University Access Programs/Pre-University
A. Transition Year Programs for Access to University
All three of the universities situated in or near Toronto and York Region offer transition to university programming for adults 19 and older who have encountered social, financial or other barriers along their formal learning journeys. These programs make it possible for adults who are motivated and passionate about getting in to university to attend intensive programming that that prepares learners for the demands of university studies. Members from a range of minority communities are encouraged to apply.
- A minimum of 19 years of age
- Some Grade 11 completion or equivalent (through upgrading or GED)
- Left school early or could not attend due to social, economic, or health reasons (check with the program for further details)
- Must have been out of school for at least one year (the duration of time out of school may vary from program to program)
- Canadian Citizen; Permanent Resident; or Protected Person
Note: Meeting the basic eligibility criteria does not guarantee entry to the program. Applicants are considered on a case-by-case basis. Assessments and interviews may be conducted by the university.Application Process: Applicants to transition programs are typically asked to submit the following:
- an application form
- a personal statement or essay submission
- letters of reference
- transcripts (if available)
Check with each program to determine the required document pieces for a complete application.
Deadline: May 1st for the September term (check with program for possible flexibility with respect to the deadline date and other important dates).
1. Transitional Year Programme at the University of Toronto
The Transitional Year Programme (TYP) at the University of Toronto is a special access program for adults who do not have the formal educational background to qualify for university admission directly. TYP offers an intensive, 8-month, full-time course of studies leading to entrance to an Arts and Science degree program.
TYP is aimed specifically at those who did not have an opportunity to finish high school or have the grades necessary to directly apply to the university because of financial problems, family obligations or other circumstances beyond their control.The Programme actively encourages applications from members of the Native Canadian, African-Canadian, Lesbian/Gay/Bisexual/ Transgendered/Queer (LGBTQ), other minority communities, people with disabilities and from sole-support parents. For more information about this program and associated fees, click here.
2. Transition Program at York University (TYP@york)
The Transition Year Program at York University is a special access program for youth (19+) and adults who are passionate about attending university. TYP@York provides an opportunity to transition to university for those that have previously experienced social and financial barriers to accessing the formal education system.
The TYP admissions committee will consider each application individually in order to assess the individual needs of candidates, to judge their level of motivation, commitment and academic promise, and to assess existing academic skills.
For more information about this program and associated fees, click here.
3. Bridges to Ryerson
Bridges to Ryerson is a one-year, part-time transitional program for mature students who have the motivation, potential, and stability required to be successful at post-secondary education, but who have foundational educational gaps and lack the formal admissions requirements. These students may have had past negative educational experiences, not completed high school, or been away from education for several years.
Students complete university-level Chang School courses, subject to the rigour of any other university course, but in a supportive environment that addresses foundational educational skills required to be successful in future post-secondary study. Students attend two evenings a week for a year, and are given targeted academic and non-academic supports and financial aid as needed. If they successfully complete the program requirements, they are eligible to apply for admission to selected programs within the university.
Completing the Bridges to Ryerson program qualifies individuals to apply for the following degrees: Bachelor of Arts; Bachelor of Commerce; and Community Services.
For more information about this program and associated fees, please visit The Chang School – Ryerson University Continuing Education
B. Academic Bridging for Access to University
All three of the universities situated in or near Toronto and York Region offer academic bridging programs/courses. These programs make it possible for adults who have been away from formal education for some time and who may not have the university requirements for direct entry admission to certain degree or certificate programs to take courses that may help them with admission to the university. These programs help participants develop the skills and confidence they need to succeed in university. Some universities may offer a credit(s) toward a degree, provided certain criteria are met (check with each university).
These courses are not appropriate if individuals require ESL instruction.
Criteria vary from program to program. (Check with the university).
1. The Millie Rotman Shime Academic Bridging Progam at Woodsworth College – University of Toronto
The Millie Rotman Shime Academic Bridging Program at Woodsworth College offers an opportunity for individuals who are at least 19 years of age to pursue degree studies at the University of Toronto.
Academic Bridging is designed for individuals who have been away from formal education for some time and do not meet the University's established requirements for direct entry admission; the course is intended to bridge the gap between a student's prior education and the requirements of first year university courses in Humanities and Social Sciences. Students who successfully complete the Academic Bridging Program are admitted to the Faculty of Arts and Science, at the University of Toronto, with retained credit(s) towards their degree.The goal of the program is to help adults:
- Develop academic skills
- Understand university culture
- Enhance life skills
2. Academic Bridging (Social Sciences and Humanities) – Division of Continuing Education at York University
York University's Academic Bridging courses are designed for individuals who have been away from formal education for some time and do not meet York University's requirements for direct entry admission. Our courses offer an opportunity for individuals who are at least 20 years of age, and have been away from formal education for some time (upon successful completion with a minimum of a B), to be guaranteed admission to York University.
Students are introduced to the academic expectations of a university instructor and the workload of a first-year course. In addition, our courses provide a supportive environment where students are encouraged to develop their study skills and academic confidence through access to our Writing Centre.
Students who successfully complete the Academic Bridging Course with a minimum of a B are admitted to a select number of Faculty's at York University, with three credits towards their degree. (York Admissions can provide you with a list of eligible Faculty's).These courses provide:
- dedicated instructors
- exposure to York University campus life
- a variety of course topics
- real experience in university study
- an opportunity to learn in a supportive environment
For more information on Academic Bridging (Social Science and Humanities), click here.
3. Bridging Program for Women – York University
The School of Women's Studies at York University offers academic bridging courses for women who want to upgrade their writing and speaking skills to explore the possibility of university study in a supportive environment.
Course participants must be 21 years of age or older, permanent residents of Ontario, and comfortable in spoken and written English. A grade of 'B' or better offers admission to mature students to the Faculties of Liberal Arts & Professional Studies.
For further information on the Bridging Program, please contact the School of Women's Studies at 416.736-2100 ext. 77818 or by clicking here.
4. Academic Bridging Courses (ABC's) – Ryerson University
(The G. Raymond School of Continuing Education)
Ryerson's Academic Bridging Courses (ABC's) are ideal for adult who need general academic upgrading in order to prepare for post-secondary courses at Ryerson or for individuals lacking subject prerequisite requirements.
Please contact the Ryerson Undergraduate Admissions and Recruitment department at 416.979.5036 or click here.