Step 1: Mandatory Guiding Stars: New Student Orientation. All first-year (freshmen) and first-year (freshman) transfer students are must complete a hybrid Orientation, consisting of three parts::

  • Online Orientation: Access it in Canvas, our learning system, at your own pace, but finish before your In-Person Orientation (available starting November 13 to students who have registered for their respective January Orientation session).
  • In-Person Orientation: Held in Springfield from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. (schedule). You and up to two guests will learn about academics, billing, course registration, and more. There is a Parent/Family program that runs concurrent with the student program - so parents we welcome you to the in-person program too!   

    • Online (OL) degree majors will attend a Virtual (synchronous - live) Orientation on Wednesday, January 10 (between 10 a.m. and 5:30 p.m. CT. Schedule available soon)
    • Students admitted after the January 11 orientations will meet individually with the Director of New Student Orientation & Parent Relations and then complete the online orientation. 
  • First-Year New Student Welcome. Friday, January 12 (10 a.m. - 4 p.m.) and Saturday, January 13 )10 a.m. - 1 p.m.) on campus, in person. You will continue to be introduced to places and resources on campus, meet current staff members, and classmates through a variety of programs and workshops. (A draft schedule will be available in December). Note: Online degree students will not be attending the New Student Welcome

Step 2: Register for Orientation

Registration for the in-person, January 11 Orientation session (or the Virtual January 10 for the online degree students) will be available on your UIS Admission Status Page after you have submitted your Intent to Enroll. Follow email instructions titled 'Set Up Your UIS Account' to create your password and recovery options that will give you access to UIS portals and Canvas.       

Step 3.  Orientation Fee 

  • Pay the $175 Orientation Fee and any guest fees online after registering, but before January 29.
  • Choose credit card payment, mail a check/money order, or defer payment to your student account (due February 28).
  • Unpaid fees after January 29 are assessed to your student account on January 30.
  • After January 28, pay the Orientation Fee through the Bursar's Office.
  • Guest Fees. A $25 non-refundable fee covers lunch, materials, videos, and more. Family members attending the Virtual Orientation have a $10 guest fee that covers materials, videos, and more. Pay guest fees online with the student Orientation Fee or on-site by credit card.

Step 4.  Confirmation & Calendar

  • A confirmation will be emailed to you.
  • Forward it to attending guests and mark your calendar.
  • Coordinate travel and accommodations for in-person Orientation.

Work with your guests to make travel and accommodations arrangements to your in-person Orientation.  

Step 5: Placement Testing and Advising. 

Placement Testing: Entering students may have to take Math or Reading Placement Exams. You can arrange for Placement Testing with the UIS Testing Center virtually or in person. Complete tests at least 2 weeks before your academic advising appointment. Use the AdviseU app from the Online Orientation to check requirements.

Advising: After you have completed the first online orientation module in Canvas you can make an appointment to meet with your academic advisor. Academic advising appointments will begin December 1. Please Note: Students will register for classes during their in-person Orientation session. 

Step 6: Prepare for your Orientation

  • Review dates to request time off work.
  • Schedule time to complete online modules in Canvas before the in-person Orientation.
  • Completing the online orientation modules is necessary to register for classes.
  • After completing the online modules, make your advising appointment.

Step 7: Read Your Personal and UIS Email.

  • Regularly check both your personal and UIS email accounts for updates.
  • Start daily email checks a week before in-person Orientation.
  • Carefully read all emails, especially from departments like financial assistance and residence life.
  • If you used your school email when applying to UIS, switch to UIS or a personal email through a provider like Gmail or Yahoo by emailing