MI Co-op Option

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What is MI Co-op?

A co-operative education (co-op) is an academic program coupled with experiential education attained in partnership between students, employers and an academic institution. The MI Co-op is an option within the MI program to complete 2 consecutive, paid, full-time co-op work terms and gain professional experience in your field of study. It is an opportunity to apply knowledge in a real world situation and gain academic credit for it.
 

Co-op Criteria

As per the Canadian Association for Co-operative Education (CAFCE), a co-op program is organized in accordance with the following criteria:
  • Each work situation is developed and/or approved by the co-op educational institution as a suitable learning situation
  • The co-op student is engaged in productive work rather than merely observing
  • The co-op student receives remuneration for the work performed
  • The co-op student's progress on the job is monitored by the co-operative educational institution
  • The co-op student's performance on the job is supervised and evaluated by the student's co-operative employer
  • Time spent in periods of work experience must be at least 30% of the time spent in academic study.

MI Co-op Structure

The co-op option will provide you with an opportunity to alternate academic terms with co-op work terms. As an MI Co-op student, you will have the chance to work in a full-time, paid position for two 4-month periods, or one 8-month period.
 

Academic Credit

Once accepted into the co-op option, you will enroll in two co-op courses, each worth 0.5 (FCE) credits, for each of the work terms. These courses will be graded “credit/non-credit” and will appear on your transcript.
 

Term Sequence

For MI Co-op students starting their studies in September 2016, two required co-op work terms will be:
  • Summer 2017 (May – August)
  • Fall 2017 (September – December);
  • OR an 8-month work term (May – December 2017).
There are two options in terms of completing the studies within a two-year frame:
 
Fall 2016
Winter 2017
Summer 2017
Fall 2017
Winter 2018
Summer 2018
Academic Term
Academic Term
Work Term
Work Term
Academic Term
Academic Term
2.0 FCE (4 x 0.5 courses)
2.0 FCE (4 x 0.5 courses)
0.5 FCE (1 x 0.5 co-op course)
0.5 FCE (1 x 0.5 co-op course)
2.0 FCE (4 x 0.5 courses)
1.0 FCE (2 x 0.5 courses)
 
 
Fall 2016
Winter 2017
Summer 2017
Fall 2017
Winter 2018
Summer 2018
Academic Term
Academic Term
Work Term
Work Term
Academic Term
N/A
2.0 FCE (4 x 0.5 courses)
2.0 FCE (4 x 0.5 courses)
1.0 FCE (0.5 co-op course and 0.5 course)
1.0 FCE (0.5 co-op course and 0.5 course)
2.0 FCE (4 x 0.5 courses)
N/A
 

Fees

  • $1200 auxiliary fee paid in two installments, i.e. $600 per co-op work term
 

Application Process

The MI Co-op is open to first year students only and the intake will take place each fall.
 
Key Dates
 
Info session Wednesday, September 21
Applications accepted September 21 - October 3 by 4:00 p.m.
Interviews October 11 - November 4
Final decision November 7
Acceptance forms submitted November 7 - 14
 

Info Session

All MI co-op students are strongly advised to attend the MI co-op info session where you will learn more about applying for the co-op option, mandatory course requirements, job search process, and on-the-job academic requirements. After a short presentation, you will have an opportunity to ask your questions and learn more about the last year's co-op experience. The info session will be held on Wednesday, September 21, 2016, 12pm (noon) - 1pm, in room 205.
 
Note: If you cannot attend the info session at noon, please come to the same session, on Wednesday, September 21, from 4pm to 5pm, in room 538.
 

Who can apply?

To apply, a candidate has to:
  • Be a current full-time first year MI student, who is a Canadian citizen, permanent resident of Canada, or international student
  • Be an MI student in a concentration only path; all 7 concentrations are included. Students completing a thesis are not eligible for the MI Co-op
In order to stay in the co-op option, and prior to your first work term, you will need to:
  • Have completed a minimum of two required courses in at least one of your declared concentrations
  • Have completed at least 8 half courses (4.0 FCE)
  • Have received minimum A- cumulative average
  • Have completed INF3900H Workplace Integrated Learning course during the winter term

When to apply?

Applications for the MI co-op option for 2016-17 will be accepted from September 21 to October 3, 2016 by 4:00 p.m.
 

How to apply?

If you wish to pursue this option, you will need to submit an application consisting of a letter of intent and resume as one PDF (file name should include your first and/or last name) at:
 
Applicants to the MI co-op option will be selected based on the quality of their (1) letter of intent and (2) resumé. If selected for the next round, students will be asked to attend (3) an interview with the MI Co-op Director and select faculty.

