Pierce College District Running Start Tips, Reminders and Helpful Hints for RS Students
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Checking your registration day and time

October 21

At Pierce College, registration times are based on seniority.  That means that students who have more credits register before students with fewer credits.  This also means that each student has their own unique registration day and time.

To find your registration day and time, do the following:

1. Go to the Pierce College Student Online Services page: http://www.pierce.ctc.edu/sos/

2. On the left side of the screen, under the Registration and Records heading, click on the link called Your Registration Time. You will be directed to the When to Register page.

3. On the When to Register page, enter your Pierce College student ID number and your inquiry pin (usually your birthday) into the appropriate boxes.  Then choose the quarter you are trying to register for.

4. You will then be directed to the page that will tell you when you can register.  Your registration date is called “Appt. Date” and your registration time is called “Appt. Time.” Please be aware that this is NOT an appointment with a Running Start advisor. This is the earliest time you can register.  You still need to call and schedule your own appointment day and time for advising, preferably before your registration day and time.

To schedule an advising appointment with a Running Start advisor, call the following numbers:

Puyallup students: 253-840-8329
Fort Steilacoom students: 253-964-6520

How to Plan Your Schedule

April 28

Registration deadline for RS students is December 7.

We always like for you to come prepared to your advising and registration appointments.  One of the ways you can be prepared is by bringing at least two planned schedules.  We like you to do this because it may happen that your first choice of classes is not available when you are able to register.

In order to plan a schedule, you can try a few different methods:

1. Students can view the quarterly class schedule on the Pierce College Web site.  You can look in the schedule to see what classes are offered each quarter.  This is available online at the Pierce College web site, usually about three weeks prior to the start of registration.  You can search by subject, campus, class type, days of the week, time of day, instructor, or keyword.

You also can combine search criteria. For example, if you are looking for English classes offered on Tuesdays and Thursdays at the Puyallup campus, select English from the subject drop down menu, Puyallup from the location drop down menu, and make sure the boxes next to Tuesday and Thursday are the only ones checked in days of the week.

First, you will need to choose the quarter and campus you want to attend – Puyallup or Fort Steilacoom.  You then also have the option of choosing specific days and times you want to attend, specific instructors, or subjects available.  (Note that you don’t have to search by these criteria – they are just available if you want to use them.)  The schedule is then organized by course type.  For instance, all Accounting classes at the Fort Steilacoom campus will be located in the Accounting section. Each course that is offered will be listed, followed by a brief description of the course and a list of any prerequisites the course has.   Below that, it will list, from left to right, the four-digit item number, the section, the number of credits, the instructor’s name,  the days the class meets, the time the class meets, and the location.  If the course is offered at more than one time, you will see other options listed.For detailed information regarding open seats in a class, exact start dates, and other information, click on the item number of the class. A separate window will open in your browser.

Remember that classes fill up quickly, so just because you see that a class is offered, it doesn’t mean it is open.  You can use the Student Online Services to make sure the classes you want to take aren’t full.

2. Use the Student Online Services.  There are a number of tools available at the Student Online Services page.

  • Class Availability by Item Number – This works great for students who know exactly what class they want to take.  Just find the class in the schedule, locate the four digit item number, and type it into the box.  A window will open showing how many seats are available in this class.
  • Schedule Planner – This works well for students who have specific times when they are available and have a pretty good idea of which classes they want to take.  The Schedule Planner can help you find classes that will work with your schedule. You input the times you are available for classes and which classes you’d like to take. It will develop a sample class schedule for you to consider.
  • Matrix – Search Courses by Discipline and Time – This tool works well for students who have certain times available to take classes and are flexible about which classes they want to take.   First, choose which campus you want to take your classes at.  It will then open a schedule that is organized by time and discipline.   This helps in finding courses that fit the specific time you are available.
  • eSchedule – Quarterly Course Schedule – The eSchedule is an online Quarterly Course Schedule you can use to search the current quarter for specific class offerings or to check class availability at a specific Pierce College campus.

All of the tools above will help you to choose the classes, days, and times you want to attend at Pierce College.

3. When viewing the class schedule and the scheduling tools above, you may see classes that look interesting, but you’re not really sure what they are about.  There is another great tool available in the Student Online Services page that will allow you to learn more about the classes you are thinking of taking.  It is the e-Catalog and it lists program information, course information (including course content and course abilities), and the current syllabi for most courses.

The above tools will help you to create your own class schedule.  If you still have questions or are unsure about how to plan your schedule, always feel free to contact the Running Start office.  Remember, one of the ways college is different from high school is that you are the one who will be deciding what times you will come to school and which classes you will take.  Your Running Start advisor will help you to make decisions about which courses are best suited for your high school requirements and educational goals, but ultimately the responsibility of creating your schedule lies with you.

