Counsellors University Application Handbook

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1 Ontario Universities Application Centre 2015 Counsellors University Application Handbook 170 Research Lane Guelph ON N1G 5E2 Telephone: Fax:

2 Contents A: General Procedures...4 Communication/Distribution of Materials to High Schools...4 Who May Use the 101 Application... 5 Who May Use the 105 Application... 5 Creating the November Application File...6 Transfer Students/Late Applicants...6 Second Semester Only Applicants... 7 Withdrawing an Application... 7 B: Special Procedures...8 International Baccalaureate (IB) Applicants...8 Out of Province Institutions...8 January Admission (Winter Entry)...8 Applying to Out-of-Province Universities...9 Applying to the Royal Military College of Canada...9 C: Fee Schedule and Payment Options Payment Details Methods of Payment D: OUAC Acknowledgement and Application Amendments OUAC Acknowledgement...12 Application Amendments...12 Applicant Status Report...12 E: Offers of Admission Communication from the Universities...13 Applicant Responses to Offers of Admission...13 Amending Responses to Offers of Admission...13 Re Accepting a Previously Cancelled or Expired Offer Amending Program Choices With an Accepted Offer Applicants Who Are Deferred at Early Admission Applicants Who Are Refused Admission Verifying Receipt of a Response to an Offer of Admission F: Secondary School Grades Processing Overview...15 Recording Academic Data...15 Process for Grades Collection Periods Verification of Grades Received...17 Special Notes...17 Appendix A: Valid Codes for Reporting Academic Data...19 Appendix B: Rules for Automatically Dropping Course Records...22 Appendix C: Schedule of Dates...23 Appendix D: Grades File Errors/Warnings...25 Appendix E: Other Services...27 Appendix F: University Contacts...29

3 Please Note The online application system is referred to as SSOLA (Secondary School Online Application). SSOLA schools are those registered with the Ontario Universities Application Centre (OUAC) to offer their students the online application and amendment systems. Non SSOLA schools are those whose students will use the paper application and manual amendment procedures. Counsellors Online Services (COLS) are web based inquiry, academic update and reporting tools available to school officials at both SSOLA and non SSOLA schools (see Appendix E: Other Services). Useful Websites Undergraduate and professional applications: Online Application: 101/ 105 Online Application: 105/ The OUAC Guidance Site: Counsellors Online Services: Ce document est également disponible en français : You can download and print additional copies of this publication at: To obtain this document in an alternative format, contact the Ontario Universities Application Centre. Telephone: Fax: Website: accessibility/ Special Notice Updates to Publications Changes to the high school curriculum admission requirements are not only becoming more complex, but also continuing to evolve as the universities address institutional, systemic and educational challenges, and their attendant decisions and changes. advise students to consult the website and to visit university websites to obtain updated information about the programs they intend to apply to. We wish you the best in the upcoming year and look forward to assisting you. Since the OUAC and university publications are finalized many months ahead of the application cycle, it is common that some information becomes outdated, that omissions and errors have occurred and that changes need to be made after the documents are printed and distributed. To address this issue, the OUAC provides updates on our website as necessary. We urge counsellors to 2015 Counsellors University Application Handbook 3

4 A: General Procedures Communication/Distribution of Materials to High Schools Late August einfo launches for the new application cycle at: The einfo flyer is mailed to high schools. Mid September The following materials are sent to high schools: The Counsellors University Application Handbook 101 posters OUF and UIP posters COLS registration forms School Data Collection Sheet 105 brochure January Admission (winter entry) availability is posted online at 101/ and NEW! einfo map poster October Application Access Code letters for January Admission (winter entry) are ed to high schools. COLS user IDs and passwords are ed to high schools/boards. A Winter Entry Applicant Report may be viewed or printed at any time through COLS by authorized school officials. Final Applicant Status Report for previous year available through COLS. November Application Access Code letters for September Admission (online access codes for all students listed on the school s November data file sent to the OUAC prior to the November deadline) are mailed to high schools. Authorized school officials may access application records through COLS for students at their school as applications are submitted. Acknowledgement s are immediately sent to students when they submit their online application. Acknowledgement letters are only mailed to applicants who use the paper application. The OUAC s school officials and students, requesting online verification of submitted and processed February grades. An audit checklist is made available to all schools with applicants who have less than six 4U/M courses. April The OUAC s school officials and students, requesting online verification of submitted and processed April grades. Mid May In the Loop newsletter is posted on the Guidance website with updates on current year processing and changes for the upcoming cycle. Applicant Status Reports may be viewed or printed at any time through COLS by authorized school officials. The OUAC s Offer of Admission Response Instructions to school officials and students. The Schedule of Dates for the upcoming cycle is posted on The Guidance website. The Admission Information Service is announced on the Guidance website. An audit checklist is made available to all schools with applicants who have less than six 4U/M courses, and a letter is sent to these applicants. July The OUAC s school officials and students, requesting online verification of submitted and processed July grades. The OUAC sends an audit letter to applicants whose final current-year grades have not been received. February Applicant Status Reports may be viewed or printed through COLS by authorized school officials Counsellors University Application Handbook

