New Student Information and Resources
Newly Admitted Students
When will I register for classes?
What classes should I take in my first term?
What happens in Preview Prep?
When should I meet with or speak to an advisor?
There is no need for you to meet with an advisor before your Preview session. During Preview, you will meet with an advisor several times in a small group advising setting and then in an individual advising session before you register. You’ll receive academic information about a variety of topics. You will develop a schedule for your first semester(s) and register for classes while you are at Preview.
What about majors? Do I need to know what I want to major in from the beginning?
In the meantime, you can check out information about the UF majors offered in your program:
Many students change majors in their first two years at UF. Taking classes in multiple majors of interest is one of the best ways to really see what a college major is like and which is a good match for you.
I have no idea what I want to major in, how do I figure this out?
I’m pre-med, but I don’t see that listed as a major. What major do I choose?
Do what you love! UF does not have a “Pre-Health” major and professional schools do not have any preference towards any particular majors. You should explore majors and choose one based on interests and abilities. Attend the pre-health session when you are at Preview for more information.
In the meantime, you can begin the process of exploring pre-health through our extensive Pre-Health advising web site.
I have taken AICE/AP/CLEP/IB exams. What courses I will get credit for and how they will apply to my degree?
As part of Preview Prep, you will input the AICE/AP/CLEP/IB exams you have taken and Prep will show the courses for which you are likely to get. You’ll even see which General Education requirements the courses fulfill. UF will accept a maximum of 45 credits via exam. Pay special attention to this section of Prep so you really begin to understand what requirements you may have met before your select courses.
Your Preview advisor will review this at Preview, but this information does take time to process. The more you understand beforehand, the more confident you will be in selecting courses.
I have taken dual enrollment credits, how will I know what those credits will count for?
If you earned credits from a Florida public state/community college or university, you’ll compare the course prefix (first three letters) and the last three digits of the course number to UF courses to see if there is an equivalent course at UF (e.g., AMH1010 = AMH2010). Equivalent courses will generally fulfill the same requirements (e.g., general education, major) that the UF course fulfills. Credit toward the Writing Requirement is determined separately. UF accepts a maximum of 60 credits from Florida public state/community colleges. There is no limit on the credits accepted from Florida public universities. If you earned credits from a private or out-of-state institution, the credits will be evaluated by your college to determine if courses completed will fulfill specific requirements. Typically, you will handle this once you are on campus and your final transcripts have been received by UF and posted to your UF transcript.
When you come to Preview, your Preview advisor will further help you understand how your incoming dual enrollment credit applies to your degree.
Is there any reason I would re-take at UF a course for which I have earned credit?
It is not unusual for students to repeat courses that are part of a sequence, especially if they do not feel confident in their mastery of the material, if it has been a while and the material is not fresh in their minds, or if the student is embarking on a challenging load of courses and they wish to ease their transition. This happens most commonly in math and science sequences (for example, a student who took AP Calculus AB and passed the AP exam in 11th grade may choose to retake Calculus 1 in their first term before going on to Calculus 2).
Do I have to take any placement tests?
If you are planning on a major that requires Calculus or General Chemistry, or you are pre-health, you will likely need to take the ALEKS math placement exam. In Preview Prep there is a tool which will help you understand whether you need this placement exam based on your majors of interest or interest in pre-health and any incoming credit for which you have confirmation.
How do I select classes for General Education requirements or electives when there are tens or even hundreds to choose from?
As part of Prep, you are encouraged to identify up to five courses of interest in each General Education area as well as five elective courses. It’s impossible to explore several hundred classes while at Preview, so it’s important to do this in advance. Having lists of courses of interest that you have looked at helps you have viable alternatives when you are registering for classes.
What is IUF1000, “What is the Good Life?” and when will I take it?
The question “What is a good life?”’ is especially relevant for college students as you become more and more involved in making the decisions that will shape your future and the future of others. In order to make reasonable, ethical, well-informed life choices, it is useful to reflect upon how one might aspire to live both as an individual, and a member of local and global communities. The Humanities, a cluster of disciplines that inquire into the very nature and experience of being human, provide many approaches in this course to the question “What is a good life?”
UF offers enough seats in IUF1000 for new freshman to be able to take this course in their first year. If you don’t register for it in Summer B or Fall term, you will be able to take it in Spring term.
