As a newly admitted graduate student, you may have all sorts of questions about what to do next. This guide will help you navigate the start of your graduate career.
Accept your admission offer
Activate your Electronic ID and set up your campus email address
To access IT services at NDSU, you must activate your electronic ID. Your electronic ID is usually your Firstname.Lastname. Your electronic ID gives you access to computer clusters, library services, Blackboard and your NDSU e-mail account.
Your NDSU email, like postal and campus mail, is an official means by which the university communicates with students. The university expects that email communication is received and read by students. The Graduate School and your department will send you information via this email address, so be sure to check it often.
Contact your department or advisor
Your advisor’s contact information is in your admission letter. You may also find contact information in the campus directory. During your initial communication, ask:
- Are there specific tasks you must complete prior to your arrival
- Is there a departmental orientation session and where you may find more information
- Should you register prior to your arrival and for which courses
- Is there a student handbook and where you may find that information
- Other questions about your program that you may have
Start the onboarding process for your assistantship
Submit your vaccination records
North Dakota State University requires certain vaccinations per NDSU Policy 162. Vaccination requirements, documentation requirements and other vaccine information are found on the Student Health Service website.
Non-compliant students may receive a registration hold on their account that will prevent them from registering for future classes. International students are exempt from deadlines as they can receive immunizations upon arrival to North Dakota at their required International Student Screening appointment.
As you make plans to attend NDSU, we encourage you to consider the many options for graduate student housing on campus by exploring the Residence Life website: www.ndsu.edu/reslife.
All NDSU apartments welcome not only students, but also their spouses and/or children. The Residence Life website also includes an online form to assist in roommate matching.
Familiarize yourself with policies and support services
Being aware of NDSU and Graduate School policies is one key component for student success. The University Catalog is the source for policy information. The Graduate School is here to help you interpret and follow these policies.
Our campus, as well as the Fargo community, has a number of resources available to students and their families. Do not hesitate to seek out resources as you need them. We want you to feel supported on our campus and in our community.
Click here for information on student support services at NDSU.
Register for classes
Students register for classes through Campus Connection. Each semester, prior to registration, you are required to accept the Financial Obligation Agreement. There are very detailed instructions regarding adding classes and dropping classes available. If you have trouble with registering, contact your Academic Support Specialist for assistance.
NDSU uses Blackboard for its online learning management system. In Blackboard, students can view the course syllabus, access and submit assignments, and take tests.
Obtain NDSU Card
All students must get an NDSU Card (Student ID) on or before the first day of classes (distance students are not required to have an ID card). The NDSU Card Center in the Memorial Union issues the card. You must have your NDSU Card to access many of the services at NDSU.
New Graduate Student Orientation
The online orientation for graduate students. provides information to help you begin your graduate studies and become familiar with resources on campus. All new graduate students are required to complete the guide. The guide is found at gradschool.ndsu.edu.
On the first day of the semester, the Graduate School hosts a welcome event for all all incoming and returning graduate students to gather and learn about academic, professional, and social activities designed specifically for them. Establishing connections and developing a sense of community as graduate students at NDSU is an important part of the graduate school experience.