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Frequently Asked Questions

What is the Guidebook App?

The Guidebook app is an interactive app that will prepare you for your orientation session and your first year at Columbus State! Follow the directions below to join the Cougar Nation at CSU. To get the guide, choose one of the methods below:

  • Download 'Guidebook' from the Apple App Store or the Android Marketplace
  • From the Guidebook application, search "Columbus State University 2019-2020" , and click Download Guide!

Don't have a smartphone? No worries! Check out the Guide here!

What does the ROAR program consist of?

ROAR is the program that will introduce all new incoming students to Columbus State University. At your session, you will learn how to navigate around campus, information about the variety of student organizations and array of student services that CSU provides, and how to select and register for courses.

Non-traditional and transfer students with less than 30 hours will also attend ROAR because they are considered freshman since they have under 30 hours. These particular sessions are geared towards specific needs of these students and only consist of one day, which ends with advisement and registration for courses.

Why do I have to pay for ROAR?

ROAR is a self-sustaining program. The funds earned are used to purchase supplies and materials, provide for meals throughout the session, entertainment, and payment of the ROAR staff.

When can I register for ROAR?

ROAR orientation registration for Spring will open in November  and registration for summer and fall will open in March. Those students who have been accepted will receive a postcard email from Columbus State University, which will have all the necessary steps to follow in preparation for their ROAR experience.

Registration is a two step process; first you select your session and then submit payment at that time to secure your session.

Do I have to stay for the entire program?

All aspects of the ROAR orientation program are mandatory for all incoming students. Students who leave early will not be allowed to register for courses at the end of your session. The last step to ROAR is advisement and registration for classes.

Can parents / family members go with their student to register for courses?

Guests of students are not allowed into the registration labs. ROAR is a student's first opportunity to experience academic independence. It is important that students begin their collegiate experience with a knowledgeable approach. In addition, we have limited space for our advising and registration processes and must keep the rooms clear for students and advisors to interact efficiently.

I am a transfer student. Do I have to attend ROAR?

Transfer students with less than 30 hours are considered freshman and are required to attend ROAR. There are specific dates catered specifically to these students.

If you are a transfer student with more than 30 credit hours (all 30 credit must transfer over), you will be required to complete an interactive online orientation.

**Please remember that although you complete the online orientation, you must still see your academic advisor before you can register for courses.**

Do transient students need to attend ROAR?

A transient student (aka "guest student") is a student who is enrolled at one University, but taking classes at another that will count towards their degree at their home University. Generally this happens when students don't live near their home University over the summer but want to take a class or two to speed up the obtainment of their degree, or if for some reason they can't take a class at their home University that they need to graduate.

Students that fall into the above category DO NOT have to attend a ROAR orientation session.

If I attended ROAR and didn't enroll, do I have to come again?

If we have a record that you have attended a ROAR session in the past year, then you are not required to attend another session. Contact the Orientation Office at 706-507-8593 or email to verify that you attended an earlier ROAR session.

If I have / want to change my major from what I listed on my admissions application, will that affect my advisement at ROAR?

The ROAR program bases your advising and registration sessions off of the major that is listed on your academic record. If you would like to change your major after you apply to the university, please contact the Admissions Office at 706-507-8800 and request a change of major on your record.

What is the Advising survey?

TheAdvising Survey assists the advisors of your department in making a ready made schedule for you when you attend orientation. This survey asks for the preference of the student in class times, intended major, core class preference, and your possible credit hours (half or full time)  to name a few. 

When do I need to take the Advising Survey?

We ask that you complete the Advising Survey once you complete your ROAR registration. This will ensure that your advisor will be able to prepare a schedule for you by the time you attend the advising and registration portion of the orientation program.

Please follow these steps to take your Advising Survey:

Follow the directions below and you will have a schedule built for you once you arrive at ROAR for your orientation session.
Signing up for courses is easy!
Step 1 - Sign on to MyCSU
Step 2 - Click on the Students link on the left navigation menu
Step 3 - Click on the Student Records tab
Step 4 - Click on the Advising Survey link under the "Student Records/Personal Info" section
Step 5 - Complete the Survey
Step 6 - You will receive your schedule at Orientation and can make changes if necessary

For questions or assistance regarding Advising, please email the Academic Center for Excellence at

I can't come to ROAR because I have a conflict. Is this a problem?

ROAR is required for all incoming freshmen students. Students who do not attend a ROAR session may be subject to enroll during course schedule change. .

I paid to attend ROAR but was unable to come. What should I do?

We must plan for meals and supplies in advance based on the number of students registered. Therefore, we are unable to give refunds. Your payment will roll over to another date if you change your session date.

For students starting classes in the fall, we have planned out several orientation sessions to make it more convenient. If you are unable to attend the original date you have registered for, please refer to the other dates or call us at 706-507-8593  or email at to change your session date.

As a parent, must I stay all day and attend each session?

Family members and guests are encouraged to stay throughout the entire ROAR program, but it is not mandatory. You will be separated from your student for the majority of the day. We have created a separate experience, tailored to provide in-depth information pertinent to your transition. You will have to opportunity to meet with various campus administrators and learn about the various services and organizations available to students. You will also become acquainted with the academic and financial processes and procedures.

The family ROAR sessions are designed to provide a comprehensive understanding of your students' collegiate experience. While we hope that you will attend all components, it is not required to stay for every aspect. However, if you register as a guest you will be required to pay the guest fee of $50.00.

Can students select the orientation sessions they want to attend?

For students entering in the summer and fall semesters, you have the opportunity to choose from a selection of different orientation sessions.  We have one session on our Riverpark campus geared towards students who are of the College of the Arts, College of Education and Health Professions, or living on our Riverpark campus. There are also multiple one-day sessions for transfer students with under 30 credits and non-traditional students.

For students entering in Spring or Summer, there is one session for students coming in right out of High School, Non-Traditional Students and transfer students coming in with less than 30 hours.

Where should I stay overnight as a family member/guest?

If your student is attending an overnight orientation session, their accommodations have been arranged in student housing. There is a list of hotel accommodations in close proximity to either campus for parents and guests.

What should I bring?

For any and all orientation sessions, please make sure that you have turned in all required paperwork such as final high school transcript, immunizations, and lawful presence verification to the Admissions Office.

Students –  Check out our "What to bring" tab on our Guidebook app for ROAR orientation at Columbus State!

  • Please plan on bringing a jacket in the event that it rains during our sessions.  We will provide you with a pen and writing utensils as well as a bag. 

Parents – Please bring a smiling face! You will be provided with a schedule and something to write with. Bring anything else pertaining to your child you deem necessary.

Where do I park?

Main Campus Sessions: Check-in will be at theMock Pacvillion outside of Clearview Hall. 

RiverPark Campus Session: Check-in will take place at the RiverCenter Lobby. Please park at the CSU garage on Front Avenue (between 10th and 11th Street).

Located on the Guidebook app, there is a map tool that will assist and direct you in parking for orientation.

When is the last day I can register for a ROAR Session?

ROAR registration will close one week before the session begins. Register early in order to secure your orientation session attendance.

If you have questions regarding ROAR reservations, you can email us at or call the Orientation Office at 706-507-8593. If you happen to get an answering machine, please leave your name, number and questions. We will return your call as soon as possible.

Where can I get a schedule for ROAR?

Download the Guidebook app on your smartphone or tablet. This app will provide you with not only a schedule for orientation; but a pre-orientation checklist of things to do before you arrive on campus. 

I've registered for ROAR, now what?

Download the Guidebook app. There are a list of items to complete prior to arrival. To ensure you are best served at orientation, please complete all tasks listed.