Frequently Asked Questions:
If your question is not answered in our FAQs, please click on Important Resources listed above to view a list of offices and contact information.
How can I get a copy of my student's grades?FERPA, or the Family Education Rights Privacy Act, is federal legislation that gives ownership of records to the student at the college level. The easiest way for parents to receive information about their student's grades is for the student to provide it. Students can look up their academic transcript online, print it off and email a copy to their parents. Student records are available to students through MyBama.
If I'm paying for my student's education, why can't I get a copy of his records?FERPA requires that access to a college student's records must be granted by approval of the student. A student may submit a release form that would designate to whom they authorize the release of non-directory information. This form is available on the Registrar webpage at registrar.ua.edu. The release of academic information would also be possible if the student is listed as a dependent on the parent's most recent federal income return. A copy of the return and proper identification would be required for release.
My student provided me with access to her records during Student Orientation. Why didn't I receive a copy of her grades after the semester?The University doesn't automatically send information to third parties designated by the student. Parents will need to request a copy of the desired information by contacting the Registrar. A request must be submitted each time you want to receive protected information.
How does my student register for classes?Registration takes place around the middle of the semester prior to the one in which your student plans to take classes. The process sets up their course schedule and reserves a place for your student in each of those classes. Your student will need to meet with their advisor and utilize degree works (accessed through MyBama) to make sure they are staying on track. Please know that registration is complete upon receipt of payment and fees. Visit the Office of the Registrar for more information at registrar.ua.edu.
Where can my student purchase textbooks?Your student can purchase books at the SupeStore (Located in the Ferguson Center or Tutwiler Hall). They can also be reserved online at www.universitysupplystore.com
Where can my student get help with study skills?The Center for Academic Success provides resources for students who need assistance with certain classes.Â They have many different tutors and different tutoring class that can help in any subject that your student might need help in. There is also a class that is geared toward helping freshmen in particular adjust to college life. To look at a list of the University's class offerings, go to mybama.ua.edu, and then go to the catalog.
How can I contact a professor?Your student should be in contact with their professors. When a student is enrolled in the class, the professor gives out a syllabus with his or her office hours and an email address. Due to FERPA (see above information) the professor should only communicate academic related information with your student.
How big are classes at UA?Our student-to-faculty ratio is 19:1. Some of your classes might have large lecture sections with smaller discussion or lab sections that provide more individualized attention. Many more classes, including freshman composition, will be small and will include lots of student-faculty interaction.
What is an ACTion card?The student's ACT card is the university I.D. They can use it to access university facilities, as a method of payment for dining dollars and Bama Cash transactions, and around campus like at the library. The Action Card is also used to get into sporting events. The student just slides his/her card and they are let into the event.
Where can my student eat using their Dining Dollars or Bama Cash?Students can eat all over campus with their dining dollars and at some off campus locations. Bama Cash is also accepted off campus including both food and non-food stores. Both are accepted at Crimson Cafe, Buffalo Phil's, and several other places. If you go to www.bamadining.com and click on locations/hours, you will see a map that tells you all the locations for dining dollars and Bama Cash. Bama Cash can be used off campus at several different places. There is normally a decal that says BAMA CASH on the door of the off campus places that accepted it. For a complete list of locations, visit www.bamadining.com . You can also call 348-6816 for more information.
Where can I find the hours of the dining facilities posted online?Hours for the dining facilities differ from semester to semester. You can view the hours for the current semester online at http://bamadining.ua.edu/pages/locations.html. If you have any questions about this, please feel free to contact the Bama Dining office at (205) 348-6816 or toll-free at 1-888-BAMA FOOD.
What's the difference between Dining Dollars and Bama Cash?All undergraduate students with 9 or more hours will join the Dining Dollars program. A balance of $300 per fall and spring semester (and $100 per summer term) is automatically billed to your student's account. These funds are available for use at all campus Bama Dining locations. Bama Cash accounts are optional. With a pre-deposit of funds, students can use their Action Card to make purchases at participating locations both on and off campus. Parents can deposit money onto the ACT card for their student to be able to use Bama Cash. If they have Bama Cash, their ACT card will act like a debit card.
