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College Advising Center

FAQ

The information below, along with the First-Year Students Guide to Pioneer Success (GPS), is intended to help incoming students get started on their academic life.

If you have questions, would like to review your options, or discuss potential schedules, we encourage you to contact the College Advising Center at cac@lclark.edu, 503-768-7600, or make an appointment. You can also get in touch if you run into any problems during registration.

To learn more about housing, new student trips, or arriving on campus, please check in with New Student Orientation

How do I find out what classes are offered in the fall?

The College Catalog lists all of the courses offered at Lewis & Clark; however, not all courses are offered every semester. The courses that are offered in a particular semester are listed on our registration website, called Webadvisor.

1.  Go to webadvisor.lclark.edu. (Haven’t setup your WebAdvisor account yet? Check out page 4 of your GPS.)

2.  Log in using your WebAdvisor User ID and password. Select the Students menu.

3.  Under the Registration heading, select Search for Sections.

4.  From the Term drop-down menu, select CAS-Fall 2017.

5.  Narrow your search to courses open to first-year students by clicking on the Course Type field (in the lower right) and selecting CAS: First year students. This will show you all 100-level courses and 200-level courses that have an F in the section number (it’ll be a long list).

6.  Click Submit. 

7. If you see a course you would like to learn more about in the Section Selection Results, click on the title of the course to read a description, to determine if there are any prerequisites, and to see complete scheduling information about when and where the course meets.

What courses can I take?

First-year students may register for all 100-level courses, for 200-level courses that have an “F” in the section number (for example, RHMS 270-F1), and for 300-level language courses, if you test into them.

You can find out if courses have prerequisites when you search for courses in Webadvisor (to search for courses, follow the directions on page 6 of your GPS): click on the course title to see the description, including prerequisites.  For example, many math and science courses have a prerequisite of “QR 101 or equivalent” (an ALEKS score between 53 and 75 is equivalent to QR 101. Visit Placement Exams to learn more about equivalencies).  

What courses should I take?

Your first year is a time for exploring possible majors, as well as different subjects that sound interesting to you. Of the courses you take in college, roughly a 1/3 will fulfill General Education requirements, another 1/3 will be in your chosen major, and the final 1/3 are electives that allow you to explore and broaden your horizons. We encourage students to work on all three of these areas each semester. 

Rather than “getting all my requirements out of the way first,” students should create a schedule that involves one or two General Education courses (e.g., Core 106 and a language course), a course that explore a possible major, and at least one course “just because” it sounds interesting, captures your imagination, or speaks to your passions. Some classes that you take “just because,” or to explore a major, might also fulfill a General Education requirement. 

In early July, additional spots will be opened in many courses that first-year students typically take, such as math, chemistry, biology, and a variety of introductory courses in subjects such as history, politics, and psychology. Students considering Math, Science, or Environmental Studies majors, as well as prospective Music majors, should get started on specific course sequences in their first semester. 

What are General Education requirements?

General Education courses provide a foundation for learning at a liberal arts college. These classes can expand your perspectives and skills, and expose you to the fine arts, humanities, natural sciences, and social sciences. Lewis & Clark College’s General Education requirements consists of the following:

•  Core courses (Exploration & Discovery).

•  A foreign language taken through the 201 level

•  Two international studies courses

•  Three scientific and quantitative reasoning courses: at least one Science Laboratory course (Category A), at least one Mathematical and Quantitative Reasoning course (Category B), and one course in Quantitative Reasoning in the Social Sciences or Humanities (Category C)

•  Four credits in creative arts

•  Two credits (taken in separate semesters) of physical education/activity

The requirements and courses that fulfill them are listed in the College Catalog under General Education Requirements.

When should I take General Education classes? How can I see what GE classes are offered in the fall?

