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Advising FAQs

What is a Transfer Degree Program?

A Transfer Program is an Associate in Science degree designed for students who plan to earn an associate degree at Jefferson State and then transfer to a 4-year institution to earn a bachelor’s degree. Students who utilize the STARS guide, Degree Works, and an academic advisor will take courses that are guaranteed to transfer to a 4-year institution as degree requirements. If a student completes the freshman and sophomore level courses at Jefferson State, they will be half way toward earning their bachelor’s degree when they transfer.

How many hours are needed to complete an associate degree in a Transfer Degree Program?

60 credit hours

What is STARS, how do I access a STARS guide, and why is it important?

  • STARS is the primary tool used for students enrolled in Transfer Degree Programs to make certain they are taking courses that will transfer to 4-year public institutions in Alabama. It is a list of courses that are guaranteed to transfer based on the major selected on the guide. Students must also print the Area V page for the intended transfer institution to have a complete STARS Transfer Guide.  
  • Students can access the STARS site and print an official STARS guide at this link:
  • STARS is important because it guarantees the transferability of coursework and prevents loss of credit hours upon transfer. 

What is a Career and Technical Degree Program?

Career and Technical Degree Programs are Associate in Applied Science degree programs for students who plan to complete an associate degree and go directly into the workforce. Many courses in these programs do not transfer to a 4-year university.

What Career and Technical Degree Programs are offered at Jefferson State?

A complete list of career and technical programs are available at this link:

How many hours are needed to complete an associate degree in a Career and Technical Degree Program?

Each program has a specified required number of credit hours ranging from 60 to 76 hours.

What is an Associate in Arts degree?

An Associate in Arts degree is our general degree program. 60 credit hours are required to complete this degree which includes 41 hours of core courses that can be used toward many transfer degree programs. The remaining 19 hours can be selected from a specific list of elective courses. This may be a good option if you are unsure of your intended major but want to concentrate on taking core courses that are likely to transfer to a 4-year institution.    

How can I locate my academic advisor?

  • The appropriate advisor is determined by your major. Students who plan to transfer to a 4-year institution and earn a bachelor’s degree can meet with any of our advising staff in the Advising Center. Go to our Advising Page at this link,, and click on Schedule an Advising Appointment after you have been admitted to the college. 
  • Our Career and Technical Degree Programs have assigned advisors that can be found at the following link:

Where can I access Pre-Nursing, Pre-Radiologic Technology, and Pre-Respiratory Therapy information and advisors?

Information and advisors for each of these programs is available at this link:

What is Degree Works, why is it important, and how do I access it?

  • Degree Works is a complete list of courses required to earn the degree you have selected. Students can use Degree Works to keep track of their progress toward completing an Associate Degree. Although Degree Works is a great tool, it should not replace meeting with an academic advisor.
  • To view Degree Works, login to myJSCC and go to Degree Works Under Campus Links.
  • Degree Works is important because it helps students verify they are taking the correct courses and allows students to track progress toward earning their degree.
  • Our Financial Aid office uses Degree Works to determine the courses that can be covered for a student who receives financial aid funds.
  • Our Graduation Office uses Degree Works to confirm when all degree requirements have been met.
  • Admitted students can access Degree Works on their myJSCC student portal under Campus Links.

What criteria can be used for math and English course placement?

Jefferson State can consider ACT scores, Accuplacer Placement Test scores, or high school graduating GPA and course grades within 5 years for placement in math and English.

How can I schedule to take the Accuplacer Placement Test?

Follow the instructions on the Testing Center website's Accuplacer page.

What are corequisite courses and how do I register for these courses?

Jefferson State offers two corequisite courses which are MTH 099 and ENG 099. Students meeting specific placement test criteria can take MTH 100 along with the corequisite course MTH 099 or take ENG 101 along with the corequisite course ENG 099. MTH 099 and ENG 099 are courses that provide additional support to help a student be successful in MTH 100 and ENG 101. To request registration in these courses, go to

What is ORI 101 and is it a required course for all students?

ORI 101 (Orientation to College) is a one credit hour course that aids students in their transition to Jefferson State, and integrates new students into the life of the institution. It is a requirement for all transfer degree programs including our Associate in Science and Associate in Arts degrees.

How do I change my major?

First, you should consult with an academic advisor if you have any questions. To change your major, go to to access the Change of Major form. Your major can be changed during the registration period for the upcoming term.

How do I withdraw from a course and what should I consider before I withdraw?

  • If it is during the drop and add registration period, a student can drop a course (instead of withdraw) on their myJSCC registration portal. A course that is dropped will not show on the transcript.
  • Before you withdraw, you should check with the Financial Aid office at to determine if a withdrawal will impact receiving future financial aid funds.
  • Before you withdraw, you should check with to determine the last day to withdraw for the term without penalty to your GPA. You may have more time to determine if this is the best option.
  • Before you withdraw, you can contact your instructor for their recommendation about whether you should withdraw from the course. 
  • Before you withdraw, you can check to see if you are eligible for a refund by contacting the Cashier’s Office at the Jefferson or Shelby Campus.
  • The Withdrawal Prior to Midterm Form (if withdrawing from one but not all courses for the term) and the Complete Withdrawal Form (if withdrawing from all courses for the term) are available on the Forms page at this link:
  • After the published midterm date and before the start of finals week, a student can withdraw with a grade of WP (withdrawal passing) only if they are passing the course. 

How do I know if I am a freshman or a sophomore?

Students who have completed between 1 - 30 credit hours toward their degree are considered a freshman. Students who have completed 31 or more hours toward their degree are considered a sophomore.  

How many courses should I take each semester?

  • Many factors should be considered when determining the ideal number of credit hours to take including academic readiness, financial considerations, and personal/family obligations.
  • A student who wants to attend full time should take between 12 – 16 credit hours each fall and spring semester. Students generally take fewer courses during the shorter summer term.
  • Being a Financial Aid recipient does not automatically require you to attend as a full-time student. Contact the Financial Aid office at for more information.

How can I get help selecting a major?

How will students receive important communication from Jefferson State?

  • Your Jefferson State email is the primary mode of communication. It is important to check this email on a regular basis and use this email when communicating with faculty and staff.
  • Students can also see Campus Announcements on the home page when they login to their myJSCC student portal.
  • To sign up to receive emergency alerts about campus closings, please complete a request at this link:

How do I access online courses in Blackboard?

Login to your myJSCC student portal and click on Blackboard Courses under Campus Links to access online courses. For detailed information about accessing courses in Blackboard, go to

What is attendance verification?

  • Attendance must be verified in each course at the beginning of each term. Attendance verification is required for all students to confirm enrollment. Instructors will determine how attendance will be verified.
  • For online courses, students must login to each course and complete the verification assignment to verify attendance.
  • For on campus courses, the instructor generally will use on campus attendance in class to verify attendance.
  • For hybrid courses, the instructor can choose to verify attendance using an online verification assignment or on campus attendance in class.

What can I do if I was dropped because I did not verify my attendance in a course?

Students who do not verify their attendance are dropped from the course. Check your Jefferson State email for an email with instructions on how to submit a request to your instructor to be reinstated in the course.

How can I ask a quick question without an advising appointment?

Email These emails are typically answered within 24 hours every weekday.