|First Year Experience
It's exciting to think about being a college freshman - but it's also kind of scary! We understand that. Everything is new or different - academics, social life, your independence. It can all present challenges to you and any one thing can make or break the success of the whole college experience for you.
UW-Baraboo/Sauk County is aware of what concerns and challenges new freshmen face and has developed an array of programs and experiences that together are defined as the "Freshman Year Experience" to help you stay on the educational path you have chosen. This experience starts long before your first classes meet and carries through your first semester and beyond, providing assistance with many aspects of your educational life.
Here's what you can expect during the freshman year experience:
UW Placement Tests
The whole process begins with a test to determine at what level of college English composition and mathematics courses you should begin. Tests in foreign languages are also available and recommended for students who have had more than one year of foreign language coursework in high school. Admitted new freshmen will receive information about taking placement tests.
Student Orientation, Advising and Registration (SOAR)
After determining where they will attend college for freshman year, most new freshmen begin worrying about what courses they should take. The SOAR program will address those worries. During this program, you will have an opportunity to learn about university services and resources, meet with an academic advisor, and register for your first semester classes.
All participants will learn how to use the Web-based student records system - PRISM. You will register during your campus SOAR session for your first semester. After that, you can register independently via the Web, after consulting an advisor. For continuing students, specific appointment dates and times are assigned based on the number of completed college credits.
UW-Baraboo/Sauk County holds a formal ceremony called Convocation for first year students to welcome them as members of the campus community and to help mark the importance of the step they are taking in their lives by entering college. The Convocation program takes place during the week before fall classes.
Students and their guests participate in the two-part program which includes a meeting with the student's First Year Seminar class and instructor as well as a matriculation ceremony through which the student formally joins the UW-Baraboo/Sauk County student body. Matriculation expresses the commitment UW-Baraboo/Sauk County makes to students to help them reach their individual goals and the commitment students are expected to make to their academic college success and to the UW-Baraboo/Sauk County community.
First Year Seminar Course
At the core of your freshman year experience is a 10 week one credit class called the "First Year Seminar." This course serves as an "extended orientation" experience, and includes assisting students in making a successful transition to the university environment and experience as its primary goal.
According to campus research, math classes tend to have one of the highest drop rates of all courses. To help students maximize their success in math classes, the university has developed a comprehensive array of tutoring assistance programs, non-degree coursework for those who need to brush up on math skills, and special discussion sessions in our first two levels of degree college algebra classes.