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Undergraduate Current Students | Stern School Terminology

Terms You Should Know

We know, we know...NYU and Stern have a lot of acronyms, but you'll get the hang of it. With the help of this handy glossary, you’ll be a pro in a flash!

Familiarize yourself with commonly used NYU and Stern words, terms, and acronyms:

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  • Academic Advising: Academic Advisers offer one-on-one advising to assist in curriculum planning and academic programs to supplement your academic experience. You can email specific advisers or our main advising address ( Advisers are happy to offer guidance on a variety of topics including, but not limited to, the following:
    • Scheduling courses
    • Exploring areas of study
    • Selecting minors
    • Planning study away
    • Getting involved in co-curricular activities
  • Academic Calendar: the Official University Academic Calendar provides relevant holidays, breaks, commencement, and school start/end dates.  
  • Academic Resource Center (ARC): the place to go when you don’t know where to go with academic support questions. They offer various academic support resources, including cross-school advising and peer tutoring through the University Learning Center and referrals to other academic resources.
  • Add/Drop: period at the beginning of each semester during which a student can add, drop or switch classes for the current semester. The changes are not reflected on your transcript. Please refer to Stern's academic calendar for specific deadlines. (Stern's calendar becomes available at least one month before the start of the following semester.)
  • Advanced Standing: you can earn credit for specific requirements or electives if you have earned a qualifying AP, IB, or GCE A-level exam score. Please see our "Advanced Standing and Credit by Examination" bullet point under our Academic policies page.
  • Advising on Location (AOL): Advising comes to you! A pair of advisers will pop-up in several locations in Tisch Hall throughout the semester to answer any of your impromptu questions. Read Stern Weekly for upcoming dates and locations!
  • Albert: NYU’s class registration and academic record system. This is how you register for classes, apply for studying away, check your degree progress, apply to graduate, and more!
  • Alumni Career Engagement (ACE): provides an opportunity for sophomores, juniors, and seniors to receive personalized career guidance from alumni. Alumni meet with Stern students to share advice on resumes, cover letters, interviewing strategies, and careers. Participants are then welcome to network over refreshments.
  • Anand Khubani BS in Business, Technology and Entrepreneurship (BTE): the Khubani BTE program prepares you to adapt to the changing landscape of technology-driven business. This four-year, STEM-certified degree is the first US undergraduate business program of its kind to integrate these 21st-century competencies seamlessly.


  • Beta Gamma Sigma (BGS): the national honorary society of collegiate schools of business with more than 750,000 members in more than 160 countries. Membership in the society is open to juniors and seniors whose grade point average places them in the upper 10% of their respective classes.
  • Book Club: this student-driven initiative was piloted in the spring 2014 semester to extend the intellectual journey initiated in Stern’s social impact courses. Professor Mark Brennan, the Stern Book Club’s faculty champion, is passionate about helping students tap into their scholarly curiosity and broaden their intellectual horizons.
  • BS/MS in Accounting (CPA Track): this dual-degree program prepares students to sit for the Certified Public Accountant licensure examination. Students accepted into the CPA track receive two degrees: a BS in Business and an MS in Accounting. Admission is only open to enrolled NYU Stern undergraduate students, and they can apply as early as spring of their first-year.
  • Bursar: the central billing and collection point for NYU. The department is responsible for managing the university billing, collecting, refunding, and cashiering functions.
  • Business and Political Economy (BPE): the BPE program includes two full semesters at NYU's campuses in London and then the option of spending your junior fall semester in New York, Shanghai, Washington, D.C, or any other NYU site where you will be able to fulfill the BPE requirements.
  • Business Practicum Course (see also: Internships): starting as early as the summer after your first year, you can apply to take our MULT-UB 71 Business Practicum course that allows you to earn credit for an internship. If you are an international student, please be sure to check with our Office of Global Services regarding work authorizations before applying.


