Frequently Asked Questions

My lectures are clashing, what do I do?

If you have course clashes, but you want to take both of the courses, please contact the relevant course coordinators and ask if the lectures are recorded or if there is an alternative way of managing the clash. (You can find the relevant course coordinator by searching the course by code here.)

If the clash is deemed unmanageable by the course coordinators, you will need to change at least one of your papers. If you aren’t sure which one to drop or what to take instead, please get in touch with Science Student Advisor for advice.

 

Which papers are required for my major?

You can find the list of required papers for your major here.

All students who enrolled in a BSs at UC in 2018 or later for the first time must also do SCIE101.

As you will see, a relatively small number of papers are required for each major. The rest of your enrolment needs to be filled with elective papers, which can be either complimentary to your major, or they can be in completely different subject areas.

 

I need help with planning my degree. Who do I go to?

If you want help with planning your degree, and choosing your papers, you need to get in touch with our friendly student advisors. Because student advisors have back to back appointments through most of the day, best way to get in touch with them is by email.

If you are an undergraduate student, you need to speak to Bengu. Email scienceugadvice@canterbury.ac.nz to make an appointment.

If you are a postgraduate student, Anna Chapman is the best person to help you. Her email address is sciencepgadvice@canterbury.ac.nz

Both student advisors are based in the College of Science office at Level 1, Beatrice Tinsley.

 

I want to go on exchange next year. Which papers do I need to take there? How will this affect my degree?

This will be resolved during the later stages of the application process to go on exchange. In the first instance, please have a look at the exchange website, and attend one of the exchange seminars listed there. As part of the process, you will be prompted to choose universities, and come up with a list of papers that seem similar to the ones you would need to do at UC. The papers you have suggested will then be assessed for transfer of credit, and you will be notified of the outcome before you go on exchange. All of this process is handled by the International Relationships Office in collaboration with departments.

If you want to go over your degree requirements before submitting your paper preferences for exchange, please email Bengu, Science Student Advisor for an appointment. (scienceugadvice@canterbury.ac.nz)

 

Do I need to do SCIE101?

If you have enrolled in BSc for the first time at UC in 2018 or later, you need to do SCIE101.

This applies even if you have started your studies in UC in another degree previously, and switched to BSc in 2018 or later; or if you started a BSc in another institution previously and transferred to a BSc in UC in 2018 or later.

There are no exceptions to this. More information about the course content of SCIE101 can be found here.

It is ideal to do SCIE101 in your first year, but if you haven’t done so you can add it into your enrolment in your second or third years.

 

How do I drop a paper, or add another paper into my enrolment?

You can drop a paper through your myUC account. Here is more information on how to do this. Important dates for 2019:

10th of May: Deadline to drop a semester one paper with no academic penalty, no refund.

26 July: Deadline to drop a semester two paper with full refund, or to add another paper into your enrolment for semester two.

23 August: Deadline to drop a whole year paper with no academic penalty, no refund.

27 September: Deadline to drop a semester two paper with no academic penalty, no refund.

 

If I fail or drop a paper, do I have to take it again?

If the paper you failed is required for your major, you will need to take it again. The majoring requirements are listed here under each major. SCIE101 is also required for all BSc students starting their BSc in 2018 and onwards.

If the paper you drop or fail is not required for your major, you can retake it if you want to. Alternatively, you can take another paper to replace it. If you are unsure, contact Science Student Advisor.

 

Can I pass the year if I drop a paper?

BSc is a very flexible degree; there are no set years to pass before you can proceed to the next year.

If you fail or drop a paper, you may no longer meet the prerequisites for some higher level papers in the following semester or year. However, you may still meet the prerequisites for other higher level papers. In this case, you can continue with the higher level papers you are eligible to take while at the same time taking the lower level papers you previously failed or need.

If you are unsure of the consequences of dropping or failing a paper, get in touch with your Student Advisor.

 

What is a major?

