Friday, November 30, 2012

Spring and Intersession Registration

Freshman Registration begins today, Friday, November 30 at 3PM.  By now, you should have met with an advisor in the CAS Advising Center to ask questions, review your schedule and receive your term PIN.  When your PIN becomes activated, you will follow these instructions to register for your spring and intersession courses. Wondering what to do if you have problems? 

Common Spring/Intersession Registration Woes
  • The Course I wanted is closed!  Can I be written in?  Ordinarily, it is not possible to be written into a closed course, even with the professor’s permission.  However, the CAS Advisors maintain a wish list.  If the course you truly want is closed, stay calm!  Register for the next best thing and then send one of us an email with your R# and the name and CRN of the course you are trying to get into.  Course enrollment fluctuates after final grades come out as people change their minds or determine that they can no longer take the courses they have planned.  If you are on the wish list, both you and your advisor can check during the summer for openings.  Additionally, getting your name on the wish list is beneficial because, if there are a lot of people waiting for a course, departments will occasionally open new sections but we need to know that you are waiting for a seat!

·         The computer says “cross registration only”!  What does that mean?  For some science courses such as BIOL 141/142, BIOL 110/111, CHEM 112/113, CHEM 232/233 and their corresponding labs, as well as for the WRTG 105/106 sequence, you are required to register for the same section of the course as you were registered for in the fall semester.  If you wish to make a change to your section, you may do so on Monday, December 3. 

  • The course I wanted says “major restriction” but I am declaring that major! Many courses are restricted to specific majors.  If you are currently in the process of declaring a major and are unable to register for an open section of a course for that major, call the CAS Advising Center immediately!  We can add you to the course!  In contacting us please remember:

1.  Call us--don't try to come in!!  By the time you make it in to see us and we get off the phone with students who are calling for help, all of your classes might close!  It's always best to call!!

 2.  Completely sign out of your myscranton account!  Only one person can be logged into your registration at a time!  If you are logged in, we can't help you!  It can take a long time for the computer to log you out and the longer it takes, the less likely it is you'll get the classes you want!
3.  Be prepared!  Have your R# and the CRN of the course(s) you want on hand so we can help you faster!

  • The course I want is “reserve closed”!  What does that mean?  Many courses reserve a certain number of seats for students in particular majors.  Once the non-reserved seats are taken, students who are not in those majors are not able to register for the class.  Reserves come off on December 3.  Email your advisor to tell them you didn’t get a seat.  If the course is open when the reserve is removed, your advisor can add you to the course. 
  •   My Account is On Hold!! Login to your myscranton account to make sure you are not on hold before registration begins.  When you have a hold on your account, neither you nor your academic advisor will be able to register you for the classes.  Most holds are financial.  You will need to talk to the Bursar’s Office to resolve the problem.  They are located in St. Thomas Hall room 201 and you can call them at 570-941-4062.
  • I never came in for registration!  If you haven't kept an initial advising appointment for fall preregistration, and you are not currently scheduled for an appointment, the CAS Advisors will not be able to help you until Monday, November 30.  We are solidly booked up until registration now.  Until you have your initial appointment, you can't get your PIN and therefore can't register or be registered for fall classes.  If you call during registration, we can't help you! We open at here as early as possible to improve your chances of getting into the courses you want!
Other things to chew on...

  • Your PIN becomes activated today but it stays activated until the end of the first week of the spring semester.  There is a lot of time for courses to open up!  Be patient and don't panic!

  • When you completed your preregistration, you and your advisor both signed off on the schedule you planned.  Your advisor certified that the courses you chose were consistent with your academic goals and would help you progress toward timely graduation in your major.  If you make changes to your schedule besides switching sections or adding a PHED course, you should check in with your advisor to make sure you will still be on track!
Katie Robinson
CAS Academic Advisor

Friday, October 12, 2012

Pre-Registration Time

While you may be just getting into the swing of life and academics at Scranton, it's already time to select your courses for the Spring 2013 semester!  We know that this can be a stressful task the first time around but we are here to help you along the way!  This post will tell you everything you need to know to successfully register for classes!

You have an appointment already scheduled with an advisor!!
You will be meeting with an advisor either in October or the beginning of November to get your course schedule approve, retrieve your PIN and discuss any concerns you may have.  An appointment has already been made for you!  If you haven't done so, go to the CAS Advising Center on the 3rd floor of 600 Linden Street to pick up your appointment materials!!

