New Online Master's Student To-Do List

Welcome to Purdue!  We want to make sure you have all necessary accounts and accesses with Purdue established before the start of classes so you can focus on pursuing your educational goals. Please start completing the items listed below (although some things may not be able to be completed until closer to the start of the semester):

  1. Set up your Purdue Career Account (it will ask for your 10-digit PUID number, which is found on your admission letter).  You will use your career account to access myPurdue, Brightspace, and other portals.  Questions on your Purdue career account should be directed to our IT department,
  2. Set up two-factor authentication, which grants secure access to myPurdue, Brightspace, and other Purdue online services. Effective June 27, 2023, this authentication is called Purdue Login.   You will submit your Purdue career account and password, and then be asked to authenticate via the Duo Mobile app. Please see if you have questions.
  3. Your Purdue email address is made up from your Purdue career account username.  The best way to access your Purdue email is through Office 365, which is free to registered Purdue students.  You are expected to use your Purdue email when communicating with offices, advisors, professors, teaching assistants, etc. at Purdue.  You should check your Purdue email frequently, as that is the only way you’ll receive notifications from Purdue. Questions on your Purdue email should be directed to itap@purdue.eduPlease note: for your first few weeks as a student, you may also receive emails to the email address used with your application.
  4. As part of your Purdue Office 365 account, you have 1 TB of space on OneDrive.  You can use this to store course-related files and documents, and access them anywhere you have internet access.  To access OneDrive, log into Office 365 with your Purdue career account and password, and click OneDrive. (Should you not be registered in a semester, you will lose access to Office 365, so please make sure to back up anything important.)
  5. myPurdue is the system you’ll use to update your personal information, see your current courses and transcript, register for courses, pay your tuition and fees manage any financial aid, and draft and submit your plan of study (POS... see #17 below). 
  6. You should update your emergency contact information and affirm your financial responsibility within myPurdue, to release holds put on your account by the graduate school. (These 2 holds are put on your account each semester, so please remember to address them in the future.)  Please make sure your official transcript copies have been provided to the grad school.  Transcripts submitted with the application are not considered official copies...  please see If you have other holds on your account, you’ll need to contact the department that placed the holds to address removal of the hold.  Some holds affect registration, while others don’t.
  7. All new students, including online students, are required to complete the Respect Boundaries: Sexual Violence Awareness Program.  This will be available on your Brightspace account, usually a couple weeks before classes start.  For more information, see
  8. All ME Graduate Students, including online students, are required to complete online Responsible Conduct of Research (RCR) certification before starting your first semester.  Upon completion of the CITI RCR training, you’ll receive a certificate, which needs to be submitted to both AND See the section:  HOW DO STUDENTS COMPLETE THE CITI ONLINE TRAINING REQUIREMENT? for directions on how to login and complete the requirements.  Previous students have shared that it takes from 90 minutes to two hours to complete all the modules.
  9. The official Purdue learning platform for courses is Brightspace:   Choose Purdue West Lafayette campus (even if you’re an online student) to login.  Here is an introductory video that covers how to use Brightspace, Gradescope, etc. You’ll be able to access your registered courses in Brightspace, the first day of the course. If you drop a course, the course will be removed from Brightspace and you’ll no longer have access.  When the semester ends, the course will be removed from Brightspace, so if you want to save your work or any materials from the course, save them in a different tool, like Dropbox or something similar.  If you ever need help with Brightspace, please see
  10. See the Registration page for information on how to retrieve your registration PIN, review courses offered, register, etc. (Please note regarding your PIN: the PIN database is uploaded the day before registration opens for that semester, and then updated every week afterwards, on Fridays.  If you try to access your PIN and are told that you are not found in the system, please wait until after Friday to try again.  If at that time, you can’t retrieve your PIN, please email Please be aware that some set up goes on behind the scenes after you accept admission, and it may take a week or two before everything is done and you can register. If you are unable to register two weeks after you accepted admission, please email Sheri Tague.
  11. Sheri Tague will serve as your academic advisor and you can contact her for course registration and plan of study (POS) questions.
  12. Once registered, you can request a Purdue ID card, which will be a little different than what residential students receive.  Please see, under Specific Instructions, select Students, and follow the process under ‘Fully Online and Hybrid Students’.
  13. Make sure you have your own computer, microphone, webcam, (not company-owned) since some courses will require online proctoring for assessments, so you’ll need to be able to download and install the proctoring software.  You should always make sure to test the proctoring software, well in advance of any scheduled exams.
  14. As you’re waiting to start your semester, we’ve created an individual development plan (IDP) to help you reflect on your goals and skills and allow you to set your plan to improve skills you see that are vital to being successful in your future career plans. The IDP will also give you an overall timeline of degree completion and the various steps you need along the way, to help you with planning: Online Master’s Non-thesis IDP Plan
  15. Bookmark the ME Graduate Office website.  You should become familiar with what is on this website as it will answer a lot of your questions and guide you through a lot of processes.  You should check it regularly, as any updates/notifications will be posted to the website.
  16. There is a blog that exists just for you, Purdue ME grad students!  You should subscribe to the blog and you can request daily or weekly summaries emailed to you.  All seminar invitations, job opportunities, new course offerings, and other important but non-policy/procedure notifications, will be posted to the blog to eliminate extra emails to you. Also, watch for emails from the ME Grad Office, as we’ll notify you of changes to policy/procedures, upcoming grad meetings (ex: New Student Orientation, ME Grad Open Forum, or Virtual Office Hours, etc.), and other important information.
  17. Check out Purdue Engineering social media sites, and other helpful resources as shared by our current students, in The Complete Guide to being a Purdue ME Online Student.
  18. Remember, is the email address for the grad office. It is better to email than to leave a voicemail. Please send your questions and submissions to this address, not to individual staffers, as it is monitored by everyone in the office, which allows the first available to respond to you.  We will get back to you as quickly as possible, but depending on the time of year, please allow up to 5 business days for a response.  (We highly recommend you don’t wait until it’s close to a deadline to email us a question, concern, or submission, related to that deadline.)
  19. Tuition is due, in full, by 4pm on the first day of classes, unless other arrangements have been made with the Bursar’s Office (Ways to pay Tuition and Fees).  If your employer is paying your tuition, information can be found on the Sponsored Billing and Payment page. For other questions related to tuition/fees, paying tuition, or financial aid, see the Purdue Bursar website.
  20. Do not worry about setting up your plan of study (POS) before classes start.  You can review online courses offered in various semesters and get a general idea of what your POS will look like, but you can’t access the POS generator until the 3rd week of classes.  Your POS needs to be submitted before the 6th week of classes, so it can be moving through approvals, and be fully approved before the end of your first semester.  Registration PINS for the next semester will not be released if your POS hasn’t started moving forward for final approvals. By default, Dr. Nicole Key will serve as your master’s committee chair for your advisory committee, and you will list her on your Plan of Study in that capacity. But if you want to find a different professor for your committee chair, please reach out to ME faculty.

Let us know if you have any questions!

ME Graduate Office
516 Northwestern Ave. (4th floor of Wang Hall)
West Lafayette, IN 47906
(765) 494-5730
Virtual office hours available every Tues/Wed/Thurs