We've put this academic advising-focused resource together to help you be successful during your time at The University of Arizona. If you have a question that isn't addressed in this resource, don't hesitate to reach out to your public health academic advisor.
Advising Resource for Undergraduate Students
All University of Arizona students register for classes twice a year; once in the fall and once in the spring. This resource will provide you with information about registration, including how to best utilize your time with an advisor during your registration period.
What is Registration?
Registration is the time period during the semester where you will choose your classes for the following semester.
Important things to remember about registration:
- Students are given priority for course registration based on credit standing (meaning seniors register first and freshman last). Fully online, veterans, athletes and honors students get advanced registration status.
- Registration starts around late October in the fall and mid-March in the spring. The University posts the priority registration schedules here.
- Because Public Health is a very full college/major, we recommend that you prepare your shopping cart ahead of time and set your alarm for 10 minutes prior to your registration time to have the best chance of scoring your perfect schedule.
- The last important thing to remember during registration is to not hesitate to reach out for help. Your academic advisors are here to help!
Can I Register Without Seeing my Advisor?
Absolutely! In an ideal world, this is what we want to happen. We want to give you enough information and confidence to navigate this on your own, select your own classes and build your own schedules.
We also have a fillable Curriculum Guide that we hope you keep up-to-date with completed coursework. Visit this page for the main campus Curriculum Guide and this page for the fully online Curriculum Guide. This is a tool to help you know what coursework you have completed and what still is left to do.
All that being said, if you would like to meet with your advisor to prepare for registration, we welcome your visit!
Appointment & Walk-In Etiquette During Registration
Note that there is no need to wait until priority registration begins to see your advisor. You can visit/speak with your advisor at any point before your registration period to sort out schedules and ask advising questions.
- Be prepared for your appointment or walk-in time with your questions and classes in mind for your next semester (ideally, you will have placed courses in your shopping cart already).
- When preparing your potential schedule it is important to have back-up classes in case you do not get into your first choices. This will help you problem solve the morning of priority registration if your ideal schedule doesn't work as you hoped.
- Lastly, read all emails sent out by public health advisors before and during registration. We do our best to anticipate your questions so that you have information available to you when you need it (without having to wait for your appointment or walk-in slot).
I Didn't Get Into the Classes I Wanted - Now What?
First, take a deep breath! This sometimes happens.
Here are some steps you can take:
- Are you a first or second year student? It sometimes happens that courses fill and you don't get your ideal schedule. With a solid back-up plan, you can still make progress to graduation.
- Is the class you cannot get into something other than a public health class? If it is, be sure to contact that department! For instance, if you want PSIO 380 and it is full, then reach out directly to Physiology department for assistance.
- Are you still in pre-public health but trying to register for a 400 level class? Remember, you have to have already applied to the professional major to take 400 level classes!
- Is there a prerequisite for the class you are trying to get into? For instance, to take HPS 350 you have to have already completed HPS 178 and HPS 200.
If you feel stressed about your schedule (or lack of schedule!), please reach out to your academic advisor.
Figuring out which General Education classes to take can be confusing, especially when different majors have different requirements. Below you will find answers to the most common General Education confusions, specific for pre-public health and public health students.
Tier 1 - 150, 160, and 170, classes (INDIVS, TRADS, and NATS)
The most important things to know about Tier I classes are:
- You need two 150 classes (INDIVS or Individuals and Society) and two 160 classes (TRADS or Traditions and Cultures)
- For Public Health you DO NOT need to take any 170 classes (NATS or Natural Sciences)
Tier II - Arts, Humanities, Natural Sciences, Diversity and Individuals and Societies
Tier II classes are your second level of general education classes.
Things that are important about Tier II classes are:
- You do not need to finish your Tier I classes to move on to Tier II
Public Health students only need one Tier II Arts OR Humanities (not both!)
- Some Tier II Arts classes are only 1 credit (dance is a popular one). If you choose to take that sort of class you will have to take another 2 credits. You must have a total of 3 Tier II Arts or Humanities Credits.
- Public Health students only need one Tier II Individuals and Societies (INDIV)
- Unlike Tier 1 classes, Tier II are usually classes found within a major, most are not specifically created for general education purposes. This means if you take a 300 level pottery class to fulfill your Tier II Arts it will be 300 level work. Know that going into it.
Public Health students DO NOT need to take Tier II NATS or Natural Science Classes
- Public Health students DO NOT need to take a separate Diversity Emphasis course because HPS 387 (required) fulfills that requirement.
- Because PHPM 310 and HPS 387 are required for the public health major, these courses cannot fulfill your Tier II INDIV category.