Before your appointment—Completely fill out your course Registration Form. 
You should fill out your form to the best of your ability before your appointment.  To do so you will:
  • Fill out the Semester Questionnaire in your appointment letter envelope.
  • Review the online catalog ( to determine what major and cognate courses are required for your major for the spring semester.
  •  Review your CAPP to determine your progress in completing required general education courses.  Decide which ones you would like to complete in the fall.
  • Use the purple sheet to guide you in accessing the online course search.  Look up the courses you plan to take.  Choose the specific sections for which you intend to register.
  •  Put all course information on the Course Registration Form.  Don’t forget to record all the CRNs and days and times for each course. (see example)
On the day of your appointment—arrive on time for your appointment. 
         Bring your completed Semester Planning Guide and your completed Course Registration Form.  At this appointment, you will discuss your intended schedule with an academic adviser.  Once your advisor approves your schedule, he or she will give you a registration  term PIN.
     Friday, November 16—use your PIN to go online and register for your courses for the spring 2013 semester. 

     Your PIN will become active between 3 and 4:45pm.  Once it becomes active, you can go online to register for the classes your adviser approved.  You can follow the instructions here or follow the link to this video which explains how to register using your term PIN.  Your PIN stays active until the end of the first week of class in the Fall 2012 semester. 

     Call us for help!

     If you experience difficulty in registering, call the CAS Academic Advising Center (570-941-6323)!



Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Academic Success Strategies

Now that you are several weeks into the semester, you probably have a better feel for things.  You've gotten to know your roommate, found all of your classes and are finally becoming accustomed to showering in flip flops.  But how confident do you feel academically?  Your first few tests are rapidly approaching so its time to talk about hitting the books!

How much should I be studying?

The general recommendation is that a college student should be hitting the books 2-3 hours a week for every hour spent in class.  That means, if you are carrying 15 credits, you should be spending 30-45 hours a week on work outside the classroom!  This time doesn't only need to be spent in studying.  It can also be reading before class, reviewing lecture notes, writing papers and working on projects.  The important part is that you put the time in!  For many students at the University of Scranton, this recommendation feels unrealistic at first.  A lot of freshmen never truly had to study in high school.  However, college tests WILL BE DIFFERENT!  It's better to invest too much time during the first couple weeks and realize that you can afford to study less than it is to put in a minimal effort and have to spend the rest of the semester trying to improve your grades.

How do I find the time?

Time management can be difficult your first semester.  It's hard to juggle all of your responsibilities and also spend 30-45 hours a week on work.  You must realize that what makes your time so valuable is that you have a very finite amount of it.  Recognize this value and invest it wisely.  There are a number of approaches that students find helpful:

  • Buy a Planner!  (or a large calendar)  If you haven't bought a planner yet, the time is now.  It's not realistic to think you can maintain your schedule in your head.  Once you have a planner, sit down with all your syllabi and record the dates for all major assignments and quizzes.  If you can't afford a planner, you can always print out a free calendar at places like this website!  
  • Make a Fixed Commitment Calendar!  On a fixed commitment calendar you plan for all of your fixed, or unchanging commitments such as the time you spend at work, in class or watching your favorite TV show.  Next you will plan out all of your meal times and study times as well as your recreation. Hang it somewhere visible so you can make more informed decisions regarding the way you use your time.
  • Plan for Large Assignments in Advance!  When you record all of your assignments in a planner or on a calendar, you will be able to determine if you have particularly hectic times ahead this semester.  Plan ahead for weeks with multiple tests.  Also, break down large assignments into smaller components with mini due dates to minimize procrastination.  There are a number of websites available to help you do just that if you aren't sure how to start on your own.  Here is just one example!
How do I study smarter not harder?

Location, Location, Location--where you study can be just as important as how much!  Find an area as clear of distractions as possible.  Your room is usually not a very good choice--there are too many temptations--the TV, friends across the hall, video games and your computer.  Also, planning to study on your bed is akin to planning a nap.  Remove yourself from most distractions either by going to the library or a study area in one of the buildings on campus.  You will finish your work faster and will be able to enjoy those other things guilt free.

Take Breaks--research shows that the average person can only concentrate fully for a maximum of 45 minutes at a time.  Try to avoid committing to a three hour cram session.  Set a timer for yourself and try to get up and take a short walk or move around a little at least once every 45 minutes to optimize your focus.  

Read and Review!  If your professor has listed chapters for reading, make sure you are reading them prior to class.  This will help you understand the lecture better and it will enable you to ask questions and be more actively involved in class.  The expectation is typically not that you will understand everything you read before class.  As soon after class as possible, it is wise to review your course notes.  Consider adopting a note taking system such as Cornell to optimize your interaction with your course notes.   

What about PowerPoints?   If your professor uses PowerPoints for notes, print them out and bring them to class to make additional notes.  

