As the end of the fall semester approaches, registration for the spring term will soon begin. To help you navigate the registration process, Jennifer McCreight, Ph.D., director of the School of Education, Civic Leadership, and Social Change answered some frequently asked questions about course selection, important deadlines, and more.

How does a student know which classes they should take based on their major, general education requirements, and elective courses?

At Hiram, you are encouraged to work closely with your advisor to keep track of what courses you need and when they will be offered. By meeting with and discussing major and career goals with your advisor, you can develop a plan and take advantage of the many diverse classes both inside and outside of your major and the core requirements.

Another resource is the College Catalog, which shows you what courses are required across your major and what is necessary for you to complete your core requirements. Be sure to refer to the catalog that was in place the year you enrolled at Hiram.

Once you know what you need to complete within your major/the core, and when courses will be offered, it’s much easier to narrow down any electives or choice classes that are on your radar. 

It’s critical for you, as a student, to keep your own organized files (whether these files are digital or paper copies, or you reference Degree Works), showing what classes you have taken, what classes you still need, and what you wish to take in the future (electives, core, minor coursework, etc.). This is helpful in advising sessions, as you and your advisor work together to make sure you are taking what you need, and that you also get to explore other exciting course options across the college. 

How many back-up courses should a student have in mind?

This depends on your status, in terms of whether you are categorized as a first year, sophomore, junior, or senior since this determines how soon you get to register for courses. For example, a first-year student should have a couple of back-ups for any class their advisor thinks might fill quickly, but this is much less necessary for a student in their junior or senior year who is able to register on the first or second available dates. 

Remember to sign up for classes as soon as you are able! Waiting even a day or two past your assigned date for registration increases the chances that you will be shut out of your intended courses due to your peers filling up the slots. 

How should a student prepare for an upcoming advising appointment?

If you are a first-year student, look at the core requirements that you have not yet fulfilled, and use the class schedules on to find options in those areas that you might be interested in taking. Similarly, if you are taking a First Year Urgent Questions course in the spring, look at the list of options on Class Schedules, and choose a few you’d want to take. This helps you and your advisor to plug these courses in around any other classes that might be required for your intended major (if you have one at this point – which you may not.

If you have met with an advisor in the past, review any notes you have about what classes are coming up for your major or in the core and check Class Schedules to see when these courses are offered. Come to your advising session prepared with any questions you have about upcoming classes. Your advisor will have ideas for courses, but this will help to make sure you cover everything.

And finally, all students should prepare for advising by reflecting on what they hope to experience at Hiram in the coming semesters, so they can talk about this with their advisor. This may be related to their major, their intended major, minors, core or elective classes they wish to take, or even their ideas for a Hiram Connect experience. Advising is a perfect time to talk about all of this with your advisor, who may have ideas for you that weren’t even on your radar.

Do you have any additional advice for a student who is registering for courses soon?

Never hesitate to reach out to your advisor with questions. Also, the morning of registration, don’t panic if your alt pin doesn’t work, you get an error message, or you are shut out of a class. Your advisor and/or the Registrar’s Office can help you with any of these challenges, so just reach out to them via email. 

The registration schedule is as follows:

Seniors – 8 a.m. on Monday, Nov. 1

Juniors – 8:00 a.m. on Tuesday, Nov. 2

Sophomores – 8:00 a.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 3

First-Years – 8:00 a.m. on Thursday, Nov. 4

Special Populations (including CCP students) – 8:00 a.m. on Friday, Nov. 5

Before you register for spring term courses, make sure that you are cleared to register! There may be holds or outstanding issues on your account. You can check if you are cleared to register here. 

To find more information regarding registration and courses to take, you can find that here.


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