University College Advising Center

FAQs

We often find that students and families have similar questions regarding MTSU policies and procedures. Below are Frequently Asked Questions that should help you get most of the answers you are looking for. Should you still have questions, please do not hesitate to contact our office at (615) 898-2339 and speak with an advisor.

Quick Links

 

General MTSU

Q: How can I get more information on CUSTOMS (new student orientation)?
A: CUSTOMS Office, (615) 898-5533, KUC 326

Q: Can I put books on hold/reserve at Phillips Bookstore or Blue Raider Bookstore?
A: Yes. You will be required to place a small deposit down on the books in order to hold them. For more information visit the Phillips Bookstore website at http://frank.mtsu.edu/~phillips/. You can also call Phillips Bookstore at (615) 898-2700.

Q: I'm feeling ill. What kinds of health services are available?
A: Student Health Services provides MTSU students with a wide variety of services including health education, outpatient services, treatment and allergy clinic and women's health. If you have questions or comments, please visit us in Campus Recreation or call (615) 898-2988 during our office hours. The Health Services Building is open Monday-Friday, 8:00am - 4:00pm and closed during university holidays. When Health Services is closed, local hospital emergency rooms and some walk-in centers are available. You may also access additional information and schedule appointments on the Health Services website

Q: I am having non-academic, personal problems. Where can I go to get help?
A: Guidance and Counseling Services are located in KUC 329 and online at http://www.mtsu.edu/countest. The Guidance Services staff provides assistance to students in their emotional, intellectual and social growth. Services are provided in a non-judgmental and confidential environment.  For more information you can call (615) 898-2670.

Q: How do I get an MTSU post office box? Why should I even get one?
A: Every full-time student is assigned an MTSU post office box. Simply go to the Post Office in the KUC and get the combination. It is very important that you check your campus box because all important MTSU correspondence will be sent to it.

Q: I can't remember my PipelineMT Password. What do I do?
A: Visit http://lum4prod.mtsu.edu/site/activate.htm to get access to PipelineMT. If you have trouble signing in or have questions about your new password you will need to contact the ITD Help Desk at (615) 898-5345.

Q: How do I change my PipelineMT password?
A: Once logged into PipelineMT click on "My Account" on the top left-hand side of the page. The option to change your password and log in will be on the next page.

Q: How do I get an e-mail account?
A: Your PipelineMT account and your email account are created the day after you are admitted to the university. Log into PipelineMT and click on the e-mail envelope to get started with your e-mail. Your e-mail address will be your PipelineMT username followed by "@mtmail.mtsu.edu" (ie. abc2d@mtmail.mtsu.edu). You may also access your e-mail by logging into Webmail from the MTSU home page using your PipelineMT username and password.

Q: Where do I pay my parking tickets?
A: You can pay your parking tickets at the Business Office, CAB 103 or through your PipelineMT/RaiderNet account. Tickets must be paid before you can register for any classes.

Q: Why do I need an ID card?
A: The card is required to receive a variety of services on campus including cashing checks, admission to athletic and special events, checking out library materials, obtaining meal tickets, and using Raider Funds. If a student loses his/her ID card or fails to have the card validated during registration, a replacement fee is charged for each card. The fee must be paid at the Campus ID Station located in the James Union Building room 306.

Q: What is the deferred payment plan?
A: Students in good financial standing at MTSU may defer payment of up to 50 percent of their registration, housing, and freshman meal plan fees for the fall and spring semesters. To be eligible for the Deferred Payment Plan, each participant must make a minimum down payment of 50 percent of the registration fees, residence hall rent, and freshmen meal plan costs. Contact the Business Office in Student Services & Admissions Center, Room 290  for more information.

Q: What are Raider Fund$?
A: Raider Fund$ can be used to purchase meals and snacks at any of the food service locations on campus; to buy a meal plan or budget card from the food service office; to make purchases at Phillips Bookstore; to pay fines at the Library; to use the washers and dryers in the residence halls; to get items from most campus vending machines; to pay for services at the Student Health Services Center; or to pay any amount payable at the Business Office. Your Raider Fund$ account can be activated by making a minimum deposit of $10.00 at the Business Office cashier windows in CAB 10.3.

