Studying Here

This summer is a good time to do some careful thinking about your academic career at William & Mary and what you hope to accomplish during your time here. You won't have all the answers now – and that's a good thing. We have a lot of experience introducing all new students to the first-year experience, and you'll have a lot of help along the way.

You're about to embark on a liberal arts education. One way to think about that is that you'll have one of the best chances in your life to explore who you are, what you care about, and what kind of place you want to make for yourself in the world. Now's a good time to take a look at yourself – at the areas of knowledge you're drawn to, at the abilities that seem to come naturally to you – and consider how you will engage the intellectual mentors that can help you become an active thinker and explorer.

We also recommend that you learn the basic structure of the undergraduate curriculum and overall degree requirements. What are General Education Requirements? How do all the credits come together to form a major and an undergraduate degree? This overall picture will help you plan what you'd like to accomplish in your first semester and first year of study.

All entering students are matched to faculty members (your "pre-major" advisor), who will help you plan your first-semester courses and prepare for registration. Your answers on the Academic Advising Questionnaire will jumpstart the conversation you'll have with your faculty advisor at your first meeting during orientation. You'll continue the conversation with your pre-major advisor all the way up until you declare a major.  

Once you're on campus and begin your studies, you'll learn about and can plan for various academic opportunities that interest you. The Sharpe Community Scholars Program is an opportunity to consider right now, as it has a first-year residential and academic component.

A few other notes for the summer: the Digital Information Literacy Exam is required by the state of Virginia and is available online in August. And if you don't already have a portable computing device, you'll want to consider the laptop options available through the W&M Bookstore to fulfill the Notebook Requirement. Also, remember that a Peer Student Advisor will be assigned to you through Tribe Studies and will be on hand to answer your questions. These students know the ropes and can offer tips and strategies from an insider's point of view.

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