The requirements and courses that fulfill them are listed in the College Catalog under General Education Requirements. However, not all courses are offered every semester. To find out which GE courses will be offered this fall:

1.  Go to webadvisor.lclark.edu.  

2.  Log in using your WebAdvisor User ID and password. Select the Students menu.

3.  Under the Registration heading, select Search for Sections.

4.  From the Term drop-down menu, select CAS-Fall 2017.

5.  Narrow your search to GE courses by clicking on the Course Type field (in the lower right) and selecting CAS-GE SCI/QUANT REAS CAT A (or CAS-GE CREATIVE ARTS, etc). This will show you all courses offered at L&C in the fall that fulfill that GE requirement, not just those open to first-year students (you can click on a Course Title on the next page to see the prerequisites). 

6.  Click Submit. 

Students often assume that they need to finish all of their general education in one or two years, but that’s not necessarily true. As long as you continue to make steady progress on the requirements, so that they are not all left for the end of your time at L&C, you’ll be fine. 

I’m not interested in a Math or Science major. What kind of courses would you recommend I take to fulfill these general education requirements?

Student fulfill the Scientific and Quantitative Reasoning requirements by taking at least one course that includes a lab component (from the Category A: Science Lab course list) and two courses that include mathematical and quantitative reasoning (at least one selected from Category B: Mathematical and Quantitative Reasoning list and the other selected from the Category B or the Category C: Quantitative Reasoning list).

The Biology and Chemistry departments both offer courses specifically designed for students who wish to meet their Category A: Science Lab requirement (SQR A) without majoring in a science or environmental studies: BIO 100: Perspectives in Biology, CHEM 100: Perspectives in Environmental Chemistry, and CHEM 105: Perspectives in Nutrition.

The Mathematics and Physics department also offers several classes designed with nonmajors in mind to fulfill the Category B: Mathematical and Quantitative Reasoning requirement (SQR B): MATH 103: Perspectives in Mathematics, MATH 105: Perspectives in Statistics, CS 107: Perspectives in Computer Science. The Physics department regularly offers PHYS 105: Astronomy, PHYS 106: The Physics of Music and PHYS 110: Great Ideas in Physics.

Students in Economics, Philosophy, Political Science, Psychology, Sociology/Anthropology, and Rhetoric and Media Studies may fulfill the Category C: Quantitative Reasoning (SQR C) requirement through a class required in their major. All other students may take another course in the SQR B category or may consider Econ 100: Principles of Economics, Econ 103: Economic Statistics, or Phil 101: Logic.

Note: Students who earn and receive credit for a 4 or 5 on the AP Statistics exam are not eligible to also earn credit for Math 105: Perspectives in Statistics, Econ 103: Statistics, or Psy 200: Statistics I.

To register for many of these courses (and any course in the SQR B category), students must meet one of the following criteria: a) a score of 53 or above on the ALEKS exam; b) a score of 4 or 5 on an AP Calculus AB or BC exams or a score of 5, 6, or 7 on an IB HL Math exam; c) completing QR 101. You can read more about your options in our advice about Placement Exams.

How many courses should I take?

We recommend taking 15 to 17 credits. When the first round of registration opens on August 1st, you’ll already be enrolled in one course, Core 106: Exploration & Discovery. Apart from that, we recommend registering for three more classes: a course that explores a possible major, something new and interesting, and a General Education course. Be sure to check out advice for Music and Math, Science, or Environmental Studies majors, if you are considering studying one of those fields.

A typical load for Lewis & Clark students is four, 4-credit classes each semester—if you do that, you’ll complete 128 credits (the total you need to graduate) in four years. However, some students take 17 or 18 credits per semester if they are taking a lab science and/or activities, while some students will have 12 or 13 credits if they have been advised to allow themselves extra time to adjust to the academic expectations here. 12 credits is the lowest you can go to be a full-time student, so one nice thing about registering for 16 is that you have a little bit of a buffer to withdraw from a class during the add/drop period (the first two weeks of the fall semester) if you feel overwhelmed.

You may not take more than 19 credits in your first semester. Give yourself time to become acquainted with campus, to adjust to the expectations in your courses, and to get involved in the Lewis & Clark community.