How do I add Bama Cash?Contact 348-2288 or 1-800-474-2288 or visit actcard.ua.edu. Just click on Bama Cash or action card online. To add money to your student's Bama Cash account, you may make a deposit online or you may also call or come by the Action Card Office at 205-348-2288 or 1-800-474-2288, 104 Student Services Center. Parents can also add money to their student's Bama Cash account using the online access. All you need to know is your student's campus wide ID student number and name as it appears on your Action Card. Further information regarding online access services can be obtained from Action Card Online.
Do any of the meals for the meal plan carry over if they are not used?Unused meals from the fall term will be added to the spring term balance as long as the meal plan member does not cancel or downgrade their meal plan. Members who downgrade their meal plan for the spring term will begin with the standard balance of the new meal plan. Members who cancel their meal plan will not retain any meal plan privileges. All meals plans will expire at the end of Spring Term. For more information, visit Bama Dining's website at www.campusdish.com/en-US/CSS/Alabama/MealPlans/.
How do I attend football games with my student?To attend a football game with a student, there are two options. The first is to purchase two regular admission tickets, one for you and one for the student. You can do this at www.rolltide.com . If your student already has a ticket to that game they could sell it to a friend or transfer the ticket through the University of Alabama's ACTion Card website: actcard.ua.edu. Another option is for the student to purchase another student ticket and upgrade it to a student guest ticket. To do this the student must visit the athletic office before the Friday of game week and pay the upgrade fee to transfer the ticket and make it a student-guest ticket. Upgrading it just makes the student ticket the same price as a normal ticket. Prices vary according to the game. Up charge fees for SEC games are normally a little more than non- SEC games.
Can I go to other athletic events with my student?Of course you can! When attending events like basketball or gymnastics, parents can purchase a ticket for themselves at the event or at www.rolltide.com and then meet with the student once inside the Coleman Coliseum and sit in the student section. Another option would be that your student purchase you a ticket ahead of time and give them to you before you enter the event. If the student section becomes sold-out it may be necessary for the parent to purchase a second ticket for the student to be allowed to sit with them.
How can my student get involved in sport clubs?Contact names and email addresses for each club, links to their individual pages, and other club related information are available at urec.ua.edu/scfaq.cfm. You can always contact Sport Club Staff at (205) 348-3994 if you have any questions about a specific club.
How can my student get involved in intramural sports?The intramural sports program at The University of Alabama offers a great opportunity for students to meet people and get involved on campus while maintaining a healthy and active lifestyle. Intramural sports are open for all students to join and are not as competitive as many other sports on campus. Intramurals are also a great stress reliever because they give your student the chance to unwind and forget about all the worries of the next big test or project for a couple of hours. Encourage your student to visit The University of Alabama's Intramural Sports page at urec.sa.ua.edu or call the Intramural Sports office Monday through Friday between the hours of 10a.m. and 4:45p.m at (205) 348-3994 for more information.
Where can I find out more about safety on UA's campus?One of our highest priorities at The University of Alabama is the safety and well-being of our students, faculty and staff. To achieve this goal, we invest significant resources in a variety of activities and initiatives designed to increase security on our campus as well as our students' ability to make responsible decisions. We foster a positive relationship with local law enforcement agencies to enhance a safe, secure and healthy community that borders the University. For information on the services offered to students, please visit the UA Police Department's website at police.ua.edu.
What is the plan for severe weather?UA is a residential campus with many students living on or near campus. In general, classes will remain in session until the National Weather Service issues safety warnings for the City of Tuscaloosa. Some students and faculty commute from adjacent counties. These counties may experience weather related problems not encountered in Tuscaloosa. Individuals should follow the advice of the National Weather Service for that area taking the necessary precautions to ensure personal safety. Whenever the National Weather Service and the Emergency Management Agency issue a warning, people in the path of the storm (tornado or severe thunderstorm) should take immediate lifesaving actions.
The University is a StormReady institution and takes severe weather preparation very seriously, especially in light of the storms that happened April 27, 2011.
When bad weather enters the Tuscaloosa area:
- Remain alert to rapidly changing weather conditions—stay tuned to local radio or television stations for weather updates and advisories.
