA247, so i don’t think that’ll affect your ability to enrol in STA247 in the summer. i mean, good for you for doing well, and all. that’s groovin‘. it just won’t affect your ability to get into stats for the summer, unfortunately. maybe you can consider taking another one of your 2014-2015 courses in the summer if you’re really set on lessening your course load for next year?

    best of luck, friendo, and try to remember not to stress too much about this, and to go outside this summer.



  • chem,  first year,  math,  summer,  UTM

    quaking in my boots for summer school

    How difficult are chem110/120 & mat134 during summer school at utm?!? I really need some advice :(


    hey there,

    well, if you’ll allow me to get a little PHILOSOPHICAL here, difficulty is kind of a relative thing. i don’t know what you specifically find hard. BUTTT if you’d like to know generally how difficult the classes will be, i suggest you take a look at the course descriptions (chem 110, chem 120 and mat134; these aren’t for summer 2014, but they should give you a general idea of the course content).

    just read the course descriptions and consider your own abilities. did you struggle with stoichiometry in high school? what about titrations? if you struggled with anything in the course descriptions, maybe brush up on some grade 12 problems to review. same goes for math.

    HOWEVER keep in mind that the classes will most likely have a little bit of review incorporated into them already, and you can get that just from the course description. for example, any ontario calculus class should have taught the fundamental theory of calculus, and that’s in the course description for mat134. so they definitely won’t just be throwing you into the deep end.

    the second thing to consider is the speed – most summer classes proceed at roughly twice the pace of a fall/winter class. do you think you can keep up with that speed? i mean you’ll also be going to class more often, so there won’t be LESS CLASS TIME, but it will be a bit CONDENSED.

    these are all things to consider, but at the end of the day, there’s shouldn’t be a huge difference between the summer classes and fall/winter classes. if you think you need to review, go for it, but i wouldn’t worry too much. if you work reasonably hard and make sure to keep up with the pace of the class, you’ll be alright. have a little faith in yourself.



  • masters,  math,  subject POST

    math minor or non-degree???

    Hey guys, troubled mind here.
    So I graduated in 2012 with BBA Management specializing in Finance, and after working for about a year I am interested in taking a Masters program in Mathematical Finance. As my BBA left me pretty much uneducated in math, I need to take about 2 semesters worth of math courses to be deemed competitive. I also realized that the sum of these courses qualify for the completion of a Minor in Math. So my question is this: Is it possible to take these courses and qualify for a Minor in Math? or do I have to take them as Non Degree.
    Thank you for your time


    hey there,

    it’s actually not possible to do just a minor at uoft – you have to do one specialist, two majors, or a major and two minors in order to get a degree. Meaning you’d have to do your courses as a non-degree student.

    But DON’T PANIC. the good thing is non-degree status doesn’t really change anything for you (except that you get last pick for courses on rosi) (but it’s not like math courses fill up incredibly fast anyways amirite?). You’ll get your courses just fine, and you won’t be at a disadvantage when applying to grad school compared to someone who has a minor in math. All the grad schools care about is the marks you got in the courses they specify.

    For once, the answer is easy-peasy! Good luck and I keep smilin’,


  • breadth requirements,  math

    Breadth requirements *shivers*


    First of all, love the Game of Thrones reference on your ask page!

    Now to my question. I’ve heard from a U of T alumnus that any student must take a math or science course in first year even if he or she is 120% sure his/her major and future career will have nothing to do with either. Is that true?



    hey there,

    thanks, man! Just for you, I’m gonna make this post GoT themed. Catering to your personal tastes and stuff, yeah. Aska’s like that.

    Now, as to your question, the idea of forcibly making everyone take a math/science course seems like some kind of dystopian fantasy, and is fortunately not true. If you’re coming in to the faculty of arts and science, which you almost certainly are, you need to fulfil breadth requirements, which are basically a certain number (no more than one or two) of courses that you need to complete in each of five categories to get your degree. One of these categories is called “the Physical and Mathematical Universes.” HOWEVER if you take 1.0 (that is, two semester’s worth – so one full-year or two half-year courses) courses in each of the other four categories, then you don’t have to take any in that fifth math one.

