Ask a REAL Con.Ed Student 2011-2012

Ba Ba Blue
Posted: 7:10AM October 04, 2011 UTC
Hello everyone!

So last year I made a thread on these forums that was extremely helpful for many prospective Con.Eddies. Let me first give you some background so you can decide for yourself if I'm the right person to ask about your concerns.

I am currently a second year Con.Ed student enrolled in the Queen's-Trent Concurrent Education program. I chose primary/junior for my teaching division. I have so far been on 2 weeks of placement and have to finish 3 more by the end of this year. I am very involved in the Con.Ed community and the campus as a whole.

I applied to the following schools: Queen's-Trent, Queen's, Windsor and Nipissing, all for Con.Ed. I have never been to the latter two, but Queen's and Trent are both great options. Most people don't realize but the Queen's-Trent and Queen's Con.Ed programs are nearly identical, so feel free to ask me whatever you want about the technical side of Queen's Con.Ed as well - I just won't be able to answer very much about the honours degree you receive in addition to your B.Ed.

Of course I also considered many other schools when I was choosing where to apply, so don't hesitate to ask a question even if it's not about any of the aforementioned schools. The worst thing I'll say is that I don't know enough to answer your question fully. Of course in two years some things may have changed (such as the fact that York now allows for first year entry into their Con.Ed program - they didn't before), so please don't rely exclusively on what I tell you.

Now that all that is out of the way, please feel free to ask away.
Was this helpful?
yes 0
51 Responses
Anonymous
Posted: 7:10AM October 04, 2011 UTC
Hey!
I want to go to Brock for Con-Ed, but I'm trying to find my back-up, so I have a few questions! :P
First, why did you choose Con-Ed as opposed to consecutive, and why Queens? Also, what's your major? Thanks!
Was this helpful?
yes 0
Ba Ba Blue
Thread Creator
Posted: 7:10AM October 04, 2011 UTC
Thread Creator
Hey Kristent94!

First it's great to hear you want to go to Brock for Con.Ed. I have a co-worker from this past summer who goes there and he's having a blast!

Anyways, I chose Con.Ed over consecutive because it just makes more sense. You get more weeks of placement, more education classes (which are really some of the only relevant classes you take) and a vibrant community of similar-minded individuals who are super loving and supportive. By being in Con.Ed I also guarantee that I'll be a teacher when I graduate; competition for consecutive schools is much more intense. The one and ONLY downfall of Con.Ed is the approximately $2000 in extra tuition that I have to pay to take my education classes. Otherwise, if you know you want to be a teacher there's really no reason at all to go consecutive.

As for why I chose Queen's, it's because I have heard some great things about it. I like how they consider the whole person when applying for entry, not just your marks. Consequently, the students who make it into Con.Ed all have great initiative and a wealth of experience that they bring into our education class. The reasons I chose Queen's-Trent over Queen's are the scholarships Trent gives (free tuition for 90 average or above), the nature surrounding the campus, and the fact that I wouldn't be able to have an independent life in Kingston since I have so much family there. Also, I really appreciate the small size of the school because it means that you are bound to have more Con.Ed students in your classes and you really get to know a good portion of the school so you begin to see your friends everywhere.

Finally, my major is math but I'm doing a minor in French to make it easier to find a job after I graduate.
Was this helpful?
yes 0
Anonymous
Posted: 7:10AM October 04, 2011 UTC
Thank you so much, that's extremely helpful!
Glad you're enjoying uni so much. :)
Was this helpful?
yes 0
Fawlkes
Posted: 7:10AM October 08, 2011 UTC
Hey prospective Con-Eddies.  I was just thinking the other day that its about the time of year you guys will be getting your OUAC numbers and fretting over applications (I know I was at this time!)and I remembered how helpful Baba was throughout the whole process, so I figured perhaps I'd poke my nose in and see if I couldn't offer a little guidance as well.

