Registration for the fall 2020 semester is currently underway at The University of Memphis and advisors of the College of Communication and Fine Arts are on hand to demystify seven myths, misconceptions and common pitfalls associated with getting scheduled for classes.
Myth 1: “I need to pay for all my classes up front before I can register.”
The Truth: Students don’t need to pay for all of their classes as soon as they register.
When and where to pay tuition is a common misconception among new college students.
“The payment deadline is normally two weeks before classes start, but students want to check the official fee payment deadlines,” said Rika Hudson, Student Success Advisor with the College of Communication and Fine Arts.
For more information on payment deadlines, check the University of Memphis Bursar’s website.
Myth 2: “I have to wait till grades post to register.”
The Truth: You can go ahead and register as soon as it’s available.
A student is able to sign up for classes as soon as the corresponding registration date hits. Even students taking prerequisite courses are able to sign up before grades have been posted.
“With prerequisites, it’s easy for the registrar to check if you’re passing a required class,” said Laurie Snyder, Assistant to the Dean for Undergraduate Studies. “However, you will be removed if you fail said class. In the event that you weren’t successful, the advising staff of the Dean’s office stands ready to help you get set up.”
Myth 3: “If I have a hold on my account, I can’t be advised.”
The Truth: Your advisor doesn’t care about the hold on your account.
A hold can be placed on an account for numerous reasons ranging from parking tickets to library fees. However, a student with a hold is still able to set up an appointment with their academic advisor.
“We are still willing to see you regardless of any holds you might have an your account,” Snyder said. “As soon as that hold is lifted, you can go ahead and register for classes.”
Myth 4: “I don’t have access to the same online tools my advisor does.”
The Truth: Students can easily view degree-related information using the Navigate system.
With Navigate, the official appointment scheduling platform for academic advising, tutoring, and academic coaching at The University of Memphis, students have access to complete information on all things related to their degree.
“If a student wants to know what classes to take next semester, what their GPA is, what they have taken and what needs to be taken, all they need to do is log on to Navigate and UMDegree,” Hudson said. “It has all the information you need and makes registering straight from the site easy.”
Myth 5: “Someone has already signed me up for this class.”
The Truth: No one can register for classes but you.
Just meeting up with an advisor doesn’t mean you are registered. Once a student has met with a advisor, it is up to them to go online and register for the classes they discussed.
“Once your advisor has set your plans in Navigate, you are able to adjust your schedule in the way you want,” Snyder said. “At the end of the day, scheduling is completely left up to the students.”
Myth 6: “The program I want to join requires an audition, so I can’t register yet.”
The Truth: Students do have to audition for programs like Department of Theatre & Dance or the School of Music, but that does not keep students from registering and they are free to work with an advisor to register for general education or placeholder courses until they find out what their official audition results are.
While a program’s audition requirements can’t keep students from registering, they could hamper their attempts to enroll in some major-specific courses. Advisors are also available to help come up with backup plans for students who were unsuccessful in an audition with their chosen department.
“In those cases, we refer students to someone like Heather Hampton, recruitment coordinator with the school of music,” said Ryan Fisher, Associate Dean of the College of Communication and Fine Arts. “Theatre & Dance does the same thing. And with art, you don’t need a portfolio to get into the program — but you will need it to stay in the program.”
Myth 7: “I’m thinking of changing my major and I can’t register until I know for sure.”
The Truth: Even if you’re changing major, the college still has a slate of gen ed classes to choose from, and very few students complete all of the required gen eds before switching majors.
It’s important for students to get those placeholders lined up, especially in fast-filling gen ed courses. However, schedule adjustments can always be made all the way up to the Friday before classes start.
“For those students who may be going undecided, we would still encourage them to sign up for the courses they’ve been advised and knock out as many required courses as possible,” Fisher said. “Too many students feel like they’re 100% locked in for the fall if they register now, but they can always change that.”