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Advising & Registration


Dean of the First-Year Class

Jane Stangl
Class Deans
College Hall 101
Smith College
Northampton, MA 01063

Phone: 413-585-4915


Office of the Registrar

College Hall 102
Smith College
Northampton, MA 01063

Phone: 413-585-2550
Fax: 413-585-2557
Office Hours

8:30 a.m.–4:30 p.m. Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday
10 a.m.–4:30 p.m. Wednesday

Registrar's Drop-in Hours

2:30–4 p.m. Thursday, during the
academic year

Summer Office Hours

8 a.m.–4 p.m. Monday through Friday

Dean Stangl with student


Each first-year student at Smith is assigned a liberal arts adviser to help you plan a course program until you declare a major—at which point you will choose a major adviser. All advisers are faculty members who are familiar with the Smith curriculum and are interested in helping you plan a program that both reflects your interests and introduces you to new challenges and unfamiliar fields of study.

Liberal Arts Advising

The dean of the first-year class will assign you a liberal arts adviser who will you help you select and register for courses that will satisfy the broad expectations of the college and will further your personal goals and aspirations. This faculty member will continue to advise you until you choose a major.

Your liberal arts adviser plays a central role in helping you decide which courses to take and how you might best prepare for your academic course of study. Each student has guidance available at every step of her college career, particularly given the combination of the open curriculum (where the key requirements are a writing intensive [WI] course and those of the major) and the large number of courses offered.

Seek out advice from faculty members (whether or not they are your own instructors), department chairs, student department liaisons, deans, support staff, student academic advisers (SAAs) and of course, other undergraduates. We are all here to help one another in a community of learners.

Your Advisers

The following three individuals will be most directly responsible for guiding you.

Liberal Arts Adviser

Also known as your LAA, is assigned by your class dean and will be your primary resource. That assignment will be made later this summer based on information you provide. You should return the advising information form by June 15. During Orientation, your adviser will meet with you individually to talk about your goals and to help you prepare for your online registration for courses.

Liberal arts advisers are members of the faculty who have been assigned to work with incoming students and explain the college’s resources. Their role is to advise and guide you during your first two years at Smith. They can help you assess your skills in those areas the faculty considers basic to college study so that youcan make full use of the courses and programs here. They will help you select courses based on your expressed needs and interests, and authorize your course selection.

Liberal arts advisers can offer advice on courses in their own departments and suggest references for you in other departments. They will know of resources for other assistance, both academic and personal. They may offer their own vision of a liberal arts program. They can help you make inquiries into registration procedures and other academic programs.

Class Dean

Your first-year class dean assists you with academic progress during your first year. The first-year class dean also works closely with academic advisers to ensure that you are progressing appropriately. Ada Comstock and transfer students are assigned advisers in their intended major fields.

The class dean is responsible for your overall academic program. The class will meet with the dean during Orientation. You are encouraged to see your dean privately throughout the year regarding any issue, whether academic or personal. Your class dean is available to assist with course registration and procedures, academic options and general advice on such matters as study abroad, summer school and leaves of absence.

Student Academic Adviser

The student academic adviser (SAA) from your house will work with you during Orientation and registration for first-year students. Student academic advisers are returning students who work with the first-year class dean and faculty advisers to help first-year students choose courses and register. They also work in the houses to help all students understand the Honor Code, the curriculum and how the system of academic regulations works.SAAs are also available to help first-year students with informal academic advising throughout the year. They will remind you and your housemates of procedures and deadlines and will announce any curriculum changes. SAAs may direct you to appropriate sources and point out special courses you might have overlooked. Use them.

You can also turn to returning students, department liaisons and other faculty for help. Just remember that no one person can answer all your questions or tell you what is appropriate to meet your needs and interests. Formulating your questions and finding the right people to ask is an important part of your education and often opens up new opportunities.

Advanced Placement & Placement Exams

Students who receive a score of 4 or 5 on most Advanced Placement examinations will be notified by the registrar’s office regarding the credits recorded and ways they can be used. These scores can be used to aid you and your liberal arts adviser in placing you at a course level appropriate to your background. The registrar’s office also evaluates International Baccalaureate, A-levels and college credit earned before matriculation at Smith. For further details, please visit the registrar’s website.

Students should follow instructions carefully and work out their own schedules of examinations. They are requested to start and finish as early as possible. At least one hour should be allowed for each written examination. Students who cannot take all the examinations they wish because of conflicts in the schedule should consult the registrar.

Placement tests at Smith College are conducted under the academic honor system. It is understood that these examinations will not be discussed in any way, even among students who have already taken them, until the close of the testing period.

There is no placement examination in art history.