Many professors expect you will spend two or three hours on average outside of class for every one hour you spend in class. Different types of work are challenging for different students and the workload in any course may vary from week to week. Nonetheless, most students find they need to devote more time to study outside of class than what they were accustomed to doing in high school.

The College Advising Center can help you decide what load is right for you. Student Support Services is another good source of advice for students with learning differences.

How do I register for classes?

You can use WebAdvisor to search for classes and save them in a Preferred Sections list, which is like a shopping cart. When it comes time to register, you can return to this list to easily complete your registration.

1.  Go to webadvisor.lclark.edu.

2.  Log in using your WebAdvisor User ID and password.

3.  Under the Registration heading, select Register for Sections.

4.  Choose Search and Register for Sections.

5.  From the Term drop-down menu, select CAS-Fall 2017.

6.  To search for courses in a particular subject area, simply enter the name of the subject and click Submit. (You may search the course offerings of up to five subjects at once, but it is not necessary to fill in the entire search form.)

7.  You can also narrow your search to courses open to first-year students by going to the Course Type field and selecting CAS: First year students. This will show you 100-level courses and 200-level courses that have an F in the section number.

8.  Click Submit.

9.  To learn more about a particular course, click on its orange section name and title. An information window will pop up. If the course interests you, check if there are any prerequisites or restrictions.

10. Once you find a course listing that intrigues you, place it in your Preferred Sections list by checking the box next to the section name and title and clicking Submit. (You can remove a section from this list at any time by using the Action drop-down menu next to the course you wish to remove.)

11. Continue looking for courses to add to your Preferred Sections list by clicking on Search for Sections.

Need more help? Check out these detailed Online Registration Instructions, contact the Registrar’s Office, or watch What time does registration open? 

When do I register for classes?

Registration for incoming first-year students happens on two dates this summer: August 1 and August 3. On both days, you will have specific registration times assigned to you when you can log into WebAdvisor and sign up for classes.

During your first registration time on August 1, you will be able to register for one course of your choosing (This will be your priority pick. Remember, you will already be registered for your Exploration and Discovery course.) During your final registration time on August 3, you will register for the remainder of your courses. After August 3, registration remains open until August 18, to allow you to make changes to your schedule or take advantage of wait-listed seats that may become available for you. There will also be time during NSO to make additional changes after you meet with your faculty advisor 

The instructions below explain how to find your appointment times for each day of registration. This information will be available as soon as you create your Lewis & Clark account.

1.  Go to WebAdvisor.  (Clicking this link will open a new tab in your browser so you can click back to follow the step by step instructions.)

2.  Log in using your WebAdvisor User ID and password.

3.  Click on Students.

4.  Under the Registration heading, select Registration Permissions and then choose 17/FA CAS-Fall 2017.

5.  After clicking submit, you should now be able to see the dates and times at which you are scheduled to register for your courses. All times are provided in Pacific Daylight Time (PDT).

For more useful tips, watch What time does registration open?

I missed my registration time! What should I do?

After August 3, registration remains open until August 18, to allow you to make changes to your schedule or take advantage of wait-listed seats that may become available for you. There will also be time during NSO to make additional changes after you meet with your faculty advisor.

What if I have AP/IB credit?

Be sure your scores have been sent to Lewis & Clark. AP or IB exam credit may affect your placement in some subjects (for example, if you are thinking of pursuing the Psychology major, an AP score of 4 or 5 will allow to you go straight into 200-level Psychology courses). The Advanced Standing section of the Lewis & Clark Catalog has a subject breakdown for both AP and IB examination equivalencies. It also explains the elective credit Lewis & Clark grants for AP and IB scores.

AP and IB scores and high school transcripts showing grades from your senior year are typically not received by the college until mid- to late-July. To see if your scores have been received by L&C:

1. Log into WebAdvisor using your L&C username and password.

2. Click Students.

3. Under the Academic Profile Heading, select Test Summary for SAT/ACT, AP/IB scores, and the results of your placement exams.

If you have questions about whether test scores have been received, you can contact the Registrar’s Office.   