    Also keep in mind that you don’t have to fulfil the breadth requirements in first year! So there is time to figure all this stuff out.

    So don’t worry yourself friend – you can avoid math for now.


  • frosh,  math,  stress

    Pythagoras wouldn’t have panicked. He was kinda scary though.


    I am a first year-student in Life Sciences about to embark on the journeys of MAT135 in the Fall and MAT136 in the Winter, and I feel very insecure about it. I got a 75 in grade 12 calculus, and the teacher was being generous. I feel like I don’t remember anything from last year? Should I review my notes? If I do, wouldn’t that hold me back? Does MAT135 touch upon some concepts from grade 12?

    How much should I be worried about university math – on a scale of 1 to 10, with 10 being ‘really worried’? I know there are math aid centres – can I just drop into those? Should I also allow myself to be consumed with stress if I get a low mark? And if I do get a low mark (and I’m praying I’m not) will that affect my application to the program I want to get into (Human Biology)?

    Thanks for your time.


    You’re stressing a lot. Let me tell you something: there is no call for the kind of panicking you’re doing right now. Life is too short for that kind of silliness. Here’s something that you probably don’t realize: you’re not the only one who knows you’re a frosh. It’s not some kind of big secret. Everyone else can tell. I can tell, your peers can tell, and more importantly, your profs can tell.

    This means that the professor knows your background, and he or she is going to structure the lecture appropriately towards it. The course starts off with a quick review of trigonometry, which, if you went to school in Ontario, is something that you started learning about in Grade 11 Math (if you went to school outside Ontario, you’re also more than likely to have learned this before).

    Now, I’m not saying the course is going to be a piece of cake, but it won’t be impossible, either, regardless of what your marks were like in high school. If you consistently do the weekly problems and go to lecture, you’ll do well. If you do find yourself needing help, however, it is always available to you – absolutely feel free to drop in on it!

    As for Human Biology, as long as you complete 4.0 credits, you’re eligible to enrol – so don’t panic.

    Good luck, little soldier, and try to chin up!


  • math

    last minute decisions lead to last spots on the waitlist

    I enrolled into MAT133Y and soon after found out that I need MAT135/136 instead. I am currently enrolled in MAT133 but waitlisted for MAT135/136 at the same time. I know that they are exclusions of each other so I’m wondering if ROSI will give me the option of choosing which one to stick with once I’m approved for all my choices. AAAND do you think there is a chance for me to get into MAT135/136. I am 4th for 135 and 47th for 136… and would they give me preference over other ppl since I require MAT 135/136?


    Hey hey

    The sometimes helpful thing about ROSI is that it doesn’t recognize exclusions. The conveniently helpful thing about the Math Department is that they don’t really pay much attention to exclusions either. 😉

    (Or, at least, that’s what the word on the streets is.)

    Anyhow, don’t worry if you’re in MAT133Y and suddenly get into MAT135H/136H. Naturally, of course, just make sure you drop 133Y once you get into the other ones. But yeah, ROSI won’t kick you out of one or the other.

    As for your waitlists…

    I’d say you’re in a great place for MAT135H. You may very well get in before class starts, but if not, I’m sure that at least four people will drop it after the first lecture.

    Now with MAT136H. Yeah. No. Not the best spot on the waitlist.

    You’re not going to get any preference though just because it’s a prerequisite for something you need in the future. MAT136H is a prerequisite for a lot of people. Maybe consider some other lecture sections? Maybe an equivalent at another campus?

    Anyhow, I can’t think of place to incorporate a stupid picture into this post, so take this and prosper.



  • economics,  math,  repeating course

    extra work for economics


    This is the first time I’m writing to you and I guess I have a little problem. I’ve just finished my first year at UofT St. George and although I struggled a bit, I know where I went wrong and I’ve kinda figured out what i have to fix to do better academically. However, I did not get into the Subejct Post that I wanted: Economics. I want to Major in Economics but i didn’t get the required math grade as I took MAT136H1 and barely passed. I’m thinking of repeating the course again this fall, but my question to you is do you think its possible for me to take MAT133Y1 instead? I know that MAT133 is an excluded course if a student has received credit for MAT136, but I think i’d have a better chance of making the grade if I took MAT133 instead. I know a lot of people would say that maybe Econ just isn’t for me because I’m not good at math, but i think last year was more down to me being lazy and not having the foundation that I would have liked. So yeah, basically what I’m asking is: is it possible for me to do MAT133 instead of repeating MAT136 having passed MAT136?