Innovation Academy students are not required to complete IUF1000, instead they take courses toward the Innovation minor.
How do I plan my time at UF if I am bringing in a lot of credits (or even completed my AA while in high school)?
Preview advising is designed to help you get appropriately registered for your first semester. If you are bringing in many credits, and/or have completed an AA, you will want to create an individualized plan of study that takes into account your intended major/career goals, what courses you brought in credit for, and how long you think you want to be an undergraduate at UF. So you should plan on meeting with an advisor in your college/major after Preview to start discussing your plan.
Earning an AA a public institution in Florida does not mean you meet all Bachelor’s degree requirements. Many colleges have additional requirements beyond Gen Ed, so you may, in fact, need additional non-major courses. Consult with an advisor in your college to understand what is required for a Bachelor’s degree.
If you are Pre-Health, you will be more prepared for professional school if you do not rush through your time at UF. Most health profession schools seek individuals who demonstrate not only long-term success in a rigorous academic setting, but also long-term and consistent demonstration of dedication to the profession and the community through clinical volunteering, community service, research, shadowing, and leadership experiences. Applicants with only one or two years of these activities after high school are generally not as competitive.
If you are Pre-Law, you will be more prepared for professional school if you do not rush through your time at UF. Most law schools seek individuals who demonstrate long-term success in a rigorous academic setting. Pre-law students must develop analytical and problem-solving skills, critical reading abilities, writing skills, oral communication and listening abilities, research skills, and organization and priority management skills. Applicants with only one or two years of these activities after high school may not be as competitive.
I was accepted to the Innovation Academy program. Where can I learn more information about the program?
Review the Innovation Academy web page. IA offers a visit program for admitted students called “Discover IA”. Discover IA sessions allow prospective students and their families to learn about the IA program and its benefits. Students will attend a presentation that includes an overview of the IA experience, as well as interaction with current students, faculty, and advisors.
I was accepted to the PaCE program. Where can I learn more information about the program?
Review the Frequently Asked Questions page for more information about this program.
After Attending Preview
How do I adjust my schedule after attending Preview?
After Preview, students can begin adjusting their Summer B/Fall schedules on the following dates:
Summer B schedule adjustment – June XX-XX
Summer B Drop/add – XX-XX
Fall schedule adjustment – August X
Fall Drop/add XX-XX
Schedule adjustment is delayed to give everyone an equal chance of being able to add open seats. There is no way to predict which seats will be open at a particular time. When you log on to the system, you can see what is open at that moment, but with thousands of students adding and dropping, it will change constantly.
If you want to adjust to add preferred classes or switch to preferred times, schedule adjustment and drop/add is the time to do that.
Things to know about Fall term schedule adjustment:
- Students are assigned appointments on the first day of schedule adjustment. This is to prevent 7,000 students from trying to log on at once and crashing the system.
- There are tens of thousands of drops and add in the few weeks before classes start. So if you don’t see the desired class/section open the first time you log on to one.uf.edu, KEEP CHECKING! Often there’s a domino effect—a student adds an open seat in a desired course/section and drops something else, another student finds that seat and drops something else, and so on.
- If you get a message stating you lack the prerequisite for a course, there a number of reasons for this.
- If you are trying to register for MAC2311, some sections are for Engineering majors and others for non-Engineering majors. The Schedule of Courses (via one.uf.edu) shows which sections are for which students. You will get a prereq error message if you are trying to sign up for the wrong section or if you don’t have the minimum ALEKS score needed for MAC2311.
- If your incoming credits did not post, the system may not see that the prereq is complete. Summer/Fall residential or Spring IA admits may email email@example.com for assistance overriding the prereq. Fall PaCE admits should email PaCEAdjust@advising.ufl.edu
- If you try to sign up for a section set aside for students in a special program (UFOnline, Innovation Academy, etc.), you will get a message saying that section is for students in a special program. You should try another section that is not restricted. If you are in a special program, your sections are restrict for other students, but not for you. Please disregard the restricted designation on those courses. If you have any difficulty registering for a course designated for your program, reach out to your academic advisor for assistance. If you encounter any other significant problem (e.g., required first term tracking course not open) you can email firstname.lastname@example.org and we will assist you if we can.
