Pharmacology and Physiology at University of Toronto St.George
Tony (Year 4)
What did you wish you knew before going to your university? What made you choose this institution over all others? What are advantages and disadvantages of your institution or campus? List any advice for incoming first-year students about your university.
I wish I knew more about the life science program before I applied for it. From how I see it, it's not a program that will get you jobs upon completion (except research positions) but will open up other opportunities for you, such as PharmD, MED, etc. I chose UofT over UBC because of the location. UofT is located right at the downtown of Toronto and that makes shopping and exploring very convenient. However, some UofT professional schools, such as the ones listed above, do not give priority considerations to domestic students and therefore are more competitive. Lastly, some of the more general life science courses tend to have vague assignment instructions, so be sure to ask your prof or TA for clarifications.
What did you wish you knew before choosing your specific program? What are the advantages and disadvantages of your program? List any advice for incoming first-year students about your program of study.
Life Science is a fun program if you love learning about science. If you are looking for something that pays well immediately after undergrad, I suggest switching programs. Also, I recommend reading about your major requirements, as some courses are not required -- meaning you don't have to take them if you don't like them. Reading about post-undergrad school requirements may be helpful too, as some professional schools do not require you to complete the full 4 years to apply. Take on that opportunity, and it will save you a lot of time.
What was your favourite university experience?
Participating in frosh week as a frosh leader every year has to be the highlight of that year. You will still have time to hang out with friends after that but you won't get a large chunk of time.
What was your least favourite university experience?
Having two midterms on the same day and then one more the day after. It was very stressful and I did not have the time to study as much as I wanted to for the third exam.
What is the hardest part about your program and what were the steps that you took to overcome any difficulties?
The hardest part about my program is how dense the material is; I'm doing a pharmacology and physiology double major. I can't speak for other majors but I found it difficult at times to navigate this double major combo. I had to memorize a lot of information for pharmacology and a lot for physiology as well. I usually preview and then review immediately after class, and then two days after, etc. Even then, I couldn't memorize everything on the sides and had to guess where the emphasis may be for the midterm.
If you were able to take electives, what was your favourite elective? If you were not able to take electives, what was your favourite course and why?
NFS284, you will learn a lot of interesting facts about nutrition and the materials aren't as dense as other life science courses. TAs' marking was pretty good too, highly recommend.