The Student Orientation, Advising, and Registration (SOAR) program is your first experience as a new student at UW. During SOAR, you will learn about academic advising, degree requirements, and campus resources. A student who intends to declare a major within the College of Letters & Science (L&S) will be advised by Academic Advising Services (AAS) at SOAR.

During the academic advising portion of SOAR, you will:

• meet one-on-one with a professional advisor
• review your placement test scores
• discuss AP, transfer, and other credits you’re bringing in
• learn how to search for, choose, and enroll in classes
• discover how your classes and credits meet degree requirements
• learn how to make changes to your schedule
• get answers to your questions about academics and life on campus
• get assigned to an academic advisor

You can also learn more about advising and the College of Letters & Science in our 2022 L&S Advising Handbook.

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I have been admitted to UW-Madison. Can I meet with an academic advisor before SOAR?

Congratulations on being admitted to UW-Madison! If your questions are primarily about course selection and academic options, we will go over this at SOAR and you will be meeting with an academic advisor then. We generally do not meet with incoming students before SOAR, since we will not have all the necessary academic records to properly advise before then. SOAR also includes specific programming and resources to support course selection and registration.

Prior to academic advising at SOAR, we encourage you to attend one of UW’s prospective/admitted student events and information sessions that take place throughout the year.

How do I know if AAS is the right place for me at SOAR?

Academic Advising Services serves undergraduate students in the College of Letters & Science as they progress towards major declaration and degree completion. If you know the major(s) you intend to declare is housed in L&S, AAS would be the right advising unit for you at SOAR. Find a full list of L&S majors in The Guide 

What if I'm not sure about the major(s) I intend to declare?

When you make a SOAR reservation, the system will ask you questions that will help choose your SOAR Advising Group

Where can I learn more about what to expect at SOAR?

Review the SOAR website for information on how to prepare for your SOAR experience.

How do I contact my advisor after SOAR?

After SOAR, you will be assigned to an advisor in AAS. If you have questions after SOAR, email your assigned advisor. Once the term following SOAR begins, you can schedule an appointment with your advisor in Starfish. 

L&S Orientation
Photo by Bryce Richter /UW-Madison