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Should I Do A 5Th Year And Then Graduate, Or Graduate And Return For A "special Year"?


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I'm really stressed out as to which one to do and I've been having difficulty getting help about this from the counsellors at my school. I know I need to do an extra year regardless to boost my GPA. I would prefer graduating "on time" then coming back for a "special year". The downside to that is that I might need to overload (switched programs halfway through undergrad). And I'm not even sure if there are any disadvantages to doing a special year? I'm mostly interested in applying to Ontario medical schools, if that helps solve my situation. I would really appreciate any help. Thank you! 

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Doing a special year really limits your options in regards to course selection. You'd be better off doing a 5th year since the course selection system treats you as a 4th year, and you won't need to wait for priorities to be lifted. By that time all the good courses will be full anyway. UWO also has extra rules such as not letting you take courses with no prerequisites in a special year.

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^ This, also I believe uOttawa only considers years that are part of a degree program, so a special year wouldn't help you, but a 5th year would. 

 

"The mark used at the various steps in the selection process is the weighted grade point average (WGPA), the calculation of which is calculated based on the applicants most recent three years of full-time undergraduate studies completed towards a bachelors degree in any recognized University.https://med.uottawa.ca/undergraduate/admissions/application-process/excellence-marks

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Yes, it won't be fun to watch many of your classmates graduate if you do a 5th year on your degree, but it's the better option in terms of med apps. There are so, so many people who do 5th years for any number of reasons-co-op, switching programs, etc. The 'special year' option creates more limitations for your application, which is why you'd be doing the year anyway, so you should try to maximize the benefit of the year

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Doing a special year really limits your options in regards to course selection. You'd be better off doing a 5th year since the course selection system treats you as a 4th year, and you won't need to wait for priorities to be lifted. By that time all the good courses will be full anyway. UWO also has extra rules such as not letting you take courses with no prerequisites in a special year.

 

Wow, I definitely didn't know that about courses! Course registration is stressful as it is. Thank you so much for letting me know!

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^ This, also I believe uOttawa only considers years that are part of a degree program, so a special year wouldn't help you, but a 5th year would. 

 

"The mark used at the various steps in the selection process is the weighted grade point average (WGPA), the calculation of which is calculated based on the applicants most recent three years of full-time undergraduate studies completed towards a bachelors degree in any recognized University.https://med.uottawa.ca/undergraduate/admissions/application-process/excellence-marks

 

Thank you so much for bringing this to my attention! I appreciate it.

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Yes, it won't be fun to watch many of your classmates graduate if you do a 5th year on your degree, but it's the better option in terms of med apps. There are so, so many people who do 5th years for any number of reasons-co-op, switching programs, etc. The 'special year' option creates more limitations for your application, which is why you'd be doing the year anyway, so you should try to maximize the benefit of the year

 

Haha yeah, not gonna lie, definitely feeling some fomo missing out on grad, but you make a good point. I guess I'll definitely do the 5th year before grad. But I'm curious - are there any other limitations on my app besides the ones listed above? Thank you for your help!

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