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Waterloo Optometry 2012 Cycle

Discussion in 'Pre-Optometry' started by tmorowat, Jul 12, 2011.

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  1. tmorowat

    tmorowat

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    Hey everyone!

    I just thought I'd continue with the Waterloo cycle tradition by creating one for the 2012 cycle. I read almost all of the posts for the 2011 cycle and decided that it was an excellent idea. Mostly, I'm just extremely nervous and stressed and I'm going to do the online application soon. I also still haven't written my OAT soon, but it's coming up... (STRESS!)

    I hope to hear from more Waterloo Optometry 2012 applicants:)

    Tina
  2. quackquack

    quackquack Waterloo Optometry 2015

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    Hi,
    I was accepted into UW optometry few months ago so while I'm not an applicant for this term, if anyone has any questions, feel free to contact me!

    I got a lot of help from kind people during last cycle and would love to give back in any way I can. Good luck all!
  3. OptomHope

    OptomHope

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    Agreed! I would also love to help you all in any way possible :). I definitely remember what it felt like to be in your shoes a year ago so you can PM me too if you need anything at all!
  4. neuro89

    neuro89

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    I too would be happy to share anything and everything about my application experience for the 2011 cycle with future applicants. I still lurk around SDN pretty frequently. PMs are always welcome! :D

    Now bring on the actual 2012 applicants, lol!
  5. tmorowat

    tmorowat

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    Thanks for all of your support! I'm sure at least some 2012 applicants will happen to find this thread.

    I will probably come for advice after I receive my OAT results... It'll be hard to judge whether or not I should repeat the test to get a higher score. I'm SO nervous... I'm just hoping it'll go well the first time and I won't have to worry about it.

    On the Kaplan tests, I've been averaging around 350AA/360TS, though my physics sections are never above 330:( I've been trying really hard for physics, but at this point I think I just have to do the best I can with what I know. I'm hoping as long as my overall score is decent, I should be fine? I have also heard that Kaplan physics is harder than the actual OAT, but I don't want to underestimate it by any means.

    Thanks again,
    Tina
  6. dawnfirenight

    dawnfirenight

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    Fourthing(?) the offer to help in any way I can! I'm starting at Waterloo in the fall - so excited!
    Last edited: Apr 2, 2012
  7. tmorowat

    tmorowat

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    That's really good to know! I think that with most other aspects of being accepted I'm fairly competitive, so the OAT is the last thing I need, as well as giving a good interview, of course.

    Thanks so much! That's great to know:)

    Tina
  8. OptomHope

    OptomHope

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    From what I've heard, the OAT seems to just be a thing that the adcom looks at after they've seen the rest of your file. A sort of "did they get over 300 in every section?" thing! So if those are your practise scores I think you'll be set...especially since I found that I was doing worse in my practise than I ended up doing in the real thing. I got a 350AA/350TS with my lowest score actually being in physics at a 320 since I had yet to have taken University physics before the test!
  9. tmorowat

    tmorowat

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    That's really impressive... I can't seem to do much better than that an I took physics in grades 11 and 12 as well as in first year. And I considered myself to be fairly good at physics. I'm glad they see it like that then, considering I'm okay with other aspects of my application.

    My oat is tomorrow and I'm nervous but also really excited to be done with it.

    And I officially applied to Waterloo yesterday as well.
  10. nensis

    nensis

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    So glad someone started this thread! I've been creeping SDN for the past 2 years but finally decided to join the network now that I'll be applying for the 2012 cycle!

    tmorowat, I also write my OAT tomorrow and am in the exactly same boat as you! I feel as though I will need to rewrite since I've been averaging about a 350 and I know I have a bit of test anxiety which usually makes me do worse on actual tests :(

    Are you going to be applying to any american schools this year? Best of luck tomorrow :)
  11. quackquack

    quackquack Waterloo Optometry 2015

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    Good luck to both of you on the OAT tomorrow! :)

    Yeah I got like a 320 or something on physics... (But well on other parts) personally I wasn't impressed with it but I didn't feel like it's a big part of the application. I still believe GPA is one of the most important thing they look at, along with interview etc. So as long as you're decent in all areas, you have a good chance.
  12. tmorowat

    tmorowat

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    I'm so glad to hear that it's not the number one thing. If my gpa were lower, I think i'd be a little more concerned. Though I prepared for it as intensely as I would have even if my other strengths were worse.

