12 ways to avoid back-to-school wait times
The start of the academic year can be a hectic time, especially for new Concordians. That’s why the good people at the Student Success Centre helped us compile this checklist for first-year students.
Their Number 1 tip? As you head into the fall term, find out exactly what you can do from home — and what has to be handled on campus.
With that in mind, here are 12 ways you can save valuable time at Concordia.
1. Read your offer of admission carefully
If you’ve questions about how to register for courses or need to contact your admissions advisor, look no further than your offer of admission.
There, you'll find useful information on how to seek academic advising, defer the start of your program and more.
Your offer of admission also lists the start and end dates for your program, as well as whether your acceptance is conditional or final. If it’s the latter, be sure to check your to-do list on the MyConcordia portal to see if you need to submit any outstanding documents.
2. Go online for your class schedule, student account and more
Before the start of class, get familiar with My Student Centre, a self-service dashboard in your MyConcordia portal.
From there, you can register for and drop courses, view your class schedule, check exam times and look at your grades.
You can also use this one-stop shop to pay your tuition online, though it should be noted that certain credit/debit cards are not supported by the system. In this case you can pay in person at the Birks Student Centre in the J.W. McConnell (LB) Building.
3. Register for fall and winter courses at the same time
In case you’re not aware, you can register for the entire academic year at once, all online. That means no stressing midway through your first term about which courses to take come winter.
To register for classes, go to your MyConcordia portal, click “My Student Centre” and then select “Enrol.”
Need help? Use the registration guide.
4. Get your student ID card F.A.S.T.
Once you’ve registered, set aside some time to pick up your student ID card. You’ll need it to use the libraries and the printers, ride the shuttle bus and write exams, among other things.
To pick up your ID, go to the Birks Student Service Centre in the LB Building.
It’s worth going at the start of the fall term, as the Frontline Administrative Service Team (F.A.S.T.) will be offering enhanced services in the atrium of the LB Building, to help alleviate the back-to-school demand.
From Monday, August 29 to Friday, September 23, F.A.S.T. assistants will be on hand to respond to inquiries about tuition and fees, account restrictions and payment arrangements.
5. Order your OPUS Card online
Good news: Concordians skip the line!
Follow the instructions to process your online payment and you'll receive your card by mail.
6. Stock your student ID card with cash
Your ID card doubles as a DPrint card, which you’ll need to access Concordia’s self-serve printer/scanner/photocopiers.
Top-ups can easily be done online, or on campus using Concordia’s service stations.
7. Reserve a locker
Prime locker locations are snapped up quickly, so act fast — reserve your locker online through the MyConcordia portal.
Select “Student Services,” then click on “Get a locker.” You can then choose the campus, building and floor where you want your locker to be.
The fee for renting from September to April is $15 or $25, depending on the locker size; the charge will be automatically added to your student account.
8. Set up your Concordia email account
Getting your student email address is easy and will allow you to download Office 365 ProPlus Suite for free, which includes such school-time staples as Word, Excel and PowerPoint.
To activate your account, visit the MyConcordia portal and select the “Office 365 student email” option from within the “Accounts and settings” section.
9. Attend Orientation 2016!
Concordia’s two primary orientation extravaganzas are Start Right, which offers workshops on everything from Concordia’s libraries to academic writing, and Discover Concordia, where you can meet key people in your faculty and learn about the many campus resources at your fingertips.
The August-to-early-September period offers a myriad of welcome events, from campus and city tours to faculty shindigs.
10. Pick up your agenda
Head to Room H-711 in the Henry F. Hall (H) Building to pick up a free CSU agenda, which includes important university dates.
11. Read through your course outlines
During your first week on campus, carefully look over the course outlines given out in class.
Be sure to check the grading scale (there is no unified scale throughout the university), grade breakdown, required work, attendance and participation requirements.
12. Drop courses before the deadline
If you need to change your schedule and want to drop a course, make sure to do so before the DNE (Did Not Enter) deadline (September 19 for the fall term).
Find out about 8 awesome Concordia student services.
PLUS: 2 bonus tips for international students
Get insured using the Medavie app
If you’re an international student, there’s more good news!
Concordia’s International Students Office (ISO) now offers the Medavie Blue Cross Mobile App. This means that instead of waiting in line to pick up your Blue Cross card, you can now use the app as proof of coverage.
Medavie acts as your virtual health insurance card and can be used when you visit a doctor, go to a hospital or access Concordia’s Health Services. (NOTE: Be sure to always have your Concordia ID Card on hand when visiting a health-care professional.)
Download the app on your smart phone, select the white card option, then set up your account using group policy number 0097008000, and your Concordia student ID number preceded by 0 and followed by 00.
Upload your immigration documents