Your START Advising

Your academic advising office for the beginning of your academic career is START (Student Advising & Resource Team). Your START advisor can help you with understanding your degree requirements, choosing a major, scheduling for next semester, connecting with campus resources, and more. Basically, if you have a question, ask your START advisor. If we can’t answer your question, we will connect you with a person who can.

All START students are required to meet with their advisor at least once a semester. Students can meet with a START advisor by appointment or drop-in advising, which is offered at varying times during the semester.  

Your College

Even though you are advised by START, you are still a member of a college: College of Arts, Sciences, and Letters; College of Education, Health, and Human Services; and College of Engineering and Computer Science. As a student within that college, you will have to know and abide by their specific policy and procedures. Your college has an informational website that you should peruse. Be sure to spend particular time exploring the policy information posted on your college’s website! You will be expected to know this information and abide by it. If you have questions regarding any policies or procedures posted on your college’s website, please ask your START advisor!

College of Arts, Sciences, and Letters

The College of Arts, Sciences, and Letters, known as CASL (pronounced castle), is home to 38 undergraduate liberal arts majors, ranging from Anthropology to Biology to Women’s and Gender Studies. The College of Arts, Sciences, and Letters Advising and Academic Success office’s website has curriculum information for all majors, minors, and certificates offered through CASL. It also has very detailed information policy and procedure information, which you need to know. Be sure to read through the Summary of Most Commonly Used Policies in its entirety. Yes, it’s long, but it is incredibly important.

College of Business

The College of Business (COB) offers a bachelor’s in business administration with nine choices of major. The Undergraduate Student Services Office’s website provides information on policies and procedures. Be sure to read about experiential opportunities available in the college, as well as opportunities to become involved on campus through student organizations and professional organizations specific to business.

College of Education, Health, and Human Services

The College of Education, Health, and Human Services (CEHHS-pronounced chess) houses programs for those interested in careers within the K-12 school system and other education-related fields (Elementary and Secondary Certification Programs, Instructional Technology, Children and Families, etc), as well as programs created to serve the health and well-being of our community (Health and Human Services, Health Policy Studies, Addiction Studies Certificate, etc). CEHHS’s website has information on all of their undergraduate programs, policies, and helpful information on common college terms and frequently used forms.

College of Engineering and Computer Science

The College of Engineering and Computer Science (CECS) houses 11 undergraduate degree programs and two concurrent degree programs. As a CECS student, it is important to take time to get to know the CECS advising website. In here, you will find the CECS policies and procedures, as well as sample sequences and urriculum sheets for all of our majors. You will be held responsible for knowing the policy and procedure information, so look over it carefully and ask questions when you have them.

Degree Requirements

At orientation, you learn how to use Degree Works, UM-Dearborn’s online degree audit system. Be sure to sign in again to see how the courses you registered for at orientation fit into your degree requirements. Please follow the link for tutorials on using Degree Works.

Registration Deadlines

Registration and Records publishes registration deadlines, and they will email you throughout the semester to remind you of upcoming dates. It is important to observe posted deadlines.


START only communicates via email, as do other offices on campus. You must check your UMICH email daily, or you will miss important information that can have a negative impact on your ability to succeed here. We assume you are checking your email daily because that is your responsibility, so if you miss an email and end up missing a deadline, there can be consequences that you’ll have to deal with. Some may be negligible, like you have to come to drop-in advising instead of making an appointment because all the available appointments were booked, but some can be serious, like you have to stay registered for a course that you are failing because you missed the selective drop deadline. ALSO, don’t forward your UMICH email to another account. Some emails don’t go through. For example, CASL sends its Dean’s List letters electronically, and those emails will not forward. Don’t miss out on a celebration of your hard work because you don’t want to check two email accounts.

Time Management

Full-time students take at least 12 credits, which is generally four courses. Full-time students must balance their outside obligations (work, volunteering, student organizations, and the like) to make the most of their educational investment. Not everyone has the ability to limit outside obligations. Taking classes part-time allows students who work full-time, or have additional obligations such as family members to care for, the ability to give each class the attention it needs. Keep in mind: for every credit hour you take, you should spend at least two hours working on that course outside of the classroom. For example, if you take 12 credits, you will be in class 12 hours a week, and you will be studying, doing homework, reading, for at least 24 hours each week. That’s at least 36 hours spent on school per week. Full-time school is a full-time job!

Finishing your degree in four years has important cost benefits, which you need to know about. Check out #FastFourward’s website to find out how to save money and maximize your earning potential.

If it takes 120 credits to finish your degree and you would like to graduate in four years, you need to take 30 credits per year. If you don’t want to take Summer courses, you must take those 30 credits between Fall and Winter semesters. That isn’t realistic for students who work more than 10-12 hours a week, have siblings to care for, or other substantial obligations. Students can still reach 30 credits by taking 12 credits each in Fall and Winter, then taking 6 in Summer.

There is often a transition period after transferring where students have to adjust how they study and the amount of time spent studying to earn the types of grades they received at their previous institution. Expect that you will need to make some adjustments. UM-Dearborn has resources to support you through this transition.  If you would like to talk to a success coach about time management skills, study skills, or tutoring, please call the Office of Student Success at 313-593-5340 to schedule an appointment.

The Undergraduate Catalog—More Important Than You Think!

The Undergraduate Catalog is your contract with the university, and we all know that you should never enter into an agreement without reading the contract. Take the time to review the University and College policies in the catalog because you will be held responsible for knowing them. Here are some policies that you should pay extra attention to as they can be particularly relevant to your first year on campus:



Remember, every piece of information in the Catalog is important, and you do need to understand it. As you read, write down your questions, and then bring them to your appointment with your academic advisor for clarification!

Next Steps

You will meet with a START Advisor at New Student Orientation. If you have questions prior to orientation please contact us.

Once you are enrolled as a student START Advising will be your new point of contact. If you have questions about UM-Dearborn or any of the policy and procedure information from your college’s website, please email START at We will be happy to answer any questions you may have.

START Advising

2149 -
University Center (UC)
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