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Academic Advising

Realize your Potential

Contact Us

La Plata Campus

Leonardtown Campus

Prince Frederick Campus
443-550-6000 or 301-870-3008

Waldorf Center
301-632-2900 or 301-870-3008, ext. 2900

College of Southern Maryland
8730 Mitchell Rd
PO Box 910
La Plata, MD 20646-0910

Academic Advising

Welcome to Academic Advising at CSM!

The Hawk Eye Advisor: "We have our eye on you!"

April 2015 Edition

Welcome Summer Visiting Students!

Registration is going on now for Summer Minisessions!

Are you looking to take a summer course while on break from your home institution? Summer visiting students follow special instructions for registration. Please read the instructions for information on applying to the college, registration procedures for students, and the payment policy.

Current students, if you need assistance with planning your summer and fall schedule, please see an Academic Advisor.  7-week minisessions are fast-paced and last about half of the time of a regular semester. A few courses are 1 month in duration. Be ready to hit the ground running with mini courses. Choose a class that you think you will enjoy because one 7-week minisession class is like having 2 courses during the regular 15-week semester.

The maximum number of credits a student may take in a minisession is 9 credits and the maximum credits across the two summer sessions is 18. Meet with an Academic Advisor who will work with you to help you choose courses that work with your program of study. 

Summer 2015 Minisession Dates

•    Summer Minisession I: May 26-July 2
•    Summer Minisession II: July 6-August 14

When viewing the schedule, take care to note that some courses are only 1 month in duration, so they will have different start/end dates than above.

Current students! Priority Fall registration begins in April!

Set your phone’s calendar alarm to remind you to register on your priority registration day! If you need assistance with planning your next semester, please make an appointment before we enter the peak registration period. Save yourself the wait when walk-in advising is at its busiest time!

Fall Priority Registration Dates    

Students with 45+ credits at CSM: April 20
Students with 30+ credits at CSM: April 21
Students with 15+ credits at CSM: April 22
Students with 1+ credit(s) at CSM: April 23
New students: April 24

Fall Terms

  • Fall regular semester September 2-December 16
  • Fall mini I semester September 2-October 21
  • Fall mini II semester October 26-December 16

Are you a new student at CSM?

Many courses have prerequisites, so you will need placement tests at the Testing Center unless you have already completed college-level English and Math at another institution. Please make an appointment with advising and bring unofficial transcripts showing grades for prerequisite courses needed for courses at CSM. Otherwise, schedule an appointment with Academic Advising after you take your placement tests. Learn about placement waivers, placement testing and test center hours at the Testing Center web page

Course descriptions with prerequisites, along with programs of study, are available in our on-line catalog which may be viewed on CSM’s main web page.

Financial Aid

March 1 was the priority deadline for submitting the FAFSA. Complete your FAFSA as soon as possible. See the Financial Aid web page for assistance.

Do you plan to graduate in May 2015?

See an Academic Advisor to complete your graduation application to receive your diploma by mail. More information about spring graduation may be found in the 2014-2015 Commencement Guide.

Graduation Application Deadlines

Deadline to participate in Spring Ceremony was March 25
Deadline to apply for a diploma is April 15
Commencement ceremony is May 21
Diplomas are received in the mail after June 30 

Use Student Success Services to help you finish strong!

Student Success tutoring services and other student success on-line workshops and essay paper review services are free for students! Did you know that you may have any essay paper for any class reviewed by the Student Success Center? See Essay Paper Review services for details! Access free self-help pdf’s and online workshops on Test-Taking Skills, Time Management, Learning Styles, and more!

“Time for your program review”

If you have reached your 18th or 36th credit, including adding/deleting classes, it is time to see your Academic Advisor.  Read more about this normal advising hold under the side link on this page, “Mandatory Advising." Please make an appointment with Academic Advising to go over your program of study and we will assist you with choosing courses for your summer and fall planning. If you are ready to register and need to learn how to self-register, please visit How to Use myCSMD to learn more.

Dropping a course?

Last day to withdraw without a grade or to change a credit to an audit/audit to a credit for the regular semester was March 30.

Last day to withdraw without a grade or to change a credit to an audit/audit to a credit for Minisession II is April 22. 

Prepare to transfer!

It is never too early to start planning to transfer to a 4-year college or university. Now is a good time to make an appointment with an academic advisor to discuss transfer.

You may complete some legwork on your own to get started, by visiting the Articulation System for the Maryland Colleges and Universities (ARTSYS) and going through their brief tutorial. It is a user-friendly website that will assist you in finding what schools have bachelor’s degrees (and beyond) in the major that you seek, and will tell you what CSM courses to take to prepare for the transfer and more!

If it looks like the information in ARTSYS has not been updated in recent years, then please consult James Spence, our Transfer Coordinator, for those schools. If you seek out-of-state school information, please make an appointment to see James Spence.

Thinking of changing your major?

