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The University of Southampton
Student and Academic Administration

Online Option Choice - FAQs

This page offers guidance and advice for students who are selecting their optional modules using the online option choice system. 

Use the menu below to find answers to some of the frequently asked questions about online option choice, as well as a step-by-step guide for using the system.

Online Option Choice Student Guidance

Step-by-step instructions

Click 'Open Guide' to see our guidance document to take you through the process for selecting your optional modules using the online option choice system.

Open Guide

General Information

What is online optional module choice?

Online option choice is part of Self Service Banner. It gives you the opportunity to select your preferred optional modules online for the upcoming academic year (eligible programmes only).

How can I get guidance for using the online option choice system?

We have created a user guide to take you through the process step-by-step, which you can download by clicking the 'Open Guide' button at the top of this page.

When is online option choice available?

For continuing students, the open period is from late April to mid May and for new entrants, the open period is end of August to end of September (for eligible programmes). For specific dates, please visit our Online Option Choice: Open Periods page.

Is module selection on a first-come, first served basis?

Yes - Online Option Choice will be available from 8am on the first day of your "open period".

Why have I have been placed in a queue?

During the times when volume of traffic to Banner Self-Service is high, you will be placed in a queue to log in. Once it is your turn, you will have a 10 minute window during which you can log in. If you log off, you will be able to log back in within those 10 minutes. However, after that time you may need to re-join the queue to log back into Self-Service.

I’m in the queue, will it log me out? 

Not unless you indicate you wish to leave the queue, in which case you will lose your place.

I’m logged in to Online Option Choice, and am having trouble deciding which modules to choose. Will the system time out if I take too long?

Once you are logged in, you'll have as much time as you need to make your choices. However, if you are inactive for more than 15 minutes, the page will timeout.

Can I logout part way through and return to complete my choice of options later?

Yes, you can return to the online option choice as many times as you like during the "open period". It will "remember" the modules you last selected. 

I have chosen my options via the online optional choice system, but I want to change my options. Can I do this via the online system?

Yes within the “Open Period” log into the system and repeat the process following the instructions provided on screen.

What if I forget to make my module selections before the deadline?

If the "Open Period" has closed please contact your Student Office. You will likely be asked to make your module selections using a paper form which will be available from your Student Office.

Will I get an email confirming my choices via the online option choice system?

Yes, you will receive an email confirming your choices, note: this is not a guarantee of securing a place on any module, it is a record of your preferences.

Finding out more about your programme and modules

Where can I view the options available to me before I use the system?

You can view the modules available to your programme via the online programme catalogue - accessed via SUSSED. Please see our Information and Services page for more information. Your Faculty will also be able to advise you on where to find further information about the choice available to you.

What is the difference between core, compulsory and optional modules?

  • Compulsory module: a compulsory module is a module which must be taken by all students on a particular programme. Compulsory modules may be passed by compensation*.
  • Core module: a core module is a module which must be taken and passed by all students on a particular programme. Core modules may not be passed by compensation*. Where programme regulations specify, a student may be required to select a module from within a group of modules, which, once selected, becomes core.
  • Optional module: an optional module is a module selected from a group of available modules which does not become core or compulsory on selection. Optional modules may be passed by compensation*.

*Compensation: pass by compensation is the award of credit for a failed module on the basis that overall performance elsewhere in the part is sufficient to merit the passing of that part and the learning outcomes of the programme as a whole will be met.

How can I find out more about the modules I am choosing?

If you click on the module code link and then on the module again you will be taken to the online module profile where you can find out more about the module including assessment weightings and the name of the person who will be coordinating the module.

How can I select a module that is not listed on the online option choice system?

You can only select modules that are offered as part of your programme regulations on the online option choice system. If you would like to select a module outside of your programme regulations you will need to seek permission from the Director of Programmes and the request the module using a paper 'Change of Module Form' which is available from your Faculty Student Office.

Can I choose an uneven split of modules over the academic year?

If you would like to take more credits in one semester than the other then you will need to seek permission from your Director of Programmes.


Can I choose my options using my smartphone?

We recommend that you complete online option choice on a desktop PC.

What password do I need to log into the online option choice system?

You must log in with your university username and password.

I tried to log into the system but my password is not valid?

You can re-set your forgotten or expired password at If you are still experiencing issues logging in please contact ServiceLine.

When I log on to the online option choice system it says that I cannot choose my options at this time, why is this and who do I contact?

If this occurs during the open period, it may because your programme of study is not eligible for choosing options online or is opening at a different time. Please contact your Student Office who will be able to advise you.

I am currently suspended can I still choose my options via the online option choice system?

If you are suspended with services you will be able to use the online option choice facility.  However, if you have simply suspended your study you will not.  If you are unsure about your status or would like further advise about choosing your optional modules please contact your Faculty Student Office.

The first page is asking me to "confirm" the wrong programme.

In this case you should not "Confirm" if the information displayed is incorrect. Please contact your Student Office and get them to check and correct your records. Once that is done you can try again.

I get an error message when I choose the option that I want, it tells me that I have not got the required pre-requisite or co-requisite for the module, who should I contact?

In some cases, it may be possible to take a module where you have not taken the pre-requisites with the permission of the module lead. If you think this might apply you, you should contact your Student Office in the first instance who will be able to advise you on how to contact the module lead. Please note that this module will need to be entered onto your record manually by your Student Office.

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