5 Who May Use the 101 Application An applicant should use the 101 application if they meet ALL of the following requirements: They are taking courses during the day at an Ontario high school (this includes students returning for second semester and graduated students returning to upgrade one or more courses). They have not, at some point, been out of high school for more than seven consecutive months. They received/will receive their Ontario Secondary School Diploma (OSSD) with six 4U/M courses at the end of the current year. They have not attended a postsecondary (college/university/career college) institution. They are applying to first year of an undergraduate degree program or diploma program at an Ontario university. The following additional information assists school officials in determining the type of application to be used. Applicants who meet the requirements listed above and who are registered simultaneously in two day schools, day school/night school or day school/correspondence (or other distance education modes of study) should use the 101 Application. The applicant s day school is responsible for submitting information about all courses and grades for that applicant. Applicants who will attend second semester only, and who meet the criteria noted above, should use the 101 Application. However, those students who intended to, but did not register for, second semester and who have already applied using the 101 Application must contact the OUAC prior to February 1 for instructions about how to transfer the 101 Application over to the 105 Application. Where applicants are attending two day schools, one of the day schools must become the home school and hold responsibility for submitting all academic data on the applicant s behalf. Who May Use the 105 Application An applicant should use the 105 application if they: Attended a high school in another province or country and now plan to attend an Ontario high school but have less than six 4U/M courses. Attended a postsecondary (college/university/ career college) institution. Registered in an Ontario high school but have been, at some point, out of high school for more than seven consecutive months. Registered only in night school courses or correspondence courses, or are enrolled in any other form of distance education, such as internet courses (e.g., they do not hold simultaneous registration in day school and night school). Notes: 1. If an applicant filled out a 105 Application and is now registered at your high school for second semester, contact the OUAC for instructions on how to proceed. The fees paid through the 105 Application are non refundable but may be used toward the applicant s 101 Application, if applicable. February 1 is the deadline for these requests. 2. Certain Ontario high schools allow applicants to request their official high school transcript electronically (completed courses only) using an online service hosted by the Ontario College Application Service (OCAS). The OUAC partnered with OCAS to offer this service to university applicants, which they can access from the Transcript Request section on the 105 Online Application. If the high school an applicant attended is not included in this online service, they need to contact the high school to arrange for their official transcript to be sent directly to their university choice(s). They should ask the high school to indicate their OUAC Reference Number on their transcript Counsellors University Application Handbook 5

6 Creating the November Application File The majority of Ontario high schools provide the OUAC with initial demographic information and academic history in an electronic file format. Specifications for this file are in the OCAS/ OUAC Secondary School Data Transmission Specification document on the Guidance website at: See also Appendix A: Valid Codes for Reporting Academic Data in this handbook. The November deadline for when you should submit this file to the OUAC is listed in the Schedule of Dates at the end of this publication. Submitting the application data file: allows the OUAC to create and print Application Access Code letters which students use to access the online application; allows the OUAC to pre load the school s demographic and academic information into the OUAC s database; and includes data files for all students who have two or more 4U/M courses, ensuring that students who apply later in the cycle will have the application access codes. Create a PIN School officials who are unable to submit the required information electronically can use the Create a PIN option through COLS. The student s given name, last name, Secondary School Student Number (SSSN) and Ontario Education Number (OEN) are entered to create an account. Note: If you receive a Duplicate error message, a PIN may have already been assigned with an identical SSSN or OEN. Check with the student whether application access codes were already created for them by another school or contact the OUAC s Secondary School Division for assistance. The OUAC generates Application Access Code letters that are mailed to schools for distribution to students. The next business day after a PIN is created, the school official can log in to the Academic Info section of COLS to enter the student s academic history and current courses. Transfer Students/Late Applicants Students who apply after the January deadline are strongly urged to investigate specific university deadlines prior to applying. All fees paid to the OUAC are non refundable. Transfer students or late applicants can submit an online application in one of the following ways: 1. The applicant transferred from another SSOLA school; therefore, the OUAC already has an application data file for that student. The applicant should request his/her access codes from the school that originally provided the data. The applicant should complete the online application. After the application is submitted, the new school must contact the OUAC in writing to request a change of school information. The request must include the student s name, OUAC Reference Number, old and new school name and MIDENT, the student s new SSSN, if applicable, and the student s OEN. These changes allow the new/ current school to access the student s file with COLS. This process is also applicable for students who already applied and are now transferring to a new school for second semester. 2. The applicant was not included in the November application data file. Use the Create a PIN option in COLS. The next business day, manually add academic information to the application. An authorized school official can enter historical and current grades in COLS with the Academic Info option. Alternatively, a school official can send the OUAC an official transcript, labelled with the student s OEN and/or OUAC Reference Number (if applicable), along with a list of current courses. The applicant can complete the online application, including demographic information. Depending on when the school official has added the academic information, the applicant may or may not see anything under Academic Information. 3. The applicant was included in the November application data file. Provide the student with his/her Application Access Code Letter, which the OUAC previously sent you Counsellors University Application Handbook