 

Scholarships/Financial Aid Information

Q: What happens if you just stop attending a class? How can this affect your financial aid?
A: If you stop attending a class, you will receive an 'F' for that class. If you encounter personal or academic difficulties that affect your ability to attend class, you have the option of dropping the class up until a certain point in the semester. Course withdrawals may be processed using PipelineMT. Be sure to consult the calendar in the class schedule book to find out the official drop dates for each semester. Your financial aid can be affected if you withdraw or simply stop attending classes. Be sure to check with your financial aid counselor and academic advisor before making the decision to drop a class!

Q: Where do I go to find information on scholarships?
A: There are many different scholarships available. Visit Financial Aid for more information on what's available and how to apply.

Q: I'm interested in the Tennessee Lottery Scholarship. What do I need to do to qualify?
A: For more information about the Lottery Scholarship you will want to visit Financial Aid Lottery Scholarship Information Website

 

Registration and Dropping/Adding Classes

Q: What date can I register for classes?
A: Students register for classes based on the number of hours they have accumulated. Notification of your assigned date is no longer sent to students via mail. To find this information check your PipelineMT/RaiderNet account under "Registration and Schedule". Look for link to "Assigned Registration Time". Dates are usually assigned approximately one month before Priority Registration. Make sure you have all holds cleared before attempting to register.

Q: How do I register for classes?
A: Students may register online through their PipelineMT/RaiderNet account.
Step 1: Log in using your user name and password.
Step 2: Click on the RaiderNet tab.
Step 3: Locate the "Registration" portion of RaiderNet.
Step 4: Click on "Drop and Add Classes" (Click on "Look Up Classes" to search for open classes).

Q: What classes should I take next semester?
A: The classes that students can register for depends on the student's major. Students should consult with their academic advisor for the selection of courses. Students are encouraged to begin working on their general education requirements during the first year of study. Certain general education courses will be required based on the major the student chooses.

Q: How many hours should I take?
A: The answer to this question depends on you. How much do you think you can handle? A minimum of 12 hours per semester is required to remain a full-time student; a maximum is 18 hours per semester. A reasonable class load is between 15 and 18 hours, but strong consideration should be taken under advisement for travel time, job, and family commitments. It is recommended that for every hour in class a student needs to spend two hours outside of class for that particular subject. For full-time students, we recommend you register for around 15 hours. In the event you must drop a course during the semester, this minimizes the chances of impacting your full-time status. Taking and passing 15 hours a semester for 4 years will result in 120 hours, the minimum number of hours needed to graduate from MTSU.

Q: How do I drop a class?
A: Classes may be dropped by PipelineMT/RaiderNet. Consult the schedule book of the appropriate term for deadlines concerning grade assignment and refunds. Tennessee Board of Regents policy prohibits students from dropping prescribed courses. Under extenuating circumstances a course may be dropped with the approval of the Chair of the University Studies Department.

Q: How can I withdraw from the University?
A: You can withdraw from the University by Pipeline/RaiderNet at the bottom of the "Drop/Add" page or in person at the University College Advising Center in the McFarland Bldg.

 

Academics

Q: I am on academic probation. What do I need to do to get off of probation?
A: To get off academic probation you'll need to earn a 2.0 GPA for the semester or meet one of the following standards:

  1. If you have earned 0-29.99 quality hours, you'll need to have at least a 1.5 cumulative GPA.
  2. If you have earned 30-49.99 quality hours, you'll need to have at least 1.8 cumulative GPA.
  3. If you have earned 50 or more quality hours, you'll need to have at least a 2.0 cumulative GPA.

