Academic Advising: Understanding Your Role, Your Advisor's Role
From the moment you step foot on Plattsburgh's campus (and even before), there is an astounding amount of academic assistance available to you! As a matriculated student, you always have a designated "Academic Advisor" in your major or program.
Your academic advisor is usually your first contact when you need to:
- Plan courses for the next semester
- Ask a question about a campus resource, or
- Explore major-specific careers or other special opportunities.
Your Academic Advisor's Role
Your academic advisor is primarily responsible for the following:
- Affording ample opportunity to meet to discuss your educational experiences, especially during the designated "course advisement period," when your advisor reviews your selection of courses for the following semester and issues your registration PIN;
- Acquainting you with general education requirements and college policies;
- Ensuring that you are aware of departmental requirements and specific course sequences in the