Admission Tips and Tricks

by Anna
MEd student, Developmental Psychology and Education

Hey there! ­čÖé

I know that students are likely feeling pretty antsy because graduate school applications are due! OISE’s deadline is November 15th for some programs, and more information about specific program deadlines is located HERE. Note that some Closing Dates are TBA, so remember to check that specific page for updated information later on.

The deadline to apply to my graduate program, the Masters of Education in Developmental Psychology & Education, is actually March 31st, 2017. This is to give working professionals such as teachers more time to decide if they want to apply to this program.

I think this is a good choice, but I’m still writing this post early to give people the relevant information.

Admission Requirements for a Masters of Education in Developmental Psychology & Education:

  • 4-year Bachelors Degree with an average of a mid-B or better in the final year
  • 1 year of relevant professional experience
  • Normally possess teaching certification
  • 2 letters of recommendation (preferably 1 academic & 1 professional)

All the relevant information was taken from HERE.

My Tips & Tricks to Get into the MEd in DPE (& Possibly Other OISE Programs)

  1. Apply to more than one OISE Program (which is why I’m writing this post early)
  • OISE’s Application fee is $220 for up to three program choices, which is pretty steep. You can use the same letters of recommendations & application information, including transcripts, for three applications so why not? Potential students might want to clearly indicate which parts of their┬áPersonal Statement are geared towards which program in their application. Full details can be found HERE.

2. Recognize that Admission Requirements reflect the profile of the most typical candidates and not every candidate.

  • I have a lot of teachers in my classes, but I’m not a teacher nor certified to be one. I’m still in this graduate program because I have relevant experience in the field of education & met all the other requirements.
  • I’ve also met students who aren’t Ontario Certified Teachers per say┬ábut are Early Childhood Educators who ended up getting a Bachelors degree before/after finishing their ECE diploma. Reputable TESOL or TEFL certification would also be relevant.

3. Include any research experience you have, including anything course-based.

  • This graduate program is a professional program, which means no thesis. It’s still good to show the Admissions Committee that you’re capable of doing research & thinking critically, especially for a graduate department as research-intensive as OISE.
  • Research experience doesn’t always have to be in a lab! I took an upper-year course about doing research in psychology where I designed a study, & I did an undergraduate thesis that was in progress during the time of my application. I included both courses as research experience on my CV/Resume.
  • Qualitative/observational research may also help, especially if you’re a teacher who participated in said activities in a relevant school or community setting.

4. Include & reflect on anything that makes you unique.

  • OISE really values the diversity of its applicants & students, so include anything that makes you stand out! If you’re the first person in your family to apply to graduate school, say that. If you speak any other languages, mention this in the context of what you hope to accomplish/learn at OISE.
  • International applicants may find it helpful to reflect on why they want to come to OISE/U of T, & their experience learning English (if they come from a non-English speaking country/part of the world). Incidentally, past OISE Student Ambassador Roxana wrote THIS POST about Admissions for International Students. This information is also available in Spanish HERE.

5. Recognize that the year of professional experience required doesn’t have to be done after you graduate with an undergraduate degree.

  • It can be acquired during your degree or during the summer. If you had a relevant job during your undergraduate degree, that counts. If you volunteered somewhere in the field of education or were part of a club, that’s also relevant.
  • Include anything on your CV/Resume that could help, including volunteer work & any relevant workshops or conferences you may have attended.

6. Try to apply to at least one program where admissions aren’t as difficult/competitive.

  • Certain graduate programs at OISE get a lot of applications & attention, such as the MEd in Counselling & Psychotherapy. If you’re also interested in some of these programs, it’s a good idea to apply to at least one graduate program at OISE that doesn’t receive as much attention. My application to the MEd in Counselling & Psychotherapy was, unfortunately, unsuccessful, but I likely wouldn’t have time to write this blog post if it was! ­čśŤ

I hope that what I wrote was helpful, and relieves some anxiety during this difficult time. I won’t tell anybody not to procrastinate, but do hope that everybody takes the time to reflect on why they want to come to OISE before they apply.

More information about Graduate Admissions at OISE is located HERE, and the School of Graduate Studies Application System portal is located HERE.

Happy Application Season! ^_^

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About Anna Dinissuk

Hi there! :) I'm Anna. I'm a 1st year MEd student in the Developmental Psychology & Education program at OISE. Previously, I went to York University where I got a BA Honours degree in Psychology. I'm interested in working in student services, helping students who may be encountering difficulty. In my spare time, I enjoy writing poetry, reading fanfiction, browsing Etsy, playing Candy Crush Saga, and annoying my cat. :P Feel free to comment on any of my blog posts if you need help finding information about OISE or have questions about what I write. ^_^

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