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Current Students

Thank you for visiting the Adult Degree Program's current student’s page. Below, you will find information that guides you during your time in the Adult Degree Program.

Admission to JMU/ADP

Upon admission to the JMU Adult Degree Program, you will receive a welcome email with a Tuition Deposit Invoice for amount of $250.  You will not become a matriculated student until you pay the invoice.  Specific instructions for paying the invoice are located on the invoice.

Along with the welcome email and invoice, you will receive an “Admitted Student Checklist” that you are required to complete prior to registering for any classes.

  • Activate e-ID and student email account
  • Complete MyMadison tutorials
  • Complete ADP Foundations course in Canvas
    • Submit Honor Code Results to
    • Complete Madison Research Essentials
    • Complete Orientation to Canvas

All incoming ADP students are required to attend a face-to-face Orientation session and take IS200 Introduction to Individualized Study first.

  • IS 200 is a 3-credit, 8-week online course in Canvas
    • Online class meetings
    • Career Research Paper and Educational Autobiography to get you back to college-level writing
    • Program Plan development – this is an outline of your intended coursework

Adult Degree Program Student Handbook

Each student will receive a printed copy of the handbook at Orientation.  You may download another copy here.

Everything you need to know about being a student in the Adult Degree Program is in this handbook.  Please refer to it before you contact the ADP office with questions.

How do I register for classes?

Prior to registration for courses, students are responsible to know about any type of “Hold” on their student account that may prevent them from registering for the upcoming semester. 

Outstanding obligations or debts to university offices may result in a "hold" or reduction in services available to you, such as enrollment, course adjustments, or issuance of diplomas and academic transcripts. Holds on your record and instructions for clearing them are viewable on MyMadison.  The fact that a student did not receive notification of a hold is an insufficient reason to cause the release of the hold.

Dates and Deadlines

For a current listing of important enrollment dates and deadlines, please refer to the Office of the Registrar web site at and link to "For Students" then "Important Dates.” You can also use the "Site Index.”   Please refer to the JMU calendar for a listing of other university events and holidays. These dates and deadlines are subject to change at the university's discretion.

ADP students have different processes for registering for their classes depending on the kind of course they want.

  • ADP Online Module Courses
  • College of Business (COB) Courses
  • Psychology Department Courses
  • All other JMU Courses
  • Transfer Courses from other institutions
  1. ADP Online Module Courses are courses that are offered to ADP students only through the Outreach and Engagement/ADP department.  Download the brochure here.

Prior to each registration (course enrollment) period, ADP will send a list of ADP Online courses offered for the upcoming semester. 

  • ADP Online Module Courses must be taken in consecutive order.  For example, you must take 101 before 102.
  • Registration for these courses are completed by Outreach and Engagement/ADP
    • Students will send their course request list and student ID number to
    • OE/ADP will register students for those courses when Open Enrollment starts. The courses will not show up on your student accounts until the registration is complete.
    • OE/ADP will send each student a confirmation email at the time registration is complete.
  1. College of Business Management Classes: In order to make the registration process less stressful for you and for the faculty and staff in the Management Department, you will need to notify Anne McGuigan the semester BEFORE you wish to register for the class. This advance notice will allow the Management department to plan for ADP student registration in the popular Management classes and assign overrides to you. These overrides make it possible for you to register for the classes even though you are not a declared Management major. Our goal is to ease your frustration in getting the classes you want and last-minute class substitutions that may change the focus of your concentration.

These are the steps to follow:

  • Email your name, phone number, email address, student ID number, and the course name(s) and number(s) of the class(es) you wish to take to Anne McGuigan at Phone calls, letters, and in-person requests will not be accepted.
  • Your requests must be received by the following deadlines:
    • For Fall semester classes March 1
    • For Spring semester classes October 15

At this time, this policy does not apply to summer session classes. If that changes, we will notify you.

Ms. McGuigan will input overrides into the appropriate class(es) for you and send you the information you need in order to register.

