• psychology,  subject POST

    utsg psych major: the saga continues

    i didn’t make the psych major at uoft sg and that was my main goal. i don’t know what to do now. i have to retry but not sure how that process works. and i don’t have financial means to take an extra year so i’m worried i’m off track. what are my next steps…


    hi there,

    ok hooold up. i gotta say this sounds… awfully familiar.

    since it looks like everybody and their mother is applying to the utsg psych major, let me just rehash some of the important stuff from that previous post which might help.

    1. you didn’t get in. sucks, but it’s not the end of the world. from my experience, there are lots of chances to apply later on β€” as long as you makes some real solid changes to your studying and academics going forward.

    2. to reapply in second year and above (9.0 FCEs or more completed), you’ll need marks from psy100, grade 12 calc and bio, as well as psy201 and 1.0 FCEs of the 200-level psy courses listed. retaking psy100 could certainly help your grades for POSt, but it’s up to you to decide if/when/how to do it. lucky you, i happen to be a bit of a degree explorer aficionado, so let’s just walk through how you could plan this stuff out.

    since the grade cutoff is listed at around 77-79%, if your current psy100 and grade 12 calc/bio marks are lower than that then it might be safer to retake psy100 next year. if you need to graduate in four years, the most straightforward ways to do that would be to either take psy100 in the summer (still $$, but at least it’s not $$$$…) or take more than 5.0 FCEs in one academic year (likely 2nd year, if you want to have the best chances of getting into the psych major right after). you can take 4.0 – 6.0 FCEs in the fall/winter semesters for the same program fee, so there won’t be any extra costs (finanically, at least) but it could be more difficult to balance things and get the marks you need. taking a summer course isn’t a walk in the park either, since things are going at 2x speed, but (hopefully) you won’t be taking other courses at the same time too.

    3. if you do end up taking psy100 next year, i’d suggest first prioritizing your 200-level psy courses and courses needed for other majors/minors you want to complete (unless you’re ready to risk it all for the utsg psych major, it’s probably best to still keep up on your other programs). try to pick courses that you’re really interested in, where you can likely do well. the utsg artsci course evals are a handy way to stalk check out potential courses, including ratings by instuctor and year/session. remember to prepare backups too β€” course enrolment is already finnicky, and if you’re not a psych student it might be hard to get your first choice psy courses since you won’t have priority.

    once you’ve got your required courses down, i’d recommend adding psy100 in your lighter semester so that even if you’re taking 6 courses, it’ll still be manageable. another tip is to enroll in multiple courses if you’re not sure which ones would be a good fit, and just make sure to drop the extra ones by the deadline.

    4. i’d also recommend speaking with your college registrar to get support with planning, academics, or anything else you might need help with. they’ll be able to help with your study strategies, provide resources, and a whole lot of other things to get you on track.

    5. if you haven’t already, try applying to the psych minor next year too as a backup. it’ll allow you to enroll in courses as a psych student and could be a good alternative if getting into the major is still a challenge.

    now, follow these trusty steps and i guarantee you’ll… wait, what’s that? no guarantees? oh. okay. well unfortunately, i can’t say for sure that you willΒ get into the utsg psych major even if you follow all these handy tips, but hopefully this gives you a better idea of what your next steps might look like.

    best of luck,

    aska

  • psychology,  subject POST

    all roads lead to the utsg psych major

    I had a rough semester and ended up with a 75 is PSY100. Hoping to get into the psych major at utsg but I’m right at the cutoff. Do you think there’s a chance for me to get in still? If not, should I retake the class next year?


    hello there young grasshopper,

    ah yes, the agony of waiting for POSt offers… unfortunately, it’s quite hard to tell in your case as you’re literally right at the cutoff. to be honest, it could really go either way, and also depends on the number of spots compared to the number of people applying for the program, as well as their marks.

    if you haven’t heard back about your application yet, the best thing (well, also kind of the only thing) you can do is probably just to chill and wait it out! it’s good to prepare ahead but there’s also no need to stress out when the results aren’t even out yet!

    i will say, psych and most artsci programs are quite good with giving multiple chances to enter the POSt and switch in/out of things even in upper years, so even if you aren’t accepted after first year, you can definitely still get in later on.