- During drop/add – Anything you are registered for at 11:59 pm on the last day of drop/add will stay on your schedule and you will owe tuition and fees for the course. So review your schedule one final time on the last day – sometimes students mean to drop something but never do. Also, we don’t recommend adding classes on the last day that you have never attended, unless you are 100% certain you want the class. You can’t drop and add with ease after drop/add, a drop will mean you owe the tuition/fees, have a W on your record and have used one of your drops. Late adds have to be approved by the department offering the course and by the college. There’s a different system for late adds and drops.
What if I need to adjust my schedule due to AICE/AP/IB scores, completing ALEKS after Preview, or due to a change of major?
What do I need to do before Fall classes begin?
If you are bringing in any credits, go to Student Self-Service in one.uf.edu. Check the Test Score screen and your UF Transcript (click on Current Students). Are all exam and dual enrollment credits posted? Exam credits should be posted both to Test Scores and the UF transcript by the end of July. Dual enrollment credits through the Spring term should also be posted to the UF transcript by that time. If you have credits that are not posted, email email@example.com to ask what you need to do to get your credits posted.
Review your schedule and make sure you are not repeating a class for which you have credit – unless you are doing so deliberately (e.g., taking a course to refresh before going on to another course in the sequence). Repeating a course essentially replaces your previous credit for the course. You cannot earn credit twice for the same course.
Why is it important to make sure all your credits have been received by UF?
You won’t be able to confirm your degree requirements until your credits are posted and appear in your degree audit. You also want make sure you are not repeating a class for which you have credit – unless you are doing so deliberately (e.g., taking a course to refresh before going on to another course in the sequence). Repeating a course essentially replaces your previous credit for the course. You cannot earn credit twice for the same course.
In addition, registration appointments for the next term are set by the number of credits earned, so if you are bringing in a lot of credits and they are posted to your record, you will get to register earlier for future terms.
I’m concerned about taking online courses, what do I need to know?
Students may be able to avoid online classes if they are flexible about which Gen Eds/electives they take, but in some majors that’s harder than others. Some major courses are only offered online. If the only open seats in a class were in an online section, you can check the Schedule of Courses (via one.uf.edu) to see if there are traditional classroom sections or the class and then attempt to schedule adjust for them, if you prefer. Regardless of the course format, it is important to practice good time management and organization strategies. As with any class, students taking an online class are encouraged to utilize any available campus resources, including the professor’s office hours, in order to put themselves in the best possible position for success in the course.
Once Classes Have Begun
How do I access my online classes?
UF uses the Canvas platform for online classes. To access Canvas, go to one.uf.edu -> Student Self-Service. Click on e-learning in left-hand menu. Log in to e-learning (Canvas) and your courses should appear on your dashboard.
For helpful hints, see this Youtube video about Navigating e-learning at UF.
How can I talk to an advisor about academic concerns or to make academic plans?
If you want comprehensive advising (e.g., review a grad plan, talk about potential majors or double majors/minors, overseas studies, etc.), see an advisor after drop/add but within the first month of classes. Demand for advising begins to grow as registration for the next term approaches and advisors will have less time as the semester goes on.
In addition, during busy times many college advising offices will adopt strategies that allow them to assist the greatest number of students – so after a certain point, they may see students on a walk-in basis only or appointments may book up quickly.
If you are unsure of where to receive advising, see the college advising contacts./p>
I’m not doing as well in my classes as I’d like, what can I do?
Many new students struggle in early in their academic career because they are in a new environment with different expectations. You may think you need tutoring when you actually need to enhance your study strategies—what worked in high school will NOT always work as well in college. Of course, tutoring may help as well – take advantage of all the resources available to you at UF.
Our Academic Success Resources page offers suggestions and resources to help you improve your grades.
When is registration for next semester?
All students receive an email about one month into classes with information about registering for the next term. You’ll be directed to a section on one.uf.edu -> Student Self-Service called ‘Registration Prep’ that shows your current major, your advising contact info, your degree audit, holds and your registration start time. Go to Registration Prep as soon as you receive that email.
Students are assigned a registration start time by number of credits earned, so students closer to graduation are more likely to get the courses they need to graduate. Students with disabilities, veterans and other small groups of students who need priority are able to register before seniors. Honors students are also able to register early for a limited number of credits – they will receive information from the Honors office.
