Promoting Academic Skills for Success (PASS)

Get on Track for Academic Success

PASS is a 6-week non-credit program run in-person through the Robert Gillespie Academic Skills Centre. It is for UTM academically at-risk undergraduate students who are: 

  • On academic probation or academic suspension 

  • Entering the university under probationary status 

  • Currently in good-standing, but who are trending towards academic probation 

The PASS program aims to help students adopt healthy long-term study strategies and understand the keys to success in their courses. 

Upcoming Registration Information 

PASS is offered once per academic term beginning in mid-October, early February, and early June. 

Key Timeframes 

Winter 2024

Summer 2024

Fall 2024

Registration Start  October 3 January 16 May 16
Registration Deadline  January 15 at 4:00PM  May 15 at 4:00PM September 30 at 4:00PM
Intake Timeline  Week of January 8 to Week of January 22  Week of May 6 to Week of May 20 Week of September 16 to Week of October 14

Classes begin 

Week of January 29 

Week of May 27

Week of October 21
Classes end  Week of March 18 Week of July 15 Week of December 9

Register for the Winter 2024 cycle of PASS 

How does PASS work?

The PASS program has three phases: an intake process, the classes, and an exit process. 

Intake Process 

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  • Online survey 

  • 15-minute online intake meeting with a Learning Strategist



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  • 6 weekly in-person class meetings 

  • In-class activities and discussions 

  • Reflection and exploratory assignments


Exit Process 

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  • Online survey 

  • 15-minute online exit meeting with a Learning Strategist 

  • 15-minute online consultation with a Writing Instructor

To begin the PASS program, students must complete the full intake process. 

The PASS classes will take place on fixed days and times over six or seven weeks and cannot be re-scheduled. To successfully complete the PASS program, students must fully attend all six classes and complete all the assigned work. 

Students who successfully complete the PASS program will be invited for additional academic skills development and exploration called “PASS Term 2”. 

PASS Topics and Assignments 

The PASS program is led by RGASC staff members and involves valuable contributions from staff from the Office of the Registrar, UTM Library, Career Centre, and the Health & Counselling Centre. Through the PASS program, students will develop strategies in academic skills, managing their physical and mental wellness, and their career and professional development. 

The PASS modular topics are: 

  1. Study planning and note-taking 
  2. Exam and test preparation 
  3. Information literacy and writing 
  4. Writing 
  5. Numeracy 
  6. Health and wellness, careers, and academic advising 

The exact order of the modules may vary from cycle to cycle.

 “The experience I had with PASS was amazing. It really helped me to figure out ways to improve my study methods and health. I had so much fun in every session as I met new people and got to bond while learning valuable lessons together. PASS has truly changed my mindset about school and allowed me to be more confident in going back to school. I know that I can now start my semester without any worry.” 

PASS is not like a traditional credit-based course. Your classes will include group discussions and activities facilitated by your Learning Strategist and your Program Assistants. Your homework aims to facilitate your exploration, reflection, and planning for each module’s specific topics. It will be assessed to focus on giving you feedback so that you can further develop your plans in academic and related contexts and how you will support your academic journey.