  • You MUST register for these classes yourself on MyMadison during your registration appointment. Ms. McGuigan can input an override for you, but that will only "hold a seat" for you. It does not register you for the class.
  • Your override expires with your registration appointment. The place in that class that is aside for you will not be held beyond your registration appointment.
  • The Management Department will make every effort to accommodate your requests as long as you follow the above guidelines. Students who do not give the appropriate advance notice will have to wait until the following semester to register for classes.


  1. Psychology Department Courses: Complete the online override request form located at
    1. Gather course information from MyMadison

                                                  i.      Catalog Number (ex. 220)

                                                ii.      Course Name (ex. Cultural Psychology)

                                              iii.      Course Section (ex. 0002)

                                              iv.      Class Number (ex. 83980)

                                                v.      Class Meeting Days & Time (ex. MW 8:00-9:05 am)

  1. Under Major Information

                                                  i.      Select “Other Major” and add ADP/BIS

  1. In the box for “Other” Information, indicate that you are an ADP student and if you are near completing your degree.
  2. The rest of the form is self-explanatory
  1. All Other JMU Course Offerings - Steps to enroll in classes at JMU:

Step 1: Look up the enrollment dates and your enrollment appointment time.

All currently enrolled undergraduate students will have enrollment appointments during advance registration for each term.  Advance registration is the period in which students initially enroll in classes according to assigned appointment times.  Advance registration dates are as follows:

Spring Semester                 November                             
Summer Session             March   
Fall Semester                 April                      

These dates are also available under "For Students" then "Important Dates" at  You can see your specific enrollment appointment via MyMadison approximately one to two weeks before registration begins.  The system will be available at various times after advance registration for course adjustment. 

Step 2: Review the course listings and plan a class schedule.

Course listings are available on MyMadison at  The search engine allows you to search for classes using the following criteria: general education cluster, subject, catalog number, open sections only, description, component, course career, class meeting days, instructor and session.  

Some important things to keep in mind while planning your class schedule:

Check the class status of the courses you want to schedule.  The class status indicates whether a class is active (or open), closed, or cancelled. A department may also have stopped or suspended enrollment on a temporary basis.  

TBA is used when a course meeting time, day or location has not been determined by the publication date of the schedule of classes.  It is the student's responsibility to contact the department for times, locations and meeting days of courses listed as TBA.

Class offerings and teacher assignments are subject to revision and/or cancellation without notice. Consequently, the listing of a particular class, teacher and related information is not an assurance that the class will be offered as listed.

Certain summer courses will have the designation of "contingency."  These course offerings will be dependent upon minimum enrollment.  While these courses usually have sufficient enrollment, if this minimum enrollment is not reached, the university reserves the right to cancel the class.  Courses not so designated are guaranteed.  The determination as to whether a course will be offered will be made after the first class meeting.

Step 3: Meet with your academic advisor.

New ADP students entering JMU in the fall or spring semester must contact their advisors prior to enrollment or course adjustment to receive program plan approval. All other undergraduate and graduate students may enroll and adjust their schedules without advisor approval, but it is essential that students discuss their scheduling plans with their faculty advisors. The role of the faculty advisor is to assist and advise students in the attainment of their educational goals. Advisors do not control their advisees' programs. The responsibility for fulfilling all major and degree requirements for graduation lies with the students.

Step 4: Clear all holds on your record.

Clear all debts or other obligations that may hold your enrollment.  You can view your holds and instructions on how to clear them on MyMadison.

Step 5: Initial Registration

You can enroll from any computer that has access to the internet by visiting  From the login page, you can test the compatibility of your browser with MyMadison, view tutorials, read alerts or special instructions that have been posted and link to the Office of the Registrar.  If you need assistance with MyMadison at any time, please use the on-line help, tutorials or contact the Office of the Registrar at 568-6166.  You may also seek assistance at the fifth floor area in the Student Success Center.

Please read the Permission to Enroll (Override) and Prerequisite and Eligibility Requirements sections under the Important Enrollment Terms and Policies section before you begin enrollment.

Step 6: Course Adjustments

A course adjustment is any change to a finalized schedule including changes in credit options or grading options. Deadlines for processing specific course adjustments are stated in the Registrar's Handbook.

