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A New Student’s Guide to Getting Started at NOVA

NOTE: See important additional information for “Special Populations” including:

  • High School and Home Schooled Students
  • Members of the U.S. Military
  • Military Dependents (Spouse and Children)
  • Prospective F-1 Students
  • Senior Citizens
  • Students with Disabilities
  • Visiting College Students
  • Washington, D.C. Residents

NOVA has an open door admission policy. This means that any high school graduate or person 18 years of age or older with the ability to benefit can take advantage of the many academic opportunities we offer. In addition, some high school and home schooled students under age 18 can earn college credit through NOVA with
appropriate approvals. See page 8 for details.

STEP 1      Apply for Admission

If you are attending NOVA for the first time, or if it has been three years or more since your last class at the College, you must submit an Application for Admission.
Apply online at www.nvcc.edujust click on the box that says “Apply Online.” You can also print out an application form online or pick one up at any of our
six campus locations.

If you apply online, your application can be processed within 24 to 48 hours. If you apply in person or by mail it may take longer. Once your application is
processed, you are automatically admitted to NOVA and can begin registering for classes.



Allied Health | Nursing | Veterinary Technology

If you plan to apply to NOVA’s Allied Health, Nursing, or Veterinary Technology programs, you must meet the special admission requirements outlined in the “ Programs of Study” section of the NOVA Catalog.
Because of limited laboratory, classroom, and/or clinical space, certain programs can only accept a limited number of students. These programs have specific admission, program continuation, and program completion criteria. For details, go to www.nvcc.edu/campuses-and-centers/medical or consult the print or online version of NOVA’s Catalog (See Step 3).

STEP 2         Apply for  Financial Aid (optional)

To apply for student financial aid (including grants, loans, and work-study), complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) online at www.FAFSA.ed.gov.  You must include the College’s School Code:  003727 on the FAFSA.  See the Financial Aid section for more information.

Submit all documents no later than April 1 to ensure that aid will be awarded in sufficient time to pay your tuition. After April 1, awards will continue to be made retroactively and funds will be disbursed after the add/drop period to the student’s mailing address. Late applicants for financial aid should make other arrangements to pay tuition and fees by the deadline  to ensure that classes are not dropped.

You can pay your tuition in installments by enrolling in the Deferred Tuition Payment Plan before your tuition due date. For more information see page 14 (or www.nvcc.edu/tuitionandfees/index.htm#methods). To enroll online, go to www.nvcc.edu/tuitionandfees/index.htm#methods.

STEP 3         Consult Your NOVA Catalog

The NOVA Catalog describes the College’s degree and certificate programs, provides detailed course descriptions, and outlines official college policies. You can pick up a free copy at any campus Student Services Center, or access the Catalog online at www.nvcc.edu/curcatalog.

STEP 4          Take Placement Tests

NOVA has an open admissions policy, so SAT scores and other entrance examinations are not required to attend the College. However, you may need to demonstrate the required levels of reading, writing, or math for the courses you wish to take. Test results will show whether you need remedial courses to prepare you academically for college-level work.

If you scored 550 or better on the Critical Reading portion of the SAT exam within the last three years you may register for ENG 111 without further testing. If you already have a degree from an accredited U.S. college or university you do not have to take the English placement test; If you wish to take a math course, the math placement test still may be required.

Placement tests are free and offered at the Testing Center at each campus. See page 5 for locations and phone numbers. You will need to bring a photo ID card and your NOVAConnect Student ID number. Allow approximately two hours for each test.

Be sure to brush up on your English and math skills before taking the placement test.  Resources to help you prepare for the tests are at: www.nvcc.edu/future-students/placement-tests/index.html.

For details, consult your NOVA Catalog or go to www.nvcc.edu/future-students/placement-tests or contact the Counseling Services on the campus you  plan to attend .

STEP 5         Attend New Student Orientation (especially if you are a recent high school graduate )

Your next step after applying as a new student is to attend a New Student Orientation (NSO) – see www.nvcc.edu/current-students/services-to-students/orientation/index.html At NSO you will be advised, register for classes, and obtain other important information such as available student resources, your Student ID and parking permit

Or Contact Counseling Services To make sure you’re taking the right classes, we strongly encourage you to contact the Counseling Services Office at your preferred campus early, either by appointment or walk-in advising. Students with disabilities can meet with the counselor for disability services; financial aid and veterans’ advisors are also available. See the Directory of Services on page 5 for phone numbers.

STEP 6          Enroll in Classes

March 29- NOVAConnect registration for Summer 2011 begins for all students.

