Differences between College and University

Being a direct-entry transfer student, I have noticed many differences between the college I previously attended and Ryerson. I am grateful that I have both perspectives, and wanted to share four main differences I have personally noticed.

1. Class Size

Students in lecture hall

Lecture | Giphy









In college I was used to very small class sizes, usually no more than 30 students in each class. Coming to Ryerson most of my third-year university classes have approximately 90 students in each of them. Although this may seem significantly bigger, I have not noticed very much of a difference when it comes to getting help from professors or my level of participation in class.

2. Campus Size

Person walking under Ryerson sign

Ryerson | Giphy









My college was a series of buildings all attached to each other, and the student population was relatively small. At Ryerson there are significantly more students, more buildings, and the campus covers a larger area overall.

3. Courses

Guinea pig wearing glasses with pencil in mouth

Guinea Pig | Giphy









College programs are typically very specialized, so there is little room for choosing your courses, and when you do get to choose the options are limited. Going to a large university allows for more customization. There are so many courses to choose from, especially when you hit 3rd and 4th year.  

4. Content Delivery

2 women dancing at desk

Dancing | Giphy

Content in university is delivered mostly through lectures with workshops/practical/hands-on learning built-in when necessary. Whereas in college every class I took would involve some sort of hands-on practical activity to apply the lecture content to, and sometimes there would just be a practical activity without a formal lecture.

More information for university and college transfer students can be found online!

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