Friday, September 28, 2012

Grad School....wait what?!?!

Hello again everyone!

Welcome back to a new school year.

As we look ahead to long semesters filled with studying, working, studying, sleeping, and studying, many of us are also considering graduate studies. If you’re in (or hoping to be in) the grad studies boat, today’s post is all for you!

Wait….did I just say GRAD SCHOOL? Ohh yes I did. If you’re in your last (or second-last) year of undergrad and you’re thinking about grad school, it’s crunch time! Application deadlines are looming fast and there are lots to do. But never fear, the AA&CC is here!

If you are considering any types of post-undergrad education, your first objective is to research different programs and schools, and figure out what works with what you want to do post-graduation. Essentially, you need to evaluate your goals and match them up with a program.

Grad school applications are much more rigorous compared to undergrad applications; they typically include an application form, specific pre-requisite courses you must take to be eligible, transcripts, references, and personal statements. They may also include specific test scores, resumes or CVs, writing samples or supplementary forms.

Your best bet with grad school applications is to start early! If you’re having trouble figuring out grad school applications, come in to the AA&CC (AC213) to ask questions or check out this tipsheet:

There will be a Professional & Graduate school fair this upcoming Thursday, October 4th from 11:00AM-3:00pm in the UTSC gym. This is a fantastic opportunity to meet representatives of each of the schools & programs and get an idea of what attending that school would be like. Everyone is welcome and entrance is free! See you all there :)


Thursday, September 20, 2012

Another school year, Welcome!

Hi all! Welcome back to the returning students and welcome to the freshmen! I hope everyone had a relaxing but fun-filled summer.

 I'm back writing academic tips and suggestions again for the blog! I hope you're as excited as me to venture another succesful year in university! So to start off, I want to welcome the Class of 2016 to UTSC!

Power walking halfway across the campus to not be late for your next class in IC building, walking through the long hallway to get to your class in SY building, lining up and patiently waiting to get coffee at Timmy's, grabbing a snack in market place in between classes, for some, this may be familiar part of your routine in UTSC. However, for others, they may slightly feel anxious about starting their journey in this thing called University. Class of 2016, breathe and do not panic. Most of you probably bid farewell to your comfortable high school life and feel apprehensive as you did, but do not worry. Here are some tips to have a smooth transition from high school to university.

Familiarizing yourself with the campus. UTSC may not be the largest campus of UofT but it still can one of the confusing ones. It has 'hidden' tutorial rooms like AC 332 and 334 found behind the big AC 223 lecture hall. So, reading your UTSC map or asking someone where you can find your next class may be your solution for the next couple of weeks. But trust me, after a month or two, you'll be very familiar with the campus and it's nook and cranny.

Do your readings BEFORE your lectures. I know you probably heard about this a million times already during the first week of your classes from your professors, but it helps you be on top of your 'game'. It also makes that two or three hour lecture seems shorter, as you actually understand what your professor is talking about. (Tip: If you are having trouble organizing your stuff, AA&CC is offering a Time & Management Procrastination Workshop on September 24th, Monday. You can sign up on your intranet, under the calendar.)

Attend your lectures AND YOUR TUTORIAL. Students often ask if tutorials are really necessary and the answer is heck yes! Tutorials are there to help you understand the course materials better. Tutorials are a lot smaller than lectures so it  makes it more interactive for students and teaching assistants. In some courses, attending the tutorials is already 10% of your final grade.

Be attentive and do some note-taking in your classes. Attending your lectures does not only involve you being present in the class. Actively listen to your professor and participate if possible. I have talked about this in my previous post and offered some tips so go check it out if you have not had the chance.

Don't forget to start enjoying your University experience. University may be overwhelming at first with all the extensive lectures, lengthy lists of readings, piles of homework and papers but don't forget it is also about the social experience and about meeting new people. Don't forget to squeeze in those little study sessions with friends in a group study room in the library, or enjoying a lunch in Rex's Den, or even enjoying the night life in Toronto after a day of finishing assignments.

But before I forget here is a friendly reminder of the Academic deadlines for this semester:

2012 Fall Session

Friday, August 17 Last day to pay fees.
Monday, September 3 Labour Day - University closed.
Monday, September 10 Classes begin in F and Y courses.
Sunday, September 16 Last day for students writing deferred examinations in December to adjust their current course load (on ROSI only).
Sunday, September 23 Last day to add F and Y courses (on ROSI only).
Monday, October 8 Thanksgiving Day - University closed.
Monday, November 19 Last day to drop F courses without academic penalty and have them removed from the transcript.
Monday, December 3 Last day of classes and last day for submission of term assignments in F courses.
Tuesday, December 4 -
Thursday, December 6
Study Break.
Tuesday, December 4 -
Friday, December 21
2012 Summer deferred examinations.
Thursday, December 6 Last day to drop UTSC F courses (on eService only) and have them remain on the transcript with a grade of LWD indicating withdrawal without academic penalty. After this date grades are recorded on transcripts whether course work is completed or not (with a '0' assigned for incomplete work) and they are calculated into GPAs. (Note: See for LWD dates for courses on other campuses.)
Friday, December 7 -
Friday, December 21
Final examinations in F courses.
Monday, December 24 -
Friday, January 4
December break - University closed.
Friday, February 15 Last day to confirm intention to graduate at the 2013 Spring Convocation.

Lastly, there are a lot of resources available for you, as you begin your expedition to academic success in UTSC. So if you feel overwhelmed and very anxious, do not forget to stop by our office found in the Academic Resource Centre, Room AC213 and we can definitely help.

So till next time,