    Regretfully motivated,

    It is possible for you to do MAT133Y, but the credit WILL be counted as extra, meaning it won’t contribute to your cGPA, and on your transcript it’ll just say “EXT” (for extra) next to it.

    However, the grade you get will still be considered for a program requirement.

    And, lucky for you, you won’t have to go through the trouble of bugging your college to enrol in the course for you since technically you’ve never taken MAT133Y before.

    Just note that with MAT133Y, you need to get at least 63%.



  • math,  UTM

    not another math problem!

    Hey Aska 🙂

    I’m a student who was enrolled in the life sciences programme at UTM last year, and I’m hoping to get into the Bio Major programme as time goes on. Due to all sorts of not-too-fun stuff, I ended up only taking my three required courses in the Fall (MAT134, CHM110, and BIO153), but eventually I managed to get my sh*t together and went for the full course load in the winter term. I managed to do okay on everything, but I failed my maths course by a few percent and got my butt on probation.

    I’m in summer school at the moment taking a 2-year SSc course that I’m acing (it’s a Y course, and I’m rocking above 80 right now), and I’m retaking maths as well. I enrolled in my courses before I knew of my academic standing (I got the email two or three weeks into the start of courses), and I’m pretty close to where I need to be anyway – I’m at a 1.48, I need 1.5 to be safe.

    So, I passed my first math quiz with a 60, but I failed the first test by 8 percent. Now, I thought I fixed my problem, but obviously I haven’t. So here are my questions:

    1) As a kid intending to go on into the bio major programme, can I use my No Credit/Credit option on this stupid maths course?

    2) Would it make sense to drop the course and try taking an online thing at Athabasca and having the credit transferred?

    3) Should I push through and see how I do until the LWD date?

    I don’t know what to do :/


    Hey hey

    For starters, I want to stress your working your butt off this summer to avoid the possibility of suspension.

    But your questions:

    1) No, you cannot use the CR/NCR option if this math course is a program requirement. CR/NCR courses can only fulfil degree requirements, not program ones.

    2) Honestly… no, I don’t think you should drop it and take it online. Using transfer credits for program requirements is always such a hassle. It’s doable, but clarify with the department if they’d be willing to take a transfer credit for entry.

    3) Push through until the last day to drop. Don’t bank on a LWD because those are never guaranteed.



  • math

    but why do we math

    Hi aska,

    I want to get into med school and to do that i need to keep my GPA up. I think I can manage physics, but the co req of PHY131 and PHY132 are MAT 135 and MAT 136 which is a math overload. My brain cannot handle it. Still I’d like to get some preparation in physics for the MCAT. I can’t drop the courses if I do bad in them since it will leave a large hole in the amount of credits that I want. I really don’t know what to do. Please help


    Hey hey

    So let’s deal with the first problem: how can you deal with all the math?

    Seek help, obviously!

    Drop into a Math Aid Centre on campus, form a study group somewhere, get some tutoring, yada yada yada.

    But if that doesn’t work, we move on: how can you deal with the “large hole in the amount of credit [you] want”?

    1) Accept the fact that there is a large hole. Fair enough. It’s good prep for real life! You’ll soon find large holes in your wallet, for example.

    2a) Take summer school courses! There an extra strain on your wallet buuuuut…

    b) Take advantage of your program fees. Basically, that dreaded flat fee you pay every August for full-time students means that you can take anywhere between 3.0 and 6.0 FCEs. 😉

    Luckily for you, I doubt you’ve actually set up your timetable yet, so just accommodate the fact you’re going to be in one hell of a math-heavy year. This means try to lighten it here and there by taking things you know won’t be too much of a struggle for you and make sure you manage your time wisely.



  • math

    calculus is driving me crazy

    Hi aska,

    I just got my MAT136 midterm back – I got 57! It is worth 30 percent of the mark, while 65 percent is the final exam. What should I do? I’m already taking a summer course!