So a little background on me:  I'm in my first year of Con-Ed at Queen's.  I applied to Trent-Queen's and Queen's for Con Ed, as well as Queen's for Arts.  Looking back, I was very narrow minded in my choice of schools, but I maintain that many of my reasons were valid, and I did thouroughly research many options.  That said, I would recomend to anyone considering Con-Ed not to get to focused on Queen's as experience has shown me many Con-Ed SA posters are wont to do.  Although I don't have to declare my teaching stream/subjects until the end of the year, I'm intending to do Intermediate/Senior (I.S) division (grades 7-12) with a double major in History and Drama.  At the moment I'm taking History, Drama, English, Latin, and Psycology.

Baba has already given you a great answer Kristen, but I'll just throw in my two cents. I second everything Baba has said about the beinfits of Con-Ed.  I once had a guidance councillor pose it to me this way:  "You go along your merry way and get your arts degree and grow as a person and you want to be a teacher and make the world a better place and you'll make a damn good one.  But meanwile, Miss Doctor-Wannabe over there meets Mr. Right in the chem lab, they get hitched and don't want two doctors in the family so what does Mrs. Doctor's Wife go and do?  Apply to teachers college.  She doesn't particularly care about kids, she cares about her pay check, but she's got the marks kiddo, and you, well, you've got personal growth.  Just do Concurrent."

^Direct quote, I swear.

In terms of chosing a second option, my best advice is VISIT THE CAMPUS.  There are lots of open houses this time of year, so if you think you might be interested in a school, go check it out.  There tends to be a lot of emphasis put on numbers or prestige or program elements, but I really think "Fit" is the most important part of choosing a school.  You will be spending four years there.  Make sure it is somewhere you feel at home.  For instance, Baba talks about liking the small, natural feel that Trent has, where I didn't like Trent for that those very same reasons.  So I would recomend asking yourself a few questions: Do I want a small, medium or large school.  Do I want a city, town or nature setting?  Is the history or tradition of an institution important to me?  And most importantly, when you visit the campus, ask yourself: Could I feel at home here?
Was this helpful?
yes 0
Omok
Posted: 7:10AM October 08, 2011 UTC
:cheers: 

and here i am to troll. 

:cyclops: but yeah. i too am in Queen's con-ed. 

:clown: we have the best (or so i proclaim) frosh week at queen's andddd anddd,

we're bad apples in b.ed. :cheers: 
Was this helpful?
yes 0
ashan
Posted: 7:10AM October 10, 2011 UTC
Hi! I am thinking of applying to con-ed. and I am in grade 12. I want to study french/social sciences and teach at an elementary school level. I was thinking of applying to Queens, but I talked to the representative that came to my school and she said that a BA in Con-ed at Queens is REALLY competitive and I have a better chance applying to Queens/Trent. My average im grade 11 was an 88%... Do you think I still have a chance at Queens, or should I forget about applying there?? 
Was this helpful?
yes 0
Ba Ba Blue
Thread Creator
Posted: 7:10AM October 10, 2011 UTC
Thread Creator
Hey Fawlkes and Omok! Glad to see you two are alive and well @ Queen's. Feel free to offer your insight into Queen's con.ed too - you're real con.ed students just like I am now :).

Anyways, ashan you should definitely apply to both programs. Queen's does get very competitive, especially in the high 80s range. People do get admitted with those marks, but those sorts of admissions are few and far between. Queen's-Trent would give you that safety net you need in case you happen not to get into Queen's (which is entirely possible). Of course, try hard in grade 12 because if your average goes up a bit more you get that much more competitive. Remember that with lower averages, having a good PSE/essay matters even more than usual (and usually the weighting is very high on that).
Was this helpful?
yes 0
Omok
Posted: 7:10AM October 12, 2011 UTC
@ashan wrote
Hi! I am thinking of applying to con-ed. and I am in grade 12. I want to study french/social sciences and teach at an elementary school level. I was thinking of applying to Queens, but I talked to the representative that came to my school and she said that a BA in Con-ed at Queens is REALLY competitive and I have a better chance applying to Queens/Trent. My average im grade 11 was an 88%... Do you think I still have a chance at Queens, or should I forget about applying there?? 



