New Student Frequently Asked Questions

What is a First-Year student?

As you transition, you will note that equality of students is a very important part of our campus culture. We use the term “first-year student” when referring to students entering college for the first time. The term “first-year” addresses all students with no differentiation between gender, age, or working status. As you view the Next Steps for New Students information and life on campus, you will see this terminology.

Is there anything I need to do before I start classes?

Yes! Be sure to check out the Next Steps for New Students page. 

  • Please review Student Health Services details regarding requirements, forms, insurance, Patient Portal access, and general FAQs. 
  • Resident students should complete their housing registration online via MyArcadia. Students who submit their Housing Application by June 22 will be the first students given housing assignments.
  • All first-year students participate in a required Common Read as a part of the First-Year Seminar Program and Fall Orientation. This year, the Common Read is Dead Man Walking, by Sister Helen Prejean. Copies are available for purchase at the Templeton Campus Store.
  • Students will be e-mailed information about AlcoholEdu & Haven, interactive, online programs designed to help you learn skills to make informed choices, how to protect yourself, and how to deal with drinking and sexually inappropriate conduct if or when it occurs around you. These programs will be available to new students late-July. Students should complete these programs by Thursday, August 23. 
  • Information about Fall Orientation will be sent to your Arcadia e-mail account in the beginning of August. 
  • Please complete the Disabilities Support Services Identification Form, if applicable. 

What is Summer Orientation?

Summer Orientation is designed for you to become more familiar with the University, meet some of your peers, and discuss course options for the fall. There is a lot of valuable information presented to new students and their guests during this time. Family and friends may also want to refer to our frequently asked questions guide for general information. If you would like more information about the content of Summer Orientation, view our videos for first-year and transfer students. 

I cannot attend any of the Summer Orientation dates. What do I do?

Please contact as soon as possible.

How should I prepare for Summer Orientation? What should I bring?

In preparation for your Summer Orientation date, please consider the following: 

  • The curriculum requirements for first-year students, as well as course listings are available online.
  • We highly recommend first-year students to review the First Year Seminar course options and prepare a list of your top 5-10 topics. 
  • The Math practice inventory is available online. 
  • Remember to bring a pencil and a calculator for the math placement inventory. 
  • Please complete the Language Placement (Spanish, French, German, or Italian) inventory prior to Summer Orientation. Other language options can be discussed at Summer Orientation. To access the online Language Placement:
    • On the MyArcadia home page, click on the Canvas link on the toolbar 
    • Click on the “courses” tab on the left of the page. 
    • Click on “all courses” at the bottom of the list
    • Locate the “Language Placement Exams” and click on it. This page contains the instructions needed to take your inventory.

New transfer students may or may not be required to take placement inventories. You will receive more information prior to your arrival for Summer Orientation.

Is lunch provided at Summer Orientation?

Lunch will be provided to all new students at Summer Orientation. If family and friends would like to have lunch in the campus Dining Hall, tickets will be available to purchase with cash at morning registration. Guests can also purchase their ticket(s) at the Dining Hall entrance with cash or credit card.

What time does Summer Orientation end?

If you are a first-year student, you can expect Summer Orientation to conclude around 5:00pm. If you are a Honors student attending the Honors Orientation day, you can expect programming to end at 6:00pm. If you are a Fall FYSAE student attending the Fall FYSAE Orientation day, programming will conclude around 6:00pm. 
Transfer students, your day will conclude once you complete your inventories and submit your registration materials to the Registrar's Office, Taylor Hall, room 103.

Will I be able to meet with campus offices during my Summer Orientation day?

Throughout the day, you will have opportunities to meet with a variety of campus offices, including Residence and Commuter Life, the Office of International Affairs, and Academic Advising. If you are bringing a guest to orientation, they will hear from Financial Aid, Student Affairs, and other departments. From 12:00-4:00pm, staff from the Financial Aid Office will be available in the Castle, second floor and the Office of Academic Development will be available in Knight Hall. 

Will I meet with an academic advisor at Summer Orientation?

Students will meet with an academic advisor to discuss course options for the fall. This advisor may not be your specific Arcadia advisor, but they will help you to review the right classes for your major.

What is Fall Orientation? Do I have to attend?

Fall Orientation will take place Friday, August 24 through Tuesday, August 28. It is a fantastic opportunity to get to know your peers, Orientation Leaders, Commuter Assistants, and Resident Assistants through orientation group meetings, workshops, events, and social activities. New transfer students have two options (you must select one):

  • Participate in the traditional five-day Fall Orientation, August 24-28
  • Attend a condensed, one-day version of Fall Orientation on Tuesday, August 28

When available, tell us which option you’ve selected by submitting the Transfer Student Fall Orientation Selection form by Monday, August 13.

Should you have additional questions about Fall Orientation, e-mail us at

Is on-campus housing guaranteed?

Yes. Arcadia students are guaranteed housing for four years. Living on campus is not required, but can enhance your Arcadia experience. Arcadia also has a strong Commuter Life program. Should you have questions, e-mail

How are housing assignments made? When will I find out my roommate(s)/assignment?

Access the Arcadia University Online Housing Portal on MyArcadia to complete your housing registration. We use that form, plus give preference based upon the date of receipt of your deposit to the University, in making housing assignments. Students who submit their Housing Application by June 22 will be the first students who are given housing assignments. You will be notified in July or August of your housing assignment via your Arcadia e-mail. View housing options.

How do I register for classes? When do I find out my schedule?

At Summer Orientation, you’ll take some placement exams and indicate your course selections. You can take practice placement inventories through MyArcadia and can view your schedule on Self Service, but it is subject to change until the first day of Fall Orientation.

Can a first-year student have a car on campus?

First-year residential students are not permitted to have a vehicle on campus for any period of time without written permission from the Department of Public Safety. Interested students may complete a First Year Parking Exception Request Form.

What types of student organizations and activities do you offer?

You can review student organization information and stay connected with KnightLife to find campus events, become a member of a student organization, and register for leadership and professional development opportunities. Download our app to stay connected on your mobile device (iOS: KnightLife, Google Play: KnightLife). Stay tuned for information this summer about how to activate your personal KnightLife account. Also, save the date and stop by the Activities and Resource Fair on Thursday, August 30, 4:00-6:00pm on Haber Green (University Commons, Great Room, if inclement weather).

Where can I find information about academic accommodations for students with disabilities?

Review the Disability Support Services website. If you need accommodations for Summer Orientation, please call 215-572-4033 or fill out the Placement Exam Accommodations Request Form at least one week before your Summer Orientation date. Be sure to complete the Disabilities Support Services Identification Form, if applicable.

What type of computer should I purchase?

We have worked with both Dell and Apple to create custom Arcadia pages for student computer purchases. Their pages can be accessed here.

Can I talk to other students to learn more?


  • Contact an Arcadia ambassador or an Orientation Leader
  • Join the class of 2023 Facebook group
  • Search for and join the Class of 2020, 2021or 2022 Facebook group if you are a new transfer student

More Frequently Asked Questions