7 Before or after the student applies, use COLS to ensure that all academic information is accurate and complete. Second Semester Only Applicants Students who start school in the second semester and meet the criteria on page 5 should use the 101 Application. However, those students who intended to, but did not, register for second semester and who already applied using the 101 Application should contact the OUAC by February 1 for instructions about transferring the 101 Application to the 105 Application. Withdrawing an Application If an applicant withdraws/retires from school or no longer wishes to attend university (that is, wishes to withdraw the application), the applicant should delete all of their choices either online or in writing to the OUAC (applicant signature required) Counsellors University Application Handbook 7

8 B: Special Procedures International Baccalaureate (IB) Applicants Applicants who are following the IB program within an Ontario high school will complete the 101 Application. Applicants indicate on the application whether they are following the IB Diploma or the IB Certificate program. This information is transferred to their selected universities. Modifications to this information can only be made by counsellors who have Update access to the Academic Info option in COLS. Applicants cannot change this information online. IB Grades Collection Procedure The OUAC does not record IB academic data electronically. Hard-copy IB transcripts that are sent to the OUAC are copied and forwarded to each of the applicant s selected Ontario universities. The OUAC does not collect essays and extracts. School officials should record the OUAC Reference Number on any transcripts sent to the OUAC. Faxed transcripts do not photocopy well, and therefore will not be accepted. Important: Schools are urged to transcribe IB courses and grades into equivalent Grade 12 courses, which can be forwarded electronically to the OUAC. Many universities require the OSS equivalents for scholarships and other adjudications. February (Projected Grades): IB schools will forward an original hard-copy transcript of each student s projected grades to the OUAC by the stipulated February grades deadline (see Appendix C: Schedule of Dates). April (Predicted Grades): Schools should send predicted grades by the stipulated April deadline (see Appendix C: Schedule of Dates). July (Final Grades): Schools may forward hard copy transcripts of final IB results to the OUAC; however, it is preferred that they be sent directly to the applicants university selections. Doing so will ensure that students are appropriately considered for scholarships, admission, etc. If grades are submitted to the OUAC, they must be received on or before the stipulated July grades deadline (see Appendix C: Schedule of Dates). Out of Province Institutions The OUAC will not forward IB transcripts to out of province institutions. Ontario IB students who apply to one or more out of province institution(s) must arrange for their IB grades to be sent directly to those universities by the high school. However, OSS curriculum courses/grades will be transmitted to specified institutions under regular OUAC procedures (see section F: Secondary School Grades Processing). January Admission (Winter Entry) Several universities admit qualified applicants to first year studies in January. Typically, these applicants complete their university admission requirements (including the OSSD, Community Involvement requirement and Secondary School Literacy requirement) at a semestered school by January. A list of universities that offer January Admission (winter entry) and application deadlines is available in early September at: Application Procedure Applicants who wish to apply for January Admission (winter entry) will likely need to apply before the first November application data file is submitted. As a result, authorized school officials will be required to Create a PIN for applicants (see Create a PIN in the Counsellors Online Services Manual). Once the account is created, an Application Access Code Letter is generated and forwarded to the high school, allowing the student to access the online application. Applicants who apply for January Admission (winter entry) may also select programs for spring and/or fall entry. The online application is available at the beginning of October, allowing ample time for applications to be completed before the deadline dates the universities specify. Applicants unable to apply online can contact the OUAC for a paper application Counsellors University Application Handbook