A major is the main subject area you will be studying during your Bachelor degree. Very likely, half or more of the papers you do at UC will be in your major. Some examples of BSc majors are Psychology, Biology, and Physics. You can find the full list here.

 

Can I minor in another subject?

Currently we do not have minors in BSc. You can do a double major in two different subjects, or you can choose to do a single major.

That being said you can still take elective papers from outside of your major for interest.

 

Can I take any Arts or Commerce papers as a Science student?

Yes, you can take up to 105 points of non-science papers throughout your BSc.

 

How long does it take to do a double major? Is it too hard?

If the degree is planned carefully, in most cases it takes three years to graduate with a double major, same as a single major. The workload is also the same as doing a single major.

When you are doing a single major, you would take papers in your major, but you would also have plenty of space for elective papers. These elective papers can come from a variety of disciplines including your main major, but they can also come from other degree schedules such as Arts or Commerce.

When you are doing a double major, you wouldn’t have as much space to take elective papers. Roughly half of your degree would consist of papers from your first major, and the other half would be papers from your second major.

If you intend to do a double major, make sure to see a Student Advisor at the beginning of each year to make sure you are on track with your degree plan.

 

What jobs can I get with a BSc?

Too many to list, but you can find some examples of the kind of jobs you can get with your degree here.

If you go to any job search website, and browse through some job titles that seem interesting, you will notice that many of them will require a “relevant degree” and a list of skills needed. Your degree at UC will give you many of the technical skills required to do any job in your field, and it will also put you in a good position for learning additional skills quickly on the job.

We highly encourage students to have a think about the kind of work they like doing early on and acquire useful skills to do that job well. Because BSc is such a flexible degree we can often tailor your degree by choosing the papers that will give you the skills you need for your intended career. If you have a specific kind of job you want to do, get in touch your student advisor or your favourite lecturer in the department as soon as possible to discuss the best papers to take to get there.

 

If I drop a paper will I still be a full-time student?

Ideally, you would pass 120 points worth of papers each year. However, For StudyLink purposes, 105 points of papers is considered to be full time study.

This means that if you start out with the regular four paper per semester workload, and later drop a paper, you will still be considered a full time student. (This is assuming that the paper you are dropping is worth 15 points. If you are dropping a 30 point paper you need to check your overall points carefully.)

International students need to be enrolled in at least 90 points per year; 45 per semester. (However in cases where a student has fewer than 45 points of papers left to complete a degree, this lesser workload is often acceptable. You will be advised by the enrolments team if there is anything you need to do.)


What do I do if I am struggling with a paper?

In the first instance, make sure that you are attending all lectures and course activities, and submit all assignments, even if you don’t think you will do very well. You also need to talk to your paper coordinator as soon as possible. Your lecturers are likely to have office hours you can take advantage of, some papers also have additional tutorials and support available. You can find out about all of these by talking to your paper coordinator.

If you have done all of this, and still struggling with the paper, you may consider withdrawing from it to be able to focus more on your remaining papers. You can do this online through your myUC account. (There is a deadline for this, so it is not always possible to withdraw.)

If the paper you drop is required for your major, you will need to take it again. The majoring requirements are listed under each major here. SCIE101 is also required for all BSc students starting their BSc in 2018 and onwards.

If the paper you drop is not required for your major, you can retake it if you want to. Alternatively, you can take another paper to replace it. If you are unsure, contact Science Student Advisor.

 

What other support is available to me?

There are many support services available on campus, whether you are looking to remedy a specific problem, or just see if you can do better in any area of your life. You can see the full list of support services under the “support services” tab in UC Home page. Here are a few examples of various support services:

Student Care Team can help with a wide range of topics. Some examples are juggling commitments, dealing with financial hardship, or understanding UC policies and processes. More information on the services they provide and ways to get in touch with them is here.

Equity & Disability Service can help mitigate the effects of physical or mental impairment, whether temporary or permanent. More information is here.

Academic Skills Centre have a range of workshops related to study skills and exam preparation. You can also book one on one appointments with them. More information is here.