Dropping and adding courses prior to the add/drop deadlines:
Students may drop and add courses until the drop/add deadlines for each session (see the Registrar's dates and deadlines for each semester). Dropped courses will still appear on the schedule with an enrollment status and reason of "Dropped" but they will not appear on the academic transcript.  Depending on the student's course load, dropping or adding a course may result in a tuition and/or financial aid adjustment.

Exception:  Students who are enrolled in only one course during fall and spring semesters cannot drop the one class.  They will need to add another course first or they will need to withdraw from the University prior to the add/drop deadline to drop a single class.  Please follow the instructions on the Registrar’s Web site to Withdraw from JMU.

Adding courses after the add deadline:
Adding a class after the add deadline requires the consent of the instructor and academic unit head of the course.  If consent is granted, the department will enter an override into the student system.  Classes may be added with this consent through the last day to add a class with permission deadline (see the Registrar's Dates and Deadlines for each semester).

In addition to the above permission, overrides are required to add classes that are full or to allow enrollment into a course for which a requisite has not been met.  Please see Permission to Enroll (Override) and Prerequisite and Eligibility Requirements under the Important Enrollment Terms and Policies section.

Withdrawing from a class after the add/drop deadline:
A student may withdraw from a course after the drop deadline but before the end of the course adjustment period.  A student who withdraws from a course after the drop deadline will receive a grade of "W" for the course, and this grade will be recorded permanently on the student's transcript regardless of the status of the student in the course at the time of the withdrawal.   In extraordinary situations, a student who becomes unable to complete some course requirements after the course adjustment deadline has passed may request a grade of "WP" or "WF" from the instructor.  Individual instructors determine the method (e.g., verbal, written) and timing of such requests; the student is responsible for ensuring that the request is made in an appropriate manner and at an appropriate time.  In response to such a request, the instructor may choose to record a grade of "WP" or "WF,” but is not obligated to do so (and may record any grade other than "W").  The course instructor may also suggest that the student contact the University Ombudsperson about withdrawing from the university.

Students who withdraw after the add/drop period are still responsible for tuition. 

Students are responsible for knowing their enrolled course schedules and for making any desired course adjustments prior to the published enrollment deadlines.  Failure to attend class will not result in a "W,” "WP,” or "WF" grade unless the student has formally withdrawn or negotiated a "WP" or "WF" grade with the course instructor.  After the end of the course adjustment period, a grade other than "W" must be issued for all enrolled courses.   

Students considering withdrawing from a course should be aware that graduate and professional schools and future employers might hold differing opinions on a student's withdrawal from a course.  For this reason, a student should withdraw from a course only after serious consideration. 

Step 7: Confirming your schedule

You may view and print your schedule at any time via MyMadison.  You are responsible for the accuracy of your schedule, so please print and keep a copy of your schedule each time you make changes to it.

  1. Transfer Courses from other Institutions:  Students may take courses at other institutions for transfer credit under the following conditions:
  2. Complete the Permission to take Transfer Courses form at
  • To ensure that credit will transfer, this form must be completed prior to enrolling. Students will not receive transfer credit for those courses that are equivalent to courses completed at James Madison University with a passing grade.
  • Transfer courses may not be used to repeat/forgive courses previously taken at JMU. Transfer credit will be awarded by JMU only for those courses in which the student earned a “C” (2.0 quality points) or better. Grades earned at other institutions will be calculated into the JMU graduation GPA for honors eligible students.
  • To earn a degree from JMU, all students must complete a minimum of 120 credit hours (some programs may require more). At least 50% of the required degree credit hours must be earned at accredited senior (four-year) institutions of higher education, including JMU. At least 25% of the required degree credit hours must be earned at JMU.
  • *Once enrolled in classes at JMU, students will be allowed to transfer no more than three courses for General Education credit.
  • Students are responsible for having their transcripts sent to JMU’s Office of the Registrar at the address above when work is completed. Contact the transferring institution’s Registrar’s office to determine the process.

How many classes can I take at one time?

If you are returning to school after some time away, we highly recommend that you start out with one course, but not more than two per semester until you are ready to take on more.

