First Year Advising – Checklist

  1. Background
    1. What kind of courses did you enjoy in high school?
      1. do you think of yourself as a Science/Math or a History/English kind of person?
      2. Why?
      3. Have you thought of non-science courses that use quantitative analysis (social sciences).
    2. Have you seen anything in our catalog that your high school didn’t offer.  (Don’t make the rookie mistake of simply taking your high school AP course selection in college).
    3. Don’t worry if you haven’t decided on a major yet.  Most First-Year students haven’t.  Most of those who have will change their mind.
    4. Be sure to look at the list of Recommended Entry Courses.
  2. General Education Requirements
    1. Explain them.
    2. You do not have to complete them during your first year at Bates.
    3. Note that courses that fulfill a Gen Ed requirement indicate which requirement they fulfill in the description in the Garnet Gateway entry for the course.
    4. Note that the registration page in Garnet Gateway has a link to a list of all the General Education Concentrations.
  3. Questions about P/F grades?
    1. Students can take two courses p/F at Bates.  You can only take one course p/f in any given semester.
    2. Taking a course p/f is not recommended for the first semester and for language courses.
  4. Questions about FYS?
    1. You’re not guaranteed your first choice, but you will get one of your first three choices.
  5. Learning Difference?
    1. Contact Abigail Nelson ( in the Office of Accessible Education.  Also, check out the OAE’s web page.  In order to help the office process all the requests, please contact the OAE before August 1, 2019.
    2. Rookie mistake – trying to do your first year in college without accommodations.
    3. Disclosing is always your choice, but we recommend that you contact your professors once you have your schedule – professors love it when you give them a heads up.  They want to be sure each student has a chance to hit a home run.  If you tell them early, you’re helping yourself.
    4. If you think that you may have a learning difference but haven’t received documentation, get in touch with Abigail Nelson ( in the Office of Accessible Education.
    5. In order to help the office process all the requests, please contact the OAE before August 1, 2019.
  6. Technical Aspects of Registration
    1.  If you’re having trouble registering for a science course, make sure you’ve registered for the appropriate lab as well.
    2. If your course has a discussion session, please be sure to register it as well.
    3. If you get the message, “instructor permission required” –
      1. You will need to contact the instructor about accessing the course. If the instructor says you may enter the course, politely remind the professor that she/he must go online and manually give you access to the course. Be sure to leave your name and student ID# with the professor.

    4. If you can’t get into the language course that your placement test recommends,
      1. Register for a different course during the registration period. Go to the class section you wish to join on the first, second and third days that the class meets. There is a fair amount of movement in language classes as professors sort out student proficiency levels. Spaces may open up; faculty may approve overloads into their courses; you may find that another course is more appropriate. Be sure to let the professor know at the end of the first class session that you wish to join the class but were unable to register as the class was already full.
  7. Schedule
    1. Is it balanced in terms of the days of the week?
    2. is it balanced in terms of subject matter?
    3. Does it include a foreign language?