Check your Registration date and time in PROWL via the “Prepare for Registration” option on the Registration Menu. Registration times are calculated by the Office of the Registrar according to the number of credit hours you have already completed. That means that courses and AP/IB exam scores you previously transferred to LMU do count in this total, but courses you have in progress do not factor into determining your registration appointment time. For that reason, it is not possible to request to adjust your registration appointment time.
Q: Why do I need to take electives?
A: In a very real way, taking electives is usually how you earn enough total units to receive your degree. Just completing your core and major requirements doesn’t add up to the minimum requirements for graduation. Electives aren’t “extra”—they are a required component of your degree! At LMU, these are the minimum unit requirements for your degree:
· 45 upper division units
· 120 overall units for the BA in MUSC, THEA, and DANC
· 124 overall units for the BA in STAR, CMST, and ARHS, and the BFA in STAR
· For most CFA students, about 33% of their units are earned in the core, approximately 33% to 50% in the major, and the remaining amount—about 25% to 33%—are earned via electives. (The actual proportion varies, but this is a general breakdown to keep in mind as you consider your overall graduation plan.)
· In other words, a CFA major who entered LMU as a freshman, without a minor or second major, will need the equivalent of about 2 semesters’ worth of credits. Ideally, you should spread your electives out over your entire time at LMU, and not save them until your final year (you can choose to take a semester of all or mostly electives, if you wish.)
· For students who add a minor or second major, those courses usually take the place of electives in terms of making up the difference of total units needed to graduate. That means that if you have a minor or second major, you may not have “room” to take “random” electives and still graduate at your expected time.
· Aside from the numerical necessity to complete units, as an LMU student you are invited, and indeed, expected, to explore academic areas outside your major. For some students, that means focusing a second area of study as a formal minor or second major, while for others, taking a class or two in various departments is the way to “sample” LMU’s many offerings. Maybe you’ve always wanted to take a music lesson, or a dance class, or learn a language? Perhaps you’re considering a Study Abroad semester on a program with few major or core course options? Maybe you have an internship outside of LMU that gives academic credit? All of these are examples of what electives are for.
Q: How do I know how many electives I need?
A: While DegreeWorks will track the total overall units that you’ve completed, it does not separately track your elective units in an easy-to-find section. You will have to calculate that number yourself by looking at your remaining required courses and comparing that number with your overall remaining units.
A. Look at your CORE area. Calculate how many more course/units you’ll earn in that area (ex. if you need ESTM, IFTR, and EHBV, that’s usually 11 more units, depending on course selection.)
B. Look at your MAJOR area. Calculate how many more course/units you’ll earn in that area.
C. If you have a minor or 2nd major, do the same for those areas too: calculate your remaining required courses and total units.
D. Now, look carefully at the Upper Division area, and how many more upper division units your DegreeWorks is telling that you need. Then, compare this number with all of the requirements you know you’ll be earning via the courses you’ve already tallied. If you’ll get to 45 upper division units via your remaining requirements, you don’t need any (more) upper division
electives. If the number is less, that’s how many upper division units you’ll need to earn via upper division electives before graduating.
· Add up the total units from steps A-D.
· Now, look back up at the top of your DegreeWorks, where it tells you how many units you have left overall to get to the minimum for your major and degree (120 or 124). If the total number of units you’ve calculated so far is equal or greater, you don’t need to take any more lower division electives. If the number is lower, then that difference is the number of lower division (or additional upper division) elective units you need to take.
· Remember, you need to earn the LENL (Engaged Learning) Flag, if you haven’t already done so. Ideally, you’ll earn it via a course taken towards your core or major requirements, but if not, be sure to choose an elective that has it. If you don’t see a way to earn the LENL flag via your remaining requirements—if none of your remaining courses has a LENL option-- you’ll have to add that in as an additional course you need to take. We recommend taking your LENL flag as soon as possible, but no later than your second-to-final semester before graduating, so that you don’t end up needing an “extra” course in your last semester.
Q: Why is the number of elective units needed to graduate different from student to student?
A: Although all students need to fulfill the 13 areas of the University core, most core categories offer the option to take a 3-unit or 4-unit course (for instance, some FFYS 1000 sections are worth 3 units and some are worth 4 units, depending on the professor’s home department). Also, some transfer students have some areas of core waived from their requirements, depending on their status at entry to LMU (FFYS or FRTA is waived for sophomore-level transfers who hadn’t completed them, and FTHI AND FPHI are waived for students with 56 or more transfer units at entry). Also, some major courses can be double-dipped with core areas (for instance, for THEA majors, ECRE and EHAP are automatically earned via THEA 111 and 240, and FDIV, IINC, and IFTR can be double-dipped with THEA major courses, if available and selected Check your major’s requirements and see which also count for core.) In this way, CFA students don’t each earn the same amount of units in the core curriculum, even as they’re satisfying the same 13 required areas.