Q: What does it mean to "confirm" your schedule? How do you do it?
A: If you are paying for your tuition via cash, personal checks, or credit cards your payment is technically "confirming" that you intend to take classes for that semester (make sure you keep your receipt of payment on file). However, if you have financial aid, student loans, or if your registration is paid through a third party, you must confirm your registration using RaiderNetvia PipelineMT. You will be given a confirmation number when you have successfully confirmed your registration. ****If a payment or confirmation has not been processed by the fee payment deadline your schedule will be deleted.

Q: How do I know if I passed my classes or not? How do I get my grades?
A: You may check your grades via PipelineMT/RaiderNet under Student Records. If you only want to see your final grades for one semester you can select Final Grades.  If you would like to view your entire transcript you will select Transcript.

Q: How do I calculate my GPA?
A: Your GPA is a weighted average that takes into account your grades and the number of credits you have. Here are two GPA calculators that do all the work for you. It is very important to remember that your TELS (Lottery Scholarship GPA is calculated differently because you are not allowed to replace grades under the Lottery guidelines. Please see your advisor or Financial Aid counselor for assistance calculating your TELS GPA.

Q: What if I get the same math teacher next semester (if I didn't pass last semester)? Can I drop it and get a different teacher?
A: During the first week of each semester, you can easily drop and add classes. However, there is a point where you can no longer add a class without that instructor's approval. It is important that you know of a class section opening before you drop; you wouldn't want to be left with a dropped class and nothing to add. Please refer to the schedule book for specific dates of the term you are enrolled.

Q: I am having trouble with my math classes. Are there tutoring services available?
A: Yes. There is a math lab located in KOM 204. You may access the hours at http://www.mtsu.edu/math/students.shtml. Having trouble in other classes? To see all the free tutoring offered at MTSU visit http://www.mtsu.edu/tutoring/.

Q: What if I don't pass my final exam but I made OK grades in my class? Will I still pass?
A: This depends a lot on how much the exam contributes to your overall grade. The more it counts towards the final grade, the stronger your other grades will have to be. If you are unsure before the exam about how well you think you might do, speak with your instructor and get some advice from him or her.

Q: Can I retake a class I failed to help my GPA?
A: Yes you can. However, no course should be attempted more than twice except upon the advice of an advisor. The second grade earned will stand, even if the second grade received is an "F" and you had previously received a higher grade. All repeated courses remain on your transcript with repeat notation. You may not repeat a course in which you have previously earned a grade of "A" or "B" without written approval from the dean of the college which houses your major. Once again, remember that if you are on the Lottery Scholarship you will not be able to replace grades in your TELS GPA like you can in your regular MTSU GPA. Please speak with your advisor or Financial Aid counselor for details about your TELS GPA.

Q: How do I appeal a grade?
A: Student appeals concerning a course grade should be resolved by conference between the student and the faculty member who assigned the grade. This should occur within forty (40) days of the graduation date for each term. In the event of an impasse between the student and faculty member, the student should discuss it with the department chair within ten (10) days of the conference. The chair will investigate, record his/her findings, and respond to the student within ten (10) days of notification of impasse. The process can continue further into a committee determination as a next and final step.

Q: How do I get an official copy of my transcript?
A: Official and unofficial copies of a student's record are furnished free of charge upon written request by the student. No student will be issued a transcript until all debts or obligations owed to the institution have been satisfied.

Q: What's an "I" grade?
A: The grade "I" indicates that the student has not completed all course requirements because of illness or other uncontrollable circumstances, especially those that may occur toward the close of the term. Mere failure to make up work or turn in required work on time does not provide the basis for the grade of "I" unless the extenuating circumstances noted above are present for reasons acceptable to the instructor. The "incomplete" must be removed during the succeeding semester, excluding summer. Otherwise a grade of "F" is entered. The "I" grade carries no value until converted to a final grade.

Q: What's a "W"?
A: A "W" is assigned in courses that are dropped during a specified period of time within a term. You should consult the appropriate class schedule book for specific dates each term. A "W" is not a grade; it is done to simply record that you decided to withdraw from a course. It is not calculated into your GPA at all.

