Summer Academic Orientation (SAO)

Welcome to Summer Academic Orientation 2014 at Western University!

Welcome to Summer Academic Orientation (SAO) online!

Summer Academic Orientation (SAO) enables first-year students to get connected with other students, learn more about Western, explore our campus and meet members of our community before they begin school in September. SAO participants have the opportunity to:

-  Select courses with a professor or academic advisor
-  Create an individual course timetable with the help of our student leaders
-  Register for courses and leave registered in courses
-  Pick up your copy of the Residence Handbook
-  Learn about Western services & university life
-  Participate in an optional campus/residence tour (view a traditional style and suite style residence)
-  Meet other first-year students in your program

If you are an in-coming first year student at Western, this is the page for you! Below is everything to need to know about the SAO program, as well as resources to guide you through activating your Western account, completing course selection, and familiarizing you with online course registration. Use the Table of Contents and the links on the right sidebar to visit pages that are relevant to you. We suggest reading each section carefully to ensure that you do not miss any important details.

We recommend that you sign up for an SAO appointment if you have not already done so. The program runs from June 19th until July 31st 2014. Signing up for SAO guarantees you a one-on-one appointment with an academic advisor who can answer questions and review your course selection with you.

Table of Contents

  1. SAO Homepage
    - Program Information
    - Link to SAO Sign-Up
  2. Account Activation
    - Western ID, Western Email & OWL Activation
  3. Course Selection
    - Terms, Requirements, and Restrictions
    - Planning Ahead for Second Year
    - Extra Tools
    - Common Myths
  4. Timetable
    - Creating a Conflict-Free Timetable
    - Tackling Your Timetable (Step-by-Step PDF)
  5. Online Course Registration
    - Using Student Center
    - How to Add, Drop, and Swap Courses
    - Troubleshooting with Information Technology Services (ITS)
  6. ResourcesFAQ and Driving/Parking Instructions
  7. Meet the SAO Team!

Sign Up For SAO!

Sign up for an SAO appointment online here, or call (519) 661-3070, Monday - Friday, 9am – 4pm EST to make an appointment today! Sign ups begin on June 5th, 2014.

Students must sign-up in advanceYour SAO day runs from approximately 9:30am - 3:30pm inclusive, and IS NOT a "drop-in" program. Please plan for a full day. International and Out-of-Province students will be offered the option of a phone appointment when they go to book an appointment. Please see our FAQ section for more information.

Parents/guests will be signed up when the student declares that they are bringing someone to their SAO day. This is done when students book their appointment, and there is no further sign up required.

Please contact Leslie Gloor Duncan if you require information in an alternate format, or if any other arrangements can make this event accessible to you.

SAO Video Series



How to Prepare

  1. Students must have their Western Identity (which is your username and password) before attending. Visit our Account Activation page to set up your identity now.
  2. Bring your First Year Calendar and have the SAO Course Selection Sheet (page 23) completed by choosing your required and elective courses.
    Course registration for first-year students will have opened by the SAO program. Students will receive an email with their enrolment time prior to course registration, and they are able - but not required - to have registered in any or all of their courses online by their SAO day. 
  3. Students who are interested in registering online can visit our Online Course Registration page for assistance. Remember that you can always change your courses until the second week of classes in September.
  4. Bring government-issued photo ID on your SAO Day for all transactions and discussions about your student record and/or tuition account. If you do not have your proper ID, we will not be able to assist you.
    If you wish to give your parent or someone else the ability to access information or a service on your behalf through the Registrar's Office, you MUST complete the Release of Information that is available on your Student Center. See the Resources and FAQ pages for more information.
  5. Students with Transfer Credit: if you expect to be awarded transfer credits for prior course work, you will not be able to confirm your SAO day until June 5th at the earliest. If you select an SAO day in July, your appointment will not be confirmed until approximately 7-10 days prior to your day. Please click here to get tips for students with transfer credit.