Also, sometimes students already have elective credits without even realizing they have them:
· Transferred credits from another college or university
· AP credit or IB credit from high school (be sure your DegreeWorks reflects this for you, if you think you have earned it!)
· Study Abroad (often, study abroad credit, even when preapproved, ultimately counts as elective credit)
· Courses taken for a previous major usually revert to elective credit if the student changes majors (depending on the program)
Q: How do I find electives on the schedule?
A: There is no “Electives Department” at LMU, nor is there a way to filter out courses that count as elective credit only. It can take some time reviewing the schedule to find appropriate courses that will count for electives that are a) open b) scheduled at a convenient time and c) unrestricted. Take some time and look carefully through as many departments as you can to find the best options for you.
· Pay close attention to course numbering! Courses whose numbers start with “1” or “2” are Lower Division. Courses that start with “3” or “4” are Upper Division. (Courses that start with any other number are not undergraduate level and should not be selected.)
· Also be sure to take note of the unit value (0-4 units) of each course. If a course has variable units, remember that it’s your responsibility to change the unit value on the registration menu.
· Although it’s tempting, and sometimes seems “easier,” to just keep taking additional courses in your major department as electives, it’s strongly recommended that you complete your electives outside of your major department. In fact, some departments explicitly prohibit students from taking their electives within their major offerings.
· Unless a course is explicitly indicated as “repeatable for credit” per its course description in the Bulletin, you can’t retake a course you’ve already taken and earn additional credit. (This includes courses you have transferred in from another school, if you were a transfer student.)
· In general, courses in CBA, Seaver, and the School of Film & TV are not open as electives. Unrestricted core courses in those Colleges are usually okay to take as electives, if they’re open. If there’s a restricted course in one of those Colleges you’re interested in taking, you can certainly ask the professor if you may enroll in it—they might or might not be able to let you in via special approval, if there’s room for you and their department chair approves.
· In CFA, you might find electives in any of the departments outside your major: ARHS, ART, DANC, MUSC, and THEA all offer some courses open to non-majors. CMST typically doesn’t open their courses to non-majors, except for some cross-listed courses in Fall and Spring, and usually all offerings in the LMU summer sessions.
· In BCLA, there’s a wide variety of departments that offer unrestricted electives, often with special topics. Search in: AFAM, APAM, ASPA, CHST, CLST, ENGL, EVST, POLS, PSYC, SOCL, THST, WGST, world languages, etc.
· Many students want to take a yoga class for an elective at some point before they graduate. Several levels of yoga are usually offered via the DANC department as DANC 174, 198, and 374 (not under YGST, which is a graduate-level program).
· Still stuck? Ask your friends what they’ve taken and enjoyed. Or look up what your favorite professors are teaching in the upcoming semester. Better still, ask your academic advisor what courses they think will best complement your academic interests.
Q: Can I take my electives at another school over the summer?
A: In most cases, yes, as long as you have the courses approved ahead of time via the Transfer Course Review form, and follow all other transfer course policies.
· Keep in mind that if you want to take upper division electives, that will need to be done at a university, not a community college. Only universities (like UCLA, CSUN, Cal State Long Beach, etc.) offer upper division courses.
· If you previously were a transfer student to LMU, you can’t exceed the total allowed transfer units (60 from a community college, 90 from a university, or 90 combined from both. AP credit counts like community college credit.)
· Finally, if you’re a rising senior, keep in mind that only up to 6 total units can be taken outside of LMU in your final year before graduating (excluding Study Abroad). For most students, that means only up to two 3-unit courses can be taken the summer prior to or the summer after their May Commencement ceremony. This is part of the “residency requirement.”
Q: I’m still confused! Who can help me calculate and choose my electives?
A: Please contact your academic advisor, and/or Jameia and Rachel in the CFA Academic Advising Center
Clear any holds you may have that prevent registration by contacting the office that placed the hold and following their instructions. If you have an Advisor’s Hold, that should be cleared after you meet with your advisor. If you have the Off-Campus Student Life Hold, please check in with that office (email@example.com). If you have a Controller’s Hold, check with the Student Accounts Office (firstname.lastname@example.org). And if you have an Associate Dean’s Office hold, please contact Dr. Elaine Walker to schedule an appointment as soon as possible (email@example.com).
