To answer many of the questions you may have regarding the academic year, we have compiled a detailed FAQ section that answers a series of questions U of T undergraduates might have about the upcoming year.

The Faculty will update the FAQs regularly as new information is confirmed. We encourage you to visit this page often for new updates.

If after reviewing the FAQs, you still have a question that is not addressed here about Mathematics Department, please email us at math.undergrad@utoronto.ca

Program Inquiries

In addition to the courses listed in the calendar program requirements, we will also accept the following:

Anthropology: ANT100Y1, ANT204H1, ANT207H1, ANT327H1
Mathematics: APM306Y1
School of the Environment: ENV333H1
Centre for Ethics: ETH201H1, ETH210H1, ETH220H1, ETH230H1
Forest Conservation and Forest Biomaterials Science: FOR201H1
History: HIS198H1, HIS202H1, HIS262H1, HIS385Y1, HISB31H3
History and Philosophy of Science and Technology: HPS110H1, HPS200H1, HPS210H1
Indigenous Studies: INS200H1, INS201Y1, INS240Y1, INS250H1, INS300Y1, INS390H1, JFP450H1
Centre for Industrial Relations and Human Resources: IRE240H1
Linguistics: JLP315H1, LIN200H1
Physics: JPH441H1
Rotman Commerce: MGT100H1
New College: NEW120Y1, MAT150Y1, NEW240H1, NEW241Y1, NEW250Y1, NEW270H1, NEW347H1
Philosophy: PHL205H1, PHL232H1, PHL233H1, PHL265H1, PHL273H1, PHL275H1, PHL281H1
Psychology: PSY100H1
Mark S. Bonham Centre for Sexual Diversity Studies: SDS255H1, SDS265H1
Victoria College: VIC172Y1, VIC262H1
Women and Gender Studies: WGS160Y1, WGS271Y1, WGS273H1, WGS275H1, WGS340H1, WGS350H1, WGS360H1, WGS355H1, WGS360H1, WGS365H1, WGS367H1, WGS369H1, WGS370H1, WGS374H1, WGS374H1, WGS376H1, WGS385H1, WGS386H1, WGS390H1, WGS395H1

If you would like to use one of the above courses to satisfy your ethics requirement, please email math.undergrad@utoronto.ca requesting a program update. Please make sure to include your student ID number. 

If you would like to use a different course that is not on this list, please fill out the Program Exception Form.

This is evaluated on a case-by-case basis, and usually is allowed when students wish to take a specialist course and apply it to their major program. Requested course substitutions should be of the same year of study e.g., you cannot use a 100-level course in place of a 200-level requirement, and the substitution course must be similar in content and difficulty.  

If there is a course you would like to use in place of a required course, please fill out the Program Requirements Waiver Form and return to math.undergrad@utoronto.ca, along with a copy of the course syllabus, your unofficial transcript, and a statement of reason. 

We expect students to meet all prerequisites for the courses they register in so they will have the foundation and knowledge to be successful in their program. However, in cases where students have completed courses at other faculties or Universities and have a strong rationale to support their request, a prerequisite waiver may be considered. 

Students can fill out the  Program Requirements Waiver Form and return the completed form to the Mathematics office (or email to math.undergrad@utoronto.ca), along with a copy of your unofficial transcript. This will then be assessed by our Undergraduate Associate Chair to determine if you will be permitted to take the requested course without meeting the prerequisites.  

Please be aware that prerequisite checks are conducted at the start of every term and are ongoing up to, and following, the add class deadline, so students can be dropped well into the course if they do not plan ahead and ensure they meet all prerequisite requirements. 

As of Fall 2020, corequisite checks will be enforced in the Math Department. Students not meeting corequisite requirements can expect to be removed from the course when prerequisite checks are underway. Please note prerequisite checks are ongoing all the way up to, and following, the add class deadline, so students can be dropped well into the course if they do not plan ahead and ensure they meet all pre and corequisite requirements.

