Every Spartan needs to make a great start at MSU. Following are some important steps to help you succeed in your Spartan college career.

1. Attend the Academic Orientation Program (AOP)

The Academic Orientation Program (AOP) will introduce you to academics at MSU, help you make important contacts on campus, assist you in setting goals, and gathering the information you need to be a successful student. You will learn about life on campus, enroll in your courses, and get familiar with campus resources. Visit the AOP website for all the info you need.

2. Sign Up for a Freshman Seminar

Freshman seminars introduce you to the intellectual life of the University and to the adventure of learning. Seminars focus on special topics, selected and taught by MSU faculty members. Most freshman seminars are open to all students in any major. Some seminars are limited to students enrolled in particular majors or programs. All freshman seminars carry credit toward graduation.

There are a lot of options to explore within the Freshman Seminar Program. Check out the four main categories here:

  • Freshman Seminars Abroad allow new Spartans to begin their academic experience in a variety of exciting locations around the world.
  • Freshman Seminars Away are summer learning opportunities off-campus and based on academic interests.
  • College/Major/Program-Based Freshman Seminars are course offerings in individual academic programs at MSU.
  • Freshman Seminars at MSU are courses taught by MSU faculty members on a number of topics. Some examples include globalization, sustainability, politics in film, leadership, and more. UGS freshman seminars are open to all MSU freshmen.

3. Plan Your Move

Move-In Day is an exciting and busy time on campus. Make sure you have all the information you need to plan your move into the residence halls. Learn more about life in the residence halls and Neighborhoods and the variety of dining options available for MSU students. Check out a list of frequently asked questions (and answers!) about life on MSU's campus.

Watch this to get a taste of living on campus at MSU.

4. Map It Out

MSU is a big place, spanning 5,200 acres and featuring 577 buildings on campus. Check out the interactive campus map to find the buildings, parking lots, and offices you need to start navigating campus and considering transportation options. Learn about the campus bus system. First-year students are not permitted to have vehicles on campus, but many choose to bring a bike. Sophomores and second semester first-years with at least 20 credits may register to park on campus.


5. Buy Books

After AOP, look up your classes in the online schedule of courses. Each class should have a list of book requirements for the semester. You may choose to shop at the on-campus bookstore or a bookstore near campus, as well as online vendors, such as Amazon.com or Half.com, to purchase needed textbooks. Start the process early for the fullest selection of used books at lower prices.

6. Financial Aid

Make sure all of your financial aid questions are answered. Visit the Office of Financial Aid website for information about student loan disbursal, cost of attendance and more. You can also manage your student account online, including paying bills and loans and checking your financial aid status.


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