    And I'm not applying to any American schools this year, just because of how much more expensive it is. I figure I'd rather try for Waterloo again nex year and apply to American schools at the same time. I'm fairly certain that I'd get into American schools if I applied now (based on what I've heard about people/friends getting in), which is why I'm holding off.

    Are you applying to any? Also, good luck on the OAT!! Last night I had a rough sleep. Hard to take your mind off of it!
  13. m7lam

    m7lam

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    Do any of you still have the Kaplan OAT book that's 1200+ pages? I live in Waterloo so I could meet up with you on campus or something.
  14. tmorowat

    tmorowat

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    I have it, but unfortunately I'm not gonna be in the Waterloo area anytime this summer. Are you ever in London, ON?

    Also, my OAT went well! I'm probably gonna post in the "my complete experience" post eventually. I'm just hoping my unofficial score doesn't change! I'm so glad that's out of the way...
  15. 2muchstress

    2muchstress

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    I'm so glad I found this forum!
    The 2011 cycle was really helpful for me since I'm superbly stressed about everything.

    My friend got in for the class of 2015 (not surprising since his marks are super high) and I'm applying this year for the class of 2016. I am also applying to the US since I know I can get in. However, I am super stressed about my grades.

    I am going to be in my 4th year this september and it's my first time applying to Optometry school. I didn't apply last year because of personal reasons causing my grades to drop pretty badly from first to second year. So now, I have just raised my GPA a little higher and now I'm borderline of the requirements. Which makes me super sad. Even though my friend told me not to fret because they do accept students with the min. GPA req, I still can't help but get stressed.

    So, I retook two courses but does anyone know if they take the average of those two courses? Or just take the second grade? Because in my school they leave the first grade blank and use the second grade for my GPA which is what I have been following the whole time. I e-mailed them today and am waiting for a response.

    I really hope I did not screw up my chances of even getting an interview XD.
  16. tmorowat

    tmorowat

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    I'm glad you found this thread too! I hope more people find it and it becomes as useful as the 2011 cycle, which I found very useful. Sadly, I don't know the answer to your questions, but I was wondering if you've done the application for Waterloo yet. I filled out the pdf but as I was trying to print it out I had problems because it's a secured pdf. I called Waterloo optometry's administration and they told me the person who will deal with it would be in on the Monday that just passed.

    Are you having problems with this too!? I'm such an antiprocrastinator! I just want to send it in and be done with it!

    Tina
  17. OptomHope

    OptomHope

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    Don't stress out too much about it getting it in ASAP. I didn't submit mine until october and was still fine. Obviously I don't suggest you wait that long but as long as you have it all done and it is just a matter of a printing issue you will be fine!!
  18. quackquack

    quackquack Waterloo Optometry 2015

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    Yeah I wouldn't worry too much about the printing issue since you have a lot of time. I just did it early because I'm the type that forgets to do something if I wait too long haha. :) As long as it's before the deadline, should be fine.

    @2muchstress

    I think during my interview, they mentioned how someone with a high 70 (or low 80, couldn't remember) got in. REALISTICALLY SPEAKING, GPA isn't everything but it's still a huge enough part. But if you feel yours isn't as competitive, make sure everything stands out! Your ECs, optometry experience, etc. In my 3rd year I knew this guy who had all the grades, got the interview, and got rejected. He didn't really have much experience (he didn't have job shadowing either). Someone else with average grades who had a lot of extracurriculars got in (he was very involved in sports, a lot of clubs, etc.).
  19. tmorowat

    tmorowat

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    Waterloo just sent me an email with a PDF that can print! I'm gonna fix it up now and try to send it off by the weekend.

    I'm not worried about it affecting my chances at getting in or anything. I just really hate the burden of knowing there's something I need to do lol. I would much rather get it out of the way!

    Thanks,
    Tina
  20. 2muchstress

    2muchstress

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    Almost forgot about this forum.. haha.. Yea apparently waterloo sent applicants the wrong pdf file and just re-emailed everyone with the new printable one on tuesday i think? And for the GPA thing with repeated courses, they just said to include both grades in the application, not really answering my question.

    And i do have lots of volunteer experience both school-related and non-school related, I have a few awards both academically and non-academically, and I've been job shadowing/volunteering/working at two optometry clinics or 1 year. I recently got superbly good on my summer school courses for this summer, so that helped a little bit.