For more useful tips, watch What if I have AP or IB credit?

How and when should I take the placement exams?

L&C requires incoming students take two placements over the summer: the ALEKS mathematical Proficiency exam and the Foreign Language placement. (A third, optional, Theory Placement Assessment is also suggested for prospective Music majors).

To learn more about the placement exams, how long (or how to) prepare for them, or how many times you might take the placements, please consult our advice regarding Placement Exams.

I took a college classes in high school. Can I get credit at L&C for them?

Credit is also not granted for college courses used in any way for high school graduation. In order to transfer credit for the college coursework you completed in high school, you will need to send a statement (via fax, mail or email) from your high school counselor or school official to L&C Registrar’s Office stating that none (or which) of the college courses you took was used toward your high school graduation requirements.  

What should I register for first?

Deciding on a priority class to register for first means considering a few different factors: What class is most important to you? Is there a major that you are particularly interested in exploring? Are there many sections of the same class being offered, and how many open seats are still available? Are you a prospective Math, Science, Environmental Studies, or Music major? Is there a general education requirement that you would like to complete soon?

There is a lot to consider, but don’t worry: you don’t have to do this alone! If, after reading over the GPS and the College Advising Center’s advice for First-Year Students, you have questions or just want to double-check your plans, contact the College Advising Center at cac@lclark.edu, 503-768-7600, or make an appointment

Something to keep in mind is that the later you register, the fewer options you’ll have. Try to register at, or as close to, your assigned registration times on August 1st and August 3rd as possible.  

Should I have backups? How many?

As you prepare to register, it is important to have a list of backup courses, so that if a particular course is full when it is your turn to register, you will have another course in mind. It is also useful to have backup courses so that you have a few different schedule options in case some of the courses you are interested in are offered at the same time. 

We recommend having a list of 4 to 6 backup classes before registration opens on August 1st. Your backup list can be comprised of other courses to consider within majors or minors you are interested in exploring, classes that fulfill general education requirements, or classes that allow you to try out something completely new and different. You also might want to consider registering for one these hidden gems

If you are having trouble crafting your schedule or finding backups, please contact the College Advising Center at cac@lclark.edu, 503-768-7600, or make an appointment.. 

What should I do if a class I want to take is full?

If a course is already full during your WebAdvisor registration time, you can put your name on a waitlist using the same screen you would use to register (select “Waitlist” from the drop-down menu, and then Submit). After you place yourself on the waitlist, be sure to register for another course that is open.

If your name is on a waitlist and a space becomes available while WebAdvisor registration is still open (through August 18th), the Registrar’s office will email your Lewis & Clark email account and you will have 48 hours to register before the spot is offered to someone else. If a spot does not open up before classes begin, you can contact the professor and/or attend the first day of class, and the instructor will explain how she or he will be handling the waitlist.

If you are unable to get into that class this fall, don’t be discouraged. We have small classes at Lewis & Clark and so some courses do fill up, but if you really want a course, you will have plenty of chances to take that class in subsequent semesters. Instead, this semester, you can start exploring your backup options or a hidden gem.

What makes a “good” schedule?

After you have identified courses that interest you, be sure to make note of when they meet so that you can create a schedule of courses that don’t conflict. 

Academic buildings are L&C are close together, so don’t worry if you only have a 10 minute break between classes - that is usually plenty of time to get from one class to another.

We generally recommend spreading courses across your week so that no one day is completely open or completely booked. Homework and other assignments are often spread more evenly throughout the week with this type of schedule. However, some students prefer to cluster their courses (i.e. back-to-back classes on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays). With this type of arrangement, you would need to carefully manage your time on non-class days, since you’ll likely have multiple assignments due on the same day in different classes.

It’s not always possible to design your dream schedule. You may have to prioritize class availability and/or fulfill a certain interest or requirement, over your ideal schedule. While your schedule may not be exactly what you want, you can make any schedule work with preparation and planning.

