Questions? Undergraduates please reach out to Jill Briggs at or (217) 206-6561. Graduate students please reach out to Sarah Gibson at or (217) 206-7934.

The Advising Process

You may view your advisor in theUIS Find Your Advisor ApplicationIf you do not see an advisor listed in the Find Your Advisor Application, please contact the department.  

You have been assigned an advisor to assist you in scheduling your courses and in choosing electives that best match your educational and professional goals. The advising process is a collaboration between you and your advisor.  Your advisor will assist you in planning your course of study, helping you choose what courses to take and when to take them in order to meet your academic and professional goals.  In addition to advising, advisors also must approve electives and sign a variety of forms for their advisees, including student petitions.

When first admitted you should have an orientation advising appointment with your advisor, where you explain your academic and professional history and goals and hear more intricate details about your degree program and what it can do to assist you in your aspirations.  After your initial orientation advising appointment, you should have an advising appointment with your advisor every semester, prior to registering, ideally when the course schedule for the following semester has just been released.  Please also make sure to discuss any conditions of admission with your advisor, as noted on your admission notification.  Your advising appointments can be conducted in a manner that works for you and your advisor, and although they can be conducted face-to-face, they can also be conducted over the phone, through email, or online (for example using Zoom).  It is up to you to take the initiative in the advising partnership.  You are personally responsible for contacting your advisor directly and setting up each advising appointment, including your orientation advising appointment.

Legal Studies Undergraduate Students
Undergraduate students are assigned a college advisor and a faculty advisor.  Your college advisor will assist you in your pursuit of your degree, and will help you stay on the most productive path to graduation.  Each semester, prior to registering, you should set-up an appointment with your college advisor to discuss your course schedule and curriculum plans.  (Please keep in mind that it is your responsibility to contact your college advisor in regards to advising.)  In addition to having your college advisor, you are also assigned a faculty advisor.  Your faculty advisor is an expert in their field and will provide mentorship as you prepare for a career and/or an advanced degree. 

Legal Studies Graduate Students
Graduate students are assigned a faculty advisor, who will assist you in your pursuit of your master’s degree, and will help you stay on the most productive path to graduation.  Each semester, prior to registering, you should set-up an appointment with your faculty advisor to discuss your course schedule and academic goals.

Advise U

Undergraduates may schedule their advising meetings through Advise U.  

Advise U is the quickest and easiest way for undergraduates to schedule an appointment with their college advisor and prepare a tentative drag-and-drop course schedule for an upcoming semester.  Undergraduates can access Advise U using a web browser on your mobile device or computer:  

Advise U is not used by the department for graduate students.  Graduate students should email their faculty advisor to schedule an advising appointment.

Curriculum Requirements

You will need to review the curriculum requirements in the UIS Catalog and discuss them with your advisor.

Upcoming courses can be viewed in the UIS Dynamic Course Schedule.

You should regularly check your Degree Audit to view an unofficial audit of your degree requirements and your progress towards meeting those requirements.  You may access your Degree Audit through the Degree Audit for Students.  (Directions for reading your Degree Audit may be found online.)

Additional Advising Notes for Undergraduates

Legal Studies Bachelor’s Degree students should discuss their Engaged Citizenship Common Experience (ECCE) requirement, including their internship requirement, with their advisor, as well as Department Honors in Legal Studies

Advising Guides

You should email your advisor to further discuss your curriculum plans and academic goals.  (Please note that it is up to you to contact your advisor.)  When initially contacting your advisor, please include your UIN and your completed proposed course plan outlining when you plan on completing required courses and potential electives.

The Academic Calendar

Please view the Academic Calendar for the start and end dates of each semester.

Course Schedule

Upcoming courses can be viewed in the UIS Dynamic Course Schedule.  (Course schedules for the upcoming semester are generally released in March for the fall and summer semesters and in October for the spring semester.)

Registering for Classes

Please check the UIS Records and Registration website for registration information. (Registration for the summer and fall semesters generally begins in April, and registration for the spring semester generally begins in November.)  The date and time you are eligible to register are stated in your time ticket.  You must establish your UIS NetID prior to registering for courses.

Online Classes
Please remember that 100% online students should only register for 100% online courses.  (Online courses/sections are noted as “Online” in the “Schedule Type” in the course schedule.)  Also, please note that our classes fill quickly, so students should register as soon as their time ticket allows.

Undergraduate and Graduate Course Sections
Please note that some courses offer more than one section.  Some courses offer one section that is for undergraduates and one section is for graduate students.  Other courses offer an on-campus section and an online section.  Some courses have four sections: on-campus/undergraduate, on-campus/graduate, online/undergraduate, and online/graduate.  It is important that you make sure you enroll in the appropriate section. If one section is full, but there are remaining cross listed seats, please email the course instructor to check into the possibility that open seats could be switched from the undergraduate section to the graduate section.  (However, please keep in mind that having available seats in one section does not automatically mean that additional seats will be added to the full section.)
If you have difficulty registering for a course, please email us at  Please include the following in your email:  your first and last name; your UIS UIN; your program of study; the name, section and CRN number of the course in which you want to enroll; and the type of registration error you received (copy and paste the exact error number / description).

Course Restrictions
Some courses have course restrictions placed on them.  Common restrictions include: Level Restrictions, Departmental Restrictions, and Instructor Restrictions.  Level Restrictions restrict sections of a course to either undergraduate students or graduate students.  If you believe you have wrongly barred from registering for a course due to a Level Restriction, please contact the Legal Studies Department at or (217) 206-6646.  Departmental Restrictions restrict registration into the course based on a student’s program of study (for example PSC courses with Departmental Restrictions are limited to Political Science students).  If you encounter a Departmental Restriction (“Requires Department Approval”), you must contact that course’s department (for example for PAD 504, a student would contact the Public Administration Department).  If you encounter an Instructor Approval Restriction (“Requires Instructor Approval”), you must contact the course instructor.

Becoming a Successful Online Learner

Being a successful online learner takes dedication, self-motivation, and communication.  To help prepare you to be a successful online learner, please take a moment to complete a Self-Assessment for Online Learning Readiness and review our Tips for Success in Online Learning.

Textbook Information

The UIS Bookstore carries all the books required for your courses.  Online students may purchase their books through the UIS Bookstore and have their books directly shipped to them.  The UIS Bookstore carries new and used books, as well as digital books, and also offers book rentals.  The UIS Bookstore also offers a price match, if you find a lower price on Amazon, Barnes and Noble or at another campus bookstore.

You may view the required books for you courses online at the UIS Semester Planner and Textbook Information website.

Resources and Support