What if I'm struggling?
If you are struggling, don't try to go it alone.  There are a number of resources at the University of Scranton that can help ensure your success.  If you are struggling consider all of these options:
  • Talk to your instructor.  He or she is accustomed to answering questions about the material and will be able to help you decide how to focus your efforts.  If you are performing poorly but seeking help, that is generally regarded more favorably than if you are struggling and doing nothing about it.
  • Talk to your advisor!  We can help you discuss options and plan your next step!
  • Seek a tutor.  You don't have to wait until you are experiencing academic difficulty to seek a tutor.  Do it at the first sign of a problem.  The Center for Teaching and Learning Excellence offers one on one tutors as well as group tutoring opportunities.  Go here for more more information.  
Finding out More
If you want to discuss any of these concepts in greater detail, come to the Advising Center today! 

Katherine Robinson
CAS Academic Advisor

Friday, August 31, 2012

Changing Your Schedule

Even if you felt incredibly excited and certain about your Fall schedule before the semester began, it's possible that only fifty minutes in a class can change your mind.  You still aren't committed to your schedule!  Let's talk about your options!



Adding a Class and Changing a Section/Time

Today, Friday, August 31 is the last day to add a course to your schedule for the Fall 2012 semester.  Changing the time, professor or section of your course is also considered adding a class, so today is the last day to do those things as well.  The CAS Academic Advising Center is only open until 4:30pm so you must make the change to your schedule before then.  You may call the advising center, email an advisor or stop by to add a course. 


Dropping a Course After the Add Period

Occasionally, it becomes necessary to drop a course after the add period.  Maybe, despite your best efforts and intentions, you feel unable to do well in a course.  Maybe you have changed your intended major and no longer feel it is desirable to continue in a certain class.  There are some important considerations when deciding to drop!

How do I drop a class?

If you wish to drop a class you must first visit the CAS Advising Center.  You'll meet with an advisor and complete a drop form.  After that, you must meet with your professor to get him/her to sign your drop form.  Then you must return the form to the CAS Advising Center. 

When can I drop?

There are two important dates to keep in mind when considering a drop:

  • Wednesday, September 26--This is the last day to drop a course with NO GRADE.  The course will not appear on your transcript if you drop by this date.
  • Friday, November 9--This is the last day to drop a course.  If you drop a course at any point between September 26 and this day, you will receive a "W" on your transcript. While a "W" does not provide an indication of academic performance and is not included in your GPA, it will forever be part of your academic record.  

How will dropping impact my academic progress?

If you drop a course after August 31, 2012, you will be unable to add a course to your fall schedule.  In order to complete any degree at the University of Scranton, you must earn a minimum of 129 credits during your time here. That means that you should complete an average of slightly more than 16 credits a semester if you wish to graduate in 4 years.  You can afford to drop a class the first semester, but if you make a habit of dropping after the add period, you may need to consider summer and intersession courses to stay on track for graduation.  Talk to an advisor for information that is more specific to you!

Friday, August 24, 2012

Welcome Freshmen!

 Welcome Freshmen!!!

Welcome Freshmen to The University of Scranton!!!  Your first semester in college is an incredibly exciting time but it can also present you with some brand new challenges!  In the CAS Advising Center, we are excited to help guide you as you navigate these uncharted waters!  No matter what concern you are facing, you can bring it to us first.  If we can’t help you, we will make sure we place you in the right hands!   

There are so many ways to get and stay in touch with us!

  • In person:  We are located at 600 Linden Street and are open Monday-Friday from 8:30-4:30. You can make an appointment or just walk in.
  • By phone:  570-941-6323
  • On the web:    
    1. We update our blog every Friday with the information most relevant to you!  You can enter your email address in the box to the right to be informed when updates are made!
    2. We maintain a Facebook page for quick announcements!
    3. Our website is full of information and resources to help you make the most of your Scranton experience!

Here are some important things to know and consider as you head into the first week of class:

Location, location, location!

You should check your schedule online once more before classes start on Monday, August 28!  Occasionally, the location of your classes may change at the very last minute.  For physical education classes, you must report to the John Long Center where you will find the specific location of your class posted.  

You can still change your schedule! 

You have until Friday, August 31, 2012 to add new courses to your schedule.  During the first week of class you can change virtually anything on your schedule.  Just come by the Advising Center to make an adjustment.  You have until Wednesday, September 26 to drop a course, though you will not be able to add anything to your schedule or change course sections after the first week of class.

You can still change your major!

You have the entire first week of class to change your major.  Just drop in the CAS Advising Center and we can help!  If you decide to change your major after the first week, you will not be able to officially do so until the end of the Fall 2012 semester. 

We are here!!

I said it once already, but it bears repeating!  We are very pleased to welcome you to The University of Scranton and are committed to making your transition to life here as smooth and pleasant as possible.  Please don't hesitate to contact us with any questions or concerns or to drop by just to say hello!

Katie Robinson
CAS Academic Advisor