Roles

Your Smeal College academic adviser is here to act as an educational "consultant," helping you understand requirements, options, possible outcomes, and processes. Ultimately, you will be making the decisions. In this respect, you are the CEO of your education.

For more information about how you can work with your adviser and get the most out of your meetings, visit the Academic Advising Center's' webpage.

Below is an excerpt from the University Faculty Senate outlining the roles of both advisers and advisees. View the full policy.

The Academic Adviser's Role

  1. Help the advisee to understand the nature of the University's academic programs and to understand the expected standards of achievement and likelihood of success in certain areas of study. The adviser also seeks to understand each advisee's particular concerns affecting academic progress.
  2. The adviser helps the advisee to follow appropriate University procedures and to understand their purposes. The adviser neither grants nor denies administrative approval for the advisee's particular academic actions.
  3. Discuss the educational and career objectives suited to the advisee's demonstrated abilities and expressed interests. The adviser helps the advisee to understand the relationships among the courses, General Education, University requirements, programs, undergraduate research opportunities, internships, study abroad programs, and other academic experiences provided by the university.
  4. Help the advisee to plan a course of study and give advice about courses and the adjustment of course loads. The adviser will inform the advisee about the prerequisites for subsequent courses in the advisee's program.
  5. Refer advisees to other resources when appropriate.
  6. Participate in the professional development provided by each college or department to keep informed and current.

The Advisee's Role

  1. Acquire the information needed to assume final responsibility for course scheduling, program planning, and the successful completion of all graduation requirements.
  2. Seek the academic and career information needed to meet educational goals.
  3. Become knowledgeable about the relevant policies, procedures, and rules of the University, college, and academic program.
  4. Be prepared with accurate information and relevant materials when contacting the adviser.
  5. Consult with the adviser at least once a semester to decide on courses, review the accuracy of the degree audit, check progress towards graduation, and discuss the suitability of other educational opportunities provided by the university.