What do I have to do before I can register for next semester?
- You MUST clear any holds that start with the words “You may not register”. Some of these holds you can clear yourself (e.g., updating emergency contact info). Others will direct you to do something specifically – or contact an office (e.g., Admissions or Bursar). You should follow the instructions in the hold. The ONLY way for the Campus Clarity hold to be lifted is for you to complete that online program. It takes a while so complete it at least several days before registration begins.
- You have a degree audit that should include any posted incoming credits as well as current courses and shows how those credits are applying to degree requirements. Degree audits are not hard to read, but they are not intuitive. It can help to go over them with an advisor (see “How can I talk to an advisor” above).
- Finding seats in desired classes/sections can be challenging. You should identify lots of options – but also, if a class is closed in during advance registration, that doesn’t mean it won’t open up at the end of this term or the beginning of next. There are many schedule adjustments going on over those months, so keep checking!
How do I know what grade I am earning in a class?
Grading in any class is determined by the professor. The syllabus usually outlines grading in detail. Read it and ask the professor if you are unsure. Many classes are not on a 0-100 point system, so it’s important for you understand the grading system for each class. Once you have begun to earn grades in a class, questions for the professor are best addressed in office hours, where the discussion can be more private.
I’m having difficulty understanding my professor because he/she speaks with an accent. What can I do?
Throughout your life and future careers you will likely encounter culture and language barriers and it is always a learning experience. Give yourself some time to adjust. Sit at the front of the classroom so you can be focused on what the professor is saying. Eventually you usually get an ear for their accent and how they speak. You can also meet with the professor one-on-one in office hours to clarify any information that may be unclear from lectures. If there are TAs for the course, you can also get assistance from them.
You may also find it helpful to find a couple of classmates and form a study group to review the material. Several minds working together can help to clarify the material and understand what is going on. At the end of the semester, there are also instructor evaluations that are highly valued and allow students to anonymously give feedback about instructors and courses.
Why do I have exams scheduled outside of class (a.k.a., assembly exams)?
The only secure way to give a common exam to very large classes to is schedule the exam when all students can take it at the same time. This means many classrooms are needed at the same time. So exams are scheduled based on room availability, usually in the evening, when students typically have fewer courses and therefore fewer conflicts. Courses make a request to have the exam scheduled within a certain window and get assigned the dates. There are a lot of classes with assembly exams (math, science, business core) and of course they want exams around similar times depending on number of exams in the class. So they are fit in as well as possible. See the Undergraduate Catalog for more information.
I’m thinking of dropping a class (after drop/add), what do I need to consider?
When should you consider dropping? If you are passing the course with at least a C or better and can realistically maintain that grade at the end of the semester, it is generally not recommended you drop. Consider using all resources to help maintain or improve your current grade by seeing the instructor, seeking tutoring or study skills assistance, etc. Generally if you are earning less than a C in the class and cannot reasonably improve that grade by the end of the term, then you should consider dropping.
Talk to the instructor to make sure you accurately understand where you stand in the course. Then talk with your college/major advisor to determine the potential academic consequences of dropping the class. Dropping may be a better option than getting a D or failing, but you should understand the potential consequences either way. Also, you have a limited number of drops and each college has policies about dropping, so consulting your advisor is key. Finally, if you receive any financial aid or scholarships, you should discuss with your Financial Aid counselor how dropping would impact your aid.
If your current situation is due to extenuating circumstances over which you had no control (e.g., serious medical illness or illness with immediate family, recent death of immediate family member, family/personal crises), then you may be able to petition to have the drop considered a ‘medical drop’. See https://www.dso.ufl.edu/care/medical-withdrawal-process/.
Although this situation is not likely for new students, if you do not have drops left, then you will need to file a petition requesting an additional drop with your college’s advising office. Keep in mind petitions are not always approved, so you should continue to attend and do the work for the course. If denied, you should do your best to earn the highest grade possible.
Key points about dropping a class:
- The deadline to drop a class shows in the Dates and Deadlines section of the Catalog.
- Dropped courses appear on the transcript with a W, but do not calculate into the UFGPA. For students registered full-time (12+ credits), they are considered by UF as having attempted a full-time load.