9 Reporting Grades Academic information can be added to the application one business day after creating a PIN. An authorized school official can enter academic data before or after a student applies, using the Academic Info option in COLS. Alternatively, a school official can send the OUAC an official transcript, labelled with the student s OEN and/or OUAC Reference Number (if applicable), along with a list of current courses. Do not send Counselling Summaries. These documents are more difficult for the OUAC staff to interpret than official transcripts. Winter Entry Applicant Report A Winter Entry Applicant Report is available online via the Reports option in COLS. As students apply for January Admission (winter entry), they are added to this list; therefore, school officials should return periodically to generate an updated list. This list is in alphabetical order and is available in HTML or Excel format. Using this report, enter the applicant s historical, midterm and, when available, final grades and OSSD related information using the Academic Info option in COLS. Students who apply to these out of province universities can authorize the universities to request their academic information from the OUAC. To authorize, the applicant must include their 11 digit OUAC Reference Number on the institution s application form. Note: In all cases, the eleventh digit should be 0. This automated transfer of academic data greatly reduces the work load for high schools by eliminating the need to prepare and mail hard-copy transcripts. Applying to the Royal Military College of Canada The Royal Military College of Canada (RMCC), located in Kingston, Ontario, is not part of the OUAC s processing service. A separate form and additional application materials must be obtained from a Canadian Forces Recruiting Centre. Call the Canadian Forces Recruiting Centre at or visit the RMCC website at: Note: Applicants who have mistakenly selected January Admission (winter entry) should log in to their online application to modify the program entry point. Applying to Out-of-Province Universities The OUAC assists the following out of province universities with collecting academic data for Ontario high school students who have applied through the OUAC: Bishop s University The University of British Columbia The University of Calgary Concordia University Dalhousie University McGill University The University of New Brunswick Saint Mary s University Simon Fraser University The University of Victoria 2015 Counsellors University Application Handbook 9

10 C: Fee Schedule and Payment Options Payment Details All fees submitted to the OUAC are non refundable. Applications will not be forwarded to the universities until the OUAC receives full payment. Partial payments will not be processed. If payment is not received for online applicants, a reminder ( or letter) is sent, requesting payment as soon as possible. If payment is not received with paper applications, the application will be returned unprocessed. Instructions for submitting application fees are available at 101/101-fees/, and in the 101 Application package that is distributed to non SSOLA schools when requested. Instructions will be slightly different for paper and online applications. Base application fee... $140 For the initial three university/program choices. International service fee...$10 If the mailing address is outside of Canada. Additional choice fee... $47 For each university/program choice beyond the initial three. Fee for a non negotiable cheque...$30 Additional Choice Fees Applicants who wish to submit additional university/ program choices beyond the initial three, and who wish to make these changes online, may pay the additional choice fee by credit card. Applicants who are unable to make changes online must obtain the University/Program Choice Amendment Form (101 or 105) Payment by Cheque or Money Order. This PDF form is available to guidance counsellors by request. or Methods of Payment Credit Card Available to online applicants only. The OUAC accepts MasterCard, VISA or American Express. Prepaid credit cards and VISA debit cards are not accepted. The OUAC cannot process credit card payments over the telephone. If a credit card is declined or invalid, the application will not be processed. Credit card payments are processed and verified immediately online. The application is processed upon successful payment. Online applicants who submit their application without paying may log back in to their application and pay by credit card. Online Banking (Canadian banks and credit unions only) Available to online applicants only. The payment will be processed in one to three business days. The OUAC accepts online payment through selected Canadian banks and credit unions. Applicants should contact their bank for further information. This is not a debit card transaction. Once an application is submitted, the applicant must proceed to their bank s website to submit their payment. The OUAC will provide the bill payment account number after the application is submitted. This number is needed to pay for the application. If an applicant has applied to the OUAC previously, they should update their bill payment account number to reflect the new number provided. The OUAC s bill payment name is Ontario Universities Application Centre or an abbreviation of this name. To process the changes, the form must be completed, dated, signed and then forwarded with the payment (cheque or money order) to the OUAC Counsellors University Application Handbook

11 Western Union Business Solutions GlobalPay for Students (Bank-to-bank transfer for international payments only) Available to online applicants only; for international payments only. This payment option allows the applicant to pay Canadian dollar fees in the currency of their choice. It provides a simple and secure way of initiating a payment electronically. The OUAC will provide the bill payment account number when the application is submitted. Cheque/Money Order (for Paper Applications Only) Available to paper applicants only. All cheques/money orders must be in Canadian funds and made payable to the Ontario Universities Application Centre. Applicants must include their OUAC Reference Number on the face of the cheque/money order. Postdated cheques and non-canadian cheques are not accepted. There is a charge of $30 for non-negotiable cheques. If the bank returns a non-negotiable cheque to the OUAC, the application process will stop at the OUAC and the selected universities Counsellors University Application Handbook 11

