FAQ for Students

Below are some frequently asked questions by our students. You can click on the question to see the answer. If you have any questions, please contact the Academic Advising Center at 304-696-2314. Our goal is for you to have enough basic understanding of policies and practices to steer yourself in the right direction when you need information or action.

A: At Orientation, each student will receive a schedule of pre-selected classes that are based on the major you chose and other information you provided on the Orientation Survey. Professional academic advisors are present to discuss the schedule with you and to make any changes that are necessary.

When you register in the future, you will meet with an academic advisor in the Academic Advising Center prior to the period designated for registration. The registration dates are determined by one’s class standing (seniors register first, freshmen register last). A Schedule of Courses is available in print and online at least three weeks prior to registration. You can go online at the Registrar’s website to see a copy.

Students who need advising information should visit the Academic Advising Center, Corbly Hall 334, or call 304-696-2314. Each student is presented with an Advising Guide at Orientation that will also guide them in choosing the necessary classes.

A: Hundreds of students come to college without a clear idea of which major is right for them. Other students come with a clear idea and then change their minds. So you should not panic too soon. In the LCOB, you are allowed to be Undecided in major for two years (allowed, not encouraged). During this time, you will explore the various fields in business to see what is a good fit in terms of interest and ability. To help Undecided students choose a major, Marshall offers numerous services. The Career Services Center administers the Discover test that helps identify student strengths and matches you with careers that utilize these strengths. Another service is the Major Expo each semester in which all students are invited to meet with representatives of the academic departments to learn about career opportunities in the majors they offer. Or you can register for COUN 100, Career Counseling for the Undecided Student, a one-credit, graded course. Please take advantage of these and other opportunities that are advertised on campus.
A: There are several ways the University communicates with students.

  1. Official Marshall E-mail accounts. We cannot over-emphasize how important it is for you to check your Marshall account daily. This is one of the ways advisors and departments and programs send information to you. You can also forward your Marshall e-mail to a private account.
  2. MyMU. Announcements and other information are available to you in your Web portal, myMU. This is where you go to find your grades, your schedules, special University announcements, etc. Please make this a regular stop on the Web.
  3. The Parthenon, WMUL-FM (88.1) and MU Report. In order, these are our student-run media: newspaper, radio, and television. These are excellent sources of information about events on campus as well as information about people and places.
  4. Posters and signs in classroom buildings and in the Memorial Student Center. Browse through these posters and signs on a regular basis. Sometimes programs use this means of communication to advertise special events.
A: That depends on what you mean by “trouble.” If you are having trouble mastering the material, studying for exams, or other academic issues, there are two courses of action: first, you should get in touch with the instructor and ask for his/her assistance and advice. You should discuss note-taking, exam preparation, reading schedule, etc. with the instructor. If you appear to need more time and assistance with the material or with exam preparation, the instructor may recommend that you go to the Tutoring Center in University College. There are tutors available in almost every subject, some in a one-on-one format, some in a group setting. Either way, you need to go to the Tutoring Center to make an appointment with a tutor. The fees for tutoring are included in the cost of tuition and fees so there is no additional cost to you for these tutoring sessions.
A: Email is a great way to start the process. Every faculty member and every administrator has an email account. This is a way to get the conversation started. However, at some point, you will need to have face-to-face conversations. Use such conversations as practice for the many such conversations you will have throughout life. This is good practice so you can learn the fine art of civil discourse: how to be persistent without being obnoxious, how to listen to others and not interrupt, how to state their side of a dispute clearly without straying into other topics, and how to disagree politely. These are just invaluable lessons we have to learn and practice our whole lives.
A: That will vary from one instructor to another and will depend on the reason for the absence. At Marshall, instructors have a great deal of flexibility in establishing the attendance policy for their classes. This is based on the belief that the instructor is in the best position to determine what is most appropriate for the way he or she has structured the class. Therefore, the individual instructors have their own attendance and make-up policies. You should contact the instructor in advance, if possible, or immediately after the absence to inquire about the possibility of making up the work that was missed.

However, there are absences that are excused by the University and these must be honored by all instructors. The categories for these absences are: University-sponsored Activities, including athletics; Student Illness; Illness or Death in the Immediate Family; Short-term Military Obligation; Jury Duty or Subpoena for Court Appearance; and Religious Holidays. Each of these categories is explained in more detail in the Undergraduate Catalog that is available online at the Admissions website. For these absences, the University policy states that you should be allowed to make up work missed and, where feasible, reschedule missed activities. It is your responsibility to initiate these arrangements and to do so immediately after the absence (or, if possible, prior to the absence). The procedures for obtaining an excused absence are clearly described in the catalog and you should read this section carefully. If you have any questions about the policy, you should contact the Academic Advising Center at 304-696-2314.