  • Center for Student Life: this office helps NYU students navigate the University through programs and services that create student engagement, support student transition, empower leadership development and foster inclusive community building. They produce events like Welcome Week during Orientation, run the NYU club system and class activities boards, and create programming for commuter, transfer, military/veteran, and international students. 
  • Code of Conduct (NYU Stern Code of Conduct):. At NYU Stern, we seek to engage our students, faculty, and alumni as lifelong partners in the process of learning, debate, and discovery. Academic and personal integrity are central to this mission. As members of our community, we commit to upholding these values.  
  • Cohort: a smaller group of your peers whom you will be with all four years at Stern. Each cohort is assigned a name after the various neighborhoods of NYC. The Stern Student Council often holds extra-curricular activities that are based upon Cohort participation.
  • Cohort Leadership Program (CLP): A first-year experience designed to help NYU Stern undergraduates learn about themselves, build leadership skills crafted for this world, and explore their personal career possibilities in it. It is a 0-credit course that meets weekly in the fall semester and is graded P/F.
  • Common Hour: Stern's "lunch hour" lasts from 12:30-1:45 p.m. Many student clubs and information sessions occur during this period, with clubs typically selecting one day each week to meet during this time.
  • Concentration: students in the Business Program will earn a major in business, but concentrations allow you to delve deeper into various areas. Please note that students can apply for up to three designations (2 concentrations + 1 minor; 1 concentration + 2 minors; 1 concentration + 1 major from CAS)
  • Curricular Practical Training (CPT): CPT allows students on an F-1 visa to accept paid, off-campus employment that is an integral part of the curriculum of your degree program. This employment must be directly related to your program of study (business). You are encouraged to check out the Business Practicum course if you are interested in pursuing CPT authorization.
  • Curriculum Worksheet: helps you plan out classes and course selections to follow a path towards graduation.


  • Dean's List: a list of matriculated Stern students who have maintained a grade point average of 3.667 or more in a program of study of at least 28 graded units over an academic year. The Dean’s List is compiled at the end of each academic year in May.


  • Electives: you are encouraged, and in many cases required, to take courses outside of Stern at the other schools at NYU. You are required to take 44 credits of electives and, of those units, at least 20 must be taken outside of Stern. The remaining 24 credits of electives can be taken at Stern (a secondary concentration, interesting electives, etc.) or can also be used to take coursework at other NYU schools.


  • Faculty Adviser: Faculty advisers are available to provide you with supplementary guidance in academic and professional pursuits. If you have a question regarding a specific area of interest, make an appointment to meet with a departmental faculty adviser or drop-in their office hours.
  • First Year in London Option: under this option, admitted students spend their first year at NYU London before returning to Stern’s NYC campus to complete the remainder of their degree program.


  • Gould Standard: NYU Stern's professional student-run newspaper.
  • Grading Guidelines: at NYU Stern, we strive to create courses that challenge students intellectually and meet the Stern standards of academic excellence. To ensure fairness and clarity of grading, the Stern faculty have adopted a grading guideline for core courses.


  • Holds: be sure to check for any holds each semester before registration (such as past account balances or academic advising holds) by signing in to Albert Student Center. Some holds may block you from registration. Click "Details" in the "Holds" section to see contact and resolution information.
  • Honors Program: invites high-achieving, research-focused seniors to become intimately involved in graduate-level research. The program pairs students with research-oriented faculty members who partner with and advise program participants throughout their year-long development of a thesis. Additionally, students take part in an honors seminar (3-units each semester of their senior year) with other program participants and have the opportunity to take graduate-level courses in areas of interest.

  • Independent Study: independent studies allow students to study material not included in Stern courses to complement carefully designed programs of study. Independent study projects must be sponsored by full-time faculty and are only for Stern juniors and seniors with departmental approval. Students must have a 3.3 cumulative GPA to be eligible for independent study. Access the Independent Study form in Stern Life
  • International Business Exchange Program (IBEX): as a Junior or Senior in NYU Stern's IBEX (International Business Exchange) Program, you will have the chance to discover the intellectual, cultural, and social life of another country and university by directly enrolling in a top business school abroad. Through partnerships worldwide, IBEX allows you to continue focusing on your business education while experiencing all the benefits of international study.  
  • Internships for Credit: see Business Practicum above
  • Inter-Club Council (ICC): is the governing body of the member clubs and is overseen by the Undergraduate Office of Student Engagement (OSE). ICC is charged with creating cohesion between the clubs, marketing events to the Stern community, and planning large-scale events that further promote the club system. The ICC connects students to the Stern community and enables students to develop networking, team building, and leadership skills.