12 D: OUAC Acknowledgement and Application Amendments OUAC Acknowledgement Acknowledgement s are immediately sent to applicants when they successfully submit their online application. If a paper application is submitted, the OUAC will mail an Acknowledgement Letter to the applicant once the application and fees are processed. Applicants are responsible for the accuracy of all application data. Applicants should log in to their online application to monitor and amend their application data as required, and to respond to offers of admission. The Acknowledgement Letter provides paper applicants with a PIN/password to access their application online. Access information should be kept confidential and in a safe place. One business day after the application is submitted to the OUAC, the authorized school official can access the student s application file through COLS at: Application Amendments Application amendment requests are not accepted by telephone. The OUAC processes all amendments made to the applicant s data and transmits the changes to the applicant s selected universities. the last screen of the Submit process. They will also see a summary of changes and/or responses to offers of admission that they made within that session. One business day after making changes, applicants should log in to their application to ensure that all requested changes are processed. Applicants should allow sufficient time for the OUAC to process and transmit the amendments to the selected universities. Where necessary, the university may contact the applicant about additional requirements. For example, some university programs require interviews and assignments as part of the admissions consideration process. Authorized school officials may access COLS to verify that requested amendments are made and to view the complete and current application information. Applicant Status Report The Applicant Status Report is available online through the Reports option in COLS. This report allows you to verify the status of each student s application. For details, refer to the COLS Manual at: In mid February, the universities begin the early adjudication process and discourage amendments to program choices. February 3, 2015, is the recommended last date to submit all information to the OUAC, including university and program changes, and additional university/program choices, to be eligible for early admission consideration. This is not a deadline date; the OUAC will accept and process changes at any time. Some universities may not be able to process late amendments until much later in the admission cycle. Applicants may access their online application to make changes to their personal information and university/program choices, and respond to offers of admission. Upon successfully submitting all changes, including responses to offers of admission, applicants will receive a confirmation number on Counsellors University Application Handbook

13 E: Offers of Admission Communication from the Universities When the universities receive application data from the OUAC, they may contact applicants with information about admission, scholarships, residences, interviews, etc. Universities may start making conditional offers of admission as soon as they determine that they received sufficient academic and application data. Offer dates will vary by university and program. Each university evaluates application files and makes admission decisions. The universities communicate offers of admission, including terms of any conditional offers, directly to applicants. The OUAC does not make any admission decisions, evaluate applicant qualifications or receive detailed information from the universities about offers made to applicants. Applicant Responses to Offers of Admission Applicants can accept or decline offers of admission from Ontario universities at: 101/. Most universities expect applicants to respond online; therefore, applicants should be familiar with this site and store their access information in a safe place. Important: An online response instruction video is available at: This video demonstrates the steps required to respond to an offer of admission. Applicants who are offered admission will be provided with instructions for responding. Applicants who respond to their offer of admission online should not mail an additional paper response to the OUAC. Accepting an offer of admission from one university will not cancel applications and/or programs at other universities (including out of province applications). Applicants may have only one acceptance of an offer from an Ontario university on file at a time. If applicants are worried about accepting or declining an offer of admission, you may contact the university s admissions office to discuss the applicants needs. The university will try to accommodate applicants as much as possible Counsellors University Application Handbook Applicants who mail their response to an offer of admission to the OUAC should sign and date the response form before sending it. The OUAC will date stamp responses on the day that they arrive at the OUAC. Applicants should ensure that the OUAC receives all responses to offers of admission by the specified deadline. When two paper responses for an applicant are received at the same time, the OUAC processes the response with the most recent date. It is therefore important that both the applicant s signature and the date signed appear on the response document. Faxed responses will be accepted by the OUAC in special circumstances. After receiving the response, the OUAC forwards this information to the appropriate university. Note: Application for residence or deposit cheques must not be sent to the OUAC. These items should be sent directly to the university where the applicant intends to enroll. Residence deposits/responses are not a substitute for offer of admission responses. Applicants must accept the offer of admission through the OUAC by the deadline stipulated to retain their offer. Amending Responses to Offers of Admission After applicants accept a university s offer of admission, they may amend their decision to accept another university s offer. Applicants who accept another offer online must first cancel the previously accepted offer. The OUAC advises applicants who submit the paper response form to indicate on the second response that the first response (indicating university and program) should be cancelled. Subsequent paper acceptances will automatically cancel previously accepted offers. The OUAC then alters the applicant s original decision and informs the appropriate universities of the change. 13

