admission to Dalhousie University
April 22, 2021 9:55 AM   Subscribe

Is it possible to get into Dal, with a low 80s average in grade 12? Specifically this individual is hoping to major in History. Dal is not know to be easy to get into (Macleans cites the average entering grade as 88%), but as with other universities, I'm assuming sciences/engineering programs skew the entrance averages up.

Bonus question. With a low 80s average, which universities in Ontario/Quebec or the Atlantic would offer the best odds for admission? Student is currently in high school, in Ontario, if that helps. Thanks in advance
posted by walkinginsunshine to Education (6 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
From this Macleans admission info page it looks like for Arts at Dal the absolute minimum is 70%. I don't think Canadian universities share data on the actual average of students being admitted
posted by GuyZero at 11:37 AM on April 22

For History, something to also consider is what type of history the student would like to study. For example, if they are interested in International Relations c1789-2000, I would recommend the University of Toronto over York University. But if their interest were in Canadian history or Social history (study of class structure, gender, race, etc.), I would recommend York over UofT, because that department is much better for that specific kind of history. For medieval, I'm not sure - UofT has excellent graduate level medieval history, but I don't know what the undergraduate program offers - and I don't know about ancient/classical, African or South Asian. For Chinese history, I recall that both were pretty good, and York has an amazing Chinese language library for modern documents.

I don't know what grades are required today for either university, but York generally has lower requirements than UofT. In 1998, low 80s would have been fine for UofT, while York admitted people with high school grades in the 70s. But it's been 22 years and I gather things have changed.

As a former History undergrad and graduate student: I would recommend that (in addition to looking at grade cutoffs), the student also just skim the undergraduate course offerings to see if those fit their interests. History is much more diffused subject than the sciences or even literature - what courses are offered will differ wildly from university to university, depending on who is in the department. I did that to help decide where to attend after being admitted to two universities, and that really helped me figure out what was the best fit for me and what I wanted to study.
posted by jb at 12:42 PM on April 22 [2 favorites]

Response by poster: Yep, I’m hoping someone who attended or had a friend/family member attend can weigh in.
posted by walkinginsunshine at 12:43 PM on April 22

Best answer: I just asked someone I know who is currently attending Dalhousie, and they are personally aware of several people who have been accepted with low 80s grades for arts degrees. So it sounds possible!
posted by fourpotatoes at 3:11 PM on April 22

Sorry for the late answer but I wanted to check with a prof I know at Dal. Yes, very good shot at entry with that average. I would suggest if you are looking in the Maritimes Mt. A. might be a good one, and York here in Toronto as well.
posted by warriorqueen at 7:43 AM on April 23

Not sure if this is helpful, as it was 13 years ago and I was categorized as an independent student and already had a college diploma. I'm also Nova Scotian, so there are some different streams my application may have fallen into.

I was accepted to study an arts major at Dal in 2008 with a mediocre HS grade average. I can't remember what it was exactly (I believe mid-80s). I had high marks in most of my courses, but a math mark of 65.
posted by Stoof at 8:34 AM on April 23

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