    so, as for plan b… if you don’t get in, you should definitely consider taking some second year psych courses, such as PSY201. these are usually required if you are applying for the psych major again after second year or above, as you may have already completed 9.0+ FCEs.

    doing really well in your second year psych courses would improve your chances of getting into POSt, as 1.5 FCEs of second year psych courses (specific ones listed in the POSt requirements) will be considered in addition to your PSY100 marks. you can try to pick courses that are also part of the psych major requirements so that if you get in, you’d be on track to completing your program requirements, while also being well equipped for upper year courses in psych.

    you could repeat PSY100 as an extra course too, although it could potentially change how you schedule your courses later on, e.g. you may have to take summer courses, an extra semester, or an increased courseload to fit in that extra course. it’s up to you to decide if it’d be worth it to repeat PSY100 right away next year or do it later on if things don’t pan out after your second year psych courses.

    although POSt might be a bit of a pain during course enrollment, chances are you’d still be able to get into at least some, if not all of the second year psych courses you need even as a non-major. another tip is to apply for the psych minor, if you haven’t already! the cutoff for that is at 73%, which may not be a guarantee, but does give you better chances of getting in β€” and psych minors will also have priority enrollment in psych courses, to make your life a little easier. πŸ™‚

    hopefully that gives some reassurance on the process! POSt offers are tricky and there’s really no way to fully predict your results until they come out, but just know that no matter the outcome, there’ll be plenty of ways to get to the program you want. in the meantime, good luck, and enjoy the summer!

    aska

  • subject POST

    i’m lovin’, i’m livin’, i’m switchin’ it up

    Im a prospect student and was wondering how hard it is to switch from Psychology to Life Sciences since I received an alternate offer. Thanks!

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    hi there,

    i’m not really sure what you mean regarding the alternate offer.

    if you’re a prospective student, you should know that you’re not really a psychology student until after your first year, at which point you’d apply to the psychology POSt and hopefully get accepted.

    if you wanted to switch from a psychology major or specialist to a life sciences program like biology, you’d be able to do that after your second year, since the program request periods take place in the late spring/summer. essentially, you’d need to make sure that you have the appropriate prerequisites for admission to the program, and then you’d need to go through the POSt application process again. to find out what those prerequisites are, you’d check the appropriate entry in the artsci calendar. if you’re successfully admitted to the program, then you could drop your psychology program and accept your admission to the new lifesci program.

    but all of that switching trouble could be averted by simply taking the prerequisites for whatever lifesci program you like in first year, and then applying directly to that program. at u of t, you don’t really commit to a program when you apply β€” i believe you indicate a program of interest, but no one’s going to hold you to that.

    i hope this helped!

    be Boundless,

    aska

  • subject POST

    we live in a society

    hello!!! i wanted to ask if you know some info about the sociology major? such as how big the classes are and what subjects you’re required to take in the senior years of high school to get into this course

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    hi there!

    you’re in luck β€” i do know things about the sociology major.

    apart from the standard social science admissions requirements, you don’t really need to take anything specific in the senior years of high school to get into the sociology POSts. instead, your first-year prerequisites will be considered when you apply to the program after second year. basically, you need to get a certain grade in both SOC100 and SOC150 to be admitted to the soc major. that grade cutoff changes year to year, so unfortunately i can’t be more specific about it.

    those first-year classes, SOC100 and SOC150, are really big. in non-covid years, they’re held in con hall. if i recall correctly, i think the enrollment is usually anywhere from 1000 to 1400 students. don’t quote me on those exact numbers. basically, it’s a crowd.

    as with most programs, as you become an upper year, the class sizes will shrink. the standard second-year sociology requirements are probably around 200 to 300 students large, and once you hit fourth year, you’re looking at 15-person classes.

    if you want to know specific class sizes as they are right now, you can look the sociology courses listed on this page up on the timetable and check the “space availability” section.