- Dropping a class can put you off-track for the major (though earning a D or E will usually do the same thing AND lower you GPA). You need to understand your individual situation, so meet with an advisor.
- You should consult with Student Financial Affairs about how scholarships and financial aid are affected by a drop.
Students may also withdraw from all courses via a similar process with the same deadline and should absolutely speak with an advisor as well as Student Financial Affairs first.
How do I drop a class after drop/add?
Speak with an advisor and your financial aid counselor (if you receive aid) before dropping a class.
- On one.uf.edu -> Student Self Service, under Registration, click “Request to: Drop a Course(s)” in the left-hand navigation and follow the instructions.
- Some colleges may require that you speak with an advisor prior to dropping a class.
- Some colleges may accept in-person requests to drop a class. Please speak with an advisor in your college if you have questions.
- Submit your request no later than the published deadline.
Finals are coming up, how do I do my best on my final exams/assignments?
- Review the syllabus for each course. What does it say about the content/form of the final exam or final project/paper? You should be clear on what the expectations are—is it a cumulative final exam, is it a project with several parts, etc.? If the instructor has mentioned/described the final in class and it does not match what is the syllabus, talk to the instructor ASAP to resolve this.
- Confirm the exam time/deadline for paper/project AND place (to take the exam or turn the paper/project in). Again, this should be in the syllabus, but confirm with the instructor (especially the place, since with large classes students may be spread around campus for the same exam). Every semester we have students who miss a final because of a time or place change (or because they wrote the info down wrong in the first place).
- Make a list of what needs to be done between now and the end of term. Prioritize the list by deadline date AND by value of the assignment to the final grade in the course. This means consulting the grade information in each syllabus and reviewing it to be sure you are clear what weight is given to remaining assignments/exams/papers.
- Make an outline of the next two weeks and identify when you are going to do what. Be realistic. You should have some idea now about how long it might take to prepare for an exam in a certain class, or how much time drafting and editing a paper may take. Final exams/projects/papers may be longer than in-term assignments, if so, prepare to spend extra time.
- It’s important to build in breaks around once an hour and to include time to eat, move/exercise, and sleep. Taking a break improves brain function. Try not to get sucked into online distractions during breaks as that is less refreshing than moving. Eating well and movement contribute to optimal brain function as well as stress reduction. If you are not a gym rat, go for a long walk – without using a device – everyday. (But don’t leave valuables unattended in a public area, get someone to watch books and take phone/laptop with.) Set an alarm on your phone so you get back to work after 10-15 minutes.
- Get a decent night’s sleep every night. Sleep is especially important for memory – some processing of information in the memory ONLY happens during sleep.
What should I know about final grades?
- You can view your final grades in one.uf.edu->Student Self-Service.
- Check you Gatorlink email periodically over break. Colleges/advisors will use email to contact students who need advice based on their final grades, especially if the student is now off-track. Reading these messages and following the instructions is likely to help you quickly and simply resolve any issues.
- If you need advice before next term classes, they should see if their advising office is available during break.
- If you have not registered for next term classes, the deadline to do so is 5:00 pm, on the day before classes begin. Students who have no classes on their schedule at that point and then begin to add classes after 5:00 pm will be charged a $100 late fee.
- If you feel an assigned grade is erroneous, first contact the instructor and arrange a time to meet and discuss the situation. These discussions are best handled in person, not via email. Many faculty and graduate teaching assistants may be away during break, so you will likely not be able to arrange a meeting until the beginning of the next term. (Note: Being dissatisfied with a grade does not necessarily mean it is erroneous, students should consult their syllabus to see if the grade was assigned properly according to the course grading policy.)
My grades are lower than I anticipated, what now?
- You may be disappointed to get your first B, first C (or lower) and also have dropped a course. Success can be defined in many ways – sometimes earning a C is worthy of a celebration because of the effort and grit it took to pull the grade up from a bad start.
- Maintain a sense of perspective if you haven’t earned the desired grades. The first semester transition is a challenge for many students and rougher on some. This is the first of what for most students will be eight semesters at UF. So ultimately, first term will play a smaller and smaller role in your overall academic record.
