NSO glossary

In an effort to reduce confusion, here's a basic glossary of some basic PSU terms. Penn State also provides a great glossary of academic terms.

BA Status – Stands for “Business Administration” and means students that are in Smeal, but who have not yet entered their major.

Co-Op – A formal work experience gained while a student that spans more than one semester (usually 5-6 months), either spring-summer, or summer-fall.

Controls – In reference to courses… limits put on enrollment in a specific course, often based on enrollment (i.e., you must be in a specific college or major), program (i.e., Schreyer Honors program), or semester standing (i.e., you must be a 4th semester student).

Degree Audit – A road-map to graduation. A form available on eLion that shows all the requirements for a specific major or minor and whether or not you have completed those requirements.

Drop/Add Period – The first ten days of courses when students may adjust their schedule as much as they would like without penalty.

Ed Abroad/Education Abroad – A summer or semester (or some other period of time) spent studying at an institution of higher education outside the US.

Electives – Courses that don’t fulfill any other degree requirement but that count towards the number of credits needed to graduate (i.e., the courses you just want to take because you like them).

eLion – A web-based program that you will use to schedule courses, check your bursar bill and grades, review your degree audit, etc.

ETM/Entrance-to-Major – The term that refers to the courses and requirements that you need to complete to be eligible for a Smeal major after your Sophomore year.

General Education – Common requirements for all students at Penn State regardless of major in several knowledge domains including Arts, Humanities, Social Sciences, Quantification, etc.

Internship – A formal work experience gained while a student, commonly during the summer.

PSU 006 – The business first-year seminar. All students are required to take a first-year seminar, PSU 006 is the one specifically designed for business students and offered by Smeal.

NSO – The New Student Orientation program. Your academic orientation to Penn State and Smeal.

LionPATH- is Penn State’s student information system, which provides students with access to their academic, registration, and financial records. Students can enroll for classes, view/accept their financial aid awards, and view their tuition bills.

Sapphire Program–The Sapphire Leadership Program is designed for high-achieving students who have been accepted to the Smeal College of Business and would like to enhance their business school experience. By providing unique academic content, co-curricular leadership and professional development opportunities, and real-world application of knowledge gained inside the classroom, the Sapphire program aims to empower student leaders of integrity to make an impact on business and society.

THON – Penn State’s Dance Marathon. The largest student-run philanthropy project in the world (so we hear). A 46 hour no-sitting, no-sleeping dance marathon to raise money for pediatric cancer research.