    the last note i’ll make is that you’ll need to take at least one statistics class to graduate with a sociology major. a lot of students don’t realize that when they request it as a POSt, and they end up dropping down to a minor to avoid that pesky stats requirement. switching POSts around can be inconvenient, so if you want to avoid math and statistics at all costs, the sociology major may not be for you! but if you’re willing to take that challenge on, it’s really just one course, and i’m sure you can get through it.

    i’m not sure what else you want to know about the sociology major, so drop me another question if there’s any specific information you’re seeking and i can try to find it for you. hope this was helpful, and thank you for waiting for this answer!

    be Boundless,

    aska

  • courses,  prereqs,  subject POST

    it can indeed be done

    Hey Aska! I’m a grade 12 student. I’m going to UofT next year in the Life Science admission category. The truth of the matter is, I am very interested in two very different programs (life sci and poli sci). My understanding is that you can double major in programs from two different admission categories, even though you’re only allowed one admission category. Is that right? Also, do different majors have prereqs? And if they do, do you think it will be possible to fit them all in my schedule?

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    hey there,

    congrats on accepting your offer of admission! it’s great to hear that you’re interested in different programs β€” i honestly think the people who study super different things, like chemistry and history, are the coolest people on campus.

    your understanding is correct β€” it’s totally okay to double major in programs from two different admission categories. different majors do have different prerequisites, though. you can find out what those prerequisites are by consulting the appropriate program entries in the arts and science calendar. in nearly all cases, it is possible to fit those prerequisites in your schedule with a little careful planning. degree explorer is your friend here.

    in first year, your admission category will afford you priority enrolment for certain courses β€” since you’re in lifesci, that means it’ll be easier to get into things like BIO120. but i wouldn’t say this will necessarily stop you from registering in humanities or social sciences prerequisites. plenty of people do it, and if you encounter difficulties,Β you can also reach out to your registrar’s office for help. in fact, if you want to have a chat with an academic advisor before your course enrolment begins, you should be able to book those kinds of appointments over the summer.

    hope this helped, and a very early welcome to u of t!

    be Boundless,

    aska

     

  • subject POST,  UTSC

    i’ve been a non-degree student and it’s not a bad experience!

    Hi. Is it possible to graduate utsc without enrolling in a subject POSt?

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    hey there,

    if you’re interested in graduating from utsc with a degree, this webpage indicates that you can’t do so without enrolling in the minimum combination of subject POSts. so to my understanding, unfortunately, the answer is no!

    if you’re interested in studying at utsc without enrolling in a subject POSt, you can look into becoming a non-degree student. that means that you’ll be permitted to take courses at utsc, but you’ll commit to those courses on a case-by-case basis and won’t need to complete program requirements. in fact, you won’t be allowed to enroll in programs if you change your mind. you also won’t receive a degree, and therefore won’t graduate in the traditional sense β€” but for some people, this is the right course of action and exactly what they’re looking for in their education!

    i hope this clarifies things for ya.

    be Boundless,

    aska

  • subject POST

    that disappointing time of year

    Hi there, I applied for human bio major and psych major for my POSt however I did not get into human bio nor any other bio major, hence I went ahead and enrolled in 1 Psych major and 2 minors (a minor in psych and minor in bio). I wanted to ask if first will I be able to easily switch my POSt as in reapply for human bio maybe after summer or in 2nd year? Also I’ve enrolled in 2 bio courses for the summer for human bio but since I didn’t get in do I drop the courses and take psych ones? Thank you

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    hey there,

    sorry to hear your POSt applications didn’t go as planned! this very disappointing experience is unfortunately all too common at U of T.

    it’s great to hear that you enrolled in placeholder programs instead β€” that’s something you need to do in order to enroll for second year.

    personally, i’d drop the bio summer courses and take psych ones instead if i wasn’t confident that i could get into a bio POSt in the future. from my perspective, it’s better to start tackling the requirements for a POSt that you’re already in β€” there’s more of a sense of security that way. sometimes, people take upper-year requirements for a POSt that they’re hoping to be admitted into later on, and then they end up in a tight spot if they don’t actually get into that POSt eventually. but if you feel good about your bio chances in the future, go right ahead and take those bio courses.

    you can also ask your registrar’s office this same question β€” i don’t think my opinion is the be-all-end-all, and the right answer for you might very well be different from the right answer for me.