Monday, September 2, 2019
9–11 a.m.
Hillyer 204

Those wishing a portfolio review for possible exemption from ARS163 Drawing I should sign up in the Art Office in Hillyer. Ten-minute interviews will be held on Monday, September 2, 2019, from 9-11 a.m. The reviews will be held in Hllyer, Room 204. Students should bring a diverse sampling of 12-15 pieces. We will attempt to make an informed evaluation however this should be seen as an advising session. Students should note that very few exceptions from Drawing I are given.

The Department of Biological Sciences does not give placement examinations. Exemption from BIO 130 and 132 may be granted on the basis of Advanced Placement credit. Students with AP/IB credits should discuss course selections with a departmental representative during Conversations.


Students interesed in the Advanced General Chemistry course (CHM 118) should consult with a member of the department at Conversations.

Japanese: Monday, September 2, from 9-10 a.m.
Seelye 301 and 308

Korean: Monday, September 2, from 9-10 a.m.
Seelye 301 and 310

Placement tests for Japanese, Chinese and Korean: A written test and brief oral interview are mandatory for all entering students who have had some informal or formal training in any of these languages before coming to Smith.


Complete online exam before 5 p.m on Monday September 2, 2019

The Department of Economics offers two online Placement Examinations to determine whether it is appropriate for entering students who have taken one or more economics courses before entering college to place out of Introductory Microeconomics, Introductory Macroeconomics, or both. In order to be prepared for fall registration, the exam(s) should be completed before 5:00 p.m. on Monday, September 2, 2019.

Students who have been given AP, IB or A-level credit for microeconomics and/or macroeconomics on their transcripts do not need to take the Placement Examinations in order to place out of the introductory course(s). However, we strongly recommend that those students still take the appropriate placement examinations to ensure that their pre-college courses have adequately prepared them to move immediately beyond the introductory level. Click on the link below for detailed instructions.

Complete online exam before 5 p.m. September 2, 2019

The Department of French Studies offers an online placement examination to test students' proficiency in understanding spoken French as well as in reading and writing. The online placement examination is accessible on Moodle until September 2, 2019.

Students who have taken at least one year of French should take this exam. Students who have taken the ETS Achievement and/or Advanced Placement tests will find among the materials provided to their advisers recommended placement in language or literature courses based on their scores.

*Even if you have taken these tests, we encourage all students to take our placement test, as it will help the department to advise students about course selection. Click on the link below for detailed instructions.



Complete online exam before 5 p.m. August 30, 2019

The Department of German Studies offers an online placement examination to determine an appropriate German course for entering students. The online placement examination is accessible on Moodle from August 1 to August 30, 2019.

This test is open to all students who have had any preparatory training in the language. Students who took the German AP exam need to take the placement as well, no matter what their AP score.

Students who have studied Hebrew prior to coming to Smith should contact Joanna Caravita for advice on placement in the correct course level. Students with no previous knowledge of Hebrew may enroll in JUD 101, Elementary Modern Hebrew I.

Complete online exam before Noon, Monday, September 2, 2019

This test is open to all students who have had preparatory training in the language. Students who took the Italian AP exam need to take the placement as well, no matter what their AP score. The online placement examination opens July 1 and must be completed by Noon on Monday, September 2, 2019.

Monday, September 2, 2019
9-10 a.m.
Seelye 110

A one–hour placement examination should be taken by students with two, three or four years of secondary school preparation. The department also considers scores of 4 and 5 on Advanced Placement examinations as grounds for advanced placement in courses.

The Math department does not have a designated placement test for math and statistics courses. Descriptions of common starting courses, advice on how to decide between them and information about AP and IB credit is available on the Introductory Mathematics Courses website.

We also urge students to chat with math and statistics faculty during orientation week at our table at the Information Fair or at Conversations.

Monday, September 2, 2019
9-10 a.m.
Sage Hall 215

Incoming students considering Music 110 should take the music theory placement test. Please note that incoming students cannot register for Music 110 without taking this test. It will assess familiarity with key and time signatures, standard pitch and rhythmic notation, and intervals.

Placement auditions for instrument or voice lessons are held during orientation and the first days of the semester. Please click on the link below for more information and to sign-up for auditions.

Audition information and sign-up

Students who have not had a calculus-based introductory physics course should enroll in PHY117 as soon as they meet the prerequisite of one semester of calculus (or the AP equivalent). Students who have taken a full year (or more) of high school physics are encouraged to consider taking PHY119, and those with a 4 or 5 on the AP Physics C mechanics exam may be eligible to place out of PHY117. Students in either of these categories should consult a member of the Department. 

Departmental representatives will be available for consultation during Convsersations.

Consult with department representatives at Conversations.

Complete online exam by August 28, 2019

An online placement examination to test the student's command of the language. All students who have had previous training in the language or have lived in a Spanish-speaking country and wish to continue the study of Spanish language and literature are required to take it.