Roles and Responsibilities of Advisors

The academic advisor’s role is an active rather than passive one! The process of effective advising requires the following objectives to be met for each student:

  • Help students define and develop realistic educational career plans through schedule planning for each semester and summer sessions, if appropriate. Each student will have an up-to-date academic schedule plan through to graduation.
  • (Freshmen advisees) Meet with students during orientation to assist with initial adjustment to university academic life.  Schedule at least two face-to-face or virtual meetings with students each semester throughout the academic year.
  • (Continuing advisees) Meet at least once each semester with continuing students to plan for the coming semester (or summer) and to review/revise long range academic program schedules.
  • Assist students in planning a program consistent with their abilities, interests, and career objectives.
  • Monitor progress toward educational and career goals and meet at least once each semester to review the progress toward completing the proposed academic program and to discuss grades and other performance indicators.
  • Discuss and reinforce connections and relationships between academic program(s) and occupation/career pathways and goals
  • Interpret and provide rationale for institutional policies, procedures, and requirements.
  • Follow-up with the advisee on any report of unsatisfactory work (notice of class probation for poor attendance, notice of withdrawal from courses and/or failing grades, incomplete grades from past semester(s), etc.).  Special attention should be paid to students who are admitted provisionally or have been placed on academic probation.
  • Approve all designated educational transactions (e.g., pre-registration/registration schedule, drops/adds, withdrawals, change of major and advisor, waivers, graduation requirements, etc.).
  • Work with the student to determine areas of personal interest, strengths, and challenges. Connect the student with campus-wide and community-based resources and opportunities.
  • Maintain up-to-date Starfish notes, with a summary record of performance to date (grade reports, transcript, requirements completed, etc.), dates of conferences, notation of special circumstances, up-to-date information and details, etc.
  • Inform and, if necessary, refer students to other institutional resources when academic, attendance, or other personal challenges require intervention by other professionals.
  • Proactively contact and be available for student advisees on a regular basis. Office hours should be posted on Starfish and preferably given to the advisee early in the semester. Advisors should plan for extended hours during pre-registration advising.
  • Consult regularly with faculty colleagues in order to have up-to-date information. For career and graduate school options, advisors should refer advisees to the Center for Career and Talent Development or the College of Graduate Studies and Research when more information is needed.