Academic Programs Catalog

Undergraduate Education

New Student Orientation and Transitions

New Student Orientation and Transitions Process

All new, incoming undergraduate students engage in a comprehensive orientation experience designed to support and guide them as they transition to MSU. Due to MSU’s commitment to student success, as a condition of course enrollment, all new undergraduate incoming students are required to participate in New Student Orientation (NSO).

New undergraduate students admitted for the fall semester participate in virtual and in-person NSO programming throughout May, June, July, and August. All undergraduate first-year, transfer, and international students are required to complete an online NSO experience course through MSU’s Desire2Learn (D2L) online learning platform and are expected to participate in in-person Fall Welcome events before the semester begins. Students who do not participate in NSO will not be able to enroll in classes and may have their admission to the University revoked.

New Student Orientation takes place through a series of five checkpoints, including: 1) completion of online placement assessments and survey tools; 2) completion of an online NSO Experience D2L course; 3) completion of academic advising and course enrollment; 4) engagement in online opportunities such as listening to NSO’s ‘Spartan Orientation Station’ podcast series and attending optional virtual Help Rooms; and 5) participation in MSU’s in-person Fall Welcome program.
Throughout NSO, students build a strong foundation of support and resources. Students are introduced to the MSU community, connected with key campus resources, and prepared academically for the upcoming semester. Students learn about their academic programs and explore majors and become familiar with MSU departments and resources that encompass aspects of the student experience related to academics, safety, financial literacy, and health and well-being. Programming also highlights the diversity of the University, life on and off campus, and involvement at MSU. Throughout the orientation experience, students engage with new and returning MSU students during both the virtual and in-person NSO program elements.

All undergraduate first-year, transfer, and international students who enter in the spring or summer semesters will participate in an NSO experience preceding the first day of classes too. Families and supporters of new students also have a virtual and in-person orientation featuring a virtual webinar series and an in-person welcome program.

For additional information or questions about the New Student Orientation program at MSU, please visit, call 1-517-355-8490, or email