  • January Term (J-Term): January Term allows students more flexibility and scheduling options. Students have the opportunity to earn required credit or explore a new interest. During this time, students can take advantage of intensive study at one of the foremost research and teaching universities in the United States and have a chance to enjoy New York City during a bustling and exciting time of year.
  • Judiciary Committee: a group of students, faculty, and administrators representing the entire NYU Stern community and serves as a resource to educate students about Stern’s Code of Conduct. In the event of a suspected infraction, the committee initiates an investigation, holds a hearing, and recommends sanctions if necessary.


  • KMEC/KMC: one of three buildings that comprise NYU Stern's complex. Official name and address: Henry Kaufman Management Center (44 West 4th Street).


  • Leave of Absence: leaves of absence are approved for medical, obligated military, or personal reasons. In advance, students may request a leave of absence from the Stern Undergraduate College for a period of up to two semesters in their career. The typical period for a leave is one semester, but students may request a second semester. To request a leave of absence, students must meet with their academic adviser. This meeting is necessary to discuss the reason for the leave and the ensuing ramifications and possible alternatives to taking a leave. Once approved, a Leave of Absence Form must be filed, and students must complete the NYU Semester Withdrawal Form.
  • Lower Concourse (LC): refers to the lowest floor located in Tisch Hall.  The LC is located two floors below the building's lobby.


  • Math Placement Exams: all Stern students are required to take at least Calculus I or equivalent.  Placement exams determine proper placement into a math course in the absence of eligible test scores.


  • Next Stop NYU: your one-stop-shop to prepare for on-boarding as a first-year student at NYU.  You'll be able to find important deadlines, links, and resources through this page to help you get ready for NYU.
  • NYU Classes: NYU's learning management system enables faculty to use web-based collaborative and assessment technologies to enhance the teaching and learning experience. Participants may access course materials, collaborate with others, engage with interactive assessments and assignments, and track their progress in a course gradebook. You can access NYU Classes within the NYUHome Academics tab.
  • NYU Connect: NYU Connect is a platform that uses the power of collaboration, communication, and data to connect faculty, advisors, student services to provide you with the services and support you need to ensure student success across the University.
  • NYU Engage: an online community where NYU students can create and join clubs and organizations, find events, and stay engaged via message boards, news posts, and group messaging.


  • Office of Global Services (OGS): the Office of Global Services seeks to further the aims of the Global Network University through excellence in advising, designing and maintaining specialized administrative processes and procedures, ensuring federal compliance related to the immigration statuses and mobility needs of our academic community worldwide, developing appropriate technical and cultural programs, and advocating effectively for the needs of the NYU international community.
  • Office of Student Engagement (OSE): facilitates students’ exploration and engagement through leadership and community building experiences. Our approach to student engagement integrates co-curricular and extracurricular activities that strengthen the Stern network of students, faculty, alumni, and employers while developing leaders who can create value for business and society.
  • On-Campus Recruiting (OCR): one of the many ways for NYU juniors, seniors, and graduate students to discover job and internship opportunities. Through OCR, employers come to the Wasserman Center to interview students. In addition to participating in OCR, we recommend that you also attend our seminars, apply for positions via NYU Handshake, attend career fairs, and meet with a career coach to help identify opportunities that are right for you.
  • Optional Practical Training (OPT): temporary employment directly related to your major field of study. If you want to work off-campus as an F-1 student, one way to do so is to be approved for OPT. And remember, once you are authorized to work, you must first have a Social Security number to receive a paycheck. Learn more about how to apply for a Social Security number. You cannot begin work on OPT until you receive your approval in the form of an Employment Authorization Document (EAD), and it is within the dates listed on your EAD.
  • Orientation Leader (OL): the first week at NYU consists of a week-long orientation program for first-years and transfer students in August. During this orientation, new students will learn more about the resources and activities available to you as a Stern student, meet the rest of the 50-60 person cohort and participate in community-building events. Orientation Leaders (OL) are role models and a source of support and information for first-year and transfer students.