Q: What do I do if I'm suspended from the university?
A: If you're placed on academic suspension, you have the opportunity to go through an appeals process. You will meet with the appeals committee prior to the beginning of the semester. Consideration for readmission will be given to students who present adequate evidence of ability, maturity, and motivation. Students should refer to the Records Office for the deadline dates for academic appeals.

 

General Education Requirements

Q: What are General Studies courses? Why do I have to take them?
A: General Studies classes are a set of science, liberal arts, and fine arts courses that serve as a foundation for all majors. Each student at MTSU is required to complete coursework in General Studies. The MTSU community values the curriculum, as it provides a broad knowledge and appreciation of the arts and sciences as well as the intellectual skills that provide a basis for effective communication, problem solving, and evaluation. The Tennessee Board of Regents set these minimum requirements for all its schools; therefore, it is necessary for all students to complete it.

Q: Does everyone have to take a math class?
A: As part of the General Studies requirement, at least one math course is required in all majors.

Q: Am I required to take a foreign language course?
A: Only if you have a high school deficiency (i.e., you didn't take a foreign language in high school) or are seeking a B.A. degree must you take a foreign language. If you are deficient in two years of foreign language requirements you will be required to complete a 1010 and a 1020 of the same language.

 

Prescribed Courses

Q: What are Prescribed classes?
A: Prescribed classes are classes designed for students who need additional instruction in areas before completing regular college curriculum courses. ACT scores, assessment tests, and areas of high school deficiency are used to determine an individual student's need for prescribed classes. Courses in mathematics, reading, and writing are offered. A learning strategies course is required for students who are placed in any two of those subject areas. A grade of "C" or better is required to satisfy a Prescribed Course requirement.

Q: What happens if I do not pass my Prescribed course(s)? Will I get kicked out of the University?
A: If you do not successfully pass your prescribed classes, you are required to retake the same courses over next semester until successfully passed. In most cases, you will not be kicked out of the University. The second time you attempt the class and successfully pass, the grade will be recalculated in your overall average. However, if your prior academic record indicates academic probation, you may have to appeal to the Academic Appeals Committee to be reinstated due to poor academic progress.

Q: Since I declared or changed my major, how do I fit in the classes I need for it while I'm taking the Prescribed classes?
A: Students should be aware of prerequisites that may apply to their particular major. Please contact your advisor for questions regarding the classes you need for your major. Contact information for advisors in each college can be assessed at http://www.mtsu.edu/advising/advisors.shtml.

Q: What is a high school deficiency?
A: The Tennessee Board of Regents requires all admitted students to have demonstrated mastery of various high school content areas (i.e., English, Algebra, Geometry, Natural/Physical Science, etc.) In the event your high school did not offer some of these subjects, or you did not demonstrate mastery, you would have a high school deficiency. It would be necessary to take coursework at MTSU to cover this deficiency.

Q: Can I delay or defer a Prescribed class to a later semester?
A: You must continuously enroll in needed Prescribed courses until completion. If you are placed in four basic or Prescribed classes per semester, you may take only one other course; either an ROTC or PHED activity course. You may not take any college-level course which requires skill in any area in which you show a deficiency as determined by the placement test.

 

Majors

Q: How do I declare or change my major?
A: A student, advisor, or academic department may request a change of major, minor, or catalog for any student currently enrolled or enrolled for a future term via the online Change of Major/Program Form. It is highly recommended that students meet with an advisor in their intended new major before submitting this form to ensure their major/minor selection meets their career goals as well as abides by University policy. For more information about changing your major please visit http://www.mtsu.edu/records/major.shtml.

Q: What is an upper division form?
When should I complete it? A: Two semesters before the term you intent to graduate, students should complete an upper-division form and file it with their Graduation Coordinator along with the Intent to Graduate form. This form may be obtained from the office of the head of the department in which the student expects to major.