Non-Degree New Student Checklist

Congratulations on your recent admissions to Gies Online Programs! Our team has created a comprehensive checklist and onboarding course to help you prepare for the start of your program. Once you have completed your checklist, continue to check your Illinois email address frequently for further updates from the program.

The checklist is fully self-paced but should be completed at least ten days prior to the start of courses.

  • Summer iMSA Non-Degree term courses begin: May 13 and June 10
  • Summer iMBA Non-Degree and iMSM Non-Degree term courses begin: May 15
  • Fall iMSA Non-Degree term courses begin: August 26 and October 21
  • Fall iMBA Non-Degree and iMSM Non-Degree term courses begin: August 14 and October 16


Ready to get started?

Please note that you will not be able to complete many of your checklist items until you receive your Official Notice of Admissions, titled ‘Illinois Admissions Decision’. This email is typically provided 3-7 business days after your non-degree offer letter.

Need additional help with a certain step of your checklist? View our collection of onboarding videos for assistance, contact, or join an upcoming New Student Office Hours.

Step 1: Accept Your Offer

Applicants who have been offered admission to Gies College of Business online programs should have received the following:

  • A Program Offer Letter: This indicates that we have referred you to the Graduate College for admission as a degree-seeking student from Gies Online Programs.
  • An Official Notice of Admission from Illinois Graduate Admissions: This will be delivered as an email with the subject line “Illinois Admission Decision."

Once you have received these items, it is time to decide if you’ll join us as a degree-seeking student through the Graduate College Application Portal. You will make one of three choices:

  • Accept Your Offer: This will secure your spot in your program. No enrollment deposit is required!
  • Defer Your Acceptance: You have the option to defer your admission for up to 1 calendar year.
  • Decline Your Offer: If you no longer want to join our program, please let us know by declining your offer.
Step 2: Setup your University Accounts

Throughout your program, you will use a variety of platforms to complete your courses and connect with your peers. The steps below are essential to utilizing with these platforms and should only take 5-10 minutes each to setup.

Claim Your NetID and Password
Your NetID will give you access to campus services, including e-mail and file storage. New students should visit Illinois NetID Claim to claim their NetID. First, you will need to enter your University ID Number (UIN) and Activation Code. The UIN and Activation Code were sent to you in your Notice of Admission Letter from the Graduate College. Next, you will select and provide answers to two security questions to protect your NetID account. Finally, you will need to choose a password for your NetID account and setup Two-Factor Authentication (2FA).

If you have previously enrolled at the University of Illinois, there is no need to claim your NetID again. You will need to reset your password. You can find more information on the Technology Services Website. 

Setup Your University Email Account
Most correspondence is sent to your Illinois email address, so it is imperative you set up your email and check it regularly. Microsoft Office 365 is a service used for email, calendaring, and contact and task management at the University of Illinois and is vital for receiving emails and information from the University. Approximately four hours after claiming your Net ID and setting your password, you will be able to login to and start using your Office 365 Email Account. If you have questions about your email or your Exchange account, please visit the Technology Services Website, or email 

Verify Your Personal Information in Student Self-Service
Once you have established your NetID, use it to log into the online Student Self-Service and verify your personal information, such as your contact information. Keeping this information up to date is extremely important and ensures proper delivery of important documents. 

Set Up Your Illinois Zoom Pro Account
Zoom Pro is the way you will participate in your live sessions (lectures) for each course, office hours and more. Follow these step-by-step instructions to get setup with Zoom.

Step 3: Set up your Coursera Account

Set Up Your Coursera Account
The University of Illinois partners with Coursera to offer our Gies online programs’ massive open online courses (MOOCs) that accompany the Canvas component of your online course. Setting up your Coursera account is a two-step process that is outlined below.

1. Link your Coursera account: Within a few days of setting up your Illinois email address, you will receive an email from Coursera regarding information on how to set-up and link your Coursera account with the University of Illinois. Linking your account ensures that the work you do in the Coursera MOOCs is transferred to your online course to be counted towards your grade. Once you have linked your Coursera account, you will see your program name displayed at the top of your dashboard.

The linking email will be sent to your Illinois email account. If you do not see your linking email within one week of setting up your Illinois email address, send an email to requesting to have your Coursera linking email re-sent.

2. Join Illinois on Coursera: Illinois on Coursera is a perk of being a student at the University of Illinois. Carefully follow these step-by-step instructions to successfully add your Coursera for Illinois dashboard. Coursera for Illinois ensures that you can access the University of Illinois Coursera MOOCs for free. If you previously had an account with Coursera then you will still need to enroll in Coursera for Illinois in order to avoid paying the MOOC enrollment fees.

Step 4: Complete Your Onboarding Course

Our online courses are delivered on two platforms: Coursera & Canvas.  Each course has two structural components:

  • A Foundational Component on Coursera (MOOCs)
  • Weekly Live Class Sessions, Graded Assignments and Exams on Canvas (High Engagement/HE)

To help students become familiar with both platforms and other important aspects of the program, we have created an Onboarding Course.

This onboarding course takes approximately 3-4 hours to complete but is essential in your success as a Gies online student. Please be sure to complete well in advance of starting your coursework.

Step 5: Register for Courses

iMBA Students

iMSA Students

iMSM Students 

New student office hours

If you have questions as you work through your New Student Checklist, please email or join our team for weekly new student office hours.