    you can certainly reapply for your first choice POSts, but you won’t be able to do that until spring of next year, when applications open again. unfortunately, there isn’t an application period after the summer or during the school year. frustrating, i know.

    i hope this helps you navigate your situation better! good luck.

    be Boundless,

    aska

  • international relations,  subject POST

    please add time travel to the long list of my talents

    hi! hope you’re doing well! i recently made a big oopsie and forgot to send in my supplementary essays for the pcj program (and my mom won’t let me forget about this anytime soon so yay for me). i was wondering if you know if the international relations major needs any supplementary essays? i can’t find it on the program page on trinity’s website, and the calendar doesn’t specify either, but my mom insists that she remembers someone saying i need to write one. thanks in advance! πŸ™‚

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    hi there,

    on behalf of every u of t student who’s ever made a consequential mistake, i feel for you and want to tell you that things will be okay! it’s great that you’re looking into IR as a backup. honestly, from what i’ve heard, the PCJ program is fantastic and very cool but sometimes a bit disorganized (new instructors cycle through often, the program’s comparatively quite young, etc.). you also have to deal with a lot of big egos because of the high threshold for admission.

    i double-checked the IR calendar entry and you’re right that it doesn’t mention any essays. if supplementary materials are required, that will always be mentioned in the calendar. but because i know how moms can be, i also asked a friend who applied to IR in summer 2019 to confirm, and they told me that they needed to submit a short essay.

    so, as one does, i put on my detective hat. i wear a lot of hats around here, but this one’s my favorite.

    i couldn’t find a gif of The Hat that i liked, so this one will have to do.

    after that, a little time travel was in order.

    in summer 2019 (july the second, to be exact), this is what the IR calendar entry looked like.

    as i expected, all application requirements were listed in the calendar entry, and back then those requirements included a statement of interest β€” or an essay. so your mom wasΒ technicallyΒ correct in the sense that, in the past, an essay was necessary. but given that the page today has removed the “Statement of Interest” bit, i think it’s safe to say that no essay is required.

    i hope this helps! good luck.

    be Boundless,

    aska

  • criminology,  subject POST

    crime specialist!

    Hello, I wonder if an 80 average in required courses will get me into the crime specialist!

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    hey there,

    crime specialist!

    if you’re referring to the criminology specialist program under arts and science at st. george, then it unfortunately doesn’t look like an 80 average in required courses will get you past admission.

    the faculty of arts and science calendar indicates that 80% is actually just the cutoff to be considered for admission. to make it into the program, you’ll likely need a higher average in CRI205, CRI210, and CRI225. but as that entry average changes each year, i won’t be able to tell you what it’ll be.

    sorry i can’t provide you with any concrete assurances. i hope this helps clarify things, though!

    be Boundless,

    aska

  • subject POST

    hello again

    Hello! i have a question about applying for programs. so, i’m a first year and i’m thinking about applying for an english major, a cinema studies major, and a creative expression in society minor. the only problem is that i haven’t done the first year cinema studies major, which seems to be the prerequisite for me to actually apply for this program. i know i can just apply for cinema studies in my second year after doing CIN105 in 2nd year (instead of 1st year), but what should i be doing before my second year?

    should i just apply for english and creative expression in society after my first year, and just have those 2 programs? or should i applying for another program instead of cinema studies as a backup?

    on another note, how many programs should i be applying for in terms of backup programs? can i apply for as many as i want and then choose which to keep and which to drop?

    also, what is the 12 credits rule? i’ve heard of it but i’m not sure what it is.

    sorry about the super long question! thanks πŸ™‚

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    hey there,

    if i’m understanding this right, i took a long time to answer your original question so you sent this one in! that’s cool, i’ll just use this post to fill in some more blanks and address your new questions.

    it makes sense that you’d be wondering what you should do before your second year. i’d recommend that you apply for your english major and creative expression and society minor, and then add a placeholder major or minor as well. an open enrolment program would be ideal if you’re just picking a random program β€” but if you can pick something you’re genuinely interested in as a backup, do that instead.

