Advising at SOAR

What is SOAR?
SOAR is UW Madison’s Student Orientation, Advising, and Registration program. During SOAR, incoming students learn about UW Madison, talk about what to expect from their experience here, and work with an advisor to sign up for their first semester courses. SOAR is a two day orientation for new freshman and a one day orientation for new transfer students.
You'll leave SOAR with your first semester schedule, an understanding of the enrollment process and enrollment tools, and your contact for advising after SOAR.
What will I do during SOAR?
 1. Learn about the purpose of a college education
 2. Meet students with similar interests to your own
 3. Get to know your academic advisors
 4. Think and talk about your experiences, interests, skills, and goals
 5. Review your placement test scores
 6. Figure out how previously earned credits will count toward your UW-Madison degree
 7. Learn how to use the UW-Madison enrollment systems
 8. Search for courses that interest you and fulfill requirements
 9. Enroll in your first semester courses
10. Learn about how to get advising help during your first semester on campus and beyond
What are SOAR Advising Groups?
You may recall selecting a SOAR Advising Group when you made your SOAR reservation. Your SOAR Advising Group is a small group of students with similar academic interests.
Incoming first-year undergraduates get to know one another in their SOAR Advising Group.
What will I do in my Advising Group?
In your SOAR Advising Group you will:
  • Meet your SOAR advisor
  • Get to know the other students in your group
  • Talk about your high school experiences
  • Discuss your previous academic experiences
  • Share your academic and career interests
  • Learn more about the requirements for earning a UW-Madison degree
  • Learn more about the requirements for starting your major, if you’ve decided on a major 
  • Learn more about strategically choosing courses to help you pick a major if you are undecided
In your group you’ll work with professional advisors, the staff and faculty dedicated to working with new students to plan academic programs and experiences.  You’ll also work with peer advisors, who are current UW-Madison undergraduates trained to work with new students at SOAR.
Chemistry advisor Tony Jacob, works with an incoming first-year undergraduate to register for classes during SOAR.
But I haven’t decided on a major yet!
It’s perfectly normal, and common, to arrive at SOAR without having decided on a major, particularly for new freshman. Maybe you have no idea where to start, or are struggling between multiple interests. Perhaps you’ve narrowed it down to a school or college but want to take some time to explore your options.
Advisors at UW Madison are able to help you no matter where you are in the decision-making process - and they will be with you every step of the way!