I think my answer will over-lap some-what with Ba ba Blue's, but...

This year, for Queen's con-ed, we have 174 students in total. -- The highest ever in Queen's con-ed history. And I believe, the rumour is, the number of people admitted into our program will gradually increase year after year. --- Though, of course, the number of applicants may also be increasing every single year too. 

Last year, the admission average was 92%, this year, from what i've heard but not confirmed, the average was 93%. 

BUT that being said, queen's do seriously put a lot of weight on your PSE when considering your applications, and THAT, will probably make a bigger difference than those few percentage points on your average. 

in the end, trying for what you want, really wouldn't hurt. -- it will only amount to extra 30 bucks and 5 hours of essay writing. (AND, the Queen's-trent PSE is exactly the same as the Queen's one, except the word limit. -- trent gives you one full page, queen's gives you 300 words...) 
Was this helpful?
yes 0
chii
Posted: 7:10AM October 12, 2011 UTC
Hey guys!

I am planning on applying to consecutive at York (the second year entry option) any tips or experiences you could share? I have 2 solid experiences with kids, one a co-op where I worked with both mainstream and autistic kids. Plus I have been helping teach at a karate school, from 3 years old, up to 65! Do you guys feel that these two big experiences are strong enough to carry me?

Also! What are your thoughts on job availability for teaching Special Ed/Autism at the J/I level? Are there jobs available? Would my interest in spec ed help me out in the interview portion?
Was this helpful?
yes 0
Fawlkes
Posted: 7:10AM October 12, 2011 UTC
OMOK!!!  Hi, sorry, I just got way too excited there.  We have to arrange that coffee meet up some time.  Its wierd to think I may have had a conversation with you and I still don't know who you are.  At least we both know who Katzel is (that one was kind of obvious)

Right, on the the questions.

ashan- I'm not going to pretend that Queen's isn't competetive.  It is. But don't let that discourage you!  Think of it this way: You could apply to both programs, and even if Queen's doesn't accept you, what have you really lost for trying?  $40 at most.  Seems worth it, doesn't it?  Also, don't freak out too much about the grades.  Yes, the average has been going up over the past few years, but remember 93 is only an AVERAGE, meaning quite a few of us, myself and Omok included, got in with marks lower than that.  In fact, I really don't like talking with people about my entrance average, because I didn't even hit 90%.  YES, ITS TRUE, YOU CAN GET INTO QUEEN'S CON-ED WITHOUT A 90!!!  And as Baba said, much of it depends on your PSE.  I put a lot of time and effort into it, and obviously, that made a difference.  I got in in early May with an 89.8% and one of my friends was waitlisted until June with a 90.2%  Also, don't let numbers choose a university for you.  You may love or hate either Trent or Queen's, so apply to both, apply to some other schools, figure out which one is the right fit for you and go from there.  Numbers aren't everything!

chii- Addmittedly, York is one of the education programs I know the least about.  Your experiences are good, but I'm not sure if, on thier own, they will be enough.  Do you have any leadership experience to supplement with (like high school councils, or any clubs you are a part of at York?) Also, how long have you been involved with Karate?  How long have you been teaching the classes?  All of that will likely be a factor.  Do you have work experience, even at someting like a fast food place?  Having held a part time job demonstrates time management skills and responsibility, among other qualities.

