Welcome to Baylor!

Nathan Shelburne

Nathan Shelburne
Director for New Student Programs

Congratulations on your acceptance to Baylor University!

The Department of New Student Programs is pleased to organize programs - Orientation, Baylor Line Camp, and Welcome Week - designed especially for you as you make the transition to being a scholar in the Baylor community.

Each program has a different focus and format that allows you to "Experience Connection" at Baylor before the first day of class.

Orientation is where the journey begins! This online Preview Book is designed to prepare you to make the most of your Orientation visit. Please read through each section to learn:

  • -What to expect from your Orientation experience
  • -How to prepare for and make the most of your time at Orientation.

We look forward to having you and your family on campus soon!

What is Orientation?

New Student Orientation is a 2-day introduction to Baylor for new students and their parents or other guests. During your time on campus, you can expect to:

  • -Get to know Baylor's beautiful campus
  • -Learn about the University's rich history and distinct mission
  • -Meet individually with an academic advisor to select and register for your fall classes
  • -Learn more about specific academic departments, majors and programs
  • -Familiarize yourself with outstanding campus resources and opportunities
  • -Experience campus dining, Baylor spirit and community life
  • -And meet great people, like caring faculty and staff, other excited incoming students and their families, and returning students who are eager to help you feel at home at Baylor.

Baylor is truly a unique place, and we hope that New Student Orientation helps you picture yourself as a Baylor Bear and a member of That Good Old Baylor Line!!

How much is Orientation?

Orientation is free! There is no cost for students or their guests to attend New Student Orientation. While Baylor does not offer overnight housing for Orientation, we have provided some helpful information about local hotels later in this Preview Book.

Choices You Will Make During Orientation

Selecting Fall Semester Classes

Most students will meet with an academic advisor on Day 2 of Orientation. Advisors partner with students to help you select course options based on your own preferences and their knowledge of degree requirements for different majors and programs.

Although your advisor will help you make decisions about classes, you are encouraged to explore majors and courses that interest you prior to your advising appointment. Here are some online tools to help you learn more about Baylor's academic offerings and prepare for your advising appointment:

Choosing a New Student Experience Course

Your first semester in college is significant for many reasons. You are joining a new community with new friends, new places, new opportunities, and new challenges. To help you navigate this new environment, Baylor requires all incoming students to take a New Student Experience (NSE) course. Some of these courses are designed for students in particular academic departments, while others are aimed at students with specific interests.

Your academic advisor will help you determine which NSE course option will best meet your needs and hopes for your first semester. You can learn more about New Student Experience courses by visiting this website.

Selecting a Meal Plan

All first-year students are required to live on campus their first year at Baylor, which also requires them to have a meal plan for dining options on campus. Baylor offers a number of great dining plans so you can select the one that will best suit your needs and lifestyle.

Learn more about available meal plan options.

You will sign up for a meal plan on Day 2 of Orientation. During the first 10 class days of the semester, you can change your meal plan to any other plan option. After that time you can change to a higher level plan at any point in the semester and your rates will be prorated accordingly.

Parking On Campus During the Academic Year

If you plan to park a vehicle on campus you will need to purchase a Parking Permit. A general Parking Permit provides you access to all student parking lots and spaces across campus, except the 5th Street Garage. Additional parking permit options include:

  • -Moped permit
  • -Motorcycle permit
  • -5th Street Garage only permit

Visit the Baylor Parking and Transportation Services website for additional information.

You can register for a Parking Permit on Day 2 of Orientation. You will need to bring your vehicle license plate number, so be sure to record that information in a place that is accessible during Orientation.

Baylor also offers a free on-campus shuttle called the Baylor University Shuttle (BUS) for your convenience. Information about routes and pickup locations is available on the BUS website.

Session Sign Up

You will be able to sign up online for Orientation beginning Tuesday, February 20, 2018. There are 10 two-day sessions throughout the month of June, with reservations being handled on a first-come first-served basis.