Review your DegreeWorks Report via PROWL. You should see your current courses included. Look over your remaining requirements carefully, and jot down any questions or concerns to bring up with your advisor.
Plan your upcoming semester schedule by carefully reviewing the course offerings on both versions of the Schedule of Classes. To browse all courses by department or filter by core area, view the Real-Time Schedule through myLMU. To filter the schedule by meeting time, core, flag, instructor, etc., use the search options in the Registration Menu on the Browse Classes function. It’s best to use both methods of viewing the schedule to make sure you are seeing all of your options.
We don’t recommend using the Browse Course Catalog option. That will search the entire course catalog of LMU, not necessarily the classes being offering in the upcoming semesters.
Meet with your Academic Advisor(s) at least a few days before your registration appointment time. Your advisor may have changed from Orientation and/or last semester! Check your current advisor’s name on PROWL (it’s also at the top of your DegreeWorks), and look up their contact information in the Campus Directory. If you have a second major or minor, you may have an advisor to help you plan for that as well. If you don’t see that additional advisor’s name, contact the chairperson of that department to find out who it is.
Register as close to your appointment time as you can, for best course availability.
Review your finalized schedule. Make sure all courses show “Registered” as the status, and print and/or save it just in case!
If you’ve chosen to waitlist yourself for a course, remember that you must check your LION email for the notification that a space has opened for you in the course (we recommend at least once per day during the registration period). One you’ve received that notification, you have only 24 hours to go back into the Registration menu to change the status to “registered” — it will not happen automatically. If you miss that 24-hour window, you must re-add yourself to the waitlist from its end.
All students in good standing may register in up to 18 units during registration. Full-time enrollment is a minimum of 12 units. As you know, you may be enrolling in a combination of 3- and 4-unit courses, for a range of 12-18 units total/ 4-6 classes total (or more, if you’re a Dance or Music major).
Please carefully consider your experiences in the past. Each student’s learning style is different. Everyone has different times of the day in which they are more focused for concentrating in class. Everyone has different extracurricular activities and responsibilities. You know what you can handle and what your resources are when your coursework becomes overwhelming. Talk to your advisor about your options about spreading out the 4-unit core courses through the upcoming semesters. And remember too, the “goal” is not to complete the University Core as quickly as possible; it is designed so that students take one or two core courses only per semester.
Requests for Unit Overload (more than 18 units) will be granted on a case-by-case basis for legitimate academic reasons (such as having a double major, and/or being in your senior year). Unit Overload is typically not available to students in their first semester at LMU (freshmen and transfers). University guidelines require a GPA of 3.50 in order to be eligible to request Unit Overload, but exceptions may be made in unique cases (for instance, if Spring is the student’s last semester before graduation).
If granted, the Registrar can allow Unit Overload for those students with permission, two weeks before the start of the semester (Fall/Spring). There is no additional tuition charge for Unit Overload (unless, of course, the extra class has a lab fee).
Access the form at the online Registrar Portal Services.
A reminder that current students are not permitted to enroll in classes outside of LMU during the Winter break or the Fall or Spring semester, even if the class is taught online. You may enroll in regular/classroom or online classes at other institutions in the Summer only after receiving an approved Transfer Course Review from the Registrar and CFA’s Assistant Dean, Dr. Elaine Walker.
You are required to enroll in RHET 1000 or FFYS 1000 in the Spring semester — the course out of those two that you did not complete the previous Fall. We will be checking every freshman’s schedule to ensure that they have registered in the appropriate course. In the unlikely event that you do not pass First Year Seminar or Rhetorical Arts in the Fall (the one you are enrolled in), you will be required to repeat it the following Spring. You should not plan to take both FFYS 1000 and RHET 1000 in the same semester.
You are eligible to participate in the May Commencement Ceremony if you are planning to complete all of your degree requirements by the previous or the subsequent December 31. If you are planning to graduate (complete all degree requirements) in May, August, or December, and/or participate in the May commencement ceremony, your Application for Degree is due to the Registrar no later than the Friday of the first week of the Spring semester.
In order to be listed as “Pending for Graduation,” your DegreeWorks report must reflect completion of all requirements by your graduation date. You must submit the appropriate forms (ex. Graduation Plan, Transfer Course Approval, Petition for Degree Audit Adjustment) to account for whatever might be missing or not met. Check your DegreeWorks Report now to avoid any surprises when you turn in your application form. Contact your academic advisor with any questions about your DegreeWorks, or the Registrar for any questions or concerns about the actual graduation ceremony and degree clearance process. The Application for Degree online form is found on the “Forms” page of the Registrar’s website.