Transfer Student Orientation

Frequently Asked Questions

  • What is the status of my admissions application?
    If you have questions or concerns regarding your application to the University of South Carolina, please contact our Admissions Office:
    Phone: (803) 777-7700 or 1-800-868-5872 (toll free)
  • When is New Student Orientation for transfer students?
    New Student Orientation dates for Summer/ Fall 2017 transfer students have been posted to our Dates & Reservations page. New Student Orientation sessions for Fall 2017 transfer students will occur during the months of June, July, and August.
  • Do I have to attend New Student Orientation?
    Orientation is typically expected of all transfer students because this is where they will meet with their academic advisors and register for classes.
  • How do I reserve my spot for New Student Orientation?
    The reservation system for New Student Orientation is being built. Please check back for updates. Please review our Dates & Reservations page for a video explaining the steps to reserve your spot.
  • What are the fees for New Student Orientation?
    The cost to attend New Student Orientation for transfer students is $115 for students and $50 per parent/guest.
  • What does my New Student Orientation cost cover?
    For students, the cost covers your lunch, parking, and all supplies and resources for New Student Orientation. The cost also helps cover salaries for student staff, printing, transportation, equipment, and facility rentals.
    For parents and guests, the cost covers your lunch, parking, and all supplies and resources for orientation. The cost also helps cover salaries for student staff, printing, transportation, equipment, and facility rentals.
  • What if I want to change or cancel my Orientation date?
    To change your Orientation date, go back to Self Service Carolina and modify your request. If you choose to cancel your request, you must call The Office of New Student Orientation at 803-777-2780.
  • What is your refund policy?
    Refunds are not offered after June 1, 2017. Requests for a refund should be sent to and are subject to a $35 administrative fee. No refund requests will be honored after June 1, 2017.
  • How do I request a refund?
    To request a refund, email with the student’s first and last name, date of birth, and the reason that you need a refund. All refunds are subject to a $35 administrative fee, and no refund requests will be honored after June 1, 2016. If you have questions, please call our office at 803-777-2780.
  • Where should I park for New Student Orientation?
    Parking for New Student Orientation will be in the Bull Street Garage. More information about the location of the Bull Street Garage is available on our Directions page.
  • Will I need a parking pass for New Student Orientation?
    No, you will not need a parking pass for New Student Orientation.
  • Where will I go for check-in for New Student Orientation?
    Depending on your session, you may have a different check-in location. Please check your confirmation email for details on your check-in time and location. If you are in doubt about your check-in time or location, please call our office at 803-777-2780.
  • What should I bring for New Student Orientation?
    You should bring a copy of your immunization forms, residency and citizenship verification materials, your VIP ID and password, a government-issued ID to pick up your CarolinaCard, an umbrella (Columbia is prone to summer afternoon rain), a sweater or sweatshirt (buildings are air-conditioned and may vary in temperature), and comfortable clothing and walking shoes. If you have selected to stay on campus overnight, you will not need to bring linens or towels; those will be provided for you upon check-in. However, you will need to bring any toiletries or personal items you will need to stay overnight. More information on what to bring will be provided when you register for New Student Orientation.
  • Why are immunizations important?
    Diseases like meningitis, measles and tuberculosis are still being spread in the U.S.; immunizations and testing protect our students from the terrible side effects of these diseases and even death. For more information about the importance of immunizations for college students and for the Immunization record form, visit
  • Will I meet with an adviser during my New Student Orientation?
    Yes, you will meet with an adviser that corresponds with your major during New Student Orientation to help you plan your class schedule and register for your classes.
  • Can I be advised prior to New Student Orientation?
    No, you must be advised at your New Student Orientation session.
  • What do I do if I require special accommodations for a medical, physical, or disability-related need? Will the University be able to provide for parents/guests who need special assistance?
    The University will seek to provide appropriate accommodations for all incoming students as well as any parents or guests who wish to attend New Student Orientation. When you reserve your spot for orientation, you will have the opportunity to request any accommodations you may need. Additionally, students should register with the Office of Student Disability Services before starting classes at USC. More information can be found here:
  • When/how/where do I take placement tests?
    The math placement test is available online and can be accessed at any time at using your USC network username and password, which can be located in Self Service Carolina. The test is 90 minutes and must be taken in one sitting. Make sure to take the test at least two weeks before your orientation date.
    Foreign language placement tests are administered on USC’s campus by appointment only. You must register for the test in advance, and you must take the test before you can be advised for a foreign language class, so please plan to take the test prior to orientation. You must take the placement test if you wish to start taking language classes at any level other than the beginning level. To sign up for a test, you must have your VIP ID and your USC email address. More information about registration can be found here:
  • Can my parents/guests help me register for my classes?
    Parents and guests are welcome to help you review the Academic Bulletin prior to coming to New Student Orientation. However, at New Student Orientation, parents are not allowed to attend advising sessions with their students. Parents will have the opportunity to meet with staff members from their student’s college and have their questions answered in a separate session.
  • Where can I buy my textbooks?
    Students can purchase their textbooks through the Russell House University Bookstore (both online and on-site). Students can pre-order their books during the summer and pick them up during move-in weekend. You can access the Russell House University Bookstore website.
  • When do I buy my textbooks?
    If you wish to buy your textbooks on the day of your New Student Orientation session, you can preorder them through the Russell House University Bookstore once you have registered for your classes. Preordered books can be picked up during move-in weekend.
  • Will I be able to go on a campus tour during my New Student Orientation?
    No, you will not be able to go on a campus tour during New Student Orientation. If you wish to take a campus tour, please schedule a tour though our Visitor Center here:
  • I’m transferring to USC for the Summer semester; when is my New Student Orientation?
    Orientation for incoming transfer students for the Summer 2017 term will take place in May 25, 2017.
  • If I am living on campus, when will I be able to move into my residence hall?
    On-campus move-in for the Fall 2017 semester has not been announced. More information from University Housing can be found here:
  • What is the CarolinaCard?
    The CarolinaCard is your official USC student photo identification card. The CarolinaCard has a number of functions, including serving as a security system to allow you to enter locked doors in your residence hall (if living on campus), serving as your ticket into University athletic events, and is what you will use to buy your meals (if on a meal plan), and make other purchases with Carolina Cash. Carolina Cash is a debit system in which you (or parents/family members) can add money to the Carolina Card to be spent at on-campus locations, including printing facilities, laundry rooms, the Russell House University Bookstore, dining locations, parking and other locations. More information can be found at
  • How do I sign up for a meal plan?
    You can sign up for a meal plan on Self Service Carolina, on the Account Information page. There are several meal plans to choose from, and more information about each can be found here:
  • What are the abbreviations for the different colleges and schools?
    College of Arts and Sciences – abbreviated as CAS
    Moore School of Business – abbreviated as BUS
    College of Education – abbreviated as EDU
    College of Engineering and Computing – abbreviated as CEC
    Honors College – abbreviated as HON
    College of Hospitality, Retail, and Sport Management – abbreviated as HOS
    College of Information and Communications – abbreviated as CIC
    School of Music – abbreviated as MUS
    College of Nursing – abbreviated as NUR
    Opportunity Scholars Program – abbreviated as OSP
    College of Pharmacy – abbreviated as PHA
    Arnold School of Public Health – abbreviated as PUB
    College of Social Work – abbreviated as SOC