Math Courses 

Students are responsible for finding a reading course supervisor. Eligible supervisors should be Math Faculty at UTM, UTSG or UTSC. Once you have found a supervisor who has agreed to supervise your reading course, students fill out section 1 of the Reading Course Form, then the instructor fills out section 2 and signs. The completed form and a copy of your unofficial transcript can be sent to math.undergrad@utoronto.ca

Please note that our first-year Math courses (MAT133, MAT135, MAT137, MAT157 and MAT223) do normally require high-school level calculus as a prerequisite, but in our department, this is not strictly enforced. Students can add the course and will NOT be removed from it even if they do not possess high school calculus. However, we do caution students that the material is definitely a jump from high school math, and will require some self-study to make sure you are prepared for the content.

If you think you will require further help, you can consider PUMP, which is a course that our Department offers as preparation for University-level math.

Additionally, please learn more about the first-year Calculus courses' differences.

Finally, on this page you can see more about University-level Math that you will be studying, there are many useful examples.

Please note this is the same course, and it is worth 0.5 credit in each of the cases. The differences are:

  • MAT223H1F* runs in the first semester of the Summer
  • MAT223H1S* runs in the second semester of the Summer
  • MAT223H1Y* runs throughout the ENTIRE Summer - this is a two-semester and a slower-paced course, we offer this version to our students too since Summer terms are very short. Again, note this course is also worth 0.5credits.

It is extremely unlikely that you are the problem. There is a lot to get used to in college, and the transition itself can be a lot. In mathematics classes, it can be especially difficult in first year courses because they have enormous class sizes and students are coming in from a wide variety of backgrounds. It is still likely that you enjoy and are good at mathematics even though you may not be enjoying the structure of the course, and that is different from whether or not you like mathematics.

If you are struggling, please do not blame yourself. Grappling with new topics and ways of thinking is a part of learning mathematics, but it should not be painful, overwhelming, or traumatic. If that is happening to you, please consider going to the Math Aid Centre, emailing or contacting your course instructors, finding a Recognized Study Group, or discussing the issues you are facing with the Undergraduate Chair. If you are not finding relief through those avenues, please contact equity@math.toronto.edu.

Lots of mathematicians hate calculus and/or have a hard time in first-year courses. This is because there is a lot to deal with while adapting to the university setting, and the transition to college-level mathematics classes or proof-based curriculum is incredibly difficult, especially when doing it without support. Students who succeed in mathematics enjoy some part of what they are learning when equipped with the support of a welcoming community of colleagues, fellow students, and teachers. If you do not feel supported or part of the mathematical community at Toronto, please contact equity@math.toronto.edu.

One of the unfortunate aspects about mathematics culture is that there seems to be a universal tendency for individuals in math classes to “suffer in silence.” What this means is that it is very likely that if you are not following the material, there are many other students also not following the material. Although it seems counterintuitive to the way a classroom environment at University of Toronto works, students who can be publicly honest about what they are not following or what they haven’t seen before make the environment better for everyone.

One mathematical myth is that how deeply you understand a mathematical concept is related to how fast you learn it. In reality, these people who seem speedy have typically seen the material before, or they have A LOT of time outside of class to actively and slowly engage with the material. Speed has absolutely nothing to do with mathematical potential. Also, there are specific strategies for studying mathematics in the types of classes that are offered at University of Toronto that are not explicitly taught in any class. This is a problem in the curriculum we offer that we are hoping to rectify in the future.

If you feel comfortable with your instructor, you could consider sharing your relationship with the material with them. It is possible that they can help you or you can find on your own other class members who are in the same position and try to work together on the class and study techniques. You can ask classmates, students who have taken the class in the past, or the instructor about particular strategies for studying, but take note that these proposed learning styles might not be the best for your individual needs. Other ways to find a sense of community in your classes are through Recognized Study Groups, the Math Student Union, AWM Chapter, or other student groups.

If none of these options are available to you, you may want to discuss the issues you are facing with the Undergraduate Chair of Mathematics or the Diversity & Equity Committee.

Teaching Assistant Positions 

Students are eligible to apply for TAship if they are a registered student at U of T.

All TA positions for the fall and winter semesters are posted on HR website sometime in June. The link to apply will be provided within the job posting, and the application will be submitted online.