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Advising in the College

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The CAS Faculty Advising Model

In the College of Arts and Sciences (CAS), academic support is a partnership between Undergraduate Academic Services (UAS) and departmental faculty. UAS provides New Student Orientation advisement and guidance in making final preparations for degree eligibility. Faculty advisors within students’ academic disciplines assist students with course planning, developing disciplinary interests, and exploring graduate school and career interests.


All students in CAS will be assigned a faculty advisor within their academic department. Advisors can be an invaluable resource so it is to your benefit to make a point to connect with your advisor early on in your academic career.

Your advisor can:

  • Help you plan an academic program that is in line with your interests and abilities;
  • Aid you in developing your educational and career goals;
  • Assist you with monitoring your academic progress and offer suggestions on how you might seek assistance when necessary;
  • Interpret academic policies, procedures, and requirements;
  • Help you consider other educational opportunities in addition to your coursework (volunteering, study abroad, campus organizations, etc.) and refer you to University offices which might also assist you;
  • Discuss career opportunities related to your academic studies and interests;
  • Be a mentor.

The advising relationship is a two-way street. As an advisee, you must actively contribute in order for the relationship to work.

As an advisee you should:

  • Do some soul-searching – think about who you are, what you want to do, and who you want to become;
  • Consider your values, interests, abilities, and goals and how they might affect your academic choices;
  • Contact your advisor and schedule an appointment when required or when you need assistance;
  • Become knowledgeable about the University, your College, and your academic program;
  • Prepare for advisement sessions (think about what you want to take BEFORE meeting with your advisor) and bring appropriate information and materials;
  • Follow-through on recommendations, referrals, and tasks discussed in your advisement session and ASK QUESTIONS if you aren't clear about something;
  • Meet with your advisor at least once a semester;
  • Understand that you are ultimately responsible for the academic choices and decisions you make.

Preparing for, Attending, and Following up after your Advisement Appointment

​Step 1: Preparation

  • Schedule an appointment in advance for a time when you have no conflicts
  • If the appointment is regarding courses for an upcoming semester, check the curriculum in the online Catalog or on your department's website and make a list of courses you would consider
  • Make a list of questions and points to discuss before the appointment
  • Make sure you know exactly where to show up for the appointment
Step 2: Appointment
  • Arrive early
  • Turn off your cell phone and/or other electronics
  • Bring your list of possible courses, questions and other pertinent paperwork
  • Bring a pad and pencil/pen to take notes
  • Ask for campus resource information or referrals: tutoring, internships, etc.
  • Before you leave the appointment, double check to be sure you got all your questions answered and covered the points you wanted addressed
  • Be sure to thank your advisor for his/her time and attention
Step 3: Follow-up
  • If you are uncertain about anything you heard, send a message explaining your own interpretation to your advisor. Ask your advisor to confirm that you understood the matter correctly. The advisor response will constitute confirmation that might prove useful to you in the future.
  • Explore options, examine suggestions and consider recommendations received during your appointment and act upon them when appropriate

Helpful Hints for Advisement Appointments

1. Don't wait until the last minute to make an appointment with your advisor. Your advisor has many advisees to see. Be aware of registration deadlines (Free Drop/Add, 8-week deadline).

2. Go to the appointment prepared. It may help to ask yourself:

  • Why did I schedule this appointment?
  • Have I remembered to bring any necessary materials and a list of questions?
  • If you are meeting to discuss registration, have you reviewed your degree audit for missing requirements and registration information and outlined the courses you are considering?

3. Arrive on time! Double check the location of your advisor's office. Keep his/her phone number and/or the department's phone number handy, just in case you're running late and need to let someone know.

4. Since academic decisions are ultimately your responsibility, make sure you ask questions during advisement appointments. If you don't understand a requirement or are not clear on a UD policy or procedure, your advisor can assist you in finding out those answers.

5. Don't be afraid to bring up sensitive issues (e.g., failing a class, financial and/or personal problems). Tell your advisor about things that may be affecting your ability to do your best.

6. Remember to thank your advisor for his/her time. This may seem obvious, but it is especially important if he/she has written a recommendation, sent you information about a special scholarship, or hooked you up with that internship you have been dreaming of!

7. Finally, make sure you follow-up on any referrals that your advisor has given you (e.g., writing center, tutoring, counseling center, study abroad).

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