All incoming ADP students are required to take IS 200 Introduction to Individualized Study first before taking other courses.  Because IS 200 is an 8-week block course, it is possible for you to take an additional course for the second 8-week block.

University Policy for Course Load and Overload 

Fall and Spring Terms - The total number of credit hours for which a student enrolls in a semester, including adjustments made to the initial schedule, determine the course load. 

During advance registration, all undergraduates will be limited to a course load of 17 semester hours.  Full-time undergraduates carry a minimum of 12 semester hours and a normal load of 15-17 hours.  During course adjustment, undergraduates may increase their course load to the maximum permissible number of hours as follows:

  • Any undergraduate in good standing may enroll for as many as 19 semester hours without special permission.
  • A student with a cumulative average of 3.25 or better may enroll for as many as 21 hours.
  • Permission to exceed these limits and register for an overload must be secured from the head of the student's major department.

Undergraduates on academic probation are limited to a maximum of 12 semester hours. Permission to exceed this 12-hour maximum must be secured from the dean of the student's major.

Summer Term - Undergraduates in good standing may enroll in as many as 19 credits in a combination of summer sessions but undergraduates on probation will be limited to no more than 12 credits. 

As a rule, undergraduates should take no more than six credit hours for each four-week term, nine credit hours for each six-week term, and twelve credit hours for each eight to ten-week term.  Permission to exceed these limits and register for an overload must be secured from the academic unit head of the student's major (for undergraduates in good standing), the associate dean of the major college or Associate Vice President for Academic Affairs (for undergraduates on academic probation), or from the dean of the Graduate School (for graduate students). 

Students are reminded that summer course work is intensive because of the condensed instructional time frame and are encouraged to plan their summer schedules with the demanding workload in mind. 

What Should I Know About Taking Semesters Off From the Adult Degree Program?

It is dependent on the length of time you will not be registering to take classes at JMU. Please refer to the chart below:

Length of Time


Before Leaving

To Return to ADP

One Semester

Fall or Spring

Contact ADP

-Contact ADP

-Submit “Intent to Reenroll” form to Registrar by deadline

-Register for classes

Two or Three Semesters

Fall and Spring, Spring and Fall

Contact ADP

-Contact ADP

-Submit “Intent to Reenroll” form to Registrar by deadline

-Register for classes

More than Three Semesters

Fall, Spring, Summer

Spring, Summer, Fall

Contact ADP – Withdraw from JMU

Contact ADP

Reapply to ADP


Program Plan

Each ADP student puts together an individual Program Plan that includes the following:

  1. Transfer Credits – any credits accepted by JMU from other institutions students attended.
  2. General Education Requirements – minimum of 40 credits. Download a listing of acceptable courses to fulfill these requirements for ADP.
    1. Social and Behavioral Science (6 credits)
    2. Humanities (6 credits)
    3. Natural Science (6 credits)
    4. Written Communications (6 credits)
    5. Oral Communications (3 credits)
    6. Mathematics (3 credits)
    7. US History (4 credits)
    8. Gen Ed Electives (7 Credits)
    9. Additional Requirements for BSIS or BAIS

Bachelors of Science in Individualized Study: Natural Science (3 credits) and Mathematics (3 credits)

Bachelors of Arts in Individualized Study: Philosophy (3 credits) and Language (6 credits 200-level or higher)

3. Concentration – Focus of Study – minimum of 30 credits.

24 credits must be completed in 300- or 400-level courses

IS 498 Senior Research Project must be included

4. Electives – All other credits

    1. IS 200 Introduction to Individualized Study
    2. All General Education Courses not used in Gen Ed portion of Program Plan.
    3. 100- and 200-level courses not used elsewhere.
    4. 000 General Credits

Adult Degree Program Scholarships 

There are two scholarships available through the Adult Degree Program. The Dwight M. Sours Endowed Scholarship and the Elizabeth M. Finlayson Scholarship.

Follow the link above for more information and click here to download the application. Annual deadline for the application submission is February 15.

IS 498 Senior Research Project

All Adult Degree Program students are required to complete a BIS Senior Project as a requirement for their Individualized Study major. Students generally complete their project in the semester before or the semester of graduation, but it can be completed any time after you have earned 90 credits.

