Exploratory Program Frequently Asked Questions
- What is the Exploratory Program?
The Exploratory Program is an initiative of the Academic Advising & Retention Center (AARC) created to lead Exploratory/Undeclared students on a path to self discovery. Students will explore the wide array of majors that WKU has to offer. The Exploratory Program will empower students to make well informed decisions regarding their major and career options. Students who utilize the Exploratory Program will build a foundation of success in order to persist to graduation.
Students participating in the Exploratory Program will:
- Connect with campus departments, faculty, staff and students beginning at orientation;
- Express a sense of pride being an Exploratory student at WKU through campus engagement and connections;
- Exhibit knowledge of campus resources through engagement in campus events including extracurricular and academic activities each semester;
- Be academically successful through recognition and utilization of campus resources such as tutoring services, The Learning Center, etc. each semester;
- Communicate effectively and professionally with faculty, staff and peers;
- Be actively engaged citizens through volunteer opportunities and civic engagement;
- Explore and familiarize themselves with WKU colleges, academic departments, and careers in order to commit to a major before they have earned 59+ hours.
- How can I find out who my advisor is?
After logging into TopNet, students will click on the "Student Services" tab. Next, students should click on the "Registration" tab followed by selecting the "View Advisor Information." tab. This link will provide the advisor's name, phone number, email address, and office location so the student may contact the advisor.
If you believe you have the wrong advisor assigned to you, please contact the Academic Advising & Retention Center at (270) 745-5065. If you are requesting a change in advisor, please fill out the Change of Major/Minor/Advisor form.
- How do I schedule an appointment with my advisor?
You can schedule an appointment with your Exploratory Advisor via the TopNet Advising Calendar. The instructions for scheduling an appointment with your Exploratory Advisor are as follows:
- Login to TopNet
- Select Student Services
- Select Registration
- Select Schedule an Advising Appointment
- Schedule an Appointment
- Select the current term
- Select your Exploratory Advisor's name
- When should I declare a major?
- You will need to declare a major before you register for your 60th hour, or before you reach junior standing. However, since there are only 39 hours of Colonnade Plan requirements, it is in your best interest to declare during your second or third semester in college.
- What is a Must Declare Major hold and how do I remove it?
Baccalaureate degree seeking students are required to formally declare a major prior to registering beyond their 60th hour of degree credit, or completion of their first term of study at WKU (whichever comes later); associate degree seeking students are required to formally declare a major prior to registering beyond their 30th hour of degree credit, or completion of their first term of study at WKU (whichever comes later). This declaration is to be made in consultation with the student's academic advisor. The hold prevents students from registering for classes until they declare a major. Students can use the online form on TopNet to change their major/minor/concentration.
Once a change of major has been processed, the must declare major hold will be removed by the system allowing a student to register for classes.
- How do I change my major/minor/concentration/advisor?
Changes in majors, minors, concentrations, and advisors are made upon request by students. Students must submit a Major, Minor, Concentration, Advisor Change Form to the academic department that administers the student’s chosen program. This form is available online for students in TopNet.
- Login to your TopNet page, go to the "Student Services" tab.
- Click on "Student Records"
- Click on "Change Major, Minor, Concentration, Advisor"
- Choose your desired major from the Major 1 drop down menu.
- Choose Yes, I request an advisor change from the Advisor 1 drop down menu.
- Submit your requested changes.
- Confirm your changes.
- Print out the form and bring it to the location indicated on the bottom of the page for the appropriate signatures (Regional Campus students should bring the form to their Regional Campus advisor for processing).
Students with approved undergraduate degree programs on file in the Office of the Registrar may change their major(s) and/or minor(s) by filing an approved, revised program or an Undergraduate Degree Program Change Form with the Office of the Registrar. For further information please contact the Academic Advising & Retention Center at (270) 745-5065.
- What is an iCAP and how do I run one for myself?
iCAP is an acronym for Interactive Curriculum and Academic Progress. Students can obtain personalized, interactive audits displaying progress toward a selected degree. An audit shows all the requirements needed to fulfill a major, minor or concentration and displays the transfer and WKU courses that have been used to satisfy those requirements. Students can run "What-If" audits to compare their coursework against other majors.
To run an iCAP students must first log into TopNet using their Net ID and password. Click on the "Student Services" tab, then "iCAP (Interactive Degree Audit)", then "Submit an Audit".
For a report that outlines your general education courses and progress you may just select "Run Audit" at the top. For a hypothetical look at what you would need to do for any particular major you may select "What-If?" do to a What-If Analysis.
Select "View Submitted Audits" and click "Refresh" until your audit appears. You may also view a video tutorial on how to run an iCAP here.
- What are Colonnade Plan courses?
In Fall 2014, WKU implemented a new general education model called the Colonnade Program. The Colonnade Program is now the core academic program at WKU. These general education requirements are an integral part of the undergraduate curriculum that both complement and support the student's preparation in their specific field.
WKU requires that all undergraduate degree-seeking students successfully complete a general education curriculum that represents a substantial component of each degree program (15 hours for associates degrees and 39 hours for baccalaureate degrees).
Courses in the Colonnade Program teach students to think critically, solve problems, and communicate effectively. Through these courses, students are encouraged to explore the connections among different areas of study in order to understand their roles as students and citizens. In short, the Colonnade Program is intended to promote intellectual curiosity and to instill a love of learning.
Regardless of a major choice, students are required to meet these general education requirements. There are specific courses that may benefit each student and advisors will convey those messages to ensure students are maximizing their experience with general education.
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