Graduate: What Happens After My Application is Received?
Once the complete application package is received, the application is reviewed by the Graduate Coordinator. All eligible applicants (with the exception of international applicants) are contacted for a face-to-face interview with a member of the Graduate Education Committee (GEC). Where distance is an issue, telephone interviews might be arranged. The final admission decision rests with the GEC.
How an Offer is Made in Thesis-Based Programs:
In the case of domestic applicants and US citizens, applicants are normally given what is called a "conditional offer". The conditions are usually that the student must complete his/her degree if in the process of doing so; and supervision and funding must be obtained, prior to the deadline for registration. The applicant’s file is circulated to all graduate faculty; however, it is the applicant's responsibility to take the initiative to contact those faculty with whom they wish to work - in particular if he/she has an interest in a specific area of pharmacology.
For all other visa applicants the process is slightly longer. To facilitate and simplify the admission and immigration process, only “clear” offers are made to international applicants. Once the GEC deems that an international applicant is eligible for admission and has met all of the admission requirements, the applicant’s file is circulated to all graduate faculty. As with domestic applicants, it is the applicant's responsibility to take the initiative to contact those faculty with whom they wish to work - in particular if they have an interest in a specific area of pharmacology. An official offer is made only when a faculty member indicates his/her willingness to supervise and fund that applicant's program.
How an Offer is Made in the Applied Clinical Pharmacology (Course-Based) Program:
Since supervision and funding are not an issue for applicants to the course-based M.Sc. program, there will likely be very few conditions on the admission offer beyond proof of degree completion, and submission of official documents where required.
At the time of application, visa applicants should have already graduated from their degree programs and be able to submit all of the official documentation necessary.
I Have Applied to a Thesis-Based Program. Do I Have To Wait Until I Am Accepted Before I Can Approach Potential Supervisors?
Many potential supervisors are not willing to consider an applicant who has not yet gone through the admission process. That said, applicants do not need to wait until they are officially accepted before they approach a potential supervisor. In fact, since it is the applicant's responsibility to obtain supervision and funding, many take the initiative early to approach faculty members in whose labs they might wish to complete their degrees.
Please, however, keep in mind that a promise of acceptance by a graduate faculty member does not guarantee admission into the graduate program. All applicants must undergo the full application process and be accepted by the Department before an official offer of admission will be made.
There are research descriptions for all graduate faculty on our website and applicants should take the time to do some prior reading before they approach a potential supervisor.
What Are the Advantages to Applying Early?
Eligible applicants whose complete applications are received early have the opportunity of having their applications reviewed and receiving an early offer of conditional admission. For applicants to the thesis-based programs, an early offer means having the advantage of having their documentation circulated early in the year; thereby increasing the chances of obtaining supervision and funding.
International applicants to the PhD program whose overall averages are within the "A" range and whose applications are complete by the posted February deadline, will automatically be considered for nomination for the Connaught Scholarship. Visa applicants who completed their degrees at the University of Toronto are NOT ELIGIBLE for the Connaught Scholarship.
Depending on the number of applications received, the GEC usually meets on at least two (sometimes three) occasions to discuss applications: In mid-February (after the February deadline); in mid-April if necessary; and in mid-June (after the June 1st deadline). Complete applications are considered as they are received, and eligible applicants may be given conditional acceptance at any of the meetings. Applicants will receive decisions by mail within 1-2 weeks after the meeting at which their applications were discussed.
Applications from domestic students whose grade point average is considered borderline, or who have not met the required B+ cutoff in previous completed years of study, will be held until the final year's marks are received, at which time a final decision is made. When an official offer is received, the applicant must meet all of the conditions on the offer before the registration deadline (usually mid-September).
Any other questions regarding the application process may be directed to:
The Graduate Assistant
Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology
Room 4207, Medical Sciences Building
1 King's College Circle
Toronto, ON, M5S 1A8