How Do I Know Which Ones To Take?
In order to be successful in your Gen Ed classes, consider these questions:
- Are you interested in the topic? If not, pass. You will be more successful and able to focus if you take something that sounds interesting versus choosing it because your best friend is taking it.
- Have you ever taken anything like it before? If you are interested in something but don't have a background in it, start at the 100 level and work your way up.
- Is it at a time that you can be successful? While you shouldn't choose a class solely based on time, if you are not a morning person don't expect to magically become one during your college years. If you know mornings are not your favorite time of the day, choose an option that is not the 8am class.
- Do you learn best with a certain style of course offering? Some general education course are offered online, while many are offered in person. Consider how it is offered and your learning style when deciding which course is best for you.
In order to ensure that you meet the 120 credits needed to graduate with your Bachelor's Degree, Public Health also requires that you take 14-15 general elective credits. These are separate from your General Education classes.
These may be fulfilled by classes you took at a community college that transferred in, if you choose to minor in something, if you are planning to go to medical school and need to take extra science classes, or from a course that you took just because it was interesting to you. All of these course options could count toward your general elective credits.
As you may or may not know, Public Health is classified by the University as a professional major. Much like the Nursing and Business UA programs, every student starts out in our college as a Pre-Public Health student. After meeting certain prerequisites, students apply to the professional major of Public Health and then take remaining coursework. Here are the steps you can works towards to be on track for graduation.
01 Complete the Prerequisite Classes!
In order to apply to the professional major you need to have 5 or fewer credits remaining in the following prerequisite coursework:
- Two semesters of First Year Composition
- Two semesters of a Second Language (or demonstrated competence to this level)
- College Algebra or higher
- Two semesters of Chemistry with a lab
- One semester of Biology with a lab
- One semester of Nutrition
- Personal Health and Wellness
- Introduction to Public Health
Please note that you do need to earn a minimum of a C grade in every prerequisite course. Your goal is to have completed or currently be taking enough classes that you have 5 or fewer prerequisite credits remaining.
02 Maintain a 2.5 GPA!
In order to make the transition from Pre-Public Health to Public Health you need to have a UA GPA of 2.500 or higher. This is a firm GPA requirement.
03 Consider the Timing of your Application (hint: apply as soon as you are eligible to!)
How do you know it's time for you to apply for major admission?
It is time if:
- You have met the prerequisite requirements.
- You'd like to make progress towards graduation and wish to start taking 400-level courses. Due to demand, public health 400 level classes are restricted to students in the professional major. In order to not delay graduation, be sure to allow for a minimum of two semesters in the professional major.
- If you are a main campus student, you should also consider applying as soon as possible if you would like to apply for public health scholarships and/or take on student leadership positions. Being part of the professional major is often a requirement for public health scholarship eligibility and for holding leadership positions in our college organizations.
Main campus students: do note, when classified as part of the professional major, there is differential tuition of a $50/credit. Talk with your academic advisor about a strategy for your application timing so that you can maximize opportunities that come from being in the major (e.g., scholarship eligibility).
04 Complete the Application!
The application to the professional major is found here (note that there are application deadlines for each semester).
We look forward to receiving your application and have you join the professional major!
Every Public Health student is required to complete a 250 contact hour/6 credit public health-focused internship before graduation. This is a chance for students gain professional public health experience, start networking, and determine post-graduation plans. Below is a list of answers to some common questions about internships.
When Can I Do My Internship?
In order to be eligible to enroll in your credit-based internship:
- You must have completed HPS 350
- You must have already applied and been accepted to the professional Public Health part of the major
- You must complete the internship orientation
- You can do all 6 credits during one semester or split it up and do two separate internships in two separate semesters.
- You may do your internship over the summer (do note tuition is required for summer enrollment so plan accordingly!)
- You may also do your internship the summer following the College of Public Health graduation ceremony ONLY IF these are your remaining units to complete the degree. In other words, you can walk with your class in May, complete your internship and then officially graduate and receive your diploma in August.
Will My Advisor Help Me?
Yes, your advisor is happy to talk you to you about recommended timing of your internship, how you go about finding internship options, and how to narrow down your choices.
You will also watch the internship orientation video the semester prior to your internship. During this orientation, you'll learn what kinds of opportunities qualify for public health credit, how to secure an internship, and what paperwork needs completed. While it is your job to secure the internship, we understand this is a first for most of you so we will help you get there!
Can I Do More Than One Internship?
Yes! Many students decide to split the internship up into two internships (for three unit enrollment each semester). We also allow you to complete up to 6 credits of your public health electives through internship credits, so potentially you could gain public health work experience through four internships before you even graduate! To be eligible for the elective internships you must have HPS 178, HPS 200 and six other public health credits completed.
