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Course Selection

Whether declared or undeclared, what will your schedule look like in your first term?

Students should consider a balance of courses toward their major, liberal education requirements, or other university requirements (minor or honors course). On average students enroll in 12- 16 credits per term. Discuss what suits you best with your academic advisor. 

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The following is a typical course set in the first-term:

I.  Writing Course:  Writ 1120, College Writing (3 cr) is required to graduate from UMD.  It is designed as a first-year course.  Students take this course either Fall or Spring of the freshman year.

II.  Math Course:  Because all programs in Swenson College require mathematics most students will register for a math course their first semester.  Math placement policy, determined by the Department of Mathematics and Statistics, is based on the correlation between Math ACT score and success (grade of C- or higher) in first-semester math.  

ACT  / SAT Requirement

Eligible Math Course

Math ACT > 27    (SAT Math 640)

Math 1296 Calculus I or Math 1290 Calculus for Natural

Math ACT 24-26  (SAT Math 580-639)

Math 1250 Precalculus Analysis (4cr)

Math ACT 21-23  (SAT Math 530-579)

Math 1005 College Algebra (5cr)   

Math ACT < 21    (SAT Math 479)

Math 0103 Basic Math and Elementary Algebra (0cr)

III.  Science Course:  Most Swenson College freshmen enroll in a science course their first term. You will work with an academic advisor to determine which is most appropriate based on your interests. If you are not sure you will choose a science or engineering major,  you might start with subjects outside of science. Some students wait until the Spring semester to begin their science course.

Biol 1011 General Biology 1 (5 cr)

Chem 1153/1154 General Chemistry 1 Lec/Lab (4/1cr)    OR

Chem 1173/1174 General Chemistry I Majors (4/1cr)  

Geol 1110 Geology and Earth Systems (4 cr)

Chem 1113 Introduction to Organic and Biological Chemistry (5 cr) 

Phys 2013 & 2014 General Physics 1 Lec/Lab (4/1cr)  

CS 1511 Computer Science 1 (5 cr) or other CS course

IV.  Liberal Education coursesLiberal Education program courses are completed over 4 years giving balance in a schedule. Courses provide the opportunity to explore options and expand knowledge beyond your primary program of study while deciding your major.  A liberal education & SCSE Major “Two for One” grid is available to students in the Swenson College Advising and Academic Services office and helps students see how some liberal education courses also help meet requirements for a major or minor.

Choosing courses for the second term: Students meet with an academic advisor prior to registration each term to review courses aligned with student's goals, major and minor options.