14 Re Accepting a Previously Cancelled or Expired Offer Applicants who: (a) wish to attend a university that has offered them admission but whose response deadline has expired; or (b) wish to re accept a previously cancelled offer, must contact that university s admissions office to see whether they will still be considered and, if yes, whether the university will issue a new offer. The OUAC will not reverse a cancelled response. Remember, many university programs become full. It will be more difficult for applicants to change universities as time goes on. Amending Program Choices With an Accepted Offer Applicants cannot make changes to a program choice if there is an active offer of admission for that program. The only changes allowed are changes to the ranking of university selections/ programs. Because policies vary at each university, applicants should contact the university admissions office before requesting amendments to a program with an accepted offer of admission. Offers (or alternative offers) of admission, for which the applicant has either not indicated a response or has accepted, will automatically become invalid if the applicant deletes the associated program choice. If a student later decides to re add this program choice, there is no guarantee that the university will re issue an offer. Applicants who delete a program choice with an accepted offer of admission may risk losing a secure place at that university. Applicants Who Are Deferred at Early Admission Some applicants will not receive an offer of admission based on the grades collected in February or April. These students may have the admission decision deferred, pending the results of their final examinations. The OUAC will receive the final grades directly from the high schools/boards in July and will forward these grades immediately to the universities. However, the universities may also request that the applicant have final grades sent directly to their admissions offices. Applicants Who Are Refused Admission Applicants who are refused admission to a particular university may decide to request admission consideration in other programs or at other universities. This may be done in one of two ways: 1. Add additional university/program selections beyond the current active university/program choices on the application. For more information, see section C: Fee Schedule and Payment Options. 2. Delete an active university/program choice and add a different choice in its place. No additional fee is required. To make these changes, applicants must follow the instructions in section D: OUAC Acknowledgement and Application Amendments. Programs quickly become full once the universities have sent all offers of admission. Applicants should not add programs that are full. To obtain information about which programs have available places, applicants and guidance officials can access the Admission Information Service at: This service is available at the beginning of June. For details, see Appendix E: Other Services. Verifying Receipt of a Response to an Offer of Admission Applicants can log in to their online application to verify that the OUAC received and processed their response to an offer of admission. The Response column on the Choices/Offers screen should display one of: Accepted, Cancelled or Declined Counsellors University Application Handbook

15 F: Secondary School Grades Processing Overview Ontario high schools may send the OUAC academic information (courses and grades) electronically or manually. The method of sending grades data does not need to correspond to the method chosen to send the November application data file; that is, a school that sends application data electronically may send grades data manually, and vice versa. The specifications for the electronic transmission of data are standardized between the Ontario College Application Service (OCAS) and the OUAC. There are some differences between the OUAC and OCAS in the areas of processing and in data usage, based on the different needs of clients (universities and colleges). Information about procedures and protocols can be found in the OCAS/OUAC Secondary School Data Transmission Specification PDF at: Additional details for applicants who are enrolled in the International Baccalaureate (IB) program at an Ontario high school are in section B: Special Procedures. High schools will be asked to provide the OUAC with academic data for the following occasions: 1. Application Submission (First Data Transmission) In October/November, high schools provide the following data for the 101 Application: prior year finals, current first semester or full year course registrations, projected second semester course registrations. Note: The OUAC does not collect first semester midterm grades. 2. February Grades Collection (Second Data Transmission) In mid February, high schools provide the following grades data: November full year grades, final first semester grades, second semester course registrations, prior year finals not submitted in the first data transmission, night school and correspondence course registrations/grades (if available), and OSSD updates for January graduates. 3. April Grades Collection (Third Data Transmission) In April, high schools provide the following grades data: second semester midterm grades, interim full year grades, prior year finals not already submitted in the first data transmission, and night school and correspondence course registrations and grades (if available). 4. July Final Grades Collection (Fourth Data Transmission) In July, high schools provide the following final grades data: final grades (current and prior year) and final OSSD indicator, including Community Involvement requirement, Secondary School Literacy requirement, OSSD Issue Date, and if applicable, the SHSM program code and SHSM Indicator. Failure to provide final grades and OSSD information may cause the universities to rescind offers of admission made earlier in the cycle. 5. Summer Grades Collection (Fifth Data Transmission) In August, schools or boards may provide the OUAC with summer school results in a fifth data transmission. Note: This submission is not mandatory. Recording Academic Data School officials must provide academic data. This information allows the universities to determine, at an early stage, whether or not applicants hold the correct course requirements for admission. In addition, the universities may make early conditional offers of admission after receiving the academic data. The following academic data is required: all current year courses (excluding Grade 9 and Grade 10 courses); all previously completed Grade 11 and Grade 12 courses (this includes all subjects with a 3 or a 4 in the fourth position of the course code); CO, CU, DO, and DU courses, where appropriate; LVGBU (Ancient Greek) and LVLBU (Latin) courses; and 2015 Counsellors University Application Handbook 15