As far as Special Ed goes, the sad reality is that there aren't many teaching jobs out there, period.  The upside is that developing a niche, particularily one that is generally unpopular, such as special ed, and especially at the J/I level, may help you get a job in the end.  That's not a garuntee, by any means.  For instance the Hamilton Catholic District School Board has over 18,000 students, and this year they hiered just 18 new teachers.  At this point in time my view on teacher education is this; I'm getting two degrees.  I might not be able to get a job teaching at first, but hey, at least I'll be one degree ahead of all of my classmates getting only a B.A.  And if I'm really meant to be a teacher, I will be, one way or another.  For now, that's really all any of us can hope and say.
Was this helpful?
yes 0
Ba Ba Blue
Thread Creator
Posted: 7:10AM October 12, 2011 UTC
Thread Creator
To add to what Fawlkes said, make sure you know what you're applying to. Queen's and Queen's-Trent are both very hyped programs, so don't base your decision off that alone. Look into other options too - I know several people who love Brock Con.Ed too.

As for Chii, what you need are long-term commitment that show a genuine interest in service to people. They need not all be related to kids, but having some experience with children shows that you know what you're getting yourself into. In all, the karate thing seems like your best experience, but don't omit the others - discuss them too to show that you have a wider variety than just the typical.
Was this helpful?
yes 0
Anonymous
Posted: 7:10AM October 16, 2011 UTC
Hello again guys!
This question isn't exactly con-ed related but you all seem very knowledgable, so maybe you can help...

As I said, I'm still trying to figure out my back-ups, and this is a big issue for me: should I apply to a school with a good program for what I'm interested in, but is not really one I'd be really wanting to go to, or a school I wouldn't mind going to with a program that's less suited for my goals?

If you can answer this, thank you thank you thank you!
Was this helpful?
yes 0
Ba Ba Blue
Thread Creator
Posted: 7:10AM October 17, 2011 UTC
Thread Creator
That's a personal choice. Prioritize what you prefer. No one can tell you really.
Was this helpful?
yes 0
Anonymous
Posted: 7:10AM October 17, 2011 UTC
Thanks, you're right. I think I've got it sorted. :)
Was this helpful?
yes 0
BeckyMacDonald
Posted: 7:10AM October 19, 2011 UTC
Hi! I am 100% positive that i want to get into a Con-Ed program somwehere, and i really have my hopes set on Queens University. But as I am reading what was said over the past few messages I see the marks i need are very high! but the PSE is very important as well? i have had alot of experence but my grades are not as high as they sould be i guess. any words of wisdom would be awesome! thanks!
Was this helpful?
yes 0
Ba Ba Blue
Thread Creator
Posted: 7:10AM October 19, 2011 UTC
Thread Creator
Hey there Becky!

My advice for you is to try to get into Queen's nonetheless - some people do get in without 90%+ averages, as is evident by Fawlkes' acceptance. Nonetheless, the probability does go proportional to your marks. As such, I highly suggest you apply to some back-up schools. Since you like the program at Queen's, I will suggest my program at Trent (Queen's-Trent Con.Ed). It is the EXACT SAME PROGRAM offered at two different campuses. We have the same expectations as people in Queen's, and we even earn Queen's credits while at Trent to use for our education degree. The only difference is the institution that my BA/BSc comes from (in my case BSc).

Other really good Con.Ed programs include Nipissing and Brock - definitely take a look at those two as well. Nipissing seems to be the most common back-up school because their entrance average is so low. Remember that all these schools have their pros and cons. For example, at Brock the Con.Ed students don't start their placement until 3rd year (maybe it's 2nd? can't quite remember...definitely not first) and Nipissing doesn't offer I/S Con.Ed (although getting certified for it isn't too hard with an AQ course afterwards).

In terms of getting into your first choice of Queen's Con.Ed, I'll direct you to a very useful file provided by Queen's-Trent Con.Ed about wording your PSE: http://www.trentu.ca/education/concurrent/pdfs/pse.pdf . Be sure to pay special attention to the second half where they remind you that you should not be modest when discussing your accomplishments. Also, the program administrator here (who reads the PSEs) has told me that the best person to proofread your PSE is an English teacher at your high school who DOES NOT KNOW YOU. That way, they won't fill in the blanks with details they knew about you previously. Remember that the person reading your PSE knows nothing about you either, so if that English teacher has questions about your PSE, chances are that the person reviewing it will as well.