- A tornado watch means tornadoes may develop. A tornado warning means a funnel cloud or tornado has actually been sighted or indicated on weather radar. The university has a weather siren on top of Gorgas Library.
- When severe weather strikes and the warning sirens sound:
- Move into the nearest shelter.
- Go to the lowest floor available, in the center of the building, away from windows.
- Stay tuned to radio or television stations for further weather statements.
- Remain inside until you are notified that the area is clear of severe weather.
The first Wednesday of each month at noon, the University conducts a test of its emergency notification system (sirens, alerts, public address system) weather permitting. In the event of local severe weather, the University places weather information online at ua.edu.
What notifications are there to let students know of emergency situations on campus?
- UA Alerts, a system that sends text messages, emails and phone calls to your student's cell phone, office and/or home phone.
- The campus PA system, which is located in both indoor and exterior areas.
- Emails sent in the UA Student News and Dialog Extra.
- Media alerts through TV, radio and newspapers.
- The UA Homepage (ua.edu)
- Digital signage on campus (i.e.: CrimsonRide shuttles)
For more information on safety and emergency situations that could arise on campus, please visit beready.ua.edu.
I have questions about my student's ResNet capabilities.Visit the website www.resnet.ua.edu or contact the IT Service Desk at oit.ua.edu/oit/it-service-desk/.
What is MyBama, and what does it do?The purpose for MyBama is to provide one location on the Web where students, faculty, and staff can get important information about the University. It is where students can access their Bama mail account, register for classes, or check exam results. Students can also create a guest login in for their parent. MyBama also provides helpful information such as the Academic Calendar and information about upcoming events.
How do I create a guest login at MyBama? Or what should I do if I lost my parent login for MyBama?To create a guest account on MyBama, you student will have to personally log in and set up guest login information for their parents. See above for information (Help Desk) or contact helpdesk.ua.edu if you lost your parent login for MyBama.
How does my student sign up for wireless internet access?The University currently has a wireless network available in many areas across campus. To use this network, you must have a computer with a wireless network adapter. For information on how your student can sign up for wireless internet access, please visit helpdesk.ua.edu/internet/wireless.html.
Are there certain wireless “hotspots” on campus?A page that lists the areas on campus that are covered by the UA Public Wireless network is available at helpdesk.ua.edu/internet/wireless_locations.html. Unless otherwise noted, the inclusion of a building in this list means that the entire building has access.
Who can I contact about on-campus or off-campus housing?You can contact Housing & Residential Communities at 348-6676 or you can go to housing.ua.edu.
When should a student begin looking for housing off campus?As soon as possible! For the coming fall, most renters sign leases beginning in January (and sometimes as early as December). Leases are usually for one year, but there are some 9 month ones available. The best thing to do is to go straight to the rental office (there are several in town) and see what they have to offer. Use www.yellowpages.com for contact information. Most offices have books with houses/apartments categorized by the number of bedrooms, price, location, etc. Visit www.offcampusassociation.com for a special program for UA students to help with living off campus. You can also go to www.apartmentfinder.com and type in Tuscaloosa and it will give you all the apartment complexes in the city and the realtors.
Where can my student stay while he takes classes this summer?Visit housing.ua.edu/summerschool.cfm for locations, rate information, and applications. You can also call the housing office at 348-6676.
My student needs special accommodations, what do I do?Please call the Housing Office at (205) 348-6676 and they can assist you with any accommodations that your student might need.
Does housing offer a special shuttle to the airport for my student during the Holidays?Of course! Persons requesting to use the service MUST come by their office in person (located in Mary Burke East Hall) to make a reservation and get the information sheet. This way we know that they have been informed of the policies for using the shuttle should a question arise later on. The cost is $30 one way and $60 round trip. For more information, please contact the Office of Housing & Residential Communities at 1-888-498-2262. For the most up-to-date information on the shuttle service, visit http://housing.ua.edu/on_campus/shuttle.cfm.
How does my student make a payment his or her student account?Web payment on MyBama may be made by credit card (Visa, MasterCard or Discover) or by web check. If you not want to make a payment or confirm your schedule on the web, you may mail the required payment to The University of Alabama, Office of Student Receivables, Box 870120, Tuscaloosa, Al 35487-0120; make in-person payments at the office of Student Receivables, 105 Student Services Center; or pay by credit card (Visa, MasterCard or Discover) via telephone by calling (205) 348-4470 or (205) 348-5350.
