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1970 Advising Policy

Approved by Campus Assembly

The 1970 policy establishes a requirement that students with less that the equivalent of one academic year obtain the signature of their adviser in order to register or cancel/add. Whenever possible, freshmen will be assigned to advisers who are also their freshman seminar instructors.

Sophomores and upper class students will be assigned to faculty advisers in the discipline in which the student intends to major. In cases where the student is undecided, students will be assigned to faculty advisers who enjoy working with undecided students.

The maximum number of advisees to be assigned to any faculty adviser is 30 students. In special circumstances, that number may be exceeded through consultation with the adviser and his/her division chair.

Adviser's Signatures
December 17, 1970

I. Rationale

The following procedures are recommended in order to provide students with a greater opportunity to assume responsibility for their own course planning while, at the same time, insuring that adequate faculty advising help is available and utilized when appropriate. For a more elaborate statement of rationale see the document distributed for the October 20, 1970 meeting.

II. Recommended Procedures

A. Registration

1. Students with less than the equivalent of one academic year of college attendance (i. e. three quarters) would be required to have the signature of their faculty adviser in order to register for classes. The adviser's signature would be taken as approval of the student's course planning and as assurance that adequate advising had taken place.

2. Students having attended college for the equivalent of more than one academic year would be allowed to register without their adviser's signature if they so chose. Registration without the adviser's signature would signify that the student assumed responsibility for his own course planning.

B. Canceling and Adding

1. Students with less than one academic year of college attendance would be required to obtain their adviser's signature when canceling and/or adding courses. The signature would indicate the adviser's approval as well as his assurance that adequate advising had taken place.

2. Students with more than one academic year of college attendance would be permitted to cancel and/or add courses without their adviser's signature.

C. Informing Faculty

1. Copies of student's registration cards would be sent to faculty advisers following each registration period to insure that advisers could have adequate information about their advisee's course planning. These copies of registration cards would be collected by the Records Office and distributed to advisers by the Student Counseling Service.

2. The Records Office would notify faculty advisers and instructors in cases of canceling and/or adding classes as well as withdrawal from college. Such notification would be accomplished by sending copies of withdrawal and cancel-add forms to advisers via the Counseling Service and by mailing similar copies directly to instructors. (Perhaps a special "Notification of Cancel-Add or Withdrawal" form would need to be developed for this purpose.)

D. Maintaining Contact Between advisers and Students

1. Freshmen will continue to be assigned to seminars with their faculty advisers and a student adviser. These seminar groups serve as the primary vehicle to accomplish freshman orientation and advising. The signature requirements for freshmen further insure adequate contact with faculty advisers.

2. Interaction between faculty advisers and students with more than one academic year of college attendance would continue to be a matter dependent upon both student and faculty initiative. Each student would be assigned to a faculty adviser who would retain an advising folder for the student and who would receive current data regarding registration, cancel-add, course deficiencies and grades. As at present students could seek out their advisers for consultation and faculty could initiate conferences with their advisees advisers might engage in group advising procedures with upperclassmen as is done with freshmen during orientation. Informal contacts between faculty and students would supply much of the need for an advising relationship as at present.

3. Normally sophomores and upperclassmen would be assigned to faculty advisers in the discipline within which the student intended to major. However, in those cases where the student remains undecided the Counseling Service would arrange for assignment to a faculty adviser who wishes to work with undecided students. This procedure would help to alleviate load problems for faculty who volunteer to advise freshman seminars, but who cannot retain a large number of undecided advisees beyond freshman year.

4. As at present students would be able to move easily from one faculty adviser to another by simply requesting change of adviser assignment at the Counseling Service. Faculty would continue to have the opportunity to control their advising load by refusing new advisees. 

5. In order to protect faculty from excessive advising loads (thus to increase the probability of adequate advising) it should be generally understood that thirty is a maximum number of advisees to be assigned to any given faculty member. (The individual faculty member and his division chairman may decide to exceed this number in order to accommodate special circumstances, but this action should always be taken reluctantly and in consultation with the Counseling Service.)

6. Special provisions would be made for transfer students to insure that they are given an opportunity to meet with their advisers prior to registration and to provide for their orientation to the college.


III. Policy Considerations

The procedures recommended above assume that most freshmen are in need of a more dependent relationship with their advisers than are more experienced students. It is, therefore, appropriate to ask that advisers assume responsibility for the course planning of freshmen advisees. At the same time it is suggested that the college pursue a policy of encouraging independence by permitting experienced students to seek out advising help on their own initiative and to choose as much independence in their course planning as they wish.

Further, it ought to be a policy of the college to encourage significant relationships to develop between faculty and students wherein the student's developing intellectual and emotional maturity can be facilitated. This kind of relationship can be encouraged by providing opportunities for it to occur, but because of the particular psychology of American adolescents, authoritarian requirements must be minimized since they tend to defeat the goals of facilitating independence in students. The college, then must assume the responsibility of permitting and encouraging facilitative advising relationships, but must avoid attempting to require that they occur.

Essentially Division Chairmen ought to be responsible for insuring that faculty are employed who are interested in, and capable of, establishing good advising relationships with students. Faculty ought to be held responsible to provide such relationships while students ought to be encouraged to assume responsibility for their own education and to enter into relationships with faculty on an independent rather than dependent basis. It is the responsibility of the Student Counseling Service along with Division Chairmen to see that a climate conducive to good advising exists.


Joe Jesseph, Student Counseling Service