    what i will note is that you can’t just request the english major and creative expression minor, because without the minimum program enrolment of a double major, a major + two minors, or a specialist, you won’t be able to register in second-year courses. something in the system will block you, i believe!

    i’m actually not sure if there’s a limit on how many programs you should apply for, but i believe you can apply for several and then choose which one to keep. you can probably verify this with a quick email to your registrar.

    what is the 12 distinct credits rule? funny that you ask, because everyone has this question. i’ve done a previous explainer here, and if anything’s unclear still, feel free to drop another something in the ask box and i’ll get back to you quicker than last time!

    hope the rest of your semester goes well, and good luck <3

    be Boundless,

    aska

  • degree requirements,  subject POST

    Responsible Studentβ„’

    hi! yet another first year here in your ask box, lol! i have two sort of related questions for you.

    i was looking at degree explorer today to be a Responsible Student. i know for sure that i want to major in english, but i’m not sure what i want to do for my other one. if you have any tips on finding good a program that you know you’ll enjoy, i’d appreciate it ? i know that’s a bit of a silly question because there’s no real answer to it, but i’m honestly terrified i’ll choose a program that i’ll end up hating.

    and second (the more important question i wanted to ask) – i was looking at the program requirements for the english major program and some of the courses iΒ haveΒ to take are ENG202, ENG203, ENG250, and ENG252. butttt if i do all of these it means that 2.0 FCEs are already taken up in my second year, and i added in some courses that i might potentially want to take (ENG273Y, JEI206H, ENG289H) – some part of the english major requirements, some not – so that means i really only have 0.5 FCEs left for whatever other major i decide on. obviously, i know i could give up on some of those courses i want to take out of interest, but i feel like if i do that i might get unmotivated for school and all, and i really do want to take them. sooo after all of that background context – is it weird/not recommended if i take about two courses or so from ENG202, ENG203, ENG250, and ENG252 in my third year even though they’re 200 level courses to free up some space in 2nd year? will that somehow set me back or be a bother to me in my third year? i’m just worried since i don’t know what else i’d want to major in, not to mention that i want to do either a 0.5 BR=4 or BR=5 in second year to get that over with.

    i hope this all makes sense!

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    just sent you an ask about english major stuff! i forgot to also mention that one of the courses i want to take for fun is CIN215, so that’s why i only have 0.5 FCEs left for my other major (whatever it’ll be). you probably don’t need all of this info, but just making sure haha thank u again!

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    hey there,

    welcome to the ask box! i do love a Responsible Studentβ„’.

    i’ll try to answer your questions in order. first, do i have any tips on finding a good program?

    finding a program that you love can be tough for a lot of students β€” many of us don’t wake up one day and just instantly know what we want to do. here are some of my suggestions:

    • did you take an introductory course to random a subject in first year, only to find out you absolutely adore that subject? that might be a good sign that you’d enjoy studying it further. this is actually how i chose one of my programs.
    • sit down and take the time to really flesh out your academic interests. you probably like reading and writing given that you’re interested in english β€” and that’s great because you’d need to read and write in many of the humanities and social sciences. is there anything within those fields that you find particularly important? are you passionate about equity, or documentaries, or gender, or creative writing? in all likelihood, there’s another major out there that will both use your skills and get you excited.
    • you could also find something that complements english well, or goes at literature from a different angle. lit and crit, for example.

    i can also refer you to some programs that i’ve heard people really enjoy:

    • diaspora and transnational studies is quite groundbreaking, and will push you conceptually. i’ve had friends transfer into that program from things like IR and polisci, because it’s a lot less eurocentric and a lot more cutting-edge. if you’re interested in gaining cultural competencies, talking about diaspora and orientalism and nostalgia, and understanding globalization, this program is very cool.
    • book and media studies apparently has some not-so-thrilling required courses, but i know people in the program who really love it once those courses are over and done with. BMS has some reallyΒ cool fourth-year seminars taught by well-known figures in the journalism/publishing industry, and sometimes i wish i was in this program.
    • urban studies is also really interesting if you were drawn to u of t because of the city!

