Advising - FAQ


Frequently Asked Questions

Registration FAQs can be found on the Registrar's Office's dedicated registration webpage

For other commonly asked questions, please see below!

What classes do I need to take for my major?
The classes required for each major are provided in the course catalog. You can also review our webpage, "What Courses Should I Take?", as well as run yourself a "What If" degree audit for any major or minor program to review the requirements and check your degree progress. 

What are prerequisite classes? How do I know my class has a prerequisite?
A prerequisite is a course that you need to take in order to be well prepared for the course you want to sign up for. These are important to note as courses with prerequisites begin with the assumption that you have already acquired a particular set of knowledge. Finding out if the course you want to take has a prerequisite is easy! Just search for the course in Lehigh’s course catalog and any prerequisites will be clearly indicated.

What are the advantages and disadvantages of using AP credits?
AP courses are immensely valuable in preparing you for college-level courses. One disadvantage is that the AP course may not provide enough content to fully prepare you for the courses at Lehigh. Taking the course again instead of opting out may be to your advantage because it allows you review the course subject matter you’ve already taken. It is a good idea to be patient. The course may seem too easy in the beginning, but college courses move quickly and you could find the material at midterm to be more than the AP course covered. (One way to check on this is to read the syllabus and the book and see if you are able to do the work to be covered at the end of the semester).

Using AP credits can work to your advantage if you do well because it will allow you to take other courses and in some cases can shorten the number of courses you will have to take to graduate.

What order do I need to take classes in?
The order in which you take classes very much depends on your major. Many of the sciences and some of the social sciences offer introductory level courses that serve as prerequisites for upper level courses. For example CHEM 30 and 31 must be take before CHEM 110 and 111. And CHEM 30 must be taken before or concurrently with BIOS 41. Other majors may not have this structure, so it is important to review the catalog entry to find out if there is a suggested sequence or prerequisite courses to pay attention to. 

Suggested course sequences and model rosters for some majors can be found in the course catalog and on the CAS UG web site.

How can I find out if my class is offered in Fall or Spring semester?
The best way to find out when a course is offered is to check the schedule of classes on the Registrar’s website each semester and to ask your advisor. The suggested course sequences are structured so that courses can be taken in the appropriate semester. You may also check for course sequencing by major in the current online catalog.

When is the best time to take the classes I need for my major? What options do I have for this major?
The best schedule for courses for a given major can be found in the course catalog under the major. Options for the major are also listed there. It is best to work with the major advisor or department to verify course sequencing options.

How often should I meet with my advisor?
You should meet with your advisor at least once a semester before registration to select courses for the next semester. It is a good idea to email your advisor to set up a time to meet. It is best to come prepared with courses you would like to take and any questions about courses or college life you may have. Your advisor is here to help you! You should feel free to discuss any question you may have about academics, like course registration, dropping and adding, professors, majors, study abroad, internships, etc.

Do I have to meet with my advisor?
Yes, yes you do! Your advisor has the PIN you need to register for classes and you need a different PIN each semester, so you will have to get the PIN from your advisor. Some advisors may opt to give you the PIN via email after chatting about your course plans, which is only fine if you have no questions or concerns about your academic progress. But if you do want to discuss your progress, it is a good idea to set up a meeting!

What if I have questions that my advisor is not able to answer?
Your advisor should be able to refer you to someone that can help. If they cannot please contact Beth Pelton, the Manager of Undergraduate Programs, in the CAS Advising Center (490 Maginnes Hall).

I am thinking of switching into or out of the CAS – what is the process?
Start by talking to your advisor. Be sure to let him/her know why you want to switch. Try to identify a major you would like to switch to before you meet. Do some research on the courses for that major. You might also talk to other students who are majoring in the subject you are interested in to get their impressions.

Requirements of changing colleges: Students have to have earned 23 credit hours total, with at least 12 credit hours at Lehigh, and are in good academic standing, which typically means after your first academic year. For students switching into the CBE, they will also need to complete another set of requirements, with detailed information found on the CBE website. After meeting the requirements students can fill out a college change petition form which is available online, in the Registration Service’s Office, or in any of the deans' offices.

Is there a way to plan out my classes for the next semester and semesters after that?
Yes, and this is an excellent idea as it will help you plan your time and give you a sense of what is next. Suggested course schedules and rosters can be found on the course catalog and the CAS website. Use these as a template for your plan. You can also use a new suite of tools that includes a course planner available in your Student Services tab in your student Banner called, Registration Tools. 

I want a more specific advisor – what is the process to go about that?
Once you declare your major you will be assigned an advisor in that major. Your major advisor can help you with questions about the major (courses, professors etc.). 

Can I change advisors?
Yes and it’s easy – just go to the department office in your major and request a new advisor!