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TOP - Frequently Asked Questions


Things to Know Before TOP


TOP is an orientation program required for all freshman and transfer students planning to register for classes on the Main Campus. TOP helps you become more familiar with Western Kentucky University and provides an opportunity to meet with an academic advisor from your chosen major in a small group setting. You will also register for classes and receive a copy of your class schedule.

As WKU continues to take steps to protect all members of our community—including future Hilltoppers like you— we have made the decision to offer two options for TOP for Fall 2021. To complete orientation, you can choose to attend an in-person, on-campus TOP or attend a virtual TOP.

Through TopNet.  TopNet is an online system that allows you to access your academic information.  You can register, add or drop classes, check your grades, complete financial aid checklists, view your iCAP report that tells you how close you are to graduation, and many other things.
Go to topnet.wku.edu.  You will need your WKU ID number.  The password box automatically pops up after you begin typing your WKU ID. The first time you log in, your password will be the last 6 digits of your Social Security Number (SSN).  If you do not have an SSN, it will be the last 6 digits of your WKU ID.

If you do not know your WKU ID, click here.
If you do not know your password, start to type in the password/PIN box, then click "Forgot Pin?" and reset it by providing some basic info.  If you can't reset the PIN, contact Information Technology (IT) at 270-745-7000.

To verify or update your major, click here.

It is important that your major is correct before you complete TOP, as TOP dates are determined by your major. If your major is incorrect, please email admission@wku.edu to change your major before reserving a TOP date.

TOP is your first major step in becoming acquainted with the campus community and with your advisor.  Before and during TOP you will take placement exams, meet other students at TOP and within your major, attend an information fair, learn about class registration, register for classes with an academic advisor, receive your class schedule, and receive your WKU ID card. M.A.S.T.E.R. Plan is a five day program, designed to assist first year residential students in their transition from home to college. Program participants move to campus a week before classes begin and benefit from the opportunity to get acclimated to campus before the upperclassmen arrive, and begin building a social support network. Educational sessions, special events, and evening social activities provide program participants with opportunities to learn tips of the trade from student leaders, meet new people, and identify resources to help them succeed in and out of the classroom.
No.  TOP is a one-day program with no required overnight stay. For Fall 2021, to complete orientation, you can choose to attend an in-person, on-campus TOP or attend a virtual TOP.
WKU is located in the Central Time Zone, one hour behind Louisville, which is about two hours from Bowling Green. Our campus shares the Central Time Zone with Nashville, TN which is only an hour away. For driving directions, please consult your e-newsletter.

Starting your WKU Journey


You will receive a confirmation email within 24 hours of registering for your TOP date. A follow-up confirmation email will be sent with your confirmed TOP date. You will also receive an e-newsletter via email beginning 5 days before your scheduled TOP that includes instructions on parking, what to bring with you, and other campus reminders.

Students planning to register for regional campus classes are not required to attend the TOP on main campus in Bowling Green.  To register for an orientation or advising session at a regional campus, please contact the appropriate campus center for instructions. Elizabethtown/Ft. Knox: 270-706-8870Glasgow: 270-861-6900; Owensboro: 270-684-9797

Yes.  There is a non-refundable fee of $50.00 per student. For in-person TOP, students are permitted to bring one (1) guest and there is $25.00 fee.  You will be prompted to pay by credit card (American Express, Visa, MasterCard, or Discover) when you reserve your date online.  You are not expected to pay any additional fees at TOP.
Students attending an in-person TOP are only permitted to bring one (1) guest. To add or remove your guest from your TOP reservation, please call TOP at 270-745-4242.  The $25.00 fee is non-refundable.

Students attending an in-person TOP are only permitted to bring one (1) guest.

WKU welcomes one (1) parent or guest to attend an in-person TOP. The parent program does run separately, but simultaneously with our student TOP. Your guest is welcome, but not required to attend TOP  Due to time and space constraints, students should plan to go to all sessions, advising, and registration without their accompanying guest.

To reschedule your TOP date, please email your name, WKU ID, and top three TOP dates to top@wku.edu.  A response will confirm your new TOP date.  A list of available dates can be found on our reservation page.
Details on how to reserve your TOP date are included on the reservations tab in the left navigation.  If you are having difficulty, please call our office at 270-745-4242 or email us at top@wku.edu.  Our staff will be happy to walk you through the process online.
A list of available TOP dates can be found on our calendar.  You may also view the list on our reservation page or in TopNet when making a reservation.
If the student has a disability, please include the information in your TOP reservation.  If you have not already contacted the Student Accessibility Resource Center, please contact them at 270-745-5004 (TTY:270-745-3030).

Plotting Your Course


For a list of accommodations, we suggest looking at the Visit Bowling Green website.The Hyatt Place is the closest hotel to campus.

No.  Students must remain on campus and in sessions in order to register for classes.  For students & guests with class or work obligations, we are happy to provide an excuse form.

Students attending a virtual TOP will need to plan to be online for at least 1.5 to 2 hours. 

Yes!  You will meet with an academic advisor from the department of your major.  The advising team will help you sign up for required (general education) courses and help you choose electives.
No.  The advising session is where the student journey truly begins.  It is a time to learn and begin accepting responsibility.  It is important to hear the student's voice and for him/her to be responsible for their schedule.  After registration, students will visit the TOP Finish Line where our staff will review the schedule.  Parents/guests are welcome to join the student at this time to ask questions and celebrate with that the student has received an official schedule.
No.  Advising and Registration is a scheduled portion of our program.
For in-person TOP, lunch is complimentary and provided for the student and their guest who have paid the TOP registration fee and received TOP materials. 
Parking instructions and driving directions will be included in your TOP e-newsletter via email about 5 days before your TOP date.
Please visit our Placement Exams page for complete details.

Yes, at in-person TOP!  As a part of your check-in process, you will take a photo.  By the end of the day, you will receive your Official WKU ID.

Students attending virtual TOP will receive further instructions on obtaining their WKU ID. 

In-person TOP at WKU is a one-day program with no overnight requirement.  The program typically lasts approximately 7 hours.  Plan to stay on campus until 4:30 p.m. on orientation day.

Virtual TOP will last about 1.5 to 2 hours. 

It is highly recommended that you complete your housing application prior to attending TOP  If it is not possible, you may visit the Housing and Residence Life office in Southwest Hall after completing TOP requirements.
No.  It is highly recommended that you begin the financial aid process prior to attending TOP.  Staff from the Office of Student Financial Assistance will be available to answer questions about the process and educate parents/guests about their options.

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 Last Modified 2/2/21