The University of Toronto has one of the strongest research and teaching faculties in North America, presenting top students at all levels with an intellectual environment unmatched in depth and breadth on any other Canadian campus. The University is Canada’s most important research institution and has gained an international reputation for its research. The rankings make it clear, that University of Toronto stands among the best public universities in the world and recognized as Canada’s top university.
The University also has the highest number of Nobel Prize winning graduates in Canada, it has been the center of some major medical and scientific discoveries including insulin, the electric heart pacemaker, and the gene responsible for the more dangerous stream of Alzheimer's disease.
Additionally, with over 15 million holdings and spanning 3 campuses, the University of Toronto is home to the second largest university libraries and one of the top 4 research libraries in North America.
The University of Toronto was founded as King’s College in 1827 and has evolved into a large and complex institution. It now occupies three campuses and is affiliated with several colleges and institutes. There are ten fully affiliated teaching hospitals in metropolitan Toronto. The University’s faculties conduct research in many places in Canada and around the world. It currently enrolls more students, employs more faculty staff, and offers a greater range of courses than any other Canadian university. To support its work of teaching and research, the University has collected a library that is the largest in Canada and among the best in the world. The University maintains many laboratories and specialized aids to research. The University of Toronto Press Inc. is the chief institution of its kind in Canada and one of the most important scholarly publishers in North America.
Alumni of the University of Toronto's colleges, faculties and professional schools have assumed notable roles in a wide range of fields and specialties. Some of the most well-known alumni of the University include high government officials and World Leaders such as: Governors General Vincent Massey and Adrienne Clarkson, Prime Ministers William Lyon Mackenzie King, Arthur Meighen, Lester B. Pearson and Paul Martin, and 14 Justices of the Supreme Court, President of Latvia Vaira Vīķe-Freiberga, Premier of the Republic of China Liu Chao-shiuan and President of Trinidad and Tobago Noor Hassanali.
Some of the University’s current notable faculty members include John C. Polanyi, winner of the 1986 Nobel Prize in Chemistry for his major contributions in the development of the laser, Peter St. George-Hyslop, the leader of a team of researchers whose work uncovered 2 genes responsible for the early-onset of Alzheimer's, and Tak Wah Mak, the geneticist who originally cloned a T-cell gene, an integral component of the immune system.
The Times Higher Education World University Rankings of 2014-2015 ranks the University of Toronto at 20th place globally and 1st in Canada, while the QS World University Rankings of 2014 place the university at 20th in the world. In the Academic Ranking of World Universities of 2014, the University of Toronto is placed at 24th in the world and 1st in Canada.
Liberal arts education is the heart of the undergraduate curriculum at Toronto, and the Faculty of Arts and Science has more students than any other faculty. The education of students for the professions has always been an important part of the University’s role, and the University accordingly maintains a wide range of professional faculties. The University’s insistence on the importance of research in all disciplines has made it the major center for graduate education in Canada. In many fields it produces a majority of the nation’s doctoral candidates. The quality and range of the programs - undergraduate, graduate and professional - attract students from all parts of the province, from around the country and from abroad.
The University currently holds classes at the main St. George Campus, at campuses in Mississauga and Scarborough, and at nine associated teaching hospitals. Students are allowed to take courses for credit in any of the University’s associated colleges, which are smaller and more intimate. The college system dates back to the earliest days of the University of Toronto and remains one of the university's most distinctive features today. Each of the seven colleges on the St. George campus is a unique community of scholars and students within the Faculty of Arts & Science.
Each college has its own culture and all provide core services for their students, including academic and financial counselling, accommodation, orientation, scholarships and bursaries, and social gatherings. Many students discover that their college is one of the most important factors in their university experience. When applying to a college it is important to examine the characteristics of the colleges carefully, and rank them on your application according to your priorities.
The University of Toronto has the following faculties: