Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) about Pre-University Studies
- What is Pre-University Studies?
- What is the advantage to enroll as a Pre-University Studies student?
- What courses are offered through Gallatin College’s Developmental Education Program?
- What if my GPA and/or test scores change before I attend classes at MSU?
- How will I know what courses to take?
- How many credits may I enroll in as a Pre-University Studies student?
- When will I be allowed to take more than seven (7) MSU credits?
- Am I an MSU student or a Gallatin College student?
- Will I receive two different transcripts?
- Can I still receive financial aid as a Pre-University Studies student?
- Will I get two separate tuition/fee bills?
- Will I be able to get an MSU Cat Card (student photo ID)?
- Can I live in the Residence Halls as a Pre-University Studies student?
- Who should I contact if I have questions?
What is Pre-University Studies?
Pre-University Studies was created to ensure the success of students who have not met the minimum requirements (GPA, HS class placement, and/or ACT/SAT test score requirements) for admission to Montana State University.
What advantages do I have as a Pre-University Studies student?
Pre-University Studies students have the opportunity to build a stronger foundation in the areas of Math and Writing early in their college careers through Gallatin College’s Developmental Education Program. Your skills will be strengthened in Math and Writing and the program will improve your chance for success in future coursework at MSU. You will also have a dedicated Advisor who will maintain high contact levels with you in order to help you use your strengths to be successful.
What courses are offered through Gallatin College’s Developmental Education Program?
Students will have the opportunity to enroll in Math classes (M 065/085 and 096/097) as a pre-requisite for MSU Core-level math and/or Writing courses (WRIT 080 and 095) as additional preparation prior to enrolling in College Writing I. The Developmental Education Program also offers a First Year Seminar (COLS 101US), a Core 2.0 freshman seminar which is similar to the University Studies First Year Seminar (US 101US), and Effective Academic Practices (COLS 100), a course focusing on time management, test taking strategies, and other essential academic skills.
What if my GPA and/or test scores change before I attend classes at MSU?
If your final high school GPA and/or scores change before you attend classes as a Pre-University Studies student, your admission status at MSU may change. Please contact your Admissions evaluator (406-994-2452) as soon as you know your new scores.
How will I know what courses to take?
You will meet with the Pre-University Studies academic advisor during MSU Orientation. Your advising session will guide you into appropriate choices based on your individual placement scores and interests. Registration for courses is completed during orientation using MyInfo at http://www.montana.edu/. Developmental courses are listed with MSU courses in the online MSU class schedule. A typical schedule for pre-US students will include Math, Writing, COLS 100 or 101, and 2 electives/Core 2.0 classes. Your advisor will help you choose an appropriate course-load.
How many credits may I enroll in as a Pre-University Studies student?
During your first semester, you may enroll in a maximum of 14 credits by taking a combination of courses through MSU and the Developmental Education Program in Gallatin College. Of those classes, you may register for a maximum of seven (7) MSU credits (generally, these are classes that are listed as 100 level or above – not including COLS classes).
When will I be allowed to take more than seven (7) MSU credits?
After you attain a 2.0 GPA your first semester, you will be considered a regular full-time student. A Pre-University Studies student may change their major (transition out of pre-US) once they have achieved a cumulative 2.0 GPA and successfully completed seven (7) 100-level MSU credits.
Note that Gallatin College is still part of MSU in much the same way as the College of Letters & Science, the College of Engineering, and the College of Agriculture, so while you may take courses that are taught by Gallatin College faculty, this does not mean you are a Gallatin College student. If you have any further questions, please speak with your advisor: Brett Runnion.
Can I still receive financial aid as a Pre-University Studies student?
Yes, if you take a minimum of 6 total credits you may apply for and receive financial aid. If you have a combined total of 12 credits or more through MSU’s Developmental Education Program and other MSU courses, you will be considered a full-time student for financial aid purposes.
Will I get two separate tuition/fee bills?
No. All of your tuition and fees for both the Developmental Education Program and other MSU classes will be on one bill. You may view and pay your bill by entering the secure site from MyInfo.
For questions regarding course registration, or other pre-US related questions, contact your advisor:
Academic Advisor for Pre-University Studies and
MSU and GC students may set up an appointment with Brett by visiting