Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Do I have to attend orientation?

Yes, if you are a first-year freshman. The University of Illinois Springfield requires all incoming first-year students, including Freshmen Transfer students (less than 30 credit hours accepted by UIS) to attend KickStart and Semester Launch orientation. Orientation is a vital part in the transition to college.


How do I register for New Student Orientation?

You can register for orientation by visiting your UIS Admissions Status page and clicking KickStart Sign up is Open. You will use the logon and password from your UIS Admissions application to login to the registration form. For any  questions or concerns call 217-206-8181 or email UISOrientation@uis.edu.


I am trying to register for orientation but the logon page says I do not have clearance?

There could be a couple of issues. (1). You are not using the logon id and password you created for your UIS Admissions Application, or (2) you have not accepted your admission to UIS, or (3) you have selected the wrong date. Honors students must select Honors designated dates and Non-Honors (Freshman) students must select Traditional dates.


How do I know that my reservation for orientation has been received?

When you submit the reservation you will automatically receive a copy of your registration form in your personal email. You will also be emailed a confirmation of the session your registered for.  You can also verify your reservation by going to your UIS Admissions Application Status page.


I checked “pay my Orientation Fee by credit card” when I was registering for KickStart but I didn’t see anything that asked for my credit card number? 

If you go to your UIS Admissions Status page you will see under Status Update – Payment Due $175 (or more if you added guests).  Click on that and it will take you through the process of paying by credit card.


How much does Orientation cost? 

There is a mandatory $175 Orientation fee that is assessed to each student and covers expenses for the student. The Orientation Fee can be paid online after registering for KickStart, or the payment may be mailed after registering, or deferred to the student account until the tuition bill is due. The Orientation Fee is mandatory and non-refundable.


If I attend KickStart do I have to attend the Semester Launch program?

Yes, UIS’s mandatory orientation program has two parts. The first part is the 2-day program called KickStart which focuses on big-picture activities like advising and registration. Semester Launch (students entering in Fall) (students entering in Spring) is the second mandatory program where we cover more in-depth programs that will help prepare you for your first semester of college.


Can I make changes to my Orientation reservation?

Yes, we understand that things come up.  Please email us cancelling the one date and indicating your new preferred date. We will cancel your reservation and register you for another date if there is one open.  Do not register for another session online, this will lead to confusion and being registered and charged for two Orientation dates.  Please note that once your cancel your reservation the reservation system automatically opens a spot in that date and someone else can register for that spot.  So please be sure and check dates before cancelling anything.


How do I know if I have to take a placement test?

Entering students may have to take Math, Reading, and/or Foreign Language Placement exams based on the ACT/SAT scores.  You can check requirements by reviewing the tables on the Testing Services website.  If you are unclear about the major requirements for ACT/SAT scores or what tests you need to take, please contact your advisor.  Traditional first-year students contact the Center for Academic Success and Advising (CASA) and Honors students contact the Capital Scholars Honors program.


Can I take Placement Exams before KickStart?

Yes, students who need placement testing (see above) you will need to request a date for placement testing and complete them before you can make an advising appointment.  You will be able to make advising appointment after you have completed the 7 Modules on the asynchronous orientation program. So to be ready for your advising appointment, make sure you complete your placement testing by May 31.  Follow these steps to complete your placement testing:


Will I be able to receive my orientation date of choice?

In June because we limit the number of student participants in each session they are filled on a first-come basis. Therefore, if you register early you are more likely to receive your 1st choice orientation session. Once a session is full the system will close the session.  If someone changes their reservation, a session may open back up. August and January sessions have no limits on the number of student registrations.


What are my chances of getting the courses I need if it takes a while for me to complete the asynchronous online program or have to attend a later session?

The first people to register have the opportunity to register for courses offered during preferred/peak class times (i.e. 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.). Some popular introduction courses at these times tend to fill up faster. You might have to take it earlier or later in the day than you would prefer, but you will still be registered for these classes. Some general education subjects (i.e. psychology, sociology) are also more popular than others so you may have to choose an alternate subject. Required courses like Freshman Seminar, English, and Math add sections as they are needed throughout the summer. You will be able to register for all the credit hours you need. It may not be at your first choice time or subject.  Students attending August or January (spring semester) should contact the Office of Advising to set up an appoint for advising before their KickStart.  Students will still have to attend KickStart and Semester Launch even though they have been advised for classes. Failure to attend could result in your schedule being cancelled and you will have to wait until the first day of classes to register again.


Can we still speak to someone from the Office of Financial Assistance to answer questions/concerns?

Yes!  We strongly encourage students and their parents/guardian meet with the student’s financial assistance counselor to review the financial aid award letter and cost of attendance. The Office of Financial Assistance will have counselors available virtually on weekdays. Contact their office to arrange a meeting: Phone: (217) 206-6724 or Email: finaid@uis.edu.  Do not make any appointments on the KickStart date the student registered for. The student will have mandatory programming to attend.


What happens if I miss my KickStart orientation? Who should I notify?

Please contact our office during business hours and we will see if there is space in another session for you.


Are parents required to do the any of the virtual Orientation programs?

No, but parent / family participation is strongly encouraged. The Parent / Family sessions provide family members with information, resources and contacts that will aid them in helping their student succeed at UIS.


Will I be able to tour the campus/housing facilities during orientation?

This year because of the COVID-19 pandemic we are offering tours of campus and campus housing virtually.


What is your refund/cancellation policy regarding New Student Orientation fees?

The Orientation and Guest Fees are non-refundable.


If I haven’t sent back my Acceptance of Admission Form to the Admissions Office yet, can I attend orientation?

No. By accepting admission you will have access to the online orientation form and the advising and testing services offices will have access to your records to properly advise you.  When you complete the online acceptance form on your admission status page you will receive a welcome email from New Student Orientation within a couple of days.  Within a week of your acceptance of admission you will be on our new student lists and will receive information about orientation.


What will I be doing during orientation?

There is a general schedule which outlines the content on the website. You and your parents/family members will receive a detailed schedule in late May.