If you have any more questions about the PSE or applying to Queen's in general, feel free to ask :).
Was this helpful?
yes 0
BeckyMacDonald
Posted: 7:10AM October 20, 2011 UTC
Thanks so much! I am hoping for Queens, but if not then Nipissing and Laurier are my backup plans. I would say Trent but its so close to home that I feel like it wont be a chance for me to see something new and experience a new town.but seeing as my hopes are set on queens i might consider it :) your advice was very helpful :) thank you so much!
Was this helpful?
yes 0
Omok
Posted: 7:10AM October 21, 2011 UTC
@Fawlkes

:albino: I actually met someone with mid-80s who got in Con-ed Sciences at queen's. (AND her eyes went bulging when i told her we have an admission average of 93% in our faculty)...

anddd andd, you MAY know me. I've been told i'm pretty memorable some times....

=) I'm that...tall (for asian) girl, short hair, who MIGHT get mistaken as a guy at times? With a really round head. >_>; smallllll eyes. -- i was in beta. o: 

;) You? (Oh god, random lurkers to this post will probably think i'm ugly now....OUCH. shame on you for thinking that. -- come to queen's and i'll treat you to coffee to give you an actual perception.) 

-------

As for prospective applicants: 

1. Remember: TRYING wouldn't hurt. 

2. All experiences are experiences. If you dig up last year's post, and check out some people's experience, it's actually not that fancy. (Me, being mediocre, had: volunteer once a week at senior's home, volunteer a month at day care, badminton team, badminton club) 

3. I think this may make some people mad, but it's the blunt truth: A lot of us, that's in con-ed, is actually using this as a back up. It's a GREAT backup. We have our spot guaranteed in faculty of education, and we don't have to compete with OTHERS once we graduate to get in that (Because, HONESTLY, high school marks are SO MUCH easier to get than University marks). ----- And at queen's con-ed, our PROF classes...two hours a week... go check out our facebook group to get a concept of what we do in there...(hint: sing, facebook, chat). 

4. You can always easily back out of con-ed if you don't like it. Whereas, if you regret not applying to con-ed...sorry, there's no possible way for you transfer into con-ed (at queen's) once you're at university. 
Was this helpful?
yes 0
Fawlkes
Posted: 7:10AM October 24, 2011 UTC
@Omok *gasp* I know who you are!  Sort of... I know you to see you, but we haven't spoken, and I'm sorry to say I don't know your name.  :(  I've been trolling the 2015 group, but the little profile pictures are too small so see clearly.  Maybe I'll come up and introduce myself next time I see you!  Wondering who I am?  I'll give you some clues.  Katzel and I have the same first name.  I share both a first name and a last name with another con-ed frosh.  I was in Epsilon.

---------

Kristen- As Baba said, it is a personal choice.  I knew that when I was applying, I was ready to give up a con-ed program to go to a school I felt I would be happier at, I know others who made thier program choice the first priority.  Only you know what is best for you.

Becky- Just do your best, that's all you or anyone else can expect.  Also, you'd be surprised at what keeping such a competetive program in mind can do for your average!  Remember, universities don't see your marks until February at least, most Con-Ed programs won't even look at your grade 11 marks, and if they do they are only used in your favour.  The PSE is VERY important indeed, and Baba is absolutly right about that document.  It helped me so much when I was writing mine.  Even if you don't apply to Trent, READ THAT DOCUMENT.

Also, do you have any idea what you would like to teach (subjects or divisions/grades)?  That can be an important thing to consider when choosing what programs to apply to.
Was this helpful?
yes 0
qzqzkej
Posted: 7:10AM October 24, 2011 UTC
Hi, I'm currently in grade 12, and am thinking of applying to queen's concurrent ed!

I just heard lots of good things about Queen's, and it's been my dream to get there since grade 10 and stuff. 

My average is about 95-96, it might go down after this year's done, 

but my counsellor said Queen's would definitely want to accept you, but 

it's good to have a back-up plan by applying to one other place. 

