Plan Your Class Schedule

Good planning is an integral part of success. Wondering where to start and what you need in order to plan your upcoming semesters? The CCSE Academic Advising Team is here to help you plan, yet we cannot do that without your input.

  1. Before you start jotting down courses, think of what else is happening in your life – work, family, self-care, etc. and how much time per week you can devote to college. Divide the weekly number of hours you can devote to school by 3. The resulting number is a rough approximation of the credit hours you should aim to take for the semester you are planning. If you want to be a full-time student doing between 12 and 16 credits per semester, you should have available about 36 – 48 hours per week. If considering taking classes during summer semesters, please keep in mind that the summer workload is double, as the semester is only 8 weeks (general education classes are offered in 4-week sessions as well). 6 credits during the summer feel like 12 credits do in spring and fall, i.e. require on average 36 hours per week to attend class and do all course-related work. Useful time management tips and apps can be found here.
  2. Log in to Owl Express and pull up DegreeWorks. Check that your student records look alright - I.e. all prior college coursework, including AP credit, CLEP credit, dual enrollment credit, transfer credit and courses you have taken at KSU are reflected there. Take note of your outstanding requirements. 
  3. Get a printout of the curriculum sheet for your major for the appropriate catalog year. If you are not sure what catalog year you are on, consult DegreeWorks. You can print your own curriculum sheet or pick up one from the CCSE Academic Advising Office. The human brain processes information on paper an on screen differently, and we recommend you have a physical printout. 
  4. Pull up the permanent schedule – it shows you which CCSE courses are guaranteed to be offered during which semester. While some classes are offered every semester, others are not.  When planning the upcoming semester, you may also consult Degree Works/OwlExpress for class availability – it gets posted there before the start of registration. 
  5. Start planning – the curriculum sheet shows you the prerequisites for each class. You can see them in DegreeWorks as well, by clicking on any class listed as an outstanding requirement.  Before you can register for a class, you need to have completed or to be currently enrolled and expecting to complete its prerequisite. Some classes have co-requisites – those you can take concurrently or need to have taken them previously. A good plan usually will mix major classes with general education classes each semester. It will mix major classes with general education classes. 
  6. Consider planning at least two semesters ahead. It is best to plan all the way to graduation – your plan will most likely change along the way, but you won't find yourself stuck with no classes to take, I.e. missing important prerequisites. You may use this planning template
  7. If you are doing a minor, consult the academic catalog for the requirements of your minor. If you are doing a double major, make sure you plan with both majors in mind.   
  8. Now that you have your draft, arrange to discuss it with a CCSE Academic Advisor. It is always best to schedule an appointment (on campus or distance, whatever works better for you) and actually discuss your plan, rather than simply emailing your advisor with a request to review it. Make sure you bring a paper copy of your plan to your advising meeting if meeting your advisor on campus. If meeting your advisor via phone or video, make sure you email the plan prior to your appointment. The process of drafting the plan probably made you aware of questions you need answers to – don't forget to bring these up during your advising appointment. 
  9. To make the most out of your academic advising appointment, make sure you have reviewed the academic advising conspectus.
  10. Congratulations! Not only do you now have a plan, but you have also developed and practiced your planning skills.