Once reservations open, we encourage you to reserve your Orientation session as soon as possible in order to secure a spot that fits within your summer plans. Flight reservations should not be made until your session dates have been confirmed through goBaylor.

Learn More About Orientation + Line Camp

Getting Ready for Orientation

Submitting Important Information

A primary component of Orientation is meeting with an academic advisor to register for your fall semester classes. There is certain information you must submit in advance of your advising session, so be sure you have taken care of the following items before coming for Orientation. Your advisor will be unable to meet with you until you have completed these items.

  • -Submit documentation of your required Meningitis Vaccination to the Health Center
  • -Submit your Health Form to the Health Center
  • -Check your goBAYLOR account regularly for holds such as census holds or International Program holds
  • -Complete the online New Student Advising Questionnaire

You can access the Questionnaire through goBAYLOR. The information you submit on this form will help your academic advisor prepare for your advising appointment.

Sending Scores and Course Credit

Many students enter Baylor with prior credits from things like previous college courses, AP test scores, or dual-credit classes. If you will be bringing any college credits into Baylor, it is important that you arrange to have that information sent to Baylor as early as you are able.

Use the links below to find additional information:

Placement Exams

Most new students at Baylor will take Placement Exams to help determine which courses they should take first in certain subject areas. These exams do not bear credit; the results of the exams simply help Baylor place you in the courses in which you are most likely to be successful.

Placement Exams are required in the following subject areas:

  • -Math
  • -Modern Foreign Language (French, German, or Spanish)
  • -English (essay)

The need for Placement Exams is determined by:

  • -entrance exam scores (ACT/SAT)
  • -the major you indicate on the Advising Questionnaire
  • -courses you took in high school

Once you have completed the Advising Questionnaire, you will see information in goBAYLOR about Placement Exams you will be required to take. Click here to learn more about Placement Exams.

Preparing for Your Trip

Traveling to Campus

Free parking is available to Orientation guests in the Speight Avenue Parking Facility. Signs will direct you to the parking facility.

Driving from the North on I-35 (DFW):

  • Exit 335B and turn left onto University Parks Drive
  • Turn right onto Bagby Avenue
  • Turn right onto 4th Street
  • The Speight Avenue Parking Facility will be on your left

Driving from the South on I-35 (Austin):

  • Exit 335B and turn right onto University Parks Drive
  • Turn right onto Bagby Avenue
  • Turn right onto 4th Street
  • The Speight Avenue Parking Facility will be on your left

Driving from the South on Hwy 6 (Houston):

  • From Highway 6, continue onto Marlin Hwy
  • Take the U.S. 77 Business S exit on the left and merge onto US-77 BUS S
  • Turn right onto FM 434 N/S University Parks Drive
  • Turn left onto Bagby Avenue
  • Turn right onto 4th Street
  • The Speight Avenue Parking Facility will be on your left

Lodging and Accommodations

The city of Waco and surrounding communities offer many wonderful hotels and other accommodations for your overnight stay during Orientation.

Visit the Waco Convention Center website for additional information about lodging in the Waco area.

Planning Your Days

Day 1

Your first step once you arrive on campus is to visit the Orientation Check-in Table and let us know you're here! Check-in will take place from 8:00-9:00am in Waco Hall, Baylor's main auditorium and the location for the Orientation Welcome Session.

Day 1 will conclude at approximately 8:30pm, following separate evening programs for students and guests. Complimentary dinner will be provided for all Orientation attendees.

Day 2

Day 2 activities will include your individual advising appointment, a variety of interest sessions, and optional activities such as viewing model residence hall rooms.

Advising appointments begin as early as 8:15am. You will find out your assigned appointment time when you check in on Day 1. Orientation activities conclude by 5:00pm on Day 2.

Still Have Questions?

There are many resources available to you and many wonderful people at Baylor who are eager to journey with you. We've provided some contact information below to help you get answers to possible questions you may have.

Orientation Preview Book