Getting Started: Tools to Map Out Your First Semester
Hello, and welcome to the first part of your academic journey here at Westmont College! We are excited that you will be joining us. To make your transition to Westmont as effective as possible, we have put together this instructional resource to help you familiariaze yourself with the academic requirements of the college. This resource will take some time to review all of the material, so do not wait! Begin reading through all of the material now, so that you are thoroughly prepared to register when your registration time arrives.
Here you will learn about:
- Many of the academic requirements of the college,
- How to navigate important web pages and web-based tools,
- And receive suggestions for choosing possible courses for your first semester.
These resources are designed to help you choose a balanced semester, with courses that will stretch and enrich you. This may seem like a daunting task, but once you are aware of the resources that are available and know how to use them, it will be easy!
Your Academic Advisor
You will be assigned an academic advisor to help oversee your academic progress while at Westmont. Academic advisors are current faculty members. If you have indicated an area of major interest by completing the survey below, most likely your academic advisor will be a faculty instructor from that particular department.
Complete this Academic Advising Questionnaire to help our office pair you with a faculty advisor. You will also review the completed questionnaire with your academic advisor at your first advising meeting during Orientation Weekend. This form must be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org by July 31.
- Please review this list of Advisor/Advisee Responsibilities to prepare you working with your academic advisor.
- Use this Advising Checklist to help you stay on track as you advance at Westmont.
- On the menu to the left, feel free to browse Westmont's Academic Advising website.
Institutional Learning Outcomes
By the time of graduation, you will develop and be able to demonstrate proficiency in the following seven Westmont Institutional Learning Outcomes:
- Critical Thinking
- Quantitative Literacy
- Written Communication
- Oral Communication
- Information Literacy
- Christian Understanding, Practices, and Affections
- Global Awareness and Diversity
These learning outcomes are instrumental in nurturing all Westmont students as thoughtful scholars, grateful servants and faithful leaders, regardless of their chosen major. Both General Education and major courses will help you to develop and master these outcomes. Click here to see how our majors and GE curriculum work to support these Institutional Leaning Outcomes and our overall institutional mission.
Understanding General Education Requirements at Westmont College
By becoming familiar with the vocabularies and types of questions asked in several disciplines, students equip themselves to be members of an increasingly global and diverse intellectual community.
Westmont College’s General Education encompasses 4 main categories:
- Common Contexts: These courses ground Westmont students in a body of defining material and explicitly invite them into an understanding of the Christian liberal arts.
- Common Inquiries: These courses empower students to explore the knowledge, methodologies, and modes of inquiry within a given discipline.
- Common Skills: These courses encourage students to develop their verbal, quantitative, or physical dexterity.
- Competent & Compassionate Action: These courses fulfill the expectation that students will put their education into action in a variety of ways, many of which may be part of the student’s major. This category is typically completed in the student's junior or senior year.
The current Westmont College Catalog is always available to view on the Registrar’s home page. Please review the expanded descriptions of each general education category in the college catalog to better understand their role in creating a holistic Liberal Arts experience.
Here is a list of Common First Year Courses, although not all of these classes will be offered this semester (you will learn to navigate this semester's class schedule shortly).
First Year students can take courses that are lower division (numbered -001 to -099). Many of these courses will satisfy two GE requirements. Check in the "Other GE" column to see which courses will satisfy two GE's (the legend at the bottom will explain the Other GE code). For your first semester, we suggest you select one course from each of the three grey sections, plus a PE activity.
Here is a list of all courses offered that will meet General Education Requirements at Westmont College, although not all of these courses will be offered this semester. Transfer students are not restricted to lower division courses and may find this document more useful.
Here is a helpful guide on how transfer work is evaluated and transferred to Westmont College.
Click here to review frequently asked questions about Westmont’s general education.
Discovering your Program Evaluation in WebAdvisor.
Every student is unique. We recognize this and have designed the general education requirements in a way that allows you to tailor your experience to better meet your goals.
Use your Program Evaluation to help you map your path towards your degree at Westmont College.
- All students can view accepted transfer work and test scores on their Program Evaluation and Unofficial Transcript in WebAdvisor.
- The Student Records Office only evaluates work to count towards your general education requirements. If you would like a course to count towards your major requirements, please complete a Re-Evaluation of Transfer Credit Form bearing your major department chair’s signature once you arrive on campus.
- If you are a transfer student, please feel free to visit the Student Records Office in Kerrwood Hall once you are on campus to review your accepted transfer work with Records Office Staff if you still have questions.