View all of our programs of study in the online catalog. Did you know that you can propose that you are in any of our programs of study and see how your previous coursework will fill in the needed areas of a different degree program? Here’s how:

  • From the CSM home page, log into your myCSMD account
  • Select “Online Services” in the center of the screen
  • Select the blue box entitled: “Current Students”
  • Once in the “Student Services” Menu, see “Advising” on the left side of screen
  • Select “Program Evaluation” and use the drop down menu to choose,
          “What if I changed my program of study?”
  • See what courses you need and what has been completed  



    Ask the Advisor Ask the Advisor

    Current Students

    New Students

    Check out  Faculty Advising at CSM!

    Ask the Advisor

    Where do you go to ask a question when you don’t know where to go? Try Academic Advising! We’re here to make sure you have no unanswered questions. If we don’t know the answer, we’ll try to find it. Whether you are a new student, returning student, or transfer student and have questions about programs, classes, instructors, or transfer we are available by phone, email, and appointment or you can just walk in for a quick question during advising walk in days. Click on “Advising Hours” on the left-side menu for all the office information.

    Here’s a quick guide to making the best of your advising visit.

    Transfer to another institution
    Appointments Walk-ins
    Select program of study Change program of study
    Career assistance Select courses
    Job search assistance "Program Review" notice
    Graduation Audit Probation restriction
    Transfer to CSM Prerequisite not complete
    Assessment of prior learning (Portfolio) Resources referral
    Cooperative education planning Cooperative education (forms)
    Advice on complicated academic situations Advice on academic situations
    First Advising Session Scheduling First Advising Session
    Student Responsibilities
    • Know academic policies and procedures, academic calendar deadlines, program requirements, and where to go for assistance. Don't really understand how advising works? Check out our Advising Syllabus!
    • Remember to contact an advisor at or around 18 credits and again at 36 credits. You will be restricted from registering until the connection is made.
    • Schedule and maintain appointments with an advisor. Come to appointments prepared by bringing your CSM student ID number and myCSMD log-in information, course selections, requirements of your program, transfer information, etc.
    • Do your homework! Follow-up on advisor recommendations and seek further assistance when necessary.
    • Make decisions. An advisor will offer you options but you must make the decisions for your future.

    Current Students

    Did you know that advising is not just for new students? Don’t forget we’re here as you continue your education. We can assist you with changing your program of study, transferring to another college, and staying on track to complete your degree. Did I mention that there are two times at CSM when you must meet with an advisor? When you reach 18 credits and again at 36 credits, you will not be allowed to register until you speak with an advisor. You’ll know when your time is up when you see this message in Online Services:

    You are not eligible for registration. Time for your program review. You must contact an advisor by web, phone or in-person.

    It's not to punish you, honest. It’s our way to make certain you are on track to graduate. To avoid missing out on an important class, plan ahead. Make an appointment with your advisor before you get the message!

    In academic distress?
    Don’t get caught with a low GPA! Use our GPA Calculator to find your GPA. Students with a low cumulative GPA are placed on Academic Probation and must meet with an Academic Advisor to register for classes. Don’t wait until registration to meet with an advisor. Make an appointment today! Complete the Academic Probation Success packet to bring with you. You’ll be surprised at how easy it is to turn your situation around. Check out our “Success Strategies” for the many resources available to get you back on track.

    CSM offers confidential personal counseling for when life, college, and work becomes too much. For contact information and hours go to Counseling Services.

    New Students

    Orientation and Registration 
    at CSM


    Congratulations! Now that you've been accepted to CSM and taken your placement tests, you are ready to take your first steps toward completing your academic goal by participating in Orientation and Registration - Your first year at CSM.  Designed to orient you to college life, Orientation and Registration is a series of touch points to guide you successfully through your first semester and beyond.

    Your first step is to have your First Advising Session. At this session, you will begin to develop your academic plan, discuss placement test results (if transferring to CSM, click here), select courses, and plan your schedule with an advisor.  At  Orientation and Registration you will be introduced to college resources and myCSMD, the college's online portal.

    Just before the start of your first semester, join the fun at Kick Off to College where you will fill up your success tool kit to "start" college the "smart" way: network with other students, meet faculty, tour the campus, learn about CSM clubs, and more! Ready to get started!?

    Checkmark Orientation and Registration  Checklist

    1) Meet with an advisor at your First Advising Session.  In some cases, your First Advising Session will occur immediately after testing.  If not, you will be directed at testing on how to arrange your First Advising Session.

    2) Attend Orientation and Registration

    Call the campus nearest to you to reserve your seat. Click here for dates and times. RSVP is required.

    3) Attend Kick Off to College.  RSVP is required.


    Arrow point to the left The advising website is packed full of resources and tips to help you complete your educational goals. Look on the left menu for success strategies, program information and student resources.

    Arrow point to the rightWhile you are here, check out our “we’re in your corner” advice column for fun and friendly advice on college situations.