Academic Advising FAQs

General Questions

Who is my academic advisor?

The School of Integrative Studies does not have assigned advising, which means that you are free to meet with any advisor in our office. You are welcome to ask to meet with the same advisor each time you request an appointment. Please keep in mind that not all members of our advising staff are available on a full-time basis. Therefore, you may need to meet with a different advisor if time is of the essence.

What is my catalog year?

Your catalog year, is the academic year in which you enrolled at Mason. You can find your catalog year by logging into Degree Works. It is listed at the top right of each set of degree requirements.

Example:

Catalog Year Example

How often should I meet with my academic advisor?

While you are not required to meet with an advisor, we do strongly recommend meeting with one at least once each semester to ensure your timely completion of degree requirements. Students can also meet with an advisor to explore/discuss other relevant academic and co-curricular opportunities.

How do I change/declare my major?

  1. Discuss with your current major advisor any concerns/issues you have with the degree program.
  2. Meet with an advisor for the new desired major and discuss degree requirements for the new major and any other questions you may have about the new degree program.
  3. If you decide to make the switch to the new major, fill out and sign the Undergraduate Change/Declaration of Academic Program form available at http://registrar.gmu.edu/wp-content/uploads/UCDM.pdf
  4. The new advisor should sign the form and send it to the registrar for processing.

How do I declare a minor

  1. Fill out the Undergraduate Minor Declaration form available at http://registrar.gmu.edu/wp-content/uploads/UMD.pdf
  2. Bring your completed form to the office who offers the minor and have an advisor sign it.
  3. The complete list of available minors can be found at http://advising.gmu.edu/current-student/minors-at-mason/ and advising information for each unit can be found at http://advising.gmu.edu/current-student/advisor-locator/
  4. Take the completed form to the Registrar’s Office in Student Union I, Room 2101

How do double majors, double minors and double degrees work?

A Double major consists of earning a Bachelor of Art in two subject areas or a Bachelor of Science in two subject areas. Students need to complete the requirements of each major in addition to general education requirements. Students interested in a double major must meet with an advisor in each department and will need to have the Change/Declaration of Academic Program form signed by both departments.

Minors normally require 15-21 hours. To pursue a minor, please see an advisor in that academic department. To declare a minor you must submit an Undergraduate Minor Declaration form to the Registrar’s office. Many minors require an advisor’s signature to declare. If you would like to earn two minors, you may need to see an advisor in multiple academic departments.

To earn two degrees a student completes the requirements for two different types of degrees, such as a Bachelor of Arts and a Bachelor of Science. Students must detail a program of study for each degree and obtain departmental approval. In order to graduate with two degrees, students need to complete a minimum of 30 GMU credits beyond those required by either degree individually. Please refer to Catalog AP.5.3.3 Second Bachelor's Degree for more information.

How do I find my registration time ticket?

  1. Log in to Patriot Web
  2. Select "Student Services"
  3. Select "Registration"
  4. Select "Registration Status, Time Ticket, Override Notification"
  5. Select the appropriate semester from the drop-down menu and click "submit"
  6. Your registration time ticket will be listed under "You may register during the following times"

Where do I find add/drop class deadlines?

Add/Drop deadlines are listed each semester in the academic calendar. You can find Mason's academic calendars here: http://registrar.gmu.edu/calendars/.

What is the difference between Dropping a course and Selective Withdrawing from a course?

A course that is dropped within the Add/Drop Deadlines (deadlines are set each semester on the academic calendar) does not negatively impact your transcript and can result in a percentage of tuition being refunded (percentages also listed on the academic calendar).

Withdrawn courses, result in a 'W' on the transcript and no tuition refund (A grade of 'W' does not negatively affect your GPA find out more here). The Selective Withdrawal period occurs after the add/drop deadline and can be found on the academic calendar.

How do I withdraw from a course after the drop deadline?

In order to withdraw from a course during the selective withdrawal period you must fill out a Selective Withdrawal form. For more information on the process, please click here.

How do I view my degree progress/evaluation?

  1. Log into Patriot Web
  2. Select Student Services
  3. Click on "Student Records"
  4. Click "Degree Evaluation Menu"
  5. Click "Degree Works". This will navigate you away from Patriot Web and open the Degree Works degree evaluation in your browser window. Once Degree Works loads, your degree evaluation will be displayed. Please note that the requirements shown in the degree evaluation are for your currently declared major (which is displayed across the top of the page after your name and G#).
  6. If there are omissions or errors in your degree evaluation, please bring them to the attention of your advisor during your next advising appointment. Please note that Experiential Learning credits are NOT tracked properly in Degree Works; if you have questions about your Experiential Learning credits, please contact an academic advisor. 