Criteria upon which applicants will be evaluated are outlined below.
 
1. Letter of intent (25 points)
In addition to being well written, as in, free of all typos, spelling errors, and syntactical and grammatical mistakes, the letter of intent should provide evidence of the following:
  • the student's appreciation for the pedagogical practice of workplace integrated learning and how their (if selected) co-op work placement will serve to advance her/his academic and professional career goals;
  • the student's clarity of direction with respect to the type of institution (public, private, non-profit) and the nature of the work experience (archives, records management, information systems, UX, libraries, information policy) being sought.
2. Resumé (5 points)
Resumés will be evaluated based on presentation and content (i.e. is it professional and polished).
 
3. Interview (20 points)
After the review of the applications, select students will be invited to an interview, which will be held between October 11 and November 4. Students will be asked to make a 3 minute presentation on the following topic: As a competitive program, what makes you an ideal (differentiated) candidate for a co-op position? The presentation will be followed by a 5 minute Q&A with the interview panel.
 
 
Final decision regarding the acceptance into the co-op option will be announced on November 7, 2016. Students who wish to accept the co-op option offer will need to submit their acceptance form by November 14, 2016.
 

MI Co-op Process

 
Before Co-op
During Co-op
After Co-op
  • Complete INF3900H taught by the MI Co-op Director during the Winter term
  • Apply for co-op positions
  • Attend all interviews
  • Complete at least 8 courses (4.0 FCE)
  • Maintain good academic standing (A-)
  • Develop goals and plan for co-op work term
  • The Co-op Director will make a site visit and meet with the employer
  • Complete the mid-term report (journaling)
  • Complete the final report
  • Provide feedback on your co-op experience
  • Have a presentation of your co-op experience
  • Get the notation for your transcript from the Co-op Director
  • Complete remaining courses for MI degree
 

Career Workshops

All MI co-op students are strongly advised to attend all career workshops, especially the Resume & CV, Cover Letter, and Job Interviews workshops, which will assist them with planning their co-op work terms, the co-op hiring process, and future career plans. The list of workshops can be found on the Career Services page and registration for workshops will be available on the Instructional Workshops (iSkills) page.
 

Co-op Job Search

As a co-op student, you will have access to co-op postings starting in January 2017. Each co-op student is responsible for sending an application to the employer, completing an interview, if invited, and obtaining an offer of employment. The Co-op Coordinator will be available to assist you with all of the steps in this process.
 
To qualify as a co-op work term, the co-op position needs to be:
  • Minimum of 12 consecutive weeks and up to 4 month long; an 8-month work term is also an option
  • Full-time, i.e. minimum of 35 hours a week
  • Paid
  • Relevant, i.e. work opportunity related to your studies
  • Supervised by a professional in the field
  • Approved by the MI Co-op Coordinator and/or Co-op Director
The estimated timeline for the hiring process is shown in the table below.
 
Work Term
Job Posting
Interview
Job Offer
Summer 2017
January - March 2017
February - April 2017
February - April 2017
Fall 2017
May - July 2017
June - August 2017
June - August 2017
 

FAQ

1. Can I take less than 8 half courses (4.0 FCE) before the first co-op work term?
The minimum number of courses to complete before the co-op work term is 8 courses (4.0 FCE) which is equivalent of a full year and a requirement for the co-op. A full academic year, i.e. 8 courses, ensures the adequate level and range of competences needed for successfully completing a co-op work opportunity. This is non-negotiable. Students registered with disability services, please make an appointment to speak with the Director of the program in person.
 
2. Is it possible to change the term sequencing?
Apart from the option showcased above, no alternative sequencing of the schedule for study and work terms is possible as the Faculty's human resources are such that the co-operative course cannot be run year round.
 
3. I noticed there are required courses only offered in the Fall of the second year. What should I do?
The faculty will re-arrange the course scheduling to fit the co-op timeline. All required courses, which are only offered in the second year, will be offered in the second year winter term.
 
4. Can I find my own co-op position?
If you find your own co-op position, please contact the MI Co-op Director and/or Coordinator to provide a full job posting or description and discuss the suitability of the position to your academic studies. If the position is relevant, then the employer will be contacted to ensure they would be willing to take an active part in the co-op partnership, both with the student and the iSchool. All other co-op requirements need to be met as well.
 
5. If I am in the TALint program, can I still participate in the co-op program?
If you are a successful co-op candidate, you will be required to resign from your TALint position.
 
For more information, please contact
Isidora Petrovic, Careers Officer
isidora [dot] petrovicatutoronto [dot] ca  |  phone: 416-978-3282