Students after class at Convocation Hall. Sandy Ma/THE VARSITY

“I feel like it’s just a better learning environment, as opposed to being in a small classroom because [in small classrooms] if people are talking it’s easy to get distracted. And I know people are on their phones and they do talk, but you can easily just move your seat. It’s better because there are projectors on all three sides so you can see well and you can hear well as well. But I had psychology… [and] I was like two minutes late and I was sitting on the floor.”

— Mona Mahmoudi, political science

“You don’t have to be completely focused all the time you can take your side notes…I heard for psychology they have films so I can go home and rewatch the lecture. [Although], for high school there are a little less people in the room so the teacher can answer questions and help out individuals all the time.”

Isabelle Kim, life sciences

“The first thing that I immediately noticed was how big it was. Like the main floor and then the second balcony, and then there was [one] more balcony above the second balcony. The quoted figure was seven hundred people, but it feels like there’s just so [many] more people in there… It really does emphasize that in university, you are not one on one with the teacher anymore… I am a believer that having a personal connection with the teacher, as fluffy as it seems, [it] really is important to the educational experience on top of the lecture and PowerPoint presentation, and that’s something that’s, frankly, not there.”

— Frederick Zhang, life sciences

“This place is so big, right? You can meet a lot of people, which can be really useful… The {professors] are nice. [Laughs.]”

— Gloria Sun, life sciences

“It feels like … I’m finally in university because we didn’t have that kind of stuff in high school. Being in a place like that and knowing that there’s a bunch of people learning the same thing, it’s kind of encouraging, but I feel worried that I have to compete with these people at the same time.”

— Amon Yamamota, life sciences

“It was definitely overwhelming, and you didn’t really know where the good seats were, so you couldn’t take advantage… I tried first floor once and really hated it, so I went up to the third… the echo from the microphone [on the first floor] — I hated that.

— Ahmed Osman, life sciences

“It was pretty overwhelming, I’m not used to such a big room. I think it was more of the [numbers of] people, not exactly the [size of the] hall, but just how many people there were. But, I think it’s also really cool; it’s a different experience;… My biggest [issue with the hall] is getting out of there: it takes a while to get out and it takes a while to get in, so that would be the only concern I have.”

— Mieka Saunders, french

“It was actually smaller than I expected. I think it’s because I heard so much about it: people saying [that] it was crazy, but it’s really not that bad. If you come early enough to get an okay seat … you can see and hear perfectly fine. It’s the getting in and getting out that’s bad, but the actual lectures are fine.”

— Zosia Gontarz, life sciences

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