Ohio University

Orientation FAQs

General Information

How long is orientation?

We offer two different programs based on when a student is starting at Ohio University. Our June sessions for students starting in the fall semester are two-day programs, while our sessions in January, May, and August are one-day programs. Orientation check-in typically happens around 8 a.m. for all programs.  One-day programs typically end around 5 p.m. and two-day programs typically end around 12 p.m. on the second day. Students must attend the entire program in order to register for classes and should plan accordingly. 

Can I change my orientation session after I have signed up?

Yes. You can log back into our registration system the same way you originally registered and select the "change the date" button at the bottom of the screen to view the calendar of available dates for your major. If you have any issues, please contact our office.

What happens if I need to cancel my orientation session?

If you need to cancel your orientation, you may do so online the same way that you originally registered for orientation up to three days prior to your scheduled session. If you cannot cancel your registration yourself or it is within three days of your scheduled session, please contact us. Please note that cancelling your orientation session does not cancel your application to the university and you will need to contact the Office of Undergraduate Admissions if you intend to do that.

When I go to the system to sign-up for my program, I don't see all of the program dates. Why is that?

Some majors have a smaller number of students entering in a semester and have fewer dates available as options so students are able to connect with a larger group of peers in their major during the program.  Also, the system is set-up to close sessions as the available seats fill for each program, so it is also possible that the program dates you do not see are because the available seats for your major are all full. In some instances, exceptions may be made to accommodate you on dates you do not see available in the system to sign-up. If that is the case, please contact us to discuss your options. 

Will I have access to the Wi-Fi network during my orientation program?

Yes. Once students arrive on campus they may login with their OHIO ID and password. Families and guests may use the guest Wi-Fi which does not require a login.

Why should I download the BSO App?

The OHIO BSO App will have valuable information including: the schedule of events for orientation and the ability to receive reminders for sessions, information about your Orientation Leaders (OLs), maps and directions, important phone numbers, and university resources. You can download the app from the Apple Store or Google Play.

What if I need to leave early or miss part of the program?

All sessions during your orientation are mandatory. Missing or skipping sessions prevents you from registering for classes. For extenuating circumstances, please contact our office in advance to discuss your situation. 

Orientation Fees

What are the fees for orientation? 

Most student orientation fees are part of the OHIO Guarantee, but there are specific fees for family and guest programs.  Full details about our orientation fees can be found on our Sign-Up and Fees page. 

How do I pay the fees for orientation?

Fees will automatically be charged to your student account after you attend Orientation and register for your classes. You can pay these fees along with your tuition charges either online or at the Bursar's Office. No payments need to be made before or during your orientation program.

Are orientation fees refundable?

Fees are non-refundable. If you have additional questions, please feel free to contact our office.

Academic Information

If I choose a later BSO date, will I still have classes to choose from?

Each Orientation session provides the same in-depth academic advising and fair access to course enrollments. No matter the program you attend, you will register for a complete and appropriate schedule for your major or intended major. If you are attending our summer program, we encourage you to register for a Learning Community in advance of attending BSO.

What should I do if I have taken AP exams?

Have your AP scores sent directly to Ohio University. Undergraduate Admissions only accepts scores submitted by the CollegeBoard. Any credit you are eligible for will be loaded to your university record before orientation. We recommend you bring a copy of your AP scores when you come for orientation, as it will aid in your scheduling process. If you are still awaiting scores when you attend orientation, it will be helpful to inform your academic advisor about the AP exams you have taken to make sure your schedule is planned properly.  

What should I do if I've taken courses at another university?

Have an official transcript sent directly to the Office of Admissions, Chubb Hall 120, Athens, OH 45701 as soon as possible. We would also suggest that you bring an unofficial copy of your most current transcript with you to orientation to be used as a discussion point in the event your transcript has not been fully processed. If you would like to check if your transcript has been received, please contact the Office of Undergraduate Admissions.

What if I want to change my major?

If you wish to change your major, we recommend doing so as soon as possible.  Since our orientation program is designed to connect you with other students in your major and specific information is shared about your major or college, it is important to make any major changes prior to attending orientation. To change your major, please contact Undergraduate Admissions via email at admissions@ohio.edu. You should do this at least one week prior to your scheduled orientation date to make sure we have prepared your orientation materials for your new major.  However, if you do not make the change by then, we will still have an option for you to discuss a major change with admissions during check-in for your program.

Family and Guest Orientation 

Do families and guests attend the same sessions as students?

Families and guests have a separate orientation experience from students. Student sessions are designed for the student to develop essential academic autonomy and an opportunity to meet future classmates. Our program sessions are designed to meet each groups' needs in this transitional experience. Additional information about the program can be found on our Family and Guest Orientation page. 

Do families or guests need to attend orientation?

Family members and guests are encouraged to attend orientation with their student. While the program is not required for family members or guests, it is an excellent time for you to get information and helpful hints on how to help your student through their college experience. It will also give you a chance to ask questions and get to know some of the students, staff, and faculty who will be working with your student throughout their college career. Additional information about the program can be found on our Family and Guest Orientation page. 

Will families and guests be able to help their student schedule?

Students will be assisted by an academic advisor and Orientation Leader (OL) throughout the registration process. Parents will be in a separate session during this time. The academic advisor is happy to answer any questions the parent may have after the student has registered. We appreciate your support in providing students the opportunity to make their own academic decisions.

Overnight Stay for Two-day Orientation Programs

Can I stay in a residence hall during my orientation?

Yes, we encourage all students to stay overnight during their two-day orientation program.  We have late night programs for students and an early start on day two, so this staying on campus allows you to be closer to the fun and make more connections at orientation. 

When you sign-up for your orientation program, you have the option to indicate your interest in staying overnight. If you did not indicate this when you signed up, please let our staff know when you check-in on the day of your program. You will receive placement for overnight accommodations when you arrive.

The fee for a student's overnight stay during orientation programs is included in The OHIO Guarantee. Any family or guests that would also like to stay overnight are welcome to do so for an added fee. Anyone who does not wish to stay overnight is welcome to commute or to arrange plans with surrounding hotels.

Who will I be sharing a room with at orientation?

Students can choose to stay with their future roommates for the night of orientation or friends who may be attending the same orientation program. If you are not travelling to orientation with someone or know anyone when you arrive at the program, you will have the opportunity to meet other students in your small group who you can room with for the overnight stay. When checking into the residence halls for your orientation program, you will need to let the Housing and Residence Life staff know you want to room with that specific person or you will be assigned to a room randomly with another student for the night. 

Are linens provided in the residence halls during orientation?

Yes. Towels, sheets, and pillows are provided for you during orientation if you stay overnight in the residence halls. You are free to bring additional items that will help you feel comfortable during your stay.

What if I need to arrive early for orientation?

We can provide housing accommodations for the night before your orientation session if you are traveling from a long distance. There is a fee per guest and student for staying an extra night. To check-in for early arrival, you will go directly to the assigned residence hall when you get to campus. Additional information about early arrivals will be shared in our pre-orientation email communications.