16 indication of the applicant s current OSSD status (including Community Involvement requirement, Secondary School Literacy requirement, OSSD Issue Date, and if applicable, the SHSM program code and the SHSM Indicator). For more details, see Appendix A: Valid Codes for Reporting Academic Data. School officials who are unable to provide grades electronically or through COLS must submit a paper transcript to the OUAC. For each grades collection period, updates to current courses can be submitted to the OUAC using an official transcript, an official report card or the Reporting Courses/ Grades for Non-Home Schools form. The student s OUAC Reference Number must be indicated. Process for Grades Collection Periods Before each grades file transmission, school officials may identify university applicants in their school/ board file(s) through the Reference Number File option in COLS, then choosing OUAC Reference Number. The OUAC Reference Number file contains OUAC Reference Numbers for the school s university applicants and is used to update the school s or board s grades file. As a result, data is transmitted only for those students who have an active OUAC application. The OUAC Reference Number file is not intended for manual updating. Counsellors who have questions about importing this file into their system should contact their software supporter. The extract file layout can be found at: School officials must notify the OUAC about any changes to the MIDENT and SSSN for new students as these numbers are used to match the school/ board electronic file to the OUAC database. School officials must ensure that students (especially twins) do not share SSSNs and OENs. OUAC Grades Collection Periods The following chart contains the deadlines and purpose for each grades collection period. February Due: February 12, 2015 Collect updates to OSSD related information Collect final grades for first semester courses Collect current grades for full year courses Collect prior year final grades not already submitted Collect registered second semester courses (including night school and correspondence course registrations/grades, if available) Collect IB transcripts for projected grades Transfer grades data to the universities April Due: April 23, 2015 Collect updates to OSSD related information Collect midterm grades for second semester courses Collect interim grades for full year courses Collect prior year final grades not already submitted Collect registered summer school courses Collect IB transcripts for predicted grades Transfer grades data to the universities July Due: July 7, 2015 Collect updates to OSSD related information Collect final grades for second semester courses Collect final grades for all full year courses Collect prior year final grades not already submitted Collect registered summer school courses/grades Optional: Collect final IB transcripts (see page 8 for details) Transfer grades data to the universities August 3-29, 2015: Optional summer grades collection Counsellors University Application Handbook

17 For details about valid codes for all fields relating to courses and grades, refer to Appendix A: Valid Codes for Reporting Academic Data and to the OCAS/OUAC Secondary School Data Transmission Specification. Note: Schools/boards may send electronic grades files, if available, at any time during the Grades Collection Dates published on the Guidance website in the Popular Resources section. It is essential that high schools adhere to the deadline dates to ensure sufficient time is available for the universities to receive the grades and to adjudicate each application, especially for limited enrollment programs. Important: If the majority of schools/boards wait until the deadline date to submit their electronic grades files, processing can be delayed due to volume or errors within the file and, as a result, will cause a delay in the distribution of grades to the universities. Verification of Grades Received Once applicant academic records are updated, an is sent to all counsellors who have update access to the Academic Info option in COLS, and to applicants who provided an address. Academic Info In the Academic Info section of COLS, counsellors can search for all applicants whose grades were received for the given collection period. Alternatively, users can search through all students to spot check the grades on file, paying particular attention to those who do not have the correct collection period under the Collection Period column. If any academic data is missing or inaccurate, make the necessary corrections as required. An Applicant Status Report can also be run to identify applicants whose data was not received at the OUAC. School officials/applicants must check the information online for accuracy, particularly the OSSD status, including the Community Involvement requirement, the Secondary School Literacy requirement, the OSSD Issue Date and, if applicable, the SHSM Program Code and the SHSM Indicator. School officials can make corrections using the Academic Info option in COLS. Audit Checklists and Letters After the February and April grades collection, the OUAC audits all applicants to identify those with fewer than six 4U/M (or equivalent) credits (February) or passing grades (April) on file. A checklist is sent to the school and a letter (April only) is sent directly to the student. After the July final grades collection, the OUAC performs an audit to identify all applicants whose final current year grades are not received. A letter is mailed to the applicant if any grades are missing. Special Notes Night School/Correspondence Courses/ Private Institutions Day school students who are studying at night school, through the Ministry of Education s Correspondence Branch or through a private institution, must have official midterm/final grades for these courses submitted by the home school or by the school where the student has taken the course(s). Grades for night school or correspondence courses may not be available at the time the school grades data is submitted. Authorized school officials with access to the Academic Info option of COLS may enter the grades online when they become available. During the current school year, the OUAC will not accept transcripts that students submit. If a student is registered at a day school in semester one, completes those courses, then registers only for night school in semester two, the day school (semester one) is still responsible for sending that student s night school course data to the OUAC. Updates to OSSD Status The universities require up to date OSSD information to grant offers of admission, scholarships, residence, etc. This information is especially important to the universities when finalizing the admission status for applicants who accepted a conditional offer of admission. For each grades collection period, counsellors should submit any changes to the OSSD status (including the Community Involvement requirement, the Secondary School Literacy requirement, the OSSD Issue Date, and if applicable, the SHSM program code and the SHSM Indicator) for each applicant, using COLS Counsellors University Application Handbook 17