Can I make payments on account and confirm my schedule?This can be done only if your student grants access to the account (student financial account only) by establishing a Parent/Guest account. Your student will need go to MyBama, click on the Student tab, and under Banner Self-Services, Student Services, and click on the Student Receivables channel. Choose Create/Change a Parent Guest Account and complete the information. If your student provides an email address in conjunction with the Parent/Guest Account, these email addresses will also receive notices and reminders of billing dates and deadlines. Your student will have to provide the user name and password created for the Parent/Guest account to the individual(s) authorizing. Those with this information will be able to view your student's account summary, make payments, and confirm schedules. Your student will still want to check the account to make sure that any necessary payment has been made and that their schedule has been confirmed by the deadline.
What does it mean when my student has to pay/confirm his or her schedule?The payment of tuition, course fees, residence hall room, Dining Dollars, meal options, and parking decal charges is a part of the registration process known as "confirming your" schedule. A payment, or payment plan agreement, is required before each semester's registration is complete (confirmed).When you receive the e-mail notice that the account is available, go to MyBama and view your account, select "confirm my schedule," choose to "pay in-full"; or select a deferment plan, make the required payment, and then your schedule will be confirmed.
What happens if my student fails to confirm his or her schedule?If your student's account has an outstanding balance and is not confirmed by the deadline, the schedule will be cancelled and it will be necessary for your student to re-enroll in classes that have available seats.
Registration is the process of setting up a class schedule and reserving a place for you in each of those classes. This is done during the BAMA Bound summer orientation. Please know that registration is complete upon receipt of payment and fees. Visit the Office of the Registrar for more information at registrar.ua.edu.
Who is my Academic Advisor?
Advisors are assigned to students based on last name and the school of their proposed major. Undecided majors are assigned to the College of Arts and Sciences.
College of Arts and Sciences
Culverhouse College of Commerce and Business Administration
College of Communication and Information Sciences http://www.cis.ua.edu/undergraduatestudies/advising.html
College of Education
College of Engineering
College of Human and Environmental Sciences
Capstone College of Nursing
School of Social Work
Can I change my schedule?
Please check with your academic advisor.
Will the UA accept my advanced placement?Students who enter The University of Alabama with Advanced Placement (AP) scores of 3, 4, or 5 in areas equivalent to General Courses will be given credit. The credit will appear on your transcript. You must send scores directly to the registrar's office. Please check with your academic department for further clarification.
Will the UA accept transfer credits?In order for credit to be transferred, courses completed at other institutions must be equivalent as nearly as possible to courses taught at The University of Alabama. It is your responsibility to make sure that the official transcripts are sent to the Admissions office. Please check with your academic department for further clarification.
How many hours can I transfer into the UA?The maximum amount of credit transferable from two-year institutions is 64 semester hours. Please check with your academic department for further clarification.
Does the UA accept CLEP credit?Yes. The University recognizes acceptable College Level Examination Program (CLEP) scores from their General Examinations and Subject Examinations as the basis for academic credit. Please check with your academic department for further clarification.
How do I get involved?You name it, it's here. There are more than 300 student organizations active on the University of Alabama campus. At the beginning of each fall and spring semester, for example, there's Get on Board Day, where most of those 300+ organizations set up tables on the Quad or in the Ferguson Center to sign up new members. You can also read about most of those organizations in our undergraduate catalog. The University of Alabama also hosts Week of Welcome (WOW) before each Fall semster. WOW is a large series of programs hosted to help first year and transfer students in their transition to academic and student life at the Capstone. See the SOURCE for a current listing of UA student organizations or call (205) 348-6114 for more information.
What campus ministries are available at UA?A wide variety of campus ministries are available to your student at the Capstone. You can view a list of these including their contact information at http://dos.ua.edu/campusMinistries.cfm.
How do I join a Fraternity or Sorority on Campus?There are over fifty Greek Lettered organizations that students can join on campus. Please visit the Greek Life website for more information greeklife.ua.edu/index.html.