- If you feel you could have done better, focus on what you learned about yourself as a college student. Maybe you can identify right now mistakes made and create a plan to avoid them in the future. A plan is important – academic development should not be a New Year’s resolution, but something you follow up on day by day. If you are have trouble following through on changes, consider something like Gatorwell’s wellness coaching, which helps students develop an action plan and coaches them through it.
- If you don’t really know what you could have done differently to improve your grades, an academic advisor can probably help. In addition, taking advantage of all the resources available through UF’s Teaching Center (including Study Skills workshops, etc.) can also help. It’s important to start utilizing these resources at the beginning of the term.
- Most students learn how to be more effective each semester. They tend to figure out which study approaches work better for which classes, they get better at budgeting their time, they get better at recognizing early when a class is going to give them trouble, or even if they are perhaps pursuing a field that does not engage them or does not play to their strengths. See this semester as part of the process of you becoming a successful college student and, ultimately, graduate. You got into UF because you are smart and capable, you just have to be prepared to adapt and try new strategies and pathways in order to achieve success at UF.
- Finally, there will be a few students for whom the semester went very poorly. If your GPA is less than a 2.0 (C average) or you earned a C- or lower in any class, then you should be talking with an advisor before the break or at the very beginning of the next term. You really must have a plan to recover and improve next semester.
Additional Useful Information
I want to take courses at another institution this summer, can I do so?
You will need your college’s approval to take courses at another institution in the summer. Meet with an advisor to discuss what the college/major allows to be taken elsewhere and what the college’s process is to get courses approved. Generally, if the credits are to be taken at a public institution in Florida you will have to complete a Transient Student Admission Application on the FloridaShines.org website. There may be additional requirements of your college or the college you wish to attend. If you want to attend a private or out-of-state institution, there will probably be a different process to get advisor approval. Keep in mind the following information regarding transient coursework:
- Credits taken elsewhere do NOT calculate into the UF GPA. However, there is no single “GPA”. Most departments will calculate a tracking GPA on the grades in the tracking courses, which usually includes courses taken elsewhere. Some colleges will calculate an ‘all-college’ GPA that includes all college work, regardless of where it is taken. Colleges or majors may also calculate an upper-division GPA (grades on courses once you have attained junior status). Finally, you may find graduate and professional schools calculate an all-college GPA or even other GPAs. Here’s the info about the UF GPA.
- Only courses taken at one of the twelve State University System schools in Florida will meet the Summer Term Enrollment requirement. However, UF will accept approved credit from any accredited institution.
How do I meet the Summer Term Enrollment Requirement?
Students must complete nine credits before graduation during summer terms at State University System institutions. Coursework at UF, UF coursework via the web while in another location, coursework taken at another SUS school, earning UF credit for an internship in Gainesville or another location, or coursework taken via an approved overseas study program all apply to the Summer Requirement. The coursework does not have to be completed in one summer term.
Students who bring 60 or more transfer credits to UF, regardless of institution, will be exempt from completing the summer requirement at UF. Exam credit does not count toward this, only 60 or more credits transferred prior to UF matriculation from an accredited institution.
For overseas study programs, how each program meets the Summer Term requirement varies: Some will meet all 9 credits (even if 6 credits are taken), while some will meet just the number of credits taken. Here’s the official policy: “However, students who earn six credits through UF-sponsored, UF exchange or approved SUS study-abroad programs during one or two summer terms completely satisfy the summer-term enrollment requirement. In addition, credits earned through any of the study-abroad programs approved by UF during a summer term count toward satisfaction of the summer-term enrollment requirement.” (see link above)
How do I qualify for Dean’s List?
Dean’s List requirements are determined by college. See the Undergraduate Catalog for details. If you have questions, contact an advisor in your college/major.
How do I qualify for President’s Honor Roll?
The requirements for President’s Honor Roll appear in the Undergraduate Catalog. You will not receive notification of this honor, however, a remark that you were named to the President’s Honor Roll is posted to your UF transcript around 30 days after grades post for the previous semester.
I’ve received an invitation from an honorary society, what should I consider before joining?
You can always look on the UF Student Organizations Directory to find any student organization. If the society is not an approved UF organization, then be wary. In addition, look to see if it is simply some sort of line for your resume (e.g., you join and get a certificate, that’s it) or if it is an actual organization that has activities, etc.