18 Recording Additional Comments School officials who wish to record additional information, such as equivalent credits, can do so one of two ways: 1. online using the Comments field in the Diploma Details tab in Academic Info, after searching for the particular student; or 2. by indicating a comment in the academic area of the paper application. Any documents that support the comments should be sent directly to the chosen universities. Extenuating Circumstances Refer to the Guidance website under Popular Resources, then Extenuating Circumstances, for information about students whose marks were affected by special/extenuating circumstances. Students Applying After the February Grades Collection Period (Second Data Transmission) Some students may apply for admission after their school submits the February grades. If the school/ board includes academic data in their electronic file for this applicant, the OUAC uses all grades received to populate the new application. Any further updates or additions to the applicant s academic data must be done using the Academic Info option in COLS. Courses Dropped by the OUAC For guidelines, see Appendix B: Rules for Automatic Dropping of Course Records. Reporting Summer School Final Grades The applicant is responsible for arranging for their official transcripts (not copies) of final grades obtained in summer school to be sent directly to the OUAC, with copies to the selected universities that note the original was submitted to the OUAC. The applicant should make these arrangements with the summer school well before the grades are available Counsellors University Application Handbook

19 Appendix A: Valid Codes for Reporting Academic Data Course Title The description or name of the course (e.g., Music, Biology). Course Code A unique code to identify an Ontario high school course. It must be a common course code approved by the Ontario Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities. Sixth Character of the Common Course Code To facilitate academic information processing at the OUAC, courses reported during the February, April and July grades collections (second, third and fourth data transmissions) must be reported with the same sixth character as was reported in the application data in November. For example, a course reported as ENG4U1 on the application should be reported in all transmissions as ENG4U1 and not as ENG4U. Important: If a particular course is being taken simultaneously (e.g., in both day school and night school), the sixth character of the course code must be different for each course to ensure that the universities store the student s academic information correctly. E.g., ENG4U (day) and ENG4U (night). Completion Date The date that the course was completed or is expected to be completed. The format is YYYYMM. Duplicate entries for the same course code are possible if the completion date and/or the course type is different for each entry. Example: ENG4U completed last year would have a completion date of ENG4U to be upgraded in second semester this year would have a completion date of If the completion date and course codes are the same, then the sixth character of the course code must be different to ensure the universities receive it correctly. Note: In order for the OUAC to process grades data and to avoid errors in students academic records, schools must report course completion dates that are consistent between the application data and the grades collection data. For example, a course reported on the application with the completion date (February 2015) must be reported with exactly the same completion date (that is, and not ) on subsequent data transmissions. Credit Value The Ministry assigned weight or credit value of a specific course. On the forms submitted manually, record this information only if it is different than 1.0 (a blank in this field will default to 1.0). On data submitted electronically, no default is allowed. Valid Credit Values in the table is 0100 ; 1.5 in the table is 0150 ; 0.5 in the table is U/M courses must always carry a credit value of 1.0 or higher. Course Status Valid entries D Delete R Repeated W Withdrawn X Not applicable For Deleted Courses Electronic reporting must contain code D. Manual reporting: Leave this field blank and select drop beside the course. For Repeated Courses The Repeat designation is assigned to one of the successful course attempts, but only when final grades are available for both (all) successful attempts of the course. The R designation should be placed against the course with the lower passing grade. This code should not be used for failed attempts Counsellors University Application Handbook 19

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