Guide to the U

The New Student Orientation & Transitions team is here to support all new students and their families as they join and become active members of the UMass community. Students starting at UMass Amherst will engage in several focused components of the orientation & transition experience: Guide to the U, Ready for the U, Welcome to the U, and New Student Advising & Course Registration

All students admitted for Spring 2024 must complete Guide to the U, be registered for Ready for the U, and take their Placement Assessments by their new student deadline in order to be eligible to schedule a New Student Advising & Course Registration appointment in January.

About Guide to the U

Guide to the U is a series of self-paced, online modules that introduces new students and their families to the university: its community, resources, values, and expectations. The Guide to the U is available to support you from the time you matriculate until you graduate. Students must complete the Guide to the U before they can attend Ready for the U and schedule an advising and course registration appointment.

After interacting with the Guide to the U, you will be prepared to: 

  • Identify campus offices and resources,
  • Explain why personal responsibility is an important characteristic of being a member of the UMass community,
  • Describe why making connections with peers, student leaders, staff, and faculty contributes to student success,
  • Differentiate the dimensions of wellbeing and their impact on student success, and
  • Meet with an academic advisor and register for fall semester courses.

Guide to the U typically takes students 1-2 hours to complete. If you don't have time to complete it all at once, you can begin then logout and resume again right where you left off.  

How to Access Guide to the U

Students admitted for Spring 2024

Guide to the U is now available and must be completed by the January 1 new student deadline.

  1. Please make sure you activate your UMass IT account and set up two-factor authentication.
  2. Make sure you are logged out of any personal Google accounts and log in to Guide to the U using an incognito/private browser window.
  3. Follow the link once to the student log-in page.
  4. Enter your UMass email address and password (your Net ID@umass.edu). Authenticate your log-in with the Authenticator App when prompted.
  5. You must be logged in as a student, not a guest, in order for your completion to be recorded. If you are having trouble logging in as a student, please make sure your UMass IT account is active (you can check your UMass email and log into SPIRE) then contact us at newstudent@umass.edu. If you are having trouble activating or access your UMass IT account, please contact it@umass.edu first.

Supporters & Guests

Supporters and guests of new students admitted for Spring 2024 can now access the Guide to the U.  

  1. Use the guest log-in page and click the Create New Guest Account button.
  2. Complete the required fields including setting your own password for that site. 
  3. Under Guest Type select Family Member.
  4. Click the Create New Account Button.
  5. Remember your email and the password you choose as you will use this to log-in again any time you return to the Guide to the U.
  6. Your Guide to the U guest account is not tied to your student's account and you may see content that does not apply to your student (ex. transfer specific pages when your student is a first-year and vice versa).
  7. Note: students do not log in through the Guest page and instead authenticate into Guide to the U using their UMass Amherst IT account credentials.

Students admitted for Fall 2024

The Guide to the U will be updated for the Fall 2024 cohort between February and April, 2024. The Guide to the U will be available for students entering in Fall 2024 and their supports on or before April 1, 2024. All students admitted for Fall 2024 must complete Guide to the U, be registered for Ready for the U, and take their Placement Assessments by their new student deadline in June in order to be eligible to schedule a New Student Advising & Course Registration appointment in June or July.