You should be aware that studies of academic success indicate that one of the most important actions students take is to attend class.

A: Each professor is required to give you a course syllabus within the first two weeks of class. The syllabus must contain essential information about the instructor (name, office hours, telephone and email numbers) and about the course (attendance policy, grading policy, course objectives, textbook and computer requirements, and assignments). It is a good idea for you to highlight the policies on each syllabus and to note all due dates in the Academic Planner that you purchase for the UNI/HON 101 class.
A: It IS possible for you to graduate in four years in most majors. The minimum number of credit hours required for graduation is 120 (developmental course credits do not count toward this number). For you to graduate in four years, you would have to average 16 hours each semester. Some factors that prevent students from graduating in four years include: dropping classes, earning failing grades, changing majors late in their academic careers.
A: Marshall has numerous computer labs on campus for you to use. There is at least one such lab in every classroom building plus each of the residence halls. There is an E-Post Office in the Student Center and 24– hour computer access in the Drinko Library. However, some students want the convenience of their own computers so they can email and do class work (and maybe a few games!) whenever they choose, and wherever they choose. The availability of wireless access on campus has increased the popularity of personal notebook computers with students.

You can find the specific information about Marshall’s recommendations on computer use and purchases at https://www.marshall.edu/it/recommendations/.

A: You may take your schedule of classes to the University Bookstore in the Memorial Student Center and the staff will assist you in finding the correct books for each class. We encourage you not to write in your books until the class meets for the first time to make sure that the books will be used for that section. It does sometimes happen that the instructor assigned to the class changes at the last minute and the book selection could change also. By the way, the average cost for books and supplies for undergraduates is $300-$400 per semester.

The University Bookstore does have the ISBN numbers for all books on its website for those who purchase their books elsewhere. We appreciate the scholarship money that the University Bookstore contributes to Marshall students each year.

A: The Higher Education Policy Commission in West Virginia has established the minimum scores for entry into college-level mathematics and English courses: ACT scores of 19 in Math and 18 in English (SATs of 460 and 450, respectively). Unfortunately, many students do not perform well enough on the exams to meet this standard. We have several options for you:

  1. You can take a placement exam administered by the University College. This exam is given almost every day during Orientation with the intention that you will take it the day before your scheduled Orientation date so the results will be available when you meet with your advisor. If you successfully complete the placement exam, you are eligible to be placed in the appropriate college-level mathematics or English course. For information, call 304-696-3169.
  2. Students with an English ACT score below 18 must complete ENG 100 before taking ENG 101.
    Students with an ACT score of 28-33 are encouraged to take ENG 201H. Upon completion of this class with a minimum grade of “C” or better, you will receive six hours of credit to count toward ENG 101 and 102. If you receive a grade of “D”, you will only receive three hours of credit toward ENG 102 and must either repeat ENG 201H or go back and take ENG 101. You MUST receive a grade of “C” or better in ENG 102. If you receive a grade of “D” in ENG 102 you must repeat the course for a higher grade. If you have junior or senior standing, but have not completed ENG 102, you must take ENG 302 in its place.
  3. Students must complete an algebra course by either taking MTH 127 or MTH 130, depending on your math ACT score. Students with a math ACT score of 21 or higher can take MTH 130 for 3 credit hours. Students with a math ACT score of 19 or 20 must take MTH 127 for 4 credit hours.
    Students who have a math ACT score of 17 or 18 must take a math workshop (WMTH002). This workshop does not count towards credit or semester hours for graduation or financial aid purposes. The math workshop is billed separately.
    Students who have a math ACT score of 16 or below must take two math workshops (WMTH 001 and WMTH 002). These workshops do not count towards credit or semester hours for graduation or financial aid purposes. These math workshops are billed separately.
    If you plan to pursue a Master’s degree in Business Administration you should plan to take a calculus course, as it is a requirement for admission into most MBA programs.
A: Any student with a learning disability who wishes to receive accommodations and services must register with the Disabled Students Services Office (304-696-2271) or the fee-based Higher Education for Learning Problems (H.E.L.P.) Program (304-696-6316). These programs will review the documentation of the disability and determine which accommodations are necessary. Their staff will then provide a notice to be given to faculty members describing the required accommodation(s). It is up to you to discuss the accommodations with your professors before any assignments or exams are due. Marshall faculty cooperates closely with the appropriate offices to provide accommodations.
A: We recognize that many students are unable to finance their college education without working at the same time. Parents and students need to bear in mind that much of the learning in college is done outside the classroom. The general formula is that you should spend 2 hours outside class for every one hour in the classroom. (For 15 credit hours, that would mean an additional 30 hours outside class.) These outside class hours should be devoted to class preparations such as reading assigned material, working on projects and papers, reviewing notes, and studying material that has already been covered. If you do not devote this time to your classes you may not do as well as you could if you had invested this time. Therefore, when you think about working while taking classes, you need to calculate the number of hours necessary to do well in class and schedule your work hours accordingly. In general, a student who is working full-time should not try to be a full-time student. A full-time student is usually able to work about 20 hours per week and still manage his/her class load.

