• physics,  subject POST,  switching

    in with a new POSt, out with the old ones

    hello!

    so i just finished my first year at utsg and i have applied to do a double major in equity studies and pharmacology. within the past couple of weeks i have been getting really really into physics (which is odd because i hated physics in high school). anyways im thinking that i want to switch into a biophysics specialist degree. the issue is, that i didnt take any physics or calculus during my first year and so i basically have to restart my four years. i was just wondering how i would go about switching to the physics specialist, do i just leave my current posts as they are and take the courses that i need for physics or do i have to drop my posts somehow or something else? not sure if this changes things but equity studies is a type one so ive already been accepted and pharmacology is type 3 so im still waiting to hear back on that one. (also do you have any tips on how to cope with the fact that i wasted an entire year and thousands of dollars)

    and thank you in advance for your response!

    ——————————————

    hey,

    nice job making it through first year! it’s a perfectly normal thing to see your interests shift at this point in your degree– i can definitely relate to that, although not to getting into physics.

    to get the tedious part out of the way first– how would you go about making the change? i wouldn’t drop your POSts now, no. you need to be registered in some kind of valid program combination to be eligible for second-year course selection, so if you won’t be able to get into biophysics before fall it’s best to keep what you’ve got. think about your current programs as placeholders of sorts– ignore their requirements, and focus on taking the prereqs for your biophysics spec. then, when the program enrollment period rolls around, apply for biophys.

    chances are you already know this, but if you took the prereqs for pharmacology, you may already have the chem requirement for biophys under your belt, at least for the most basic biophysics specialist. hopefully that makes things a little less overwhelming!

    all the biophysics specialists seem to be type 1, which will hopefully make things a little easier for you. if you were switching into multiple type 2 or 3 progams, i would have advised you to apply for them first THEN drop your previous programs once you got in. just to be safe. but since yours is a type 1 and you’re switching into a specialist, that makes things a lot simpler. you’ll be able to register in biophys before dropping equity and pharm, as ACORN allows you to be in a maximum of 3 POSts at once.

    how to cope with the fact that your first year didn’t ultimately feed into your POSt? we’re fed this myth that we all need to finish our degree in four years, and that absolutely everything in our studies must count or serve a purpose or lead to a job. i’m still wrestling with this myself, because i’ve internalized that expectation. but no. everyone has their own time, their own path. this just happens to be yours. maybe it sounds wishy-washy, or cheesy, or whatever. either way, there’s nothing you can do to erase your first year and do it over, so from here all you can do is keep moving forward. i can understand if you’re bummed about it. though. i guess from a financial standpoint especially, it can be difficult to move past.

    despite not knowing you personally, i’m real proud that you’ve acknowledged where your passions lie and are willing to pursue them, even if it might not be the most convenient thing to do. so much changes when your course content gets you excited. i don’t know what this past year has been like for you, but if it’s been rough then this might be what you need for study motivation.

    i know several people who totally switched their programs when first year was over, and even one who switched faculties AND universities after her second year. everyone who i’ve seen go after something new has been really successful in their current program of study, so much so that it’s hard to imagine what things would have been like had they succumbed to inertia. i think a lot of this has to do with the fact that they followed their interests, and care a lot about what they’re studying now. maybe that’s where you’ll be in a year’s time.

    wishing you all the best, friend! i think you’re brave.

    over n out,

    aska

  • deferral,  subject POST

    POSt prereq purgatory

    Hi Aska!

    I am finishing my first year at UofT and have run into a bit of confusion regarding program application. Last week I was sick during one of my exams and so acquired proper documentation and am going to petition to defer my exam as soon as Monday rolls around (it’s Saturday now, my college is closed).

    What I am wondering is, seeing as the exam I need to defer is related directly to admissions requirements for my preferred program, how will this affect application? Can I no longer use that credit to apply to the program? Does this mean I will have to wait a whole semester or year to re-apply for the program? It is Type 3 so I will need to be accepted, meaning I will need to have an average GPA using the course with the deferred exam…. I am very concerned and worried that an illness will cause my entire university schedule to be jeopardized.

    Thanks a lot in advance!