    Well, think of it this way: you’re not failing right?

    Sure, a 57 sucks, but here let me tell you what — I literally failed my first midterm of university. It was worth 30% of my grade like yours and I went into it with a mindset of “I’ve got this” and then bam! Failure! A 57 isn’t the prettiest grade of course, but you still have a chance to pull that up with your final exam. I mean 65% really allows you to make or break this course, right?

    You can always get some help from one of the Math Aid Centres or try some peer tutoring, but if you still don’t feel confident in yourself, make sure to drop the course by March 10 to avoid any record on your transcript or academic penalty.

    I say stay in the course and work your butt off, personally. I’d hate to have to retake something I’ve already invested two months in, you know?



  • math

    you will never escape the wrath of math

    Hi there,

    I was thinking about switch my first year sociology major to international relations but I don’t think that I have the math prerequisite since I didn’t take math in highschool.

    Is there anything I can do, or will they just accept me highschool mathless?

    Or am I forever stuck in sociology?



    Hey KS!

    To get into the International Relations program, you?re required to take a first year ECO course (which is mildly mathematical), but there aren?t actually any requirements for either of the two options. ECO100Y1 recommends high school math, but then there?s ECO105Y1 which is made especially for ?non-specialists.?

    But if you mean ?math? as in an MAT course? well, according to the requirements, there is no MAT course needed for the major program, so I’m a little confused as to why you’re confused.



  • admissions,  concurrent ed,  drama,  math

    twenty questions: aska edition


    I’m a student going into grade 12 and have two very different fields which I want to pursue, so I have some questions. Is it possible to take a major in drama and a major in math? And if so, which one would I apply with or do I apply with both, in reference to the form, essay and auditions, etc.? Does this work for the University of Toronto Mississauga Campus? And is it possible to make my math major part of a teaching degree? I also don’t really understand how choosing courses works and if you can have electives, and how many. Also, would I be limited in teaching possibilities or employment possibilities if I took math as a minor?

    Thank you,



    Hey Ioana,

    Your message is a deceptively short paragraph, but it actually consists of many specific questions. Well played, Ioana. Well played indeed.

    Anyhow, basically as long as the two programs you’d like to study are within the same faculty, you’re good. So since Drama and Mathematics are both part of the Faculty and Arts and Science, you can definitely major in them both. However, you don’t really determine those specific Programs of Study until the end of your first year. But since you’re still in high school, when you apply through OUAC, I suppose you might as well specify your program choice as Mathematics (assuming you can only choose one).

    When you apply, you essentially put yourself into some sort of stream like Humanities or Social Sciences or Life Sciences and would then be given precedence for spots in that stream’s courses. Now if you chose Drama, you would probably be placed in the Humanities stream. But DRM200Y1 Introduction to Performance has a number of entry requirements, which makes being given that priority rather irrelevant, so you may want to specify Math so that you’ll have precedence when trying to pick up those courses. At U of T, any sort of priority is useful since spots are always limited.

    Now for a B.Ed. from U of T, you can either go to OISE after you finish your degree, or you can apply to the super competitive Concurrent Teacher Education program in which you take five years instead of four and complete your degree alongside your B.Ed. With the CTEP, you can enter either straight from high school over at UTSC, or after your first year at St. George. Personally, I recommend you take the latter option and wait a little. You seem to want to do a lot of things. One year might do you some good in narrowing down between all of these choices or at least being sure of what you want.

    But if you do end up pursuing your B.Ed., you can definitely use your Mathematics major towards your teachable. And if you choose to bring Math down to a minor instead, according to OISE’s prerequisites for teachables, you should be fine. Just make sure to heed the program requirements needed for your degree. As for other jobs, try doing some research. Where can a degree in Math take you? Who knows! Consult the Career Centre if you’d like!

    And as for courses, students take an average of five per semester. In your first year you’re pretty much free to take what you’d like so that you can figure out what it is you’re looking for. If you’d like, take a look at the Calendar to get a vibe for how things work at U of T and what you can possibly take.

    Enjoy your last year before having to work your butt off!