The Excused Absence policy does not recognize work as an activity to be excused. Therefore, whether work activity is excused is up to individual instructors. You should be aware that many instructors will not consider work obligations to be excused absences.

A: If you manage your time wisely, you have enough time to participate in selected extracurricular activities. Marshall offers 150 student organizations including fraternities, sororities, honorary societies, debate and forensics, student government, faith-based groups, and special interest organizations such as the Ski Club and Outdoor Adventure Club. We think there is something for every student. These activities are coordinated by the Office of Student Affairs. A complete list of organizations is available at https://www.marshall.edu/studentactivities.

The College of Business also offers business specific organizations and clubs. These include:

  1. Alpha Kappa Psi – All majors; invitation only
  2. American College of Health Care Executives – Health Care Management majors
  3. American Marketing Association – Marketing majors
  4. Beta Alpha Psi – Accounting, Finance, MIS majors; 3.0 GPA or higher
  5. Beta Gamma Sigma – All majors; invitation only
  6. Dean’s Student Advisory Council – All majors
  7. Delta Sigma Pi – All majors
  8. Financial Management Association – Finance majors
  9. Management Information Systems Club – MIS majors; others welcome
  10. Omicron Delta Epsilon – Economics majors; 3.0 GPA in ECN classes
  11. Society of Human Resource Management – All majors

Of course, you should not try to fill every moment of the day outside class with clubs and activities. But, students who are active and involved on campus are more likely to persist and succeed in college. The key is balance.

A: Indeed we do and we encourage students to take advantage of this opportunity to experience another culture and develop a global perspective. Marshall offers over 125 programs in 35 countries where you can earn credit toward your degree. Students choose from among summer, semester or year abroad programs in countries as diverse as England, New Zealand, Japan and Spain. All courses taken as part of an approved study abroad program count toward graduation and the costs can be comparable to the cost of living and studying at Marshall.

The LCOB has exchange agreements with several schools outside the country: Catholic University of Lyon in France; Buckinghamshire College just outside of London, England; and Auckland University of Technology in Aukland, New Zealand. If you are interested in any of these programs apply directly in the Academic Advising Center.

For more information about Marshall’s study abroad opportunities, visit the Center for International Program website at https://www.marshall.edu and click on International.

A: It is true that a student who had a spectacularly bad first semester could be suspended for the next semester. A student taking 15 credit hours who made mostly F grades could accumulate enough GPA deficiencies to qualify for suspension. (Please see the online Undergraduate Catalog for details on the number of quality point deficiencies that would result in suspension.) Because students who are admitted to Marshall University have the ability to be successful at the college level, students who perform at such a weak level are usually experiencing personal problems of some type (family, financial, relationships, etc.) or maturity issues (unable to manage time, cope with freedom, etc.). A semester off from college gives the student time to address issues and recommit to college.

Suspension would, however, occur only in the most extreme cases. Usually, students who do not do well the first semester end up with less than a 2.0 GPA but their performance is not bad enough to warrant suspension. These students are placed on academic probation. Probation is a period of restricted enrollment supervised by the associate dean of the student’s college. Students on probation are put on academic improvement plans that specify the goals, actions and resources for each. Students on probation must make a 2.0 GPA each semester.

The probation and suspension policies are not intended to be punitive; they are designed to increase retention by keeping students on track for graduation. Otherwise, students might linger indefinitely, taking classes but not making progress towards graduation (which requires a minimum of a 2.0 GPA).

A: Read the catalog! The Undergraduate Catalog is available online at https://www.marshall.edu/catalog. You will find general information about Marshall, about academic policies and about all of the academic programs offered.

If you have any questions about academic policies and practices at the College of Business, contact the Academic Advising Center at 304-696-2314 or visit the office at Corbly Hall 107.