    I'm just hoping to do well on the OAT (writing it this september) and in the interview (If I get one). I actually have a feeling that they give out interviews to the majority of the applicants.

    Also, my friend that got in for class of 2015 had awesome grades, but only job shadowed like 1 week, I was like O__O? But yea, after my last exam is done, I'm going to finish off my application and then send it off mid-september!
  21. quackquack

    quackquack Waterloo Optometry 2015

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    Your application looks very good. Sounds well rounded. Most people I met on the interview day have optometry research background and some have volunteer. Very few (that I talked to anyway) have JUST shadowing. Of course, in my opinion the bare minimum is shadowing but those that do just that better have something really good to go along with their application (mainly GPA). Plus I don't really believe I can get a feel of what the profession is like just by sitting around watching. It's good that you worked for those clinics and I highly recommend it for those that haven't: opt school is not a small investment after all - know what you're getting into. But if you hear someone getting in with just shadowing... don't let that get you down and think you did extra work. There are no short cuts when it comes to professional school. Two applicants with similar specs, you will definitely be the better one.

    Good luck with your OAT. :)
    Last edited: Aug 12, 2011
  22. tmorowat

    tmorowat

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  23. Eyeguy7

    Eyeguy7

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    "Are there any reasons why your transcript does not reflect your true ability?"
    Does anybody know much about this question? I'm iffy about answering yes, though I do believe that my first year of classes does not truly represent my academic ability. This seems like the type of question that the school could use to identify students who just like to make excuses. Any opinions?
  24. Eyecrazy

    Eyecrazy

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    hahahaha that is tooooo funny/clever! Makes me want to apply to Waterloo now :) thanks for sharing!!
  25. Ubc101

    Ubc101

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    Hey guys,

    Sorry if this question has already been posted but I was wondering if anyone knows what the admission committee actually reviews when deciding on interviews? Is it simply GPA and OAT scores or do they also consider other aspects?
    I also heard rumours that Waterloo may be employing an MMI type scenario for interviews. Any news on this at all?
  26. dawnfirenight

    dawnfirenight

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    It's already MMI. You are given a question or a scenario, and you have two minutes to read the question and formulate an answer, then eight minutes to answer it. There are several such stations.
    Last edited: Apr 2, 2012
  27. Ubc101

    Ubc101

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    So looking at last year's pre-optometry cycle I noticed that interviews were being mailed out around this time! But the deadline to submit the application to the School of Optometry is mid October. I thought Waterloo did not have rolling admissions? Or do they award interviews to applicants that meet some specific requirements after the partial review of your file?
  28. OptomHope

    OptomHope

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    Interviews are sort of given out on a "rolling basis". So as soon as you submit your app you could potentially hear back within the next day or so, but it could take longer. They don't wait til all apps are in to give out interviews, so that's why they encourage you to apply early. Of course, this doesn't mean that you won't be given an interview if you apply on the last day to submit :)
  29. tmorowat

    tmorowat

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    Hey Eyeguy,

    I would probably only answer this question of there was some
    Sort of traumatic experience in my life at the time. Some reason that would affect your grades against your will. If it's just the first year adjustment into university that is the problem, or other reasons along those lines, I probably wouldnt mention it

    Hope this helps in any way! Just my opinion:)


    Tina
  30. Eyeguy7

    Eyeguy7

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    This was exactly the kind of answer I was looking for. Very helpful of you, thank you kindly :)
  31. Ubc101

    Ubc101

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    Hey guys, I was wondering what some of you had for Special Training? I could only fill up a single spot with a CPR course. I have read that not very many people end up filling the majority of the spaces provided, but i was curious as to what type of training is beneficial to have?
  32. sugarandspice

    sugarandspice

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    Same here...I only filled out 2 things. One is the CPR and one is a lab training certificate. I don't think many students have that much special training so no worries :)
  33. sugarandspice

    sugarandspice

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    Hi, I want to ask...for the General Biology pre-req with lab. Does the lab component have to span 2 terms along with the lectures?
    Thanks!
  34. dawnfirenight

    dawnfirenight

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  35. Ken1

    Ken1

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    Hi everyone, I'm also applying to waterloo's optometry school this cycle.

    Right now all my application materials are in and the only thing left is to take microbiology and the interview.

    I'm a 2nd year MSc student in the vision science program at waterloo and actually TAing the current first year optometry students in the lab. I did my OATs over the summer and the unofficial score report gave me 400 in all but organic chemistry (390). I did my job shadowing over 3 weekends with an optometrist who was once part of our lab, but I'm not sure if that's enough for shadowing.

    Also, for my cGPA, I only had a cGPA for 3.53 from UofT when I got my B.Sc. and I'm not sure how competitive that might be.

    Anyone know more about the statistics on previously accepted students and how competitive my profile is?

    And for the interview, I was wondering of there are any good resources that could help in preparation. (i.e. sample questions, sample scenarios)

    Thanks!
  36. Ubc101

    Ubc101

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    Hey Ken,

    Im sorry but I do not know enough about previous candidates that have been successful. From what I can see I would say your chances are very good (amazing OAT score, masters student, etc). Even though your shadowing may be a little light, I wouldn't worry too much about it as your other credentials are excellent. Best of luck to you.

    Does this mean that you have already received an interview date? Have a lot of other applicants received interview dates as well. I know last year's cycle started to receive them around this time (actually, i think it was a bit earlier).
  37. tmorowat

    tmorowat

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    I'm pretty sure I only had CPR training as well as pre-screening training at the optometry office I work at.
    I can't imagine how much more special training one can have!
  38. tmorowat

    tmorowat

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    I would also assume yes, but it's always a good idea to ask them!
  39. tmorowat

    tmorowat

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    I have also received an interview. I'm pretty nervous about it, and I'm not quite sure of how to prepare... I suppose I'll do what I can!
  40. Ken1

    Ken1

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    no, I haven't gotten an interview notice yet. My prof's reference letter just went in last week. Anyone know when I should expect one by if I get one?

    So far, for interview prep i've just been looking up potential questions on the internet and trying to answer them. Actually, if others are interested in this, I was thinking we could post interesting questions you come across here for other people to consider?
  41. Ubc101

    Ubc101

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    Do applicants have a much higher chance of getting an interview if they send in the two LOR earlier on or does it matter at all? Just b/c I noticed interviews are given out before the deadline to submit your two LOR.

    Also, for those applicants that do not attend Waterloo, how do they contact you for an interview? Is it just by the email provided on the application?
  42. dawnfirenight

    dawnfirenight

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    I was offered an interview about a week after submitting my paper application, maybe a little less. Anyway, my two LORs hadn't even submitted their forms yet - that happened sometime in early October. So no, I don't think it increases your chances.

    As to your second question, they will send you an email to the account you provided on your application. Be sure to check your Spam/Junk folder!
    Last edited: Apr 2, 2012
  43. dragon123

    dragon123

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    So the interview notifications are on rolling? How long does it take to find out once you submit application?
  44. tmorowat

    tmorowat

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    Hey!

    I actually havent even sent in my LOR from my professor yet and I have an interview, so I don't think it matters.

    Tina
  45. pyrobb

    pyrobb

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    Does anyone remember what type of questions they ask for the interviews? i also got an invite for nov 19th
  46. Ken1

    Ken1

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    Interview notices are going out already? I haven't gotten one yet, I'm getting anxious! How long did you have to wait since your paper application to get an interview notice? My paper application has been in since August and just got my second letter of reference in last week or so.
  47. limegreen18

    limegreen18

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    Hey guys, I applied last year and went through the whole process so I can help you out! My paper application was sent in pretty late cause I was unsure of applying, so i didn't send it off until first week of October. I received my interview invitation about 2 weeks after, I believe it was Oct 22! I didn;'t have either of my LOR sent off by then so i don't think that it has any influence on your interview invite. This year, I just sent my paper application in last week and haven't heard back yet.
    As for the interview, it is 3 scenario questions. Totally random on what you get but mainly to do with ethics, and Optometry patient scenarios and how you would deal with them.
    Any more questions just ask!
  48. q1we3

    q1we3

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    Did you apply to any US optometry schools previous year? what about his year?
  49. dragon123

    dragon123

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    Thats awesome! just a quick question when did u send in ur application? and are ur LORS in?
  50. limegreen18

    limegreen18

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    I didn't apply to any american schools last year, Im applying to Illinios this year i believe. I sent my application in last week, and no my LOR are not in yet. They have been requested but not completed by my referees.

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