To enroll in classes, use NOVAConnect on the Web at www.nvcc.edu/NOVAConnect/ or the NOVAConnect telephone enrollment system at 703–323–3770. From Prince William County, call 703–330–3770. Mailed or faxed schedule planning worksheets cannot be processed.


STEP 7          Pay Your Tuition

You will NOT be billed for tuition.  Click on http://www.nvcc.edu/schedule/crs2113/tuition.htm for a step-by-step guide to paying your tuition and fees.

If you enrolled in the Deferred Tuition Payment Plan, see the Web site for the payment schedule at http://www.nvcc.edu/current-students/paying-for-college/payment-methods/plan/index.html

If you enroll in classes between March 29 and April 28, payment for all classes is due April 29 by 5:00 p.m. In most cases, unpaid classes will be dropped after that date. Beginning April 29, the tuition for any classes in which you enroll is due before the end of the next business day, or those classes may be dropped!

Please note that you are financially responsible for all classes for which you register. If you decide not to take a class, you must drop it through NOVAConnect or visit a campus Student Services Center to withdraw officially. If you fail to do so, you will be charged for that class and may receive a failing grade.

Financial Aid

If your anticipated financial aid award is enough to cover your entire tuition, your classes will be held until it disburses. You can view your anticipated aid on NOVAConnect under Self Service > Campus Finances > Account Inquiry or Make A Payment. If your award is not enough to cover your entire balance
by the deadline, you risk losing classes unless you:

  • pay the balance by the deadline, or
  • enroll in the Deferred Tuition Payment Plan prior to the tuition due date, or
  • apply for a student loan to cover the additional costs, if you are eligible. A loan is just an offer unless a Direct Loan Master Promissory Note and Direct Loan entrance counseling have been completed and submitted for NOVA.

STEP 8         Print Out Your Enrollment Schedule

You can print a copy of your schedule using the NOVAConnect Web site at www.nvcc.edu/NOVAConnect/ or by calling telephone enrollment (see Step 6). Be sure to check for errors and verify that you have enrolled in the courses that you want and that all tuition and fees have been paid. If there are any errors, contact a
campus Student Services Center immediately.

IMPORTANT: Be sure to print a copy of your enrollment schedule every time you make changes.

STEP 9          Buy Your Books

Take a printout of your class schedule to the bookstore on the campus where the course is taught (ELI available at Alexandria), or buy your books online at http://www.nvcc.bncollege.com . You can also rent textbooks for less than 50% of the cost of purchasing a new printed textbook, either in the bookstore or from the store’s website at www.nvcc.bncollege.com.

If you have received a financial aid award large enough to cover tuition, fees and books, you may use it to purchase books from campus bookstores from May 6 through May 27, the 12-week Census Date. Remember that loans cannot be used until the promissory note and counseling have been completed and the loan has been processed; processing can take 7-10 business days after forms are entered as complete. Work-study awards cannot be used for books. If you are registered at less than full-time, your award totals will show as prorated in the bookstore, and you might not have enough aid to cover books.

STEP 10          Buy Your Parking Permit (not required at ARL, RES, or off-campus locations)

Beginning March 29, permits can be purchased online at http://parking.nvcc.edu. Your permit will be mailed to you, but you can print a temporary seven-day pass from the Web site to use immediately. Parking Offices will begin issuing Summer permits on the first day of classes for the Summer term. Check the parking Web site for the current charge per semester. Current permits are required for all vehicles parked in all campus lots (except at parking meters and hourly pay lots) during each semester/session of enrollment. Student permits are valid only in “B” lots.

Parking enforcement in “B” lots will resume for the Summer term at 6 a.m. on May 28. To use the parking garages at the Annandale and Medical Education campuses without any additional charge, you must have a NOVACard ID as well as a valid parking permit. Hourly pay parking is also available if you do not have a current permit or ID. More information can be found in the brochure on the Parking Services Web site. Save time. Don’t stand in line. Go to http://parking.nvcc.edu.

STEP 11        Get Your Student ID Card (NOVACard)

Your first NOVACard is free, and is valid for two years. It serves as your library card and, with the addition of cash at a NOVACard machine, it can be used for copying, printing, and purchases at designated café and vending locations on campus. The NOVACard is also required for valid parking permit holders who wish to use the Annandale or Medical Education Campus garages. For more information, go to www.nvcc.edu/NOVACard.

STEP 12        Activate Your Free Student E-mail Account

You are required to set up a NOVA e-mail account. Our faculty may ONLY use your official NOVA e-mail address to contact you about class assignments, course updates, and time-sensitive notices. You may also be asked to return your work by e-mail. You can forward your e-mails to another account if you choose. For instructions on using your account, go to www.nvcc.edu/ithd/student/email/ google.htm.