TAMU New Student Conference and Registering for Classes

New Student Conference

This is for class 2022 so admitted 2023 students will get this. But so you can prepare ahead, it makes for good reading all of the links. https://newaggie.tamu.edu/freshmen/

Two points I want to make.

Accommodations: To stay in the dorm or a hotel
Parents and students can stay in the dorms during NSC but must bring their own linens for the beds and towels/showering. My son stayed in the dorm because I thought it would be an opportunity to meet other students. It isn’t. It was also more difficult for me to come from hotel, park, and meet him at Sbisa to eat breakfast and then be at Rudder by 7:30 am. Also day 2 of registration, they have to be moved out of dorm and key turned in prior to your NSC events. Much easier to all stay at hotel together.

Go to Pre-Conference day. https://newaggie.tamu.edu/family-and-guests/at-your-students-nsc/nsc-programs/ The alumni center activities are great. LOTS of photo opportunities. Get your student ID with no lines, pick up Sports Pass, etc.

Every student must satisfy the University Core Curriculum (UCC). 6 of those UCC hours MUST satisfy the International Culture and Diversity requirement (ICD).
Click which campus you will be at (College Station or Galveston). In some cases, a class can satisfy two of the requirements. For example, my son took History of Rock. It satisfies both his creative Arts and an ICD requirement. In many cases, your required classes will satisfy most UCC requirements as will AP classes (wait until NSC to claim any AP credits) Some majors where the required courses satisfy the UCC, some majors may require a student take another class in a category to satisfy the UCC requirement.
Description of Core Curriculum http://catalog.tamu.edu/…/gener…/university-core-curriculum/
To search for classes that satisfy the requirements of each category of UCC and the ICD. Some classes will satisfy BOTH requirements. http://core.tamu.edu/

A lot of questions are asked about taking classes elsewhere besides A&M. A lot of classes have what is called a Common Course Number and there is a website where you can search for the common course number of any class offered at A&M (or any university/college). You can even compare the courses at different schools.
https://tccns.org/ (Texas Common Course Numbering System)

Also, to find which colleges in Texas (or other State) offer the course a student would like to take elsewhere and transfer it to A&M is the Transfer Course Equivalency website

Learn how to Build a Schedule before NSC

Students need to get familiar with how to look up courses and CRN numbers and making mock schedules using the HOWDY schedule builder or Free College Schedule Maker, to see what the actual day will look like when they select courses. https://www.freecollegeschedulemaker.com/

Get familiar with looking up and register for classes with labs and practice making a schedule. The different classes are color coded so you can see what the day looks like and then be able to quickly shuffle with different classes.

HOW TO REGISTER PDF- This link teaches you how to look up classes and read the courses. Pay attention to the descriptions as some classes, may be for certain majors only and some have labs that must be input separately though it is listed with the lecture. Also, some classes will have the semester exams already scheduled in the evenings. This throws people when they see the this.

On day 2 of NSC, you have a group advising session where they show you how to do this. Then you go to lunch and try to learn what to do. Many are still bewildered when they walk into the computer lab to register. If you prepare ahead (and share the info with others you know/meet) at lunchtime, make your schedule and then write down the CNR numbers of the classes after you have made your desired schedule. Have a few back ups. If X class has no more seats when you plug in all of your numbers, have a second choice section/prof at the same time or a second schedule altogether. Because if you are trying to figure it out while you are in the registration room, everyone else is snapping up the seats. You want to be able to walk in with your CNR numbers, plug them in when they say “GO”, hit Enter and walk out finished.

While you may not always get who you want, sometimes you can avoid certain ones. My son uses RateMyProfessors. Some can give good insight to the nuances of a class. Take some with a grain of salt. Then balance that with the grade reports for each section a prof teaches. Learn how to use that too.
Free grade report http://web-as.tamu.edu/gradereport/


Thank-you @Thelma2 ! Do the students bring a laptop or just use their phone for schedule-making practice?

@Eggscapgoats practice at home to learn how. Bring your laptop to make the schedule during lunch. My son brought his laptop into registration but it was easier to use their’s in the lab because they were all set up and ready.

He does need to learn how to use the mobile site as well. Trying to register for Math 152 freshman year was terrible (he had broken his Apple and the shop at MSC -don’t ever use by the way- took over 12 business days to fix during registration and finals. The second they get out of class, everyone is walking around, refreshing the browser and all of a sudden a section opens up and the 80 seats are gone in 20 seconds. It so much fun :(( :-SS X_X
The first time can be nerve racking. Now, it’s just how it is and you get it when you can, even if it’s open registration.

Do parents go? If so, why? (instate Houston)

There is a huge information sessions for parents and students and then break out for students. It is not mandatory for parents to attend but there are tons who do. Parents do not go into registration for engineering for the most part. There is so much info to absorb and A&M is by far the most intense of the 4 universities my 3 kids have attended.

The pre conference is a lot of fun thought. My son met his random assigned roommate, and we his family, at NSC and had a ball. Kids did their thing and we did ours! A&M is big on taking student pics with signs, be it first day of school, some random day, BTHO Finals, When they order their Aggie ring, when they get their Aggie ring, etc. They can try on an Aggie ring and take a pic with a sign that says “I tried on an Aggie ring”. It’s fun. Plus, see a display of every year Aggie ring since inception, that actually belonged to former students. There is some interactive games too that are fun

Thank you @Thelma2, what would we do with you?! A few questions… is it difficult for freshman to get decent creative arts/ICD classes or should they take in later years? Any caution to taking a core curriculum class online through local community college while at A&M… we were leaning toward this but wanted to get some feedback.