Expected Costs

April 23

While tuition for college-level courses (up to 18 credits) is covered by your school district, Running Start isn’t free.   You should expect, when entering the Running Start program, the following costs -

  • Testing fee – $15.00.  Please see the Testing Center website for fee information.
  • Admissions fee – $25.00 effective August 1, 2010
  • Comprehensive student fee: parking, transcripts, and graduation expenses: $1.50 per credit ($15 maximum)
  • Technology fee: to advance the use of technology by students: $3.50 per credit ($35 maximum)
  • Fort Steilacoom Recreation Center Fee: building costs of a multi-purpose student recreation center for students at Pierce College Fort Steilacoom: $3.50 per credit ($35 maximum)
  • Puyallup Fitness and Recreational Fee: the costs of a fitness and recreational center for students at Pierce College Puyallup: $4.25 per credit (No maximum)
  • Textbooks – All students are expected to pay for their own textbooks.  Textbooks can be very expensive, ranging from $50 – $200 per class.  Please plan ahead so you can cover these expenses.
  • Course fees – Certain courses have fees attached to them.  For instance, all full-online courses have a $40 fee per course.  Science or art courses may have a materials or lab fee.  You will see this fee when you look at the course in the bulletin.
  • Transportation - Students are responsible for their own transportation.  Both campuses are served by Pierce Transit.  Parking is available on campus for students who prefer to drive themselves.
  • Food – Students must pay for their own food.  Because students will be creating their own schedules, if they want a break to eat, they will need to plan their schedule accordingly.  Both campuses have a cafeteria and the Fort Steilacoom campus has a coffee stand where students can purchase snacks.

Please note that many of the fees are based on the number of credits you are taking and are quarterly fees, meaning you will have to pay them each quarter.

Student and course fees will need to be paid at the time of registration.  Students will be withdrawn from their classes if they do not pay their fees.

Pierce College does offer a fee waiver and a book assistance program to qualifying students.  For more information about this, please view the Running Start Student Fee Waiver and Book Loan Application.  Please review the document carefully and note that the fee waiver does not apply to all fees.

Fees are subject to change at any time.

See an example of fees and textbook costs for a possible schedule below.

This student is taking courses at the Fort Steilacoom campus.  Students taking 10 credits or above at the Fort Steilacoom campus all pay a mandatory $85 fee each quarter unless they have a fee waiver.   (Fees above 10 credits at the Puyallup campus are slightly higher.)  Two of the courses this student is taking also have a class fee, bringing the total fees to $111.50.  Please keep in mind that even if you qualify for a fee waiver, it only applies to the mandatory fee, not class fees.

Notice that there are two prices listed for each book – a used price and a new price.  If you purchase used books, you’ll save a lot of money.

The fees and textbook expenses would be $454.16 with new books and $368.52 with used books.

The above is an example of how much fees and books can cost each quarter.  Your own fees and books costs will depend on what classes you take.

Mandatory New Student Orientation

April 23

IMPORTANT: New Running Start students must attend a Pierce College Running Start orientation or they will be withdrawn from their classes.  Please keep in mind that this is not an information session you may have attended at your high school.   You will sign up for the orientation when you sign up for your classes.

Winter 2011 Registration for New Students

April 23

Registration deadline for RS students is December 7.

If you are planning on enrolling in Pierce College as a new Running Start student for the winter 2011 quarter, please do the following:

**Effective July 1, 2010 – prospective Running Start students must complete an admissions form ($25.00) and receive a Pierce College Student ID number prior to taking the COMPASS.  Note:  It can take 1-2 weeks to receive a Pierce College Student ID.  Students can expedite the admission process by providing an e-mail address on their form.

1. Take the COMPASS assessment.  Please call the Testing Center that is nearest to you to find out information about testing dates and fees.  You can reach the Puyallup Testing Center at 253-840-8343 or the Fort Steilacoom Testing Center at 253-964-6521.

Please note that you will need to bring with you to your COMPASS appointment a Photo ID, receipt for the COMPASS fee from the Cashier’s Office and Social Security Number or Pierce College Student ID.  You can also view important information such as sample COMPASS questions, fee information, and schedules at the Testing Center website: http://www.pierce.ctc.edu/dist/testing/.

2. Meet with your high school counselor to discuss your COMPASS scores and high school requirements.  At this time, you will fill out  a pre-enrollment form indicating which classes you plan on taking at Pierce College.

3. Schedule an appointment to meet with a Running Start advisor to register for classes.  Registration for new students will start on November 30.  You can call to schedule an appointment starting October 18.  Please have your Pierce College student ID number ready when you call.  We request that students, not parents, call to schedule their own appointments for assessment and advising.  This promotes self-advocacy, which is critical to Running Start students’ success.

You will need to bring your pre-enrollment form, completed and signed by your high school counselor and, if you are under 18, a parent or guardian.  You will also need to bring a copy of your COMPASS test scores and two planned schedules.
Students will register for their classes at their advising appointment.  Please be prepared to pay all fees at the time of registration.  You can view information about mandatory student fees here and fee waiver available to Running Start students here.

Starting November 3,  you will be able to view the winter schedule at http://www.pierce.ctc.edu/.

Puyallup: 253-840-8329
Fort Steilacoom: 253-964-6520