Do I only take Integrative Studies courses or can I take other Mason courses?

  • Regardless of your chosen major/concentration, you will inevitably take a combination of integrative studies and other non-integrative studies courses because this is an interdisciplinary degree. 
  • Some concentrations incorporate several SIS (integrative studies) course options. 
  • All integrative studies degree-seeking students will be required to complete a minimum number of integrative studies credits (minimum of 24 credit hours of designated Learning Community or LC courses and a minimum of 12 credit hours of designated Experiential Learning or EL courses), in addition to their chosen concentration.

How do I determine if my course earns Learning Community or Experiential learning credit (for students prior to Fall 2017)?

INTS courses are broken down into their Learning Community (LC) and Experiential Learning (EL) credits on the Integrative Studies Course Details web page. Courses for past semesters can be found by selecting the desired semester on the navigation bar found on the left side of the page. To determine the number of LC or EL credits earned, consult the appropriate column next to the chosen course.

Example: In the sample below, INTS 202 earns 4 LC credits and 1 EL credit. However, INTS 103 earns 6 LC credits and does not earn ANY EL credit. (Note: Students enrolled Fall 2017 or later must take 30 total credits INTS coursework, LC/EL credit is not tracked.)

INTS Course Details Example

How do I take courses at another institution?

In order to take courses elsewhere, students must receive prior approval from the appropriate department or dean. The Study Elsewhere form can be obtained by visiting the Registrar’s website. The form must be signed by an advisor and then submitted with any required documentation to the Student Affairs office of the student’s academic department.

What should I do if I have a disability?

You will need to establish that you are eligible to receive the appropriate services and accommodations by meeting with the Office of Disability Services. You may also contact them at 703-993-2474 to set up an appointment.

Academic Standing

How do I find my academic standing?

  1. Log in to Patriot Web
  2. Select "Student Services"
  3. Select "View Your Unofficial Transcript"
  4. Select "Display MASON Transcript"
  5. Scroll down your transcript to the term where you want to check your Academic Standing. Underneath the "Term" heading you will see your academic standing for that term listed. Example:

What is academic warning, probation or suspension?

An undergraduate student whose cumulative GPA is below 2.00 will be put on academic warning, probation or suspension. Your attempted credit level will determine the degree of academic restriction. A student’s attempted credit level consists of credits passed, credits failed, credits withdrawn, transfer credit, AP and IB credit, and any other credit the student earned through credit by testing. A warning and probation both result in a restriction of 13 credits for the following semester. Following a first suspension, students cannot take courses for two academic periods unless it is imposed at the end of a summer term in which case the student will be unable to enroll for the fall semester, but can return for the spring semester. If a student receives a second suspension, that individual will not be allowed to take courses for one full academic year. A third suspension will result in the student being dismissed from the university.

 

For more detailed information click here or make an appointment with your advisor to discuss your situation.

What happens if I retake a course / Mason forgiveness policy?

When calculating a student’s cumulative GPA, if a course is repeated, only the most recent grade will be used.

For Example: A student takes MATH 106 and receives a grade of C-. The next semester the student retakes the course and receives a grade of D. The grade of D will be used to calculate the students GPA because it is the most recently earned grade for the course, regardless if it's a better or worse grade.

Transfer Questions

What happens to my AP/IB/Dual Enrollment credits?

Each class is evaluated according to university admissions policy. If transfer credit is awarded, they will be listed on your transcript and can count toward your degree requirements if appropriate. More info available at: https://www2.gmu.edu/admissions-aid/how-apply/transfer/transfer-credit-policy 

Some of my credits didn't transfer in - How do I have my transfer credits re-evaluated?

Transfer Credit Inquiry Form (PDF). Use this form if you are missing any transfer credit from your evaluation. This includes credit by exam such as AP, IB or CLEP. Before submitting this form be sure you have requested official final transcripts to be sent to the Office of Admissions and are have read and understood the criteria for credit acceptance policies.

Transfer Credit Re-Evaluation Appeal Form (PDF). Use this form if you were awarded elective credit for a course and wish to have it re-evaluated as equivalent to a specific Mason course.

Graduation Questions

When should I apply to graduate?

Please refer to the Office of the Registrar's graduation information page, which includes deadlines and instructions to submit your application.

I have questions about my graduation status, whom should I contact?

Please contact your advisor directly to inquire about your graduation status. Alternatively, you can contact us at sisinfo@gmu.edu

When is graduation?

Please refer to The Office of University Events web page for important dates and times.

Print Friendly and PDF