    second, is it weird for you to take 200-level courses in third year? absolutely not. i know tons of people who do it. i even know people who take first year courses in your fourth year. i see the 100/200/300/400 level designations more so as recommendations (and determinants of grading expectations) than i do rules.

    in fact, i think it may be a good idea to free up some second-year space for courses from your other major, since u of t’s upper-year courses tend to have so many prereqs based on second year program requirements. for that reason, although i understand your desire to take fun courses, i would caution you to make sure you focus on getting your program requirements out of the way first so that your later studies aren’t impeded.

    if you have any further questions you can shoot me another message. i’d also recommend that you get in touch with your registrar’s office if you’d like someone to talk this over with you via the phone. an academic advisor there will have access to your full academic history, and will also know the ins and outs of planning your degree. in a sense, they’re often a lot more helpful than i can be.

    i hope this helped! good luck with whatever you ultimately decide to do. i have faith that you’ll make the best decision for yourself!

    be Boundless,

    aska

  • subject POST

    this is difficult difficult lemon difficult

    Hello! Hope you’re doing well πŸ™‚ I had a really tough time between 2017-2019 but I’ve picked myself back up and am now getting 3.5-4.0s.. but even if i get 3.5-4.0’s in my 6 winter courses my GPA will be 1.95 and the bio major cutoff is 2.0. I’ve completed every course for the major but my gpa is almost there… i was wondering if there’s still a chance I can get in (if i beg to someone lol:( I’ve even accepted my grad request and approved for my psych major. pls tell me what u think i can do πŸ™

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    hey there,

    i’m doing all right, thanks!

    i’m so glad to hear that you’re doing better, even though you went through a pretty rough patch. however, i’m not really sure what can be done. i’m not aware of any appeals process for program admission.

    your best bet is probably to get in touch with your registrar. an academic advisor at your registrar’s office may know more about your options than i do β€” contrary to what some might think, this situation you’re in isn’t super unusual. i’ve seen it on this blog a few times. also get in touch with the department. since they’re the ones who presumably make program admissions decisions, if you were to appeal to anyone, it would be them.

    sorry i don’t have anything more definitive to give you! i really hope you manage to work this out, as your GPA really is so close and i’m sure you put a lot of work in to bring it back up. wishing you all the best of luck <3

    be Boundless,

    aska

  • cinema studies,  subject POST,  Uncategorized

    it’s that time of year again

    Hey! I’m a first year who’s been thinking about POSTs. I’m probably going to major in English and I want to do creative expression in society as a minor, and maybe either book and media studies or cinema studies as my second major. The thing is, I never took CIN105 (the prerequisite) which means I’d have to do it in my second year. How do I go about applying for these programs then? i hope this makes sense lol thank you

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    hey there,

    thank you for waiting for this answer! i hope you had a great reading week, or at least a half-decent one.

    this is a good question, and you’re not alone in wanting to register in a program for which you lack the prerequisite. i feel like i’ve actually seen this specific question in recent months, which means someone else at u of t is also trying to get into cinema studies without the prereq.

    you should be able to apply for english easily β€” english is an open program, so as long as you have 4.0 FCEs, the major should let you in. the creative expression and society minor is also open enrolment, and while the book and media studies major isn’t open enrolment, it only requires that you have a grade of 67% or higher in at least one 100+ level course. doable, i think. for information about the specifics of applying to programs, check out this lovely sid smith page that boils it all down very nicely.Β 

    as for a cinema studies major, that’s absolutely still a possibility. what you can do is take CIN105 in your second year and apply during the POSt application period following your second year. in the meantime, you can select another open enrolment program as a placeholder. you need to do that because, unless you are enrolled in the minimum program combination (a specialist, double major, or major + two minors) by the time fall/winter course enrolment happens, you’ll be blocked from selecting courses.

    it doesn’t really matter what placeholder you pick, but the smart thing to do with theΒ  would be to select a program that’ll give you priority enrolment for courses you’re interested in taking. that way, you can take advantage of priority privileges for a year.

    the final thing to note is that you shouldn’t drop your placeholder until after you get into cinema studies, just to be safe.

    i hope this helped, and that your first year is going all right! good luck with your midterms and finals β€” i’m rooting for you.

    be Boundless,

    aska