Academic Advising

Freshmen: Schedule Planning

Selecting courses for your first semester of college is very important as you set the stage for a successful college career. The General Education Requirements listed in the Undergraduate Bulletin is your starting point. First semester freshmen should focus on taking courses to meet those requirements.


  1. Begin by reading and reviewing your “Academic Advising Orientation” booklet. This booklet should also become part of your Advising Portfolio.
  2. Use your MATRICULATION SHEET. A Matriculation Instruction sheet is provided to all entering students to the University. This form provides basic student information, student clearances, advisor information (who and where their office is located), and results of placement tests and courses that are required to be taken by the student. It is to be used by the advisor in assisting the student in making course selections and planning the first semester [and often the first year].  A student’s personal information and results are also available on MyStuff.
  3. CREDIT HOUR GUIDELINES: As one begins their college career it is important to have a successful first semester, i.e., to START STRONG so you can continue strong and finish strong! Use the following guidelines for number of credits to take in your first semester to enhance your chances of academic success and transition to college.     IF YOU:
  • have an Advising Index of less than 275 = 15 maximum credits recommended
  • have an Advising index of 275-325 = 17 maximum credits recommended [range of 14-17]
  • have an Advising Index of greater than 325 = 16-18 credits recommended
  • accepted Honors Program invitation = 17-18 credits with at least one honors course
  1. Develop your schedule. A student should always have a tentative schedule developed prior to meeting with their advisor each time for registration.



Select from the following courses to set the core of your first semester schedule as well as help meet general education requirements. Requirements not complete in first semester should likely be completed during the second semester of the first year. Freshmen should select a total of 12-18 credit hours: 12 credits minimum required for full-time status; 18 credits is the maximum credit load. The actual number of credits should be co-determined by advisee and advisor based upon academic preparation and readiness = use your Advising Index score to determine your first semester total credits.


  •  PRESIDENT’S SEMINAR: “EXP1101: President’s Seminar on Life Skills/Health and Wellness Colloquia” is required of all entering freshmen and MUST BE on the fall semester schedule.


  • FIRST YEAR SEMINAR: Half of all entering freshmen will be required to take FYS1000 in the fall; half will be required to complete the course in the spring. If required for fall – an FYS course MUST BE on your schedule.


  • ENGLISH*: determined by placement = if so placed, students take ENG1101 in fall and ENG1102 in spring; OR if placed take ENG1103 in the semester that is noted on your matriculation sheet.


  • ACADEMIC DEVELOPMENT*: determined by placement – if required, you must register for ADV1101 – Foundations for Academic Success – in the fall semester [unless completed during Summer Experience].

ADV1101 is an academic and life skills course designed to improve student grades, transition to college, and  overall academic success. Open to ALL entering freshmen – especially recommended for students with an Advising Index of 275 or less.


  • MATHEMATICS*: determined by placement test; choices: MTH1010 (does not meet graduation requirement), MTH1130, MTH1150, MTH1210, MTH1310 (required for business majors); MTH1410 (required of science majors); students may also take MTH1110 which counts for graduation (no placement required); student must begin at their placement level


  • FOREIGN LANGUAGE*: determined by placement; language choices: French, German, Spanish, Chinese, Japanese, Arabic, Italian, Russian, or Portuguese   – students must complete one 4-credit course at the 1020 level or higher of a language; student must begin study at their placement level.


  • PERFORMING/VISUAL ARTS: [one course required] choices: ART1050/2050/2080/2090/2120/2220/2888/ 3050/3150/3850; MUS1000/1600/3600/3610/3620/3630/3640; THE1000/1400/2400


  • RELIGION: [one course required] choices: REL1001/1002/1003/1004/1005/1006/1007/1008/1009/2001/ 2003/2004/2006/2020/2021/2022/2023/2026/2036/2037/3007/3028/3033/3034/3035


  • HISTORY: [one course required] choices: any 1000- or 2000-level history course (except HST2901)


  • NATURAL SCIENCE w/LAB: [one lab science course required] choices: BIO1100/1120/1399; ENV1110; CHM1000/1010/ 1510/1616; NSC2100/2200* (*for education majors); PHY1000/1050/1100/1200/1510/2011. See your advisor for the appropriate choice for your major and/ or career plans.


  • PHYSICAL EDUCATION:  any 1-credit PEC activity required (some have additional fees); may be taken any time prior to graduation


  • ADDITIONAL ONE-HOUR COURSE CHOICES: students may choose to take one or more of the following 1-credit courses: IDS1151 – Cultural Events; REL1019 – Christian Worship [does not meet religion requirement]


  • HONORS COURSES: Only students who have accepted the Honors Program invitation may enroll in a course designated as HONORS



  • ALL courses are one semester in length. You are only registering for one semester of a course (not an entire year). The general education requirements for the freshmen year is to be spread out over both fall and spring semesters. Thus, you are not expected to take, nor can you, all of the general education courses listed on the other side your first semester.
  • Courses are by credit hour – most courses are four credit hours. (It takes 128 credit hours to graduate.)
  • Try to avoid taking 3 back-to-back courses. It is generally a good idea, anyway, not to have three courses back-to-back anytime. Two courses back-to-back are usually okay.
  • Try to avoid scheduling all of your courses on M-W-F or TUES-THURS. It may sound good, but doesn’t work well for most students. Spread them out. If possible, the best is half on M-W-F and half on T-TH.
  • Generally, ONLY courses in the 1000-level are eligible for you to take your first semester. Any other courses at the 2000-level need approval. [See: Day Course Schedule: Freshman Courses] You may DROP/ADD and change courses through the first week of classes. The last day to DROP a course with a “W” is the Friday after Fall or Spring break, as appropriate. See your advisor for assistance!




For entering freshmen who have a particular program of study decided upon, there are some specific courses which need to be on their first semester schedule. By majors, they are:



Art ART1050 or ART1060
Biology(Pre-Med; Pre-Dental) BIO1399; CHM1010 may be included; Do not enroll in BIO1100
Chemistry CHM1510; begin math sequence
Elementary Education EDU1200; MTH1110 or higher per placement – need 2 math courses; NSC2220 or BIO1100
Special Education EDU1200; MTH1110 or higher per placement – need 2 math courses; BIO1100
Communication (all majors) COM1110 or COM1111
Exercise Science BIO2070 in fall; BIO2060 in spring
Business MTH1310 [unless placed in MTH1410]
International Business begin foreign language at placement level
Mathematics begin at placement level
History Any 1000- or 2000-level course in major field
Physical Education Cert. BIO1120; EDU1200
Athletic Training BIO2070; ATR1211
Theatre THE1000 or THE1500; THE1100