So I was considering, but I'm not sure if I should. 

I need scholarship and stuff, so I also need to apply for those when I'm applying to other place, too. 

I'm quite all confused and I needed some help/ advice!


Please reply~:)

Thank you 

Was this helpful?
yes 0
Fawlkes
Posted: 7:10AM October 24, 2011 UTC
Hi qzqzkej

While your average is impressive, I have to caution you, it might not be enough.  While we have been saying that it is possible to get into Queen's Con-Ed without marks like yours, it is equally possible to NOT get in WITH marks like yours.  So Queen's would not "deffinetly" want to accept you.  That's why you have to write a PSE.  Queen's wants to know that you are a well rounded person.

Meaning you DEFINETLY need a back-up plan.  Remember that OUAC (I'm assuming you're from Ontario) lets you apply to three programs at no extra cost, so research other schools or programs you might be interested in.  So in reality, you need two back-up plans.

In terms of scholarships, most schools will automatically consider you for entrance scholarships.  For instance, if you apply to Trent and get in with an average over 90%, tuitition is free.  Queen's offers $2000 for a 90%+ and $4000 for a 95%+ provided you get in.  Other schools have similar scholarships.  So while it seems like a lot of work to apply for scholarships at three different schools, its really not.  The exception, of course, is major entrance awards, but even then, that's only one extra application per school.

Most scholarships that you have to apply directly to are not school specific.  And luckily for you, this website is a great resource for finding ones to apply to!

If scholarships are important to you, I would strongly recomment looking at the Trent/Queen's Con-Ed program, as Trent is very generous with scholarships, and don't be afraid to look at other schools to.  My best advice to you: try not to get too caught up in the Queen's hype just based on what you have heard, there is a lot more to any university and most importantly remember NOTHING IS GARUNTEED!  Good luck, and if you have any other questions or want clarification, please, ask away!
Was this helpful?
yes 0
Ba Ba Blue
Thread Creator
Posted: 7:10AM October 25, 2011 UTC
Thread Creator
Hey qzqzkej!

As Fawlkes said, your grades are great. Don't be ashamed to flaunt them, but also don't be overconfident that Queen's will accept you. I have heard of people with 97% averages not getting in. Queen's wants to produce good teachers and being a good learner yourself is only half of what it takes.

As Fawlkes said, the con.ed program at Trent that is actually joint with Queen's sounds like it would be a good alternative for you. By going into Trent, you'd get your entire Trent tuition paid for and you'd still eventually end up at Queen's (to me that was a win-win - I wasn't rejecting Queen's, nor was I missing out on some great financial relief). Remember that it's the EXACT same program offered at two campuses. Of course, there are some unique aspects of Trent that some people love and some people don't (mostly related to geography), so I highly recommend coming to see the campus for yourself. In fact, Trent's open house will be on November 5 so you should definitely come check it out.

Since both Queen's and Queen's-Trent base decision off grades and PSE, I would also take a look at universities for which your marks will guarantee you acceptance. A good example is Nipissing, which also offers a free tuition scholarship and does not require a PSE.

Good luck on your quest to get into con.ed - it's a great program regardless of where you go, and you'll definitely be in one of the most exciting fields around when you graduate!
Was this helpful?
yes 0
kris10toll
Posted: 7:11AM November 08, 2011 UTC
Just wanted to say that I was posting on this thread as KristenT94, but problems with my account made me delete and rebuild it. So I'm still around! 
Was this helpful?
yes 0
Ba Ba Blue
Thread Creator
Posted: 7:11AM November 21, 2011 UTC
Thread Creator
Bumping this up to get more exposure. I feel like people aren't seeing this thread!
Was this helpful?
yes 0
rtremb
Posted: 7:12AM December 13, 2011 UTC
Ba Ba Blue: Do you know how many applicants there are each year for the Concurrent Education/Arts program at Queens please?  
Was this helpful?
yes 0
Looking for the old community? Click here