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 and if you are a first-year student or a transfer student. Our June sessions for first-year students starting in the fall semester are two-day programs. Our sessions for transfer students in June and all students 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 system the same way you originally signed up 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 signed up 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.

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 entering as a first-year student in the fall semester, we encourage you to apply for a Learning Community in advance of attending BSO as you will be pre-enrolled in those courses.  

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

Do all students stay on campus during the overnight programs?

Yes, we expect 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 staying on campus allows you to be closer to the program and make more connections at orientation. 

The fee for a student's overnight stay during orientation programs is included in the OHIO Guarantee, so there is no additional cost for this component. Any family or guests that would also like to stay overnight are welcome to do so for an added fee. Families and guests who do not wish to stay overnight are welcome to commute or to arrange plans with surrounding hotels. Information about places to stay can be found on the Athens County Visitors Bureau website here: https://athensohio.com/category/wheretostay/.

Who will I be sharing a room with at orientation?

If you plan to commute to campus in the fall, then you will be rooming with another commuter student during the orientation program.  Students living on campus in the fall are encouraged to sign-up for the same program date as their future roommates so they can stay with them for the night of orientation. If your future roommates are not attending orientation on the same date, then we will try to assign you to room with another student attending orientation who is either on your floor or in your building for the fall semester. You can also request to room with a specific person you know who is attending that same orientation program during check-in on the morning of the first day of your program.  

Are linens provided in the residence halls during orientation?

Yes. Towels, sheets, and pillows are provided for the overnight stay 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 person for students and their guests for staying an extra night. Additional information about early arrivals will be shared in our pre-orientation email communications.