Now’s the time to start thinking about visiting your advisor for winter term planning.  Many advisors have already sent out emails to ONID accounts explaining how to go about scheduling an advising appointment.  So, be sure to read your ONID email!  If you haven’t yet heard from your advisor send a message or stop by his or her office.  You’ll need to set up an advising appointment and the sooner the better!   If you don’t know when you’re eligible for Phase 1 registration, check Online Student Services.  Your first eligable registration date is listed in the “Registration” section.  If you’re a FOM, FE, or FE/CE student and don’t remember who your advisor is, visit the FERM Department Office in Peavy 204.

 P/N Grading
This grading system is determined by the instructor of the course and is used for enrichment or skill-building courses such internships or seminars where credit is available.  You CANNOT elect to take a class Pass/No Credit, instead selected courses will be available only as P/N.  As a bonus, P/N classes do not affect your GPA.  

If you are concerned about your performance in a class but perhaps you’re still doing well enough that WITHDRAWAL is not warranted,  you should talk with your advisor about S/U grading which, when used strategically, can help to preserve your GPA and, if you earn a S (Satisfactory) will still give you a passing score for a required class.

S/U Grading
S/U stands for Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory grading.  The last day to change your grading status in a class from the standard A-F grading to S/U is Friday, November 11.  If you want to do this, visit the Student Services Office in Peavy 140 and ask for a Change of Grading Basis form.  Fill it out and take it to your advisor for the required signature.  You CANNOT take a class for your major on the S/U system.  Also remember that if a Baccalaureate Core class is counted towards your major, that can’t be taken on an S/U basis either.  There is a university limit of 36 credits that can be taken  S/U.  Your best bet, talk with your advisor!  They’re here to help!

This week’s photo is by Luke Pangle of the South Sister. 

What’s the difference between a drop and a withdrawal from a class? 
Well, first of all it’s the deadline.  You may DROP a class through the second week of the term.  For Fall term that’s this coming Friday, October 7th.  If you drop a class by this deadline, the class effectively disappears from your transcript as though you never registered for it and if tuition or course fees were assessed, they will be reimbursed to your student account.    You may WITHDRAWAL from a class through the seventh week of the term.  For Fall term that’s Friday, November 11th.  If you withdraw from a class by this deadline, you receive a “W” on your transcript.  The credits for that class are removed/subtracted from your overall total credits earned for the term and there is no effect on your GPA.  Note, these credits still count in your “attempted” credits and count towards maximum credits allowed for financial aid purposes.   So, you should consider these things if you are receiving financial aid and need to be a full time student.   

Why would you choose one over the other? 
Well, perhaps you realize you are in over your head in a class (either you’re not prepared for the material or you’re taking a lot of classes this term or you’re working a lot or…) and it’s before the DROP deadline.  First you should talk with your advisor to make sure dropping won’t put you behind or delay entry into another class or… but if you DROP the class before this Friday (October 7th) your account will be credited if it changes your tuition assessment level. 

If you miss the DROP deadline and find you just can’t make it through a class for any number of reasons (again you really need to speak to your advisor before you make any final decision on withdrawing from a class) you can strategically use WITHDRAWAL to maintain an acceptable GPA and plan to take the class again (or perhaps a different class that meets the requirement) when you’re more prepared or have adequate time in your schedule.  Your GPA is protected from poor performance in that class and as long as at the end of the term you successfully complete 67% of the total number of credits your originally registered for you will have met the requirement for continuing financial aid.    

How do I DROP or WITHDRAWAL?
Both functions are available through Student Online Services.  However, before you do either, speak with your advisor to make sure you have the full story and aren’t putting yourself into a negative situation for future registration/course enrollment.

What do I do if I have a HOLD on my record?
If you have a HOLD on your record that would prevent you from DROPPING or WITHDRAWING from a course, you should visit the Registrar’s Office in the Kerr Admin Building for assistance as the staff there can administratively drop or withdraw you from a course(s).
What other strategies for achieving or maintaining academic success are out there?  Tune in next week to learn about S/U and P/N grading!

Phase 1 registration will begin on November 14.  Sign up for a meeting with your advisor (your advisor will email you instructions on how to sign up for an appointment) to check on progress towards graduation and what classes you need to take in the coming term.  The Winter 2011 course schedule can be found here.  Meeting with your advisor will allow you to get your registration PIN.  If you don’t remember who your advisor is, use this list of majors to help you out:

  • Forest Engineering: Loren Kellogg
  • Forest Engineering/Civil Engineering: Marv Pyles is on leave at this time; please visit the FERM Department in Pvy 204 for information on which advisor will help you during Marv’s absence.
  • Forest Management: Kama Luukinen
  • Forest Operations Management: John Sessions
  • Natural Resources: Connie Patterson
  • Natural Resources – Distance Education: Marge Victor
  • Recreation Resource Management: Connie Patterson
  • Renewable Materials/Wood Science & Technology: David Smith

Set up an appointment or stop by their office during drop-in/office hours for more information.