    ——————————————

    hello!

    sorry it took me a few days to get back to you; i’ve got a few questions lined up and am slowly making my way through them! there’s a chance that when you went to your registrar, they were already able to advise you on this. but just in case, this is my take on it.

    i don’t believe you’ll need to wait to apply, and in any case you wouldn’t be able to wait just one semester. there’s only one time of year you’re able to apply to POSt, and that begins near the latter half of the winter session. with that, there are two program request periods, and the second request period has been designed for those completing their prereqs in summer. so as long as you’re deferring your exam to the august exam period of this year (your registrar will have told you if not), you still have an opportunity to apply for your type 3 program at that point.

    this year, the second request period runs from july 2 to august 28, and results come out by september 12. the august exam period runs from aug 15-22, so there is an opportunity for your grades to be in the system before the request period is up. it’s gonna be tight, but it is definitely possible that you will be in the program by next school year.

    i hope this wasn’t confusing and it eases your worries! one deferred exam is not gonna skew your life course. hope your exam and the application process both go well for you, and glad (i think?) you’re feeling better now.

    over n out,

    aska

     

  • subject POST

    website down

    hey aska!! i know this is not your area of expertise so i’m sorry if this is out of line, but I’m trying to apply for a type 3 POSt and the website has been down for over 2 weeks 🙁 just wondering if you have the inside scoop on whether or not this will be fixed before the deadline to apply?? thanks, you’re the best!!

    ——————————————

    hello and no worries at all!

    ask whatever you please (within reason lol), i have yet to read a question and find it out of line.  either way, the website should be back up and running now! hopefully it doesn’t shut back down, but i’m sure the IT people were working on reviving it so i’m unsurprised it was already working by the time i got around to this question. best of luck with getting into your type 3, i hope the application goes smoothly!

    cheers,

    aska

  • credits,  subject POST,  summer

    another day, another POSt

    Hi! I took the min amount of courses a full time student can take so I should have 3.0 FCE at the end of the year right? So I can’t apply to a POST? What happens then? I have to wait until next summer or will I have to apply in the coming fall semester as soon as I complete 1 more FCE to make 4 total? Also I want to major in sociology but I didn’t take perquisite course (took a different soc course) & I can’t take it in the summer so do I have to apply to random programs then just switch later?

    ——————————————

    hey there,

    if you took the minimum amount of courses to still qualify as full-time, you should indeed have 3.0 FCE by the end of the year. you’re correct that this bars you from applying to a POSt right now, and unfortunately there’s no POSt application period in the fall. it only happens in two periods once a year, generally beginning near the end of winter semester and in the middle of the summer semester.

    this puts you in kind of a weird place.

    my recommendation to you depends on your plan going forward. there are two possibilities:

    1.you’re taking summer classes and will have another 1.0 credit once the first summer semester is up

    there’s a rule that prevents students from enrolling in courses once they reach 4.0 credits and aren’t registered in a program. if you are taking enough summer classes to have 4.0 by july, i’m worried that this will kick in for you before course reg, and you’ll find yourself unable to come back for fall/winter next year. what you’ll want to do with this case is request programs during the second request period. this request period depends on what program type you’re going for, and you can find those dates here.  i dunno if you’re well-versed on program types, so if you’re not you can read up on them there as well. to check what kind of type your programs are, ctrl+f them on this page. 

    yikes, i feel like one of those automated phone lines you call and have to press 5 buttons before you can speak to a real human being. press 8 for more information. press 9 to repeat this message. press 0 to revive aska-with-a-personality from the hellhole that is exam szn :(( my apologies for being as dry as a piece of two-week-old bread.

    … i don’t know what i’m throwing this gif in for. it serves no purpose other than making me a lil uncomfortable.

    since you won’t be able to get your soc prereqs by then, what you should probably do is pick placeholder programs. this’ll ensure you’ll be able to register in courses, and they’re easy enough to drop at the end of next year if you still want to switch to soc. i’d go for random type 1 programs, as they don’t ask anything extra of you. it’s basically just so your acorn continues to function and treat you as a student following the rules. loopholes!

    2.you’re not taking summer courses/enough summer courses to have 4.0 by july

    with this, i’m relatively confident the no-course-enrollment rule will not affect you. what you’ll have to do in this case is just wait til next year’s program enrollment period. this, thankfully, gives you time to complete your soc prerequisites without having to throw placeholders into your ACORN.

    hope this helped! best of luck with what exams you have left, and feel free to shoot me another question if you run into any trouble with this.

    over n out,

    aska

     

  • PSL,  subject POST

    psl pLS

    Hi aska! I’m a 2nd year Health & Disease Specialist but want to switch to a double major in H&D + Physiology or Immunology, and have a couple questions: 1) when I apply to the PSL/IMM majors do I need to check the box that I’m switching out of H&D spec. or can I just apply for the majors separately & drop out of the specialist on ACORN if I get accepted? 2) PSL rejected me last year but my marks in PSL courses/overall are way better this year – will they consider 2nd year marks? Thanks so much!!