Also, when does the course catalog for academic year 2019-2020 typically come out?

@agtrio23 writes:Thank you @Thelma2, what would we do with you?"

Buy me a Margarita? [-O< :smiley:

Depends on the creative arts. Theater arts with Quackenbush is a must I hear. History of Rock has limited classes and son got it as a sophomore. Time management skills are a must, as there is online stuff they need to be mindful of. Son is also a musician so it was very interesting to him. Non musicians may not find it as fun. It isn’t Jack Black School of Rock. I’d try every semester and take other stuff if you don’t get in to something you want.

Make sure the major will allow the UCC class to be taken elsewhere. Most classes should be fine but he should always check with an advisor. Otherwise, it’s fine. Don’t take Online summer classes through A&M. It is very expensive.

2019-2020 Undergraduate Catalog and Graduate and Professional Catalog Production Schedule*
University catalogs will be available for updates online September 4, 2018, through March 8, 2019.
Catalogs will be published online May 1.

@Thelma2 why is it necessary to take a math placement exam during NSC? Shouldn’t standardized test scores be enough to test math ability?

@goodperson200 Many Colleges and Universities require a Math Placement Test. What we think about it is irrelevant.

I am looking for and have not found yet, the fall 2018 group advising PDF, but from the Fall 2017 group advising:

Fall 2017 *Students enrolled in MATH 151 for Fall 2017 will be given a proctored Ready, Set, Go Exam in the MATH
Lab during the first week of classes to ensure appropriate placement in calculus. Students who do not
score a 22+ on the proctored Ready, Set, Go Exam, they will be dropped from MATH 151 and will be
registered for the appropriate MATH course by their general engineering advisor.
• You may retake your MPE after your NSC to try and improve your score
• 14 day wait period between exams
• You can only take it three times

So, not only are you taking the MPE at NSC, but also a proctored exam the first week of school to ensure proper placement.

In organizing my notes today, I found a PDF link (that no google search would bring up) to a schedule of HOWDY WEEK so you can see what it entails.

(yes, insert Maui from Moana) What can I say except…You’re Welcome…

Hoot Hoot… @thelma2 that is a gold mine right there. Well done!!!

My student used Aggie Scheduler (http://www.aggiescheduler.com/) and Coursicle (https://www.coursicle.com/tamu/) to practice making schedules. It’s good to be familiar with more than one schedule maker because one may be slow to load during registration if a lot of kids are using the same one.

We also printed out a couple of blank weekly schedules just in case of a technology fail!

Our family stayed in a hotel and purchased the Cain Garage parking pass. We had no problems parking.

The pre-conference day was a real time saver for us. We picked up the student ID, sports pass, visited Student Health Services to see how it works when a student gets sick (located in the A.P. Beutel building), signed up for a student mailbox in the residence hall, opened a Wells Fargo account, took another look at the dorm room, etc.

Make sure your student has completed the direct deposit enrollment or they will have a hold and not be able to register (https://sbs.tamu.edu/refunds/).

Also, if your student is in an honors program, they will need to verify they have the honors designation or they won’t be able to register for honors classes. They changed where that is found in the Howdy portal so I can’t tell you where to find it, but once they are accepted to honors, they can ask where to find the honors designation for registration purposes.

The students need to check for holds before they get to their NSC. Lots of kids hadn’t at ours, and it delayed their registration. http://registrar.tamu.edu/Courses,-Registration,-Scheduling/Registration-Enrollment-Information/Checking-for-Holds

So, for the engineering freshman who take the MPE on the second day, do they find out right away if they passed so they can schedule the proper math class later in the second day?

Great tips @chercheur, keep 'em coming! I’m making a master list of all these great links from you and Thelma2 in the first post on this topic to come back to later. I’ve figured out how to bookmark an entire thread, but is there a way that I can bookmark/save individual comments?

@Eggscapgoats They find out immediately their score. It is so important to do the practice tests prior to NSC. If they don’t pass, they will be placed in the remedial math at NSC. They students that are placed in remedial will be allowed to retake it during Howdy week but that seems to have limitations and it is a different test.

@chercheur THANK YOU! It takes a village to remember everything there is to do! Great points

I made a WORD document titled “NSC Tips” and copied/pasted all the great individual posts by @Thelma2, @AggieMomhelp and others. That way I could easily find the info I needed. Even though we took 2 laptops to our NSC, I still printed a hard copy of all the tips and took it with us.

That is exactly what I did @chercheur from the people on the forum as we were going through the process and then updating them as we went along. I still copy and paste information into them from folks because things change all the time and sometimes we don’t know of the change until we see it here.

Not sure if it has been mentioned or not but to add to @chercheur list, you also need to do the Lab Safety Acknowledgement in Howdy each semester you are taking a course with a lab. For engineering this is almost every semester. Freshman sometimes do not do this and get errors after trying to register with their CRNs and do not understand what is going wrong.

I have a question. I am an engineering student who got offered the three pathways and chose Blinn. Do I register for my Blinn classes separately from my other classes or do I register for them all at NSC?