Kyler (Year 2)
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 the university's unpredictability of certain course material thrown at its students. The prestige of the school had enticed me to broaden my knowledge on a higher degree. The University of Toronto had offered me a plethora of libraries to help me study, namely, having accommodating times for students to study even past typical "office hours."
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.
I wish I knew the minimum threshold average to a more accurate percentage to help me better achieve the marks I wanted to get into the program. I would have tried harder in a select number of courses required to enter my program as I did not meet one of my desired program's mark threshold. (The program admission minimum was increased by a substantial amount)
What was your favourite university experience?
My best university experience was the first week of classes. During the first week of classes I was able to meet new people in every single lecture and tutorial. Additionally, I was able to pick up on how being a future student at the university would be like throughout my years as an undergraduate.
What was your least favourite university experience?
My worst university experience is the commute from my house to the university. As I did not live in the university's provided residence, it is required for me to take public transport for an extended time just to go to school.
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 being able to maintain a high enough mark to proceed in being admitted to the program. The University of Toronto works differently than other universities in this regard. (You are not enrolled into your program until after the first year). Furthermore, the essay writing portion of all courses were significantly difficult in my opinion. All given prompts for any essay writing I had were very broad and the mark received was heavily reliant on the teacher's assistant's opinions. (Specifically, philosophy essays.)
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?
My favourite course was the Introductory to Sociology course (SOC100) as it had introduced me to the standard theories and definitions throughout history with relevant examples. This course was very interactive as the tutorials encouraged high engagement with everyone in the class. Additionally, the astronomy course , Great Astronomical Issues, was a great course as well. This course not only covers the students math breadth requirement (UofT's mandatory elective courses), but also introduces a smaller setting for its students to learn. It was a small classroom with weekly jigsaw questions for the class to research and teach the rest of the class. Both the professors and teacher's assistants were very helpful.
All in all, the University of Toronto is a great school and lives up to its prestigious name. It has many accommodations for any student and really offers a great student life. I had a great time as a first year student, and I look forward to the rest of my three years as an undergraduate at the University.