    ——————————————

    hello hello!

    this definitely undermines my credibility, but i only found out what psl stood for … four days ago. BUT now that i’m armed with that elusive! knowledge! i think i can help ya out here.

    1. don’t drop your H&D right away! what you’ll want to do here is apply for the majors first. then, should you get in, you’ll need to indicate that you’re switching out of H&D in order to accept
      PSL/IMM. as far as i know, ACORN will let you add up to three programs at a time, so there’s no good reason why you should take the risk and sweep H&D off the table before you know if your admission to PSL/IMM is secure.
    2. some programs have specific second-year admissions criteria, and some don’t. PSL is one of the latter; the calendar indicates that they base admissions on those 3 first-year required courses. however, there are departments that will still look at your second-year grades, and if they find you’ve made a significant improvement, this will be factored into your decision. now, i’m not sure if PSL is this level of gracious, so unfortunately i’ve gotta redirect you to the department for this one. give them a call or a visit, and find out if it’ll work out for you. you can find the undergrad assistant Eva Eng in medsci 3209, or call her at 416-978-5077.

    off you go, then. best of luck getting in!

     

    cheers,

    aska

     

  • english,  programs,  subject POST

    what is this, valentine’s day?

    Hello again!

    I just had a few quick questions regarding program enrollment. So, for my english major and creative expression and society minor it says that I can apply from March 1-September 18th 2019 and then for my book and media studies it says March 1-May 12 2019 but to check for results on July 2nd 2019 and enroll by August 7th 2019. Does this mean I can apply for it now for my second year beginning in September? Because I went to enroll in acorn and it said that the “start session” begins Summer 2019 but am I not enrolled nor do I want to enroll in summer school. I’m just confused on what this means.

    Thankyou!

    ——————————————

    hi again and welcome back!

     

    lot of dates you got there. not all of us can relate.

    SORRY anyways, all this info you’ve got boils down to yes, you can apply to your programs now for september. that summer start session thing just means hypothetically, if you DID want to start courses for your program in the summer, you’d be able to.

    this is the statement the registrar put out about start sessions, that does a way better job of explaining things:

    Heads up: If you have just enrolled in a program and the Start Session says 2019 Summer, that’s normal! It doesn’t mean you need to start taking courses this summer. The purpose of the Start Session is so you know which year you added the program, and which calendar’s requirements you will be following in order to complete the program.

    hope this helped!

    over n out,

    aska

  • arts & sciences,  cinema studies,  english,  subject POST

    aaaaand it’s that time of year again

    Hi!

    This may be a completely dumb question but, I am currently in my first year at UTSG and am deciding on what I want to major and minor in. I know for sure that I want to major in english and minor in literary studies but I am currently stuck on what to pick for my second minor. I wanted to do film studies but I haven’t taken the introduction to film studies this year and I heard that you can’t apply to be in film studies unless you have taken the intro course first. But, my question was if this is true or not and if I am able to apply for film studies and take the intro class in my second year. I have a back up plan to choose book & media studies as my second minor if film doesn’t work out. But, I was also wondering (this may sound really stupid so sorry!) if we apply for our programs at the end of our first year or the end of second year and when we are to apply. Also, one final question, can I apply for my major and then three minors in case one is difficult to get into and I don’t get into one (because film & book and media studies are more difficult). For example, if i apply for my major as english and then my minors as literary studies, film studies, and book & media studies, and if i get into all then I just pick the two minors I want the most.

    Sorry if this was really long and makes no literal sense!

    ——————————————

    hello n welcome!

    i don’t believe in dumb questions. i’ll answer anything. your confusion is valid, the school’s system can be difficult to navigate and that’s why i’m on here, running this world-class (lmao i wish) blog.

    so i’ve looked it up, but i can’t find any mention of… literary studies at u of t? so for the purposes of this post, i’m just gonna assume you mean literature and critical theory, or what i really wanna call lit&crit. if i’m wrong and literary studies is an actual program, feel free to correct me with as much salt as you’d like.

    according to the cinema studies minor page it is true that yeah, you need the intro class CIN105Y1 in order to get into the program. you’ll need at last a 70 percent in the course to be competitive for admission. if your heart is set on studying the art of the silver screen, then what i’d recommend you do is register for the course in your second year and try to apply for the minor at the end of next year. you won’t be able to register and then take the intro course, as they require a final mark in that class to let you in.

