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UWaterloo vs McGill vs UToronto

  1. Aug 27, 2011 #1
    Hey guys,

    I'm looking forward to majoring in both physics and math, however i'm not sure which of the three universities I should attend to accomplish this. Assuming that I do get accepted into all three universities, which I would say is a sure bet as my grades are much higher than their cutoffs, which would better prepare me for the likes of top tier graduate schools at the States, such like Caltech, Harvard and MIT? I know that thinking that far ahead for my education isn't necessary at this point because I have 5 years of schooling ahead of me to go ( currently entering grade 12 ) until grad school, but i'd like the comforting feeling of knowing which options are better ahead of time.

    Factoring in different pros and cons for each university, i'm pulled towards either Waterloo and UToronto. None of these universities give good financial aid, but Waterloo does have a better learning and social environment, so I've heard. UToronto seems to be very cutthroat and the stiff competition might make things very uncomfortable. I do like competition, but the things I've heard somewhat scare me. Then again, I don't believe all that I hear.

    I do believe that i'm a good student, with an open mind for the many ideas with which physics beholds, and the curiosity to venture for its gain and knowledge. I aspire to become a physicist, so I ask, which school is best?
  2. jcsd
  3. Aug 27, 2011 #2
    They're all good, seriously. What matters more is you getting the marks, research and GRE scores.
  4. Aug 27, 2011 #3
    Well, there are clearly many differences. Which one would have more/better research opportunities? Which one would prepare me better for the GRE? I know that they are all good. That's why I narrowed it down to those three. You didn't really help me choose which one :\
  5. Aug 27, 2011 #4
    Alright then. I thought you were strictly talking about the programs which are generally the same in all of these universities.

    I would personally go to McGill for their Honours Physics program just because Montreal is amazing and the physics department is smaller then say Toronto and Waterloo i.e (better research opportunities). I'm going to apply to McGill for their Honours Mathematics program and if I get accepted it would be between McGill and UToronto.
    Last edited: Aug 27, 2011
  6. Aug 27, 2011 #5
    Why wouldn't you consider Waterloo? I'm not judging, i'm just curious.
  7. Aug 27, 2011 #6
    I don't really like the campus. Don't get me wrong, the program is pretty awesome but I can't really stand the 1950s brutalist style in some of the buildings, especially the math building. McGill and U of T on the other hand make me fell comfortable...:biggrin:.
  8. Aug 27, 2011 #7
    They're all good. Waterloo is often likened to being the 'MIT' of Canada. But regardless of where you go you will get a good education. Research opportunities fall on you, not the school. If you get the grades and get a prof to WANT to hire you then I'm sure you'll qualify for an NSERC grant. Also, only you can prepare for the GRE, all 3 of those schools will give you a good backing education to give you the foundation knowledge for the GRE but that wont be enough for you to do well on it. You'll have to do it yourself.
  9. Aug 27, 2011 #8
    @Kevin, Haha, I guess i'll have to visit the university and see for myself (: How's the financial aid @McGill ? I'm pretty sure that if you don't live in Quebec, the tuition skyrockets by double or triple.

    @Clever, I do understand that GRE prep is on me, but shouldn't the classroom work and lectures cover most of the material. I assumed that the actual GRE prep is simply targeting specific things that weren't covered in depth in class, but still touched on at least once in certain classes. Then again, I could be terribly mistaken.
  10. Aug 27, 2011 #9
    Classroom work/assignments/lectures will cover the majority of what's on the GRE, but between the 3 schools you have listed I doubt there will be much discrepancy in the material taught. You will be well prepared going to any of the 3 listed.

    As for the actual GRE test prep and test material you should take a look at some of the posted Physics GRE tests online, I believe there are 3 or 4 official exams released. They will give you an idea as to what's tested and to what level of detail you're expected to know stuff
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