The truth about academia

Many ideas have always circulated in the academic world. It’s not a strange thing, the university period is experienced in many ways. Going to university is a choice that most people make at an early age. It is interesting to analyze the expectations you have when you choose to go to university and get a degree.

Admission

In most academic institutions, the deadline for applying for the fall semester is March 1 and for the winter semester, November 1. Please note that not all programs are necessarily offered in the winter term. Some institutions sometimes extend the admission periods by extending the deadline for applying to programs where there is no quota. Regular applicants – those who come from a college program and have never interrupted their studies – must meet admission requirements such as: having completed a college diploma in pre-university or technical training, meeting the specific admission requirements of the programs chosen, meeting, if applicable, the selection criteria, and passing the uniform French test. More and more Quebec universities are opening their doors to holders of a diploma of technical college studies. They welcome these graduates not only in specialization or continuing education programs, but also in regular bachelor’s degree programs previously reserved for holders of a pre-university college diploma.  After agreement between the universities, the student must have obtained the Diploma of Collegial Studies in order to be able to undertake university studies. However, there are exceptions to this rule. Each university has its own online admission form, either on the Internet or on paper. It is suggested that you apply online, as many universities charge an additional fee for paper applications. An application can be submitted to several universities and, in general, it is possible to choose more than one program per university. In addition, universities sometimes have special forms for certain programs. In continuing education, whether it is adult education, evening programs, open-student or even open-audience programs, the forms are generally different from those for regular education.

Expectations regarding the choice of university

Although the trend is changing, universities have been encouraging enrolment in their courses since childhood. It involves teachers, parents, relatives. They encourage the university path by saying that graduation is the best thing to do to find a stable job and have a better future. Today, however, ideas about university have changed due to social changes, especially those concerning the labour market. In spite of this, there are still many expectations related to university studies: first of all, professional integration. It is very common to believe that a diploma, in itself, will give a better chance of finding a job than a high school diploma or degree. It is obvious that each university path allows for interaction with the job market, but to believe that a diploma of any kind will give advantages because it is a more important title than others is a belief that hardly corresponds to the reality of today’s work. Then, entertainment. University and entertainment are two fields which, despite a fundamental incompatibility, tend to be associated by most people. This idea is fueled by the American model of the university student’s life. In many American movies or television series, university life is presented as a series of codes, rituals and customs that are difficult to compare with ours. Moreover, it allows for intellectual growth. Even today, it is believed that graduation makes you wiser. In reality, nurturing the mind and intellect is more a matter of personal choice than the intellectual stimuli offered by a degree. And finally, independence. Because of age, it is very common to associate the university period with freedom in its highest expression. If this is combined with the fact that in many cases children have to leave their city or country to study, this expectation is reinforced. This is true, at least with regard to daily activities. However, in recent years, this freedom has been reduced for students. Often, attendance at university courses is mandatory and, unless the professor pretends to look away, students are obliged to attend classes. In the past, course attendance was not mandatory, attendance was a decision that was made by the individual professor. There was the freedom to attend or prepare the subject at home alone.

What is left of the university?

Beyond expectations, we can say that the university period is a stage in our lives. If we decide to follow this path, we would certainly learn a lot. But the most important lessons are learned outside of university. One of the most beautiful aspects of university is the opportunity to share spaces with people you never imagined you would meet. Many of them will teach us a lot about life, we know their point of view in order to provide deep and sincere discussions with them. The classmates and other students are certainly one of the best things about the university experience that all students can gain. Some of these people will end up being sincere friends, others will be friends that you will keep in touch with and be happy to see again. With others, you will exchange only two words and you will not have many relationships. Believe it or not, you will remember everyone, even those who are not. The companion who was shy, but always greeted you, or the classmate who sat behind you, but with whom you never got to talk. If university makes you feel something more intense than the relationships you have, it is certainly nostalgia.

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