Try to keep in mind how the work you’ll be doing in your classes will fit together. When possible, we suggest picking courses that offer a variety of different kinds of “brain work” that strikes a balance between reading- and writing-intensive, quantitative problem solving, foreign language, or creative courses. You might love one particular subject, but too much of one thing is usually a bad idea! Remember, you will be registered for one reading and writing intensive course already, Core 106: Exploration & Discovery. 

How do I sign up for Exploration & Discovery (Core)?

Exploration & Discovery is a two-semester sequence (Core 106 in the fall, and Core 107 in the spring) for first-year students. All sections of E&D are held on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, and, generally, class times are 1:50 - 2:50pm. However, there are a few sections taught at other times to resolve schedule conflicts with other classes.  

Although there are common texts read by all sections of E&D in the fall, each section is unique in its theme and additional materials. The E&D preference form allows you to choose your top 6 preferences. The preference form will open on June 1st. We strongly recommend filling out the form as early as possible.  If your preference form has not been received by June 24th, you will be assigned to an open section.

By July 8th, you will receive an email letting you know which section you have been assigned to, and will be automatically registered for fall E&D. 

I’m thinking about being a Math, Science, or Environmental Studies major. What should I know?

In order to explore or pursue some majors at Lewis & Clark, you must start on the path in your first semester of college. That is because courses in the Mathematical Sciences, Natural Sciences, and Environmental Studies are very sequential. Many classes are offered only in the fall, so if you wait, you could be set back an entire year.

If you are considering a major in Math, Computer Science, Biology, Biochemistry & Molecular Biology, Chemistry, or Physics, you should take one or two math or science courses in your first semester.

If you are considering a major in Environmental Studies, you should take one or more introductory or breadth courses in your first semester.

To learn more about preparing for these majors, please consult our advice for Prospective Math, Science, or Environmental Studies Majors

I’m interested in studying Music. What should I know?

If you are considering majoring or minoring in music, you should to start by consulting the Music Department’s registration advice for new students. You also might consider taking the music theory placement exam over the summer.

There are many opportunities for students interested in music, and you do not need to be a major in order to enroll. The music department offers a wide variety of courses for non-majors, including (MUS) courses on the academic study of music and music performance (MUP) courses, which include music ensembles, group classes on various instruments, and private lessons.

What if I have a disability or learning difference?

Lewis & Clark is committed to serving the needs of our students with disabilities and learning differences. Professional staff in the office of Student Support Services are available to ensure that students receive all of the benefits of a comprehensive selection of services, including advice on academic strategies for success.

Student Support Services is also available over the summer to help with any kind of disability: learning, physical, or psychological. You can reach them by phone at 503-768-7192 or by email at access@lclark.edu.

How do I find out what books I’ll need for my classes?

The texts and materials you’ll need for each of your classes will be listed on the syllabus, which you’ll receive in class. However, you don’t have to wait to get the syllabus to find out what you’ll need for each class. If you visit the L&C’s College Bookstore, select the “Textbooks” link, and then choose either Start Comparison Shopping or Shop Bookstore Only. You can then select the Campus Term (L-C Bookstore CAS 2017 Fall), and choose the specific department, class, and section to see what your professors are requiring or recommending you have for that class.

The L&C Bookstore provides information about the exact textbooks and editions that your professors want you to have for their course. These books are available to purchase online or at L&C’s Bookstore, or you can try the Textbook Price Comparison Tool to view the L&C Bookstore prices alongside those from Amazon, Half.com, and others (book rentals are another good option).

Final pricing, rental titles, and the ability to place orders via our website are available beginning approximately four weeks prior to the start of the semester.

Keep in mind that your book list may change, depending on an changes you make to your schedule during the first two weeks of the fall semester, which is the add/drop period. 

Questions? Check out L&C Bookstore’s FAQ.

I won’t have internet access during registration! What should I do?

Please contact the College Advising Center at cac@lclark.edu, 503-768-7600, or make an appointment.

How do I register for the Pioneer Success Institute (PSI)?

