utmONE First-Year Transition Courses

In a utmONE course, you will develop foundational learning strategies, and sharpen your academic skills. These for-credit first-year transition courses have a maximum lecture size of 55 and tutorial size of 28, which means you'll benefit from a unique small class experience with opportunities to connect meaningfully to your classmates, professor and teaching assistant (TA). 

Each utmONE course is taught by an outstanding professor and you will get the opportunity to engage and reflect on themes related to becoming a successful, well-rounded student in your lectures and tutorials. Whichever utmONE course you choose, you will build a strong foundation for your university career.  

For the 2021-2022 Academic Year we are planning to offer both online and in-person options for our utmONE courses.  When enrolling, please ensure that you choose the option that works for you.

Benefits of utmONE 

2021-2022 utmONE Courses

How do I enrol in a utmONE course?

Other Frequently Asked Questions

Perhaps the best way to know how a utmONE course will benefit you is to hear from other students who have experienced utmONE and are now using the skills and strategies they learned to support their success.  Check out these video testimonials from recent utmONE students.

Rahima Kamal 
First-Year Student, Psychology

I think utmONE is your "golden ticket" to a head start to university life.  They not only help you transition into univesrity life academically, they also allow you to meet other first year studentsin a smaller classroom setting.

Mohamad Khalil 
First-Year Student, Commerce

utmONE has given me the tools I need to really understand what learning is.  We covered essential skills such as university writing, but also more general ones like oral presentations.  Overall, I think the skills I have learned have given me a deeper understanding of what is expected for a university student.

Benefits of all utmONE First-Year Transition Courses

Supportive classroom.  utmONE courses are smaller than most first-year classes, capped at 55 students per lecture and 28 students per tutorial.  This means you'll have more personal contact with your instructor, TA and fellow students.  You'll get to know your classmates and work together more than you might in a larger class.

Academic foundations. The skills you are taught in utmONE aren't only meant to support your success in utmONE courses, but to support you in your other courses throughout your entire degree.  You'll build a strong foundation including critical reading and writing skills, using academic sources, note-taking, time-management and preparing for exams while also exploring the theme of the course collaboratively with your classmates.

Holistic student success.  In class and in tutorial, you'll get to explore topics that will help you reflect on and develop strategies for your academic and personal success like building community, developing a growth mindset and becoming an engaged learner.  You'll explore the ways you can get involved that will support your interests and learning goals, and you'll find out more about how to be proactive in seeking support and connecting to the resources that will help you succeed.

0.5 credits toward your distribution requirements.  Each utmONE course is one-term in length and provides 0.5 credits toward your distribution requirements that you need to graduate.  Depending on the course, you can earn distribution credits in either Science (SCI), Social Science (SSc) or Humanities (HUM).

2021-2022 utmONE Courses

UTM111 Tools of the Trade overtop of an image of a smart phone, the top of a computer, and a person reading into the frame to highlight notes.

UTM111: Tools of the Trade (SCI, SSc)

UTM111 will be offered in the Winter Term.

This course is an introduction to essential academic tools used in the sciences and social sciences. It is designed to address the fundamental skills needed for comprehension and effective communication in the academia including critical analysis of texts; and the use of databases to gather, interpret, and present findings through writing and oral presentations.

In the Winter 2022 term, course participants will engage with essential academic skills while investigating the theme of sustainability with reference to the dynamics between the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and environmental and societal needs and aspirations.

Dr. Wanja Gitari, Associate Professor

UTM115 Communication Among Cultures words over a photo of three students speaking and laughing together with notebooks and laptops open on the table

UTM115: Communication Among Cultures (HUM, SSc) Fall Term

UTM115 will be offered in the Fall Term.

This course is an introduction to intercultural communication primarily in the areas of writing and speaking. It is designed to address fundamental skills related to language use in the academic setting by focusing on topics such as customs, attitudes, beliefs, and values. Specific examples will be drawn from real-life university situations, and multiple viewpoints on the nature of diversity in communication will be discussed. 

This course is suitable for English Language Learners and students interested in culture, linguistics and communication. 

Dr. Laura Taylor, Associate Professor, Teaching Stream

 UTM118 The Science of Learning words over a photo of two students looking thoughtfully at a computer screen together

UTM118: The Science of Learning (SSc, SCI)

We will offer sections of UTM118 in both the Fall and Winter Terms.

This interdisciplinary course encourages students to take ownership of their education through a focus on the process of learning how to learn and by cultivating the habits of mind for lifelong achievement and success. Students will explore theories of learning and research on the strategies students should employ to reach deep understanding. 

Dr. Michael deBraga, Associate Professor, Teaching Stream
Dr. Michael Kaler, Assistant Professor, Teaching Stream

How do I enrol in a utmONE course?

New UTM students interested in taking one of these engaging and unique courses in the 2021-2022 Academic Year will be able to enrol through ACORN when course enrolment opens in Summer 2021. You will find important information about how to enrol in courses on the Office of the Registrar website.


Please direct your questions to utm.one@utoronto.ca 


First-year transition refers to the experience of leaving high-school and starting your studies at university. This experience can be exciting, but it can be challenging to adjust to a new learning environment and adapt to new expectations. Often the approach you developed to learning and studying in high-school doesn’t quite fit with what is required of you in university. First-year transition programs and courses are designed to support you in developing learning strategies that you can use in your academic and personal life and will help to familiarize you with university resources and the campus community so that you can navigate your transition into university and get a good start to your academic career.
All incoming students can enroll in a utmONE course through ACORN on their enrollment date. For more information about ACORN and course enrollment visit the Office of the Registrar website.
Because they share similar learning outcomes, the utmONE courses are exclusions to each other. This means that you can only take one utmONE course for credit.
Yes! The utmONE courses provide 0.5 credits that can count toward the distribution requirements you need to graduate. In the course descriptions you will see HUM (Humanities), SSc (Social Science), and SCI (Science) which indicate which distribution requirements the course is applicable to.
Distribution requirements ensure that you get exposure to Humanities, Social Science and Science regardless of your program of study. In total, you will need to receive 1.0 credits in each category before you graduate. The courses you take for your distribution requirements can often be some of the most interesting courses you take because they offer a different perspective and disciplinary area than you are used to. For more information on distribution requirements visit the Office of the Registrar website.
Yes. utmONE courses and utmONE Scholars seminars are exclusions to each other. This means that you can only take one for credit. For more information on exclusions visit the Office of the Registrar website.
No. There are no pre-requisites for the utmONE courses. All incoming students are welcome to enroll, space allowing.
Yes. LAUNCH is a great complement to utmONE. LAUNCH is a first-year mentorship program consisting of interactive sessions facilitated by successful upper year students. LAUNCH can help you gain a sense of belonging to our campus community, get tips and advice from experienced students, and connect to resources and supports that will help you be successful. There are many sections of LAUNCH so that you can find time in your schedule to take a utmONE course and participate in LAUNCH. Visit the Centre for Student Engagement website to learn more about LAUNCH.