First Year Tips

Greetings Ryerson CS Cohort of 2018! On behalf of the CSCU I would like to extend you a warm welcome to Ryerson University. Furthermore, congratulations for braving the horrors of High school, considering that you decided to go to University it sounds like you want elevated levels of academic bullshit knowledge! Jokes aside, you have chosen a great time to enter a Computer Science degree program. The world tech industry is booming and is in constant need of new talent in industry fields such as software development, business technology, data analytics, artificial intelligence and many more. Your education at Ryerson will provide you with endless career and graduate opportunities which we hope will make your experience as “enjoyable and fulfilling as could be” … or something. On that note, here at the CSCU, we would like to share with you some tips and tricks to help ease your concerns and help you keep your cool as you begin this 4 to 5 year journey.

Remember: First Year at University can be rough, but it can also be a fun and enjoyable experience if you put enough effort into it.

Significant Dates

This page on the Ryerson website provides you with all the important dates ranging from course selection, reading week, last day of classes, winter break etc… I guarantee you will need to reference this page multiple times throughout the year especially when your dumbass friends decide that you should all do something for reading week but then you find out CarletonU reading week starts a week later goddamn.

Frosh/Orientation: (August 27th – August 31st)
Computer Science Academic Orientation: August 30th

First year students are invited to a week of general frosh activities starting August 7th, there should be a website coming out with more detailed information in the coming weeks. Yeah, our frosh is kinda early compared to other Universities, however I must highly stress that this is a great opportunity to meet and vibe with people from other programs. The setting is positive and casual, the events are great, there’s tons of “free” food and other stuff. When you arrive, you might get some free pancakes outside the RSU building, you will then receive a frosh kit and get placed into teams by your student leaders. Take note that there is a general frosh for all Ryerson students and then faculty specific froshes, such as Science Frosh organized by the RSS. You can pop in and out from your faculty specific frosh and general frosh whenever you want, the setting is very casual. I highly recommend showing up for the whole week.

CS Orientation is August 30th, if you don’t want to go to frosh you must at least come to this, as you will receive important program information from the CS chair.

Courses

Alright let us look at your first-year course calendar found here:

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In fall first semester (and winter second semester) you are automatically enrolled in your CORE courses i.e. CPS109, CPS213, MTH110. However, you must choose a science and a lower level liberal table A course. Take note that not all courses listed on the Table A page are available fall semester, consult this list to see if the liberal course you want is available.

Your enrolment date is August 7th at 6:00AM I suggest that if you REALLY want a certain course, you log into RAMMS at 5:50AM and get ready to click like your life depends on it. Seriously, practice enrolling on RAMMS before the big day because you need to get used to navigating it. Ever watch Hunger Games? Play fortnite? Selecting courses is like that, except with arguably more on the line.

First Semester Course Tips

Liberal Table A Selection: Honestly, choose something you are interested in. Students insist that some liberals are easier than others however in my experience you will be much more motivated to do well in a course if you enjoy the content.

Science Selection: Generally, it is a good idea to take whichever science you enjoyed in grade 12, as the university equivalent will likely be similar. It is up to you though; I know individuals who took chemistry in high school and then physics first year. I recommend taking the physics course(PCS110) with Professor Kumaradas if you can. In the labs, you mostly model physics problems using a Python library which is cool. (I do not believe Chemistry and bio have any programming in them).

CPS109: Is an introductory CS course. You learn Python syntax and general programming ideas and concepts. If you have programmed in high school honestly see if you can take a 6th course because you will probably find this one to be an absolute breeze. (A bunch of people got 4.3 in my cohort). It’s hard for a prof to screw up a course like this.

CPS213: This course deals more with hardware concepts, CPU organization, concepts relating to assembly language, Boolean algebra, binary/octal/hexadecimal data notation, logic gates and a bunch more. It is very interesting for the sake of understanding how a CPU functions.

MTH110: In the early part of this course you will notice a significant overlap with CPS213 as they both deal with the same ideas,(Boolean algebra) one in the hardware sense and one in the theoretical mathematics sense. Discrete mathematics will teach you how to prove mathematical properties. For a math course it has a lot of writing and it will force you to think logically.

Random Things to Know

  • You can adjust your schedule (lab times, sometimes lecture times) on your enrolment day, just go into RAMMS>enrolment/drop/swap>swap.

  • Classes start 10 minutes after the stated time, we call it "Ryerson Time".

  • Your professors are human, they make mistakes, talking in person to them is also always 10x better than emailing them (if they can find time for you). Just be polite and most of the time they will help you.

  • Talk to the department if you have any concerns or need help, they would be glad to assist you over anything academic.

  • Make sure you always have your Ryerson One card on you when school starts, you’re going to need it to get into classes in DSQ. You should be receiving your OneCard first day of frosh during registration.

  • You can get a locker from the school if you need it.

  • University is great for networking, make use of the opportunity.

  • Kerr Hall is difficult to navigate as a student, make sure you allow yourself more time to find your class.

  • Ryerson CareerBoost posts campus jobs, so if you need a side gig you should check it out here.

  • If you’re a commuter, Ryerson has a commuter bursary, although it’s limited so keep your eyes peeled for it during the year because many people apply.

  • There is an underground path from Union to Ryerson, so if you take the train and then walk to campus you can save a ton of money by avoiding TTC subway fare. It's only a 10-15 minute walk as well!

  • Professors oftentimes need students for research projects at the end of the year, etc. If you are thinking about doing graduate school or just want some experience TALK TO YOUR PROF THEY CAN HOOK YOU UP.

  • If you took Computer Science courses in High School, and are a very good student, I would suggest you look into taking a 6th course first/second semester because you might find the CPS courses easy. This can make your course selection more flexible in the future.

  • Also Chang School offers night courses if you’re absolutely mad. You can also take online courses from them, which is a great way to knock off some liberals. Remember: You CAN'T take CPS or MTH courses in chang school!

  • 6th courses don’t cost extra (they are “””free”””).

  • The Metro right next to George Vari sells beer.

  • You can’t drink on campus. Security WILL find you.

If you are in first year and have any other questions you may reach out to me Daniel Bellissimo or Tony Misic on Facebook.

Also our website is an easy way to get in touch with any exec

Have a great Frosh ladies and gents, and once again, the CSCU is happy to welcome you to the Ryerson CS family.