From August 14 to August 18, you will need to select a PSI section on WebAdvisor. The content of all PSI sections are the same, so please select a section that can be accommodated into your class and extracurricular schedules (such as athletics).

If you have questions about PSI, please email psi@lclark.edu.

My registration time is open, but WebAdvisor won’t let me register for classes. What can I do?

If you have created your L&C account, have logged into WebAdvisor, and are having trouble registering, it may be that you haven’t yet filled out your Emergency Contact information; without this information, WebAdvisor places a “registration hold” on your account. To find out how to submit this information, please check out page 2 of your GPS.

If this isn’t the problem, here are a few other things to check out:

Is the class full?

After you Search for Sections, the Section Selection Results page provides details about the current number of spots available in a course (Avail), the maximum number of spots offered in the class (Cap), and how many students are on that course’s waitlist (Wait). If there are 0 spots available in a course, you can join the waitlist.

Is there a time conflict? 

You will not be permitted to register for courses with time conflicts, no matter how small the conflict. To make sure you are seeing all the times that a course meets, click on the title of the course in the Section Selection Results and read what is listed under Meeting Information.

Have you checked the course prerequisites?

You will not be able to register for a course if you have not met the prerequisite. For incoming students, certain prerequisites can be met by placement exams, by AP or IB credit, or by college transfer credit. Many 200-level courses, and most 300-level courses, are not open to students until they have completed the appropriate prerequisite courses at L&C.  

To see course prerequisites, click on the title of the course in the Section Selection Results and read what is listed under Requisites. 

Have you checked the course co-requisites? 

Most science classes have co-requisite courses, which means that you must register for both lecture and lab sections simultaneously (in fact, WebAdvisor will not allow you to register for one or the other on its own). For example, if you are interested in taking General Chemistry, you can register for both Chem 110-01, a lecture section, and Chem 110L-03, a lab section (or any lecture and lab pairing that fits with your schedule). 

Need more help? Check out these detailed Online Registration Instructions and/or contact the Registrar’s Office.

What is Registration Permissions in WebAdvisor? Do I need advisor permission to register?

Over the summer, incoming students do not need advisor permission to register for classes on August 1st and August 3rd. In order to register for subsequent semester courses, however, all students are required to first gain their faculty advisor’s permission. You will be able to see advisor consent, and registration times, in the Registration Permissions section of WebAdvisor. Advisor permission is required because a close academic-planning partnership between students and faculty is at the heart of advising at Lewis & Clark. 

Registration Tips

When choosing courses, here are a few extra things to think about:

There might be some general education requirements that you would like to take before too much time passes. For example, if you took a language in high school, and want to continue studying that language in college, we recommend enrolling in the appropriate level language class your first or second semester. 

Some courses fill quickly. If you are considering one of the following courses, we recommend registering for it first:

Any Art Studio class
Bio 141: Investigations in Ecology & Environmental Science
Chem 110: General Chemistry I
CS 171: Computer Science I
Fren 101: Beginning French I
Math 131: Calculus I
Psy 100: Introduction to Psychology
QR 101: Foundations of Quantitative Reasoning
Span 102, 201: Beginning Spanish I and Intermediate Spanish I
TH 106: Fundamentals of Movement

If you’d like advice on how to prioritize your course selections, contact the College Advising Center at cac@lclark.edu, 503-768-7600, or make an appointment. You also might want to consider registering for one these hidden gems.

Try to keep in mind how the work you’ll be doing in your classes will fit together. When possible, we suggest picking courses that offer a variety of different kinds of “brain work” that strikes a balance between reading- and writing-intensive, quantitative problem solving, foreign language, or creative courses. You might love one particular subject, but too much of one thing is usually a bad idea! Remember, you will be registered for one reading and writing intensive course already, Core 106: Exploration & Discovery.

As you think about your credit total for fall, remember that physical education and music performance classes are one credit (we recommend enrolling in 15 to 17 credits per semester). If you participate in varsity athletics, you can register and earn credit for your sport during season (review advice for Incoming Student Athletes).

Want more helpful tips? Check our our Video Library.