  • Pass/Fail: designed to encourage students to explore new and potentially challenging courses throughout the University, Stern students are permitted to declare a maximum of four courses in the elective category pass/fail during their undergraduate career (limited to one elective per semester). A pass/fail grade cannot be taken in any required course or courses used to satisfy general education or business studies requirements. 
  • Pillars: These five pillars guide your student experience. They represent both the promises we make to you and the expectations of being members of this community.
  • Plagiarism: students are required to submit their own work. Ideas, data, direct quotations, paraphrasing, or any other incorporation of others’ work must be clearly referenced. To do otherwise constitutes plagiarism. Students suspected of any form of plagiarism will be subject to disciplinary action. Examples of plagiarism include the following:
    • The use of other persons or services to prepare written work that is submitted as a student's own.
    • The use of previously or concurrently submitted papers or segments thereof is written by other students or by the student themselves.
    • Submission of the same or very similar papers in different sections of multiple-section courses by collaborating students.
  • Professional Development and Career Education (PDCE): helps students gain lifelong skills, connect with a broad range of employers across industries, and make well-informed decisions about which career opportunities to pursue. The PDCE team’s mission is to expand and diversify career opportunities for Stern undergraduates. PDCE partners closely with the  NYU Wasserman Center  to connect students with resources and employers.
  • Professional Development Series (PDS): introduces first-years, sophomores, and juniors to the essential personal and professional skills that are necessary to compete for internships and full-time jobs. In each session, a distinguished industry professional discusses the relevant topic, shares personal stories and advice, and answers students’ questions.

  • Quick Visits: Advising holds quick visit advising for any immediate questions that don't warrant a 30-minute appointment. Quick Visit hours are posted on Stern Life.  **Quick Visit schedules may change for holidays, the first week of classes each semester, Welcome Week/Orientation and in the weeks leading up to and including Registration.**


  • Recitation: a presentation by a teaching assistant (TA) or instructor that supplements the course lecture. In recitations that supplement lectures, the instructor will often review the lecture, expand on the concepts, and discuss with the students.
  • Registrar: The Registrar’s Office supports teaching and learning at New York University by maintaining the integrity of academic policies and the student information system. The Registrar handles New York University's student records from application to degree conferral in perpetuity.
  • Registration: the period during which students can enroll for classes in the following semester. The general calendar of registration is as follows, unless otherwise stated:
    • Fall semester: mid-April
    • J-term semester: mid-October
    • Spring semester: mid-November
    • Summer semester: late January
    • Incoming First-Years: early June