Here are some tips on how to best communicate during your college years.
Emailing - Always be professional! ALWAYS!
In an age of texting and tweeting we understand the need to use shorthand and that most of you use it every day. #LOLOMGROFL That being said, now that you are a UA student, email is going to be your primary way of communicating with UA faculty, academic advisors, and other campus professionals. So, what do need you to remember about emails?
Emails aren't texts! It is important that the first impression you make doesn't look like this:
Hey professor Ramirez when are you free?
- sent from Iphone
In order to start a good professional relationship with your advisors, professors or any campus professional that will be in your life you would want it to looks like this:
Dear Professor Ramirez,
Are you still holding office hours on Thursday as mentioned in your course syllabus? I would like to stop by to ask about the report that is due soon. Thank you!
At the end of the day your professors, advisors, etc. want to have a quality and productive relationship with you. While you can be friendly with them, you should always strive to maintain a professionalism relationship. Your polite and professional manner will go a long way in getting you the help or networking that you are looking for!
Remember, at some point you will want a letter of recommendation. The person asking WILL ask about your communication skills and abilities. You will not want a recommendation from someone you sent that first email example to.
In addition to the email example above, keep in mind these email etiquette tips.
- Check your email! Everyday! This is how all campus professionals will communicate with you and you don't want to miss timely information about a course, scholarships, internship or job opportunities.
- Always use a header and an email signature. For example, Dear and Sincerely work every time.
- Your subject line should always be filled in and it should be short and understandable. Don't email the professor with the subject line "help". It should look like: Sociology 101 class, section A, homework question. Or, to an advisor: Question about courses for the next semester.
- Always allow AT LEAST 48 hours for a person to respond before re-sending another email or emailing someone else. Most people on campus deal with hundreds of students so patience is key.
- Be sure to state who you are (include your Student Identification number), even if you just met with the person who are emailing. (If it is your advisor, chances are we have seen 10-15 students since seeing you!)
- READ EVERY EMAIL SENT TO YOU BY CAMPUS PROFESSIONALS! If we send you an email it is so we can let you know things that are important or that we think will be of some interest to you. Advisors don't work off commission or spam - if we are sending it to you it is because we think you need it.
- Before emailing, ask yourself, "Have I tried finding the answer myself?" While your advisor is happy to help it is harder to help everyone if we are receiving emails like "How do I contact the biology department."
- Create folders in your email account so you can keep track of read and unread emails. It will make the email journey much more enjoyable!
I Emailed My Professor, Advisor, etc. at 5:01PM on Friday - Now What?
For most professionals on campus, the work week is Monday - Friday from 8am - 5pm. If you choose to send an email outside of regular business hours please understand you will not hear back until the next set of business hours occur. We love our jobs and we love our students, but we also love our time off (this is public health and we strive for work / life balance!).
The UA has many academic and wellness resources available to students. Here are just a few.
- Campus Counseling Services
- Campus Health Services
- Career Services
- Disability Resource Center
- S.A.L.T. (Strategic Alternative Learning Techniques)
- Tutoring Center & Think Tank
Looking for an additional service or office that isn't listed? Check out the UA Advising page for a complete listing!
When you first arrive at the UA you may think that people seem to be speaking a different language. We have compiled a list of the most commonly used abbreviations that will assist you when speaking to upper classmen and professionals on campus.
Public Health Acronyms, Words and Phrases
- OSSAA = Office of Student Services and Alumni Affairs
- COPH = College of Public Health
- CPH = College (of) Public Health
- MEZCOPH = Mel and Enid Zuckerman College of Public Health
- WiseAdvise = The online advising calendar used by the COPH Advisors
Other Common University of Arizona Acronyms, Words and Phrases
- UA = University of Arizona
- Gen Ed = General Education
- CLAS = College of Letters, Arts and Sciences
- GRO = Grade Replacement Opportunity
- TRADS = Traditions and Cultures General Education Classes
- INDIVS = Individuals and Societies General Education Classes
- NATS = Natural Sciences General Education Classes
- DRC = Disability Resource Center
- S.A.L.T Center = Strategic Alternative Learning Techniques
- GPA = Grade Point Average
- B Deficit = a calculation of how many units of B grades a student needs, assuming the other grades average out to Cs, to be in good academic standing
- Pre-Rec = A prerequisite is something that must be completed before moving on to something else. For instance, SPAN 101 is a pre-rec for SPAN 102.
- B.S. = Bachelors of Science
- B.A. = Bachelors of Arts