Most ADP students register for IS 498 – BIS Senior Project. This is a one-semester, 3-credit, in-depth study of a topic related to your concentration. You work with a faculty advisor to develop your project, which must be approved by the ADP director. Once the project is approved, an ADP staff member will create the course for you. We will contact you with class and section number information so you can then log onto MyMadison and register for IS 498.

Additionally, the JMU Honors Program invites students with the prerequisite GPA to participate in the Honors BIS Senior Project, a 6-credit, two-semester independent study. Students must meet Honors Program requirements for their project, and work closely with both their project instructor and the Honors Program staff to achieve that. Students opting to complete an Honors Project register for IS 499.

The BIS Senior Project has two components:

1. The BIS Senior Project itself

2. Participation in the BIS Senior Project Forum held on the last Thursday of the fall term and the last Friday of the spring semester and the 10-week summer term.

Contact the ADP office for a copy of the Senior Project Handbook at

Graduation Application & ADP Process

Contact the ADP office the early in your second to last semester for information on the ADP Graduation application process.  Please note that ADP has different deadlines and processes from what is stated on the application itself. 

Adult Degree Program Graduation Application Deadlines

· Spring/May Commencement – January 30 Deadline

· Summer/August* (No Commencement) – May 30 Deadline

· Fall/December Commencement – September 30 Deadline

*There is no formal Commencement in August, but students may walk in May or December

ADP students complete the application for your BIS degree at

Please note that once your advisor signs the application, you will need to send it to Pamela Hamilton to sign as the Department Head.  She will sign and forward it to the Registrar’s office.


The Adult Degree Program falls under the College of Education (COE).  ADP students walk in the COE ceremony held in Godwin Hall.  You will be contacted with specific information from both the Registrar and the College of Education commencement coordinator. 

Other Resources

Campus Map - - This link takes you to a variety of maps providing specific information on the location of buildings and services.

Card Services - - This link provides information about your JACard including how to care for your card and how to report a stolen or lost card.  You can also make deposits to your Dining Dollars Gold or Flex account.

Career and Academic Planning - - CAP assists students with academic and career planning. This assistance includes helping students to: choose or change a major, select appropriate courses to attain their academic goals, return to good standing if they are in academic difficulty, develop career goals, explore career interests through internships and summer employment, and implement a job search or research graduate study.

Catalog - - This link takes you to current and past copies of the undergraduate and graduate catalogs.

Commencement - - This link provides the schedule of the upcoming commencement ceremony as well as information about hotel accommodations, announcements, caps and gowns, and qualifications to participate in the ceremony.

Computing Resources - - This links you to computing resources and information at JMU.

Dining Services - - This link provides information about meal plans, dining locations and times of operation.

Disability Services - - The Office of Disability Services works to ensure that all students with documented disabilities have both an equal opportunity and equal access to JMU's programs and services. Our goal is to coordinate and provide reasonable accommodations, support services and programs that enable students with disabilities to maximize their educational potential and grow in the developmental process of transition to higher education, independence and effective self-advocacy.

Electronic ID Information - - This link provides information about your electronic i.d. and password.

Financial Aid and Scholarships - - The Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships endeavors to assist students in financing their higher education. Financial assistance is provided in the form of scholarships, grants, loans, and student employment administered by the university.  Students must be degree seeking and making satisfactory academic progress to be considered for financial assistance.  A detailed description of the financial aid programs and general related requirements are in the undergraduate catalog and on the financial aid home page:  Students should review the information thoroughly so that they can understand the application procedures and be aware of all deadlines.

Outreach Programs - - This link provides you with information on admission and application procedures for the outreach programs at JMU.

Libraries -

Parking Services - - This link provides access to a parking map, forms and regulations.

University Business Office - - The University Business Office manages all students' accounts, including payments, refunds, advances, and information on Perkins loans.  We work closely with Financial Aid to provide viable financing options for students and parents.  For additional information, please visit our web site.

The Graduate School - - This link provides you with information on admission and application procedures for the graduate programs at JMU.