  • Shopping Cart: when enrolling in classes through the Student Center in Albert, click on the "Enroll" button and select classes to enter into your shopping cart which holds the courses until you are ready to enroll. Use the search function on the right-hand side of the course guide to narrow your search by subject, session, or open/closed status. Once your selected courses are in your shopping cart, confirm classes by clicking "Finish Enrolling."
  • Social Impact: at Stern, our students are eager to use business to create a positive impact and take this responsibility seriously. We encourage you to think critically about the role of organizations in society and your influence as a prospective leader. Through a balance of curricular and co-curricular offerings, Stern develops socially responsible individuals who:
    • Think critically about how business affects society
    • Apply classroom lessons to make a real-world impact
    • Are prepared to tackle the economic and social challenges of this century as future world business leaders
  • Social Entrepreneurship in Ghana: This course offers first-years, sophomores, and juniors the opportunity to travel to Accra for ten days in the spring to serve the local community’s needs. Through this program, students gain a heightened intercultural awareness while deepening their commitment to community service.
  • Stern Around the World: Short-term programs that allow you to enrich your academic experience by combining coursework with international travel.  In addition to the SIV course (see above), Stern currently offers two other courses that integrate international travel: one to Abu Dhabi to examine and assess the implications for business of key cultural, economic, political, and social structures in the Middle East and one to Costa Rica which studies Sustainable Business in that region.
  • Stern Program for Undergraduate Research (SPUR): this program connects students with world-renowned Stern faculty, providing a unique research opportunity outside of the classroom. The experience sharpens students’ analytical skills as well as helps them in their future studies and careers. Besides being exposed to cutting-edge research and working with individual faculty members, SPUR allows students to explore potential career pathways in academia and gain an advantage when applying for graduate studies.
  • SternTalks: SternTalks helps students learn more about various industries and envision their own professional futures with help from NYU alumni. In these talks, alumni walk students through their choices to get to where they are today and considerations for entering into their line of work.
  • Street Team: the NYU Stern Undergraduate College Street Team helps prospective, admitted, and current students and families through fall and spring events, virtual info sessions, email, and social media. 
  • Student Council (StuCo): the Stern Student Council is the governing organization of the undergraduate student body and the source of various school-wide programming aimed at enhancing the student experience and school spirit. 
  • Student Health Center: students can apply for health insurance, receive medical care, obtain information about wellness workshops and programs, and receive advice on general nutrition and exercise.  
  • Study Away: As a Stern student, you have two opportunities to study away for a semester - through NYU Study Away or Stern’s International Business Exchange Program (IBEX).  You can study away in your Sophomore, Junior, or even Senior year, depending on the program. NYU Global Programs fit in best during Sophomore year or Junior year; IBEX is open to Juniors (fall, spring) and Seniors (fall only). Explore each program to learn about the many locations and courses that are available. Meet with an Academic Adviser as early as possible to start planning your adventure.
  • Swap or Edit/Swap: During course registration, the SWAP function allows you to swap enrolled classes with classes in your shopping cart in order to avoid losing your position. EDIT SWAP allows you to set up an automatic swap between an enrolled course and a course you are waitlisted for. If you get off the waitlist, Albert automatically swaps the two classes.  


  • Teaching Assistant (TA)/Teaching Fellow (TF): TA/TFs assist professors with class preparation, office hours, and grading. Other specific responsibilities are at the discretion of the professor.
  • Tracks: provides you with a roadmap of coursework that will help you develop intellectually and professionally in areas of interest that cross traditional disciplines. Tracks are designed to be multidisciplinary, in-depth, and supplemental to students' business concentration(s). Completion of a track is not noted on a student's transcript. A track consists of a set of approximately eight courses and includes a progression of three types of courses (but you do not need to finish all of these courses):
    • Prerequisite courses
    • Essential courses
    • Advanced electives
  • Transcripts (Official/Unofficial): 
  • Tutoring: Educational resources are available for both Stern and non-Stern courses:​


  • University Learning Center (ULC): the University Learning Center's mission is to assist students in developing the knowledge base, skills, and strategies that will help them to become confident, independent, and active learners. Its various academic support services help students meet the challenge of NYU's rigorous academic standards.
  • Upper Concourse (UC): refers to the floor located right below Tisch Hall lobby. 


  • Waitlist:  Students can select to be placed on the Waitlist if the section is already full when enrolling for courses. Setting up edit swaps is recommended. 
  • Wasserman Center for Career Development: is open to all New York University undergraduate and graduate degree candidates and alumni. Here, students can prepare for the job search, find a job/ internship, check out career fairs, programs, and workshops.
  • Welcome Week: 'Welcome Week' programs occur at the start of both the Fall and Spring semesters for the new first-year and transfer students, as well as students visiting NYU Washington Square. Overall, the week boasts over 500 programs covering many topics, from getting involved and learning about NYU to staying safe and navigating public transportation. And of course, you won't want to miss the awesome Marquee Events!