Frequently Asked Questions

Who is my adviser?
You have two advisers in the College of Arts and Sciences, a professional adviser and a faculty adviser. The professional adviser helps with your overall undergraduate experience; from degree requirements to activities outside the classroom to lead to graduation. Your faculty adviser helps with major specifics, research/internship opportunities, getting into grad school, and career possibilities.

How can I be sure to graduate on-time? How do I apply for my degree?
The best way to ensure that you are making progress toward completing your degree is to familiarize yourself with all of your degree requirements. Students should carefully read the areas of their Undergraduate Catalog pertaining to university requirements, college requirements and major requirements. Students should meet at least once per year with an Academic Adviser to be sure they understand all requirements for their degree and to obtain a completed degree program checklist. When you are within two semesters of graduation, you should meet with an Academic Adviser and request a Graduation Audit. This way, you can ensure that you have not missed any degree requirements. If a problem is uncovered, you can make the necessary scheduling plans to fulfill any requirements you may have overlooked. Finally, you must complete the Undergraduate Application for Degree form before the deadline for the semester in which you intend to complete your remaining degree requirements. 

How and when do I register for classes?
Oakland University has full year registration, allowing students to register for Summer, Fall and Winter semesters all at once, in March each year. Consult the Registrar site for information on the Class Schedule and specific registration instructions. Registration for classes is done based on the number of credits earned at the time of registration and is completed through the university SAIL system.
Click here for more helpful tips about Registration.

What is the maximum number of credits I can take?    
You can enroll in a maximum of 18 credit hours in a Fall, Winter or Summer semester.  To seek permission to exceed the maximum credits allowed per semester, a student must have earned at least 12 credit hours at Oakland University and must have a GPA of at least a 2.6. You can stop by our office in 130 O'Dowd Hall and request an override form if you meet these requirements. The Office of the Registrar will process the override that will allow you to register for the additional credits via SAIL.

How many credits are needed to graduate?
All CAS majors require a minimum of 124 credits to complete a degree. Some degrees will require more than the minimum. The total includes General Education, College of Arts and Sciences Exploratory Requirement, Major requirements, and for many majors elective credit.

What are elective credits?
Elective credits are credits that are needed in addition to your General Education, College of Arts and Sciences, and major requirements to meet the minimum degree total of 124 credits (for most majors). Many students will use these elective credits toward the completion of a minor or concentration. Others will simply take courses of personal interest or toward graduate school pre-reqs. The number of elective credits will vary, depending on the major you select. Your adviser can help you determine how many electives you will have.

How do I declare/change my major or minor?
Complete a Change of Major/Minor form and return it to O'Dowd Hall. Some change of majors may require you to schedule an appointment to review the degree requirements and receive a degree program checklist. Please call 248-370-4567 to schedule an appointment.

What is General Education and why do I have to take it?
A General Education curriculum is required at all accredited U.S. Universities. General Education programs are designed to introduce all university students to a broad base of knowledge as well as the analytical and evaluative tools needed to lead productive and fulfilling lives of leadership and service. General Education courses are designed to enhance these broader based skills and are independent of your degree major.

What are OU's specific General Education requirements?
OU’s General Education is made up of 10 categories and requires a minimum of 40 credits. In general, all students must complete at least one approved course in each of the 10 categories and have a total of 40 credits in General Education. 

What is the College Exploratory requirement? (College Exploratory Worksheet)
The College of Arts and Sciences Exploratory requirement provides students with a depth and breadth in multi- and interdisciplinary knowledge needed in today’s complex world. Through concentrated intellectual engagement in disciplines outside a student’s major, this requirement offers expanded horizons and progressive challenges to more fully develop the scope of a student’s understanding, abilities and accomplishments. ›In addition to satisfying the university-wide general education requirements, all students with majors in the College of Arts and Sciences are required to complete at least three courses outside of their major rubric for a minimum of 12 credits. A student may select these courses from either of the following:
1. A single rubric of their choosing (e.g., AH, ENG, SOC, etc.) within the College of Arts and Sciences.
2. A pre-defined thematic set of courses.  

Courses have been identified by faculty in the College of Arts and Sciences to assist students in selecting courses to satisfy this requirement. A College of Arts and Science minor or university double-major also fulfills the College Exploratory requirement. There are specific degree programs that are exempt for the College Exploratory requirement, please see an academic adviser for clarification.

Are there grade point average (G.P.A.) requirements that I should be aware of in order to complete a degree?
Overall G.P.A. requirements can vary depending on the student's major or minor, but will never be lower than 2.0.  Some programs may require a minimum grade per course or course average higher than the 2.0.  Please refer to your catalog for specific GPA requirements for your major or minor.

I am a transfer student and am wondering if there are a minimum number of credits I must complete at Oakland University?
Every OU student must complete at least 32 credits at Oakland University.  At least 16 credits must be in the student's elected major and 8 credits in a minor, in order to receive a degree. Some majors or minors may require more than these minimums. Refer to your Undergraduate Catalog for details on your chosen major.

I want to take classes at another school and transfer them to Oakland University. How do I know if a course will transfer?
Consult the transfer equivalency guides for transfer credit information on all Michigan community colleges. For transferring courses from Michigan colleges and universities please refer to Michigan Transfer Network. You should also consult with an Academic Adviser.

Does OU have any restrictions on transfer credits?
Yes, there are restrictions on transfer credits for OU students. Students can only transfer 50% of degree credits from a community college.  In the College of Arts and Sciences that is generally 62 credits. Additionally, all OU students must satisfy the university's residency requirement, which requires them to complete a minimum of 32 credits and their last 8 credits at Oakland University.

Do the credits I transfer to Oakland transfer as 4 credit courses?
The course you take at another college is worth the number of credits you take it for.  For example, if the course taken was worth 3 credits, it will transfer as 3 credits. 

How do I submit a Transfer Course Review Form?
Go to Oakland University’s Registrar homepage at       
Click on the tab Forms on the left hand side of the page.    
Scroll down the page until you see Transfer Course Review Form. 
Enter your NetID and password. 
Click here for more details.

If I retake a course at another college, is my grade at Oakland replaced?
In order to replace a grade for a course, you must retake the course at Oakland.  We will not replace the grade if you take the class somewhere else. Click here for more information.