    that’s a good transition into your next question, about when to apply for programs. technically, you’re allowed to apply for a program at the end of your first year. this program request period has already started, and the dates vary by program type. you can check them all out here, which i would recommend doing just so you know what your deadlines are. however, there’s nothing stopping you from engaging in this program request period in later years, as well.

    the only thing you really should know is that once you hit your second year (complete 4.0 FCEs), you’re required to be enrolled in programs or else you’ll be blocked from course registration. 

    for your last question, how it works is that you can apply to multiple programs as long as they’re not all type 1 programs. i’m not sure how familiar you are with the system, so i can give you a quick rundown of the program types. type 1 programs have no restrictions on enrolment. as soon as you request the program, you’re automatically added to it– english and lit&crit are both type 1. type 2 programs generally require a specific grade threshold in a specific course to be met– for example, a 70 percent in CIN105Y1. type 3 programs essentially add extra requirements, like auditions and essays, on top of what a type 2 asks.

    at the end of the day, you can only be enrolled in 3 subject POSts at once. that’s why you can’t pick four type 1s, but you can request two type 1s and two type 2s. if you did get admitted to both the type 2 programs you requested, you’d only be able to accept one in addition to your two other programs.

    if that’s too confusing, just know that in your case, theoretically you would be able to request that combo of programs (eng, cin, lit&crit, book and media). however, as you haven’t taken the cin intro course, i guess it’s not as relevant? 

    what you can do if you don’t get into book and media is request a placeholder minor. this is any type 1 minor that you can easily drop at the end of the year, and replace with something you like more– like cin, if you take the intro course!

    hopefully this was helpful to you! in other words, i really hope i didn’t just make your head spin even more with the long post. comments section is open for complaints if i did. i know it’s tough juggling all that comes with march (wrapping up midterms! quickly approaching finals! tackling assignments like you’re putting out lil fires!) on top of figuring out how the HECK programs work.

    all the best,

    aska

     

  • CR/NCR,  subject POST,  switching

    new GPA, who dis?

    Hello! I am currently pursuing an Accounting Specialization and have decided to switch programs. By switching programs, does my GPA reset if I don’t use any of my past credits in my new program? Thanks.

    ——————————————

    hi!

    so i’ve scoured the internet, looked through every u of t-sanctioned website, and basically the answer is… no. your GPA doesn’t reset if you switch programs.

    according to the faculty of arts and sciences’ calendar, your GPA is the weighted sum of all the courses you’ve taken at the faculty of arts and sciences. this means that every course you take in the faculty, regardless of whether or not you switch programs of study, counts towards your GPA. bummer, i know.

    lana del rey bummer GIF

    however, there are certain marks that aren’t included in your CGPA (though you probably know this already!) this includes any courses that you take CR/NCR, transfer credits, credits that you took at another university on a letter of permission or on exchange, and any courses designated as “extra.”

    the only way that you would be able to “reset” your GPA is if you transferred to another faculty, campus, or school. so, if that’s your case, congrats! your GPA is reset! if that’s not the case then, sorry, you’re stuck with your old GPA.

    if there’s any confusion or you have any other further questions, you should get in contact with your registrar’s office, who’ll be able to answer this question (AND SO MUCH MORE!)

    oh my god wow GIF

    i hope this helps!

    xoxo,

    aska

  • subject POST

    subject post blues

    hey hey! I just need some clarification. So lets say I met all the requirements of a subject post but get rejected because its competitive. Doing better in my second year won’t improve my chances of getting into the program if I dont retake the prereq courses (and try to get better grades in those courses) correct? thank uu
    ——————————————
    hi!
    unfortunately, you can’t enrol in a course that you’ve already taken and passed without the permission of the department. if you want to retake a course for your subject POSt, i would go to the department and ask if it’s possible.
    i would also make an appointment with your college registrar to discuss next steps or alternatives for the upcoming school year since you didn’t get into the subject POSt you wanted. they might also be able to help you with the next steps that you need to take if you want to retake a course you’ve passed.
    i hope this helps! good luck!
     stephen colbert colbert report good luck hopeful fingers crossed GIF
    xoxo,
    aska
  • subject POST

    s’all good baby baby

    I realized that I don’t really want to pursue the major that I applied for anymore, so I’m considering changing my major. However, the major that I’m interested in, is in another department. How difficult is it to change departments?

    ——————————————

    hi!

    well, you can change your subject POSts up until you want to graduate, as long as you have what is needed to enroll in the POSt.

    as for how “hard” it is to change departments, it really shouldn’t be an issue. as long as you have the prereqs for the major (ex. any GPA threshold or required courses) you should be able to enroll. however, if the switch is drastic, you might need to catch up on your new major’s required courses. this isn’t a big deal, you might just not be able to finish in 4 years. but again, this is NO BIGGIE AT ALL! 

    if you’re going into your second year and you’re applying for your subject POSts for the first time right now, it shouldn’t be an issue at all. again, as long as you have the prereqs for the program.

    i hope this helps! good luck on your new endeavor.

     bart simpson season 3 episode 19 3x19 no problem GIF

    xoxo,

    aska

  • ACORN,  admissions,  subject POST

    acorn, you good?

    Hello,

    I’m going into my second year studying life sciences and have applied to several type 3 programs. I got invited to a program a few days ago on Acorn and there was orange text saying “accept your invitation” and an accept button but being the indecisive person I am, I decided to wait to see if I got anything else before accepting. I checked back today and there was another program under “invited” on the enrol & manage –> programs page on Acorn however both now only have a reapply button. What does this mean? There’s no option to accept or decline the invitations, and clicking reapply just makes an error message pop up saying that the request period is over??? I’m worried and confused, pls help!!

    From,
    Confused student

    ——————————————

    hi!

    as far as i know, you can’t start accepting invitations for programs until july 3rd. i don’t think ACORN will let you accept before that, but you can view your acceptances before that. you can check out more of the dates here. so yeah… not really sure what’s happening with your ACORN and all those weird buttons, but i wouldn’t worry about it too much if i were you.

    if you’re worried about the offer disappearing, i would check with your college registrar as they have access to more information than i do as a student blogger.

    hope this helps! good luck m’dude!

    xoxo,

    aska

  • subject POST

    not immune to having a subject post

    Heyy

    I didn’t do too well in my first year life sciences courses and so I didn’t meet all of the requirements for some majors (ex. Immunology) that I was interested in. I already missed the deadline to apply for summer courses. What do I do now? I’ve applied to some programs for my subject POSt but what if I still want to get into the programs that I haven’t reached the requirements for??

    To add to the problem, I finished first year with only 4 credits (I sadly failed a Y course). Can I still “catch up” on my credits if I retake CHM135 and CHM136 during my second year?

    ———————————————

    hi!

    though people usually apply/ get into their desired subject posts at the end of first year, you can still change your post afterwards! just don’t forget to apply to a placeholder subject post for the upcoming school year so that you can actually enrol in courses. oh! and make sure you look at the prereq courses for immunology and make sure you have those completed before you reapply.

    you could also speak to the undergraduate advisor/ coordinator of immunology. they’ll be able to give you so much more information that i cannot as a humble student blogger.

    it’s no biggie that you finished first year with only 4 credits, you’ll still be counted as a second year student come september. as for taking CHM135 and 136 during your second year, you need special permission from the department to retake the course- you can’t retake a course if you passed it.

    unless you have some kind of time limit on when you want to finish your degree, you don’t have to worry about not taking summer courses. if anything, you could always take summer courses next year to “catch up” if finishing in four years is really important to you.

    good luck!

    xoxo,

    aska

  • GPA,  probation,  subject POST

    it’s not you, it’s me

    This might seem like a weird question, but I just spent an additional year
    trying to get into a type 3 specialist POSt. I’m sitting at a healthy 3.15
    CGPA right now, but economics scares me and it will probably drop. At what
    gpa/cgpa does the university kick me out of a program? Don’t get me wrong,
    I’m still going to work my ass off, haha, but I really would appreciate the
    piece of mind of knowing the very edge of my acceptable limit.

    ———————————————

    hello,

    holy crap. a 3.15 CGPA is so healthy yo.

    in regards to your question, you’re in luck. once you’re in a program, you’re in it for good.

    the program can’t break up with you, but you can break up with the program.

    even if you go on academic probation, get suspended, or take 10 years off, your program will stay the same unless you change it or remove it yourself.

    even though you aren’t going to get removed from your program, you should still set an “acceptable limit”. i would recommend that you try to stay above a 1.50 CGPA in order to remain in good academic standing. once you go below a 1.50 CGPA, you will be on academic probation which has a lot of not-so-fun consequences attached to it. if you want a good scare, look here.

    you should definitely continue working your ass off! (oh no, i said ass!!! but you said it first!)

    you’re doing great so far, so keep it up!

    peace and love,

    aska