Advice for Preparing Your Fall Schedule

 As you plan your first semester at Gettysburg, focus on laying out some preliminary goals and taking stock of your intellectual interests. Think about how you can build on your high school experience in areas where more advanced study is now a possibility as well as areas for exploration and skill building. It is important for you to be mindful of goals when selecting courses, but do not get stuck trying to make "perfect" choices. Select courses which engage your attention, excite your curiosity, and connect to what matters to you.  Keep in mind that a large number of courses open to First-Year students meet Gettysburg Curriculum requirements. So just by choosing courses that suit your interests you will also begin to make good progress toward completing requirements.

Take the time NOW, before the online registration system opens (June 20th at 9 a.m. EST), to read the materials we sent you ---which are also available online-and to plan your fall semester.

  • Think through some options so that you have some backup courses ready in case some courses are closed or do not fit with other preferences you have because of time conflicts.
  • Note that some courses do have multiple sections. So if one section of that course is closed, you can check to see if there is another still open.

Resources you should consult as you plan to select courses for the fall. The links are provided to your left and below.

  • FY Announcement of Courses Booklet (will be available online on May 17) contains lists of Fall courses offered for FY students, with class times, notations about requirements these courses meet, recommendations from departments about courses, and faculty to contact if you have questions.
  • The First-Year Advising & Registration Guide (will be available online May 14)  provides answers to many of our frequently asked questions and specific recommendations. Check back this summer for details.
  • The Academic Advising Office website offers links to help you understand the Curriculum, Frequently Asked Questions about academic and other matters, the Honor Code, Accommodation for Disabilities, and links to other offices' websites for other useful information. 
  • Instructions for Online Registration are available via this online tutorial from the Registrar's Office.

General Advising Information

  • Your faculty advisor will be assigned in late July or early August. We assign advisors AFTER reviewing the information about you in the First Year Dashboard and looking at the courses you have chosen in order to maximize the amount of contact you will have with your advisor in your first semester.
  • When you meet with your faculty advisor during Orientation, you will review your schedule and have an opportunity to make some adjustments. But keep in mind that by the time you come to campus many courses will be closed. So do not put off making selections when the online registration opens June 20th. NOTE: All first year students register for the spring semester in November. So you only need to register for the fall semester. 
  • You should register for 4 full one unit courses. This is the normal course load. In general, we do NOT recommend putting your name on a Wait List for a course or a particular section of a course that is full. Once you register for 4 courses, you can track courses you prefer to see if a space opens and then exchange courses if you choose to do so.
  • AP Course Credit. You may not know your AP test scores when you register for classes on June 20th. If you took AP English and expect to earn a 4 or 5, it is okay to register under the assumption that you have been exempted from the First Year Writing Requirement. If you find out later that you did not earn a 4 or 5, you can either change your fall semester schedule to add a first year writing course OR wait until the spring to take that course. Please see the First-Year Advising & Registration Guide for more information on AP credit.

Contact the Office of Academic Advising if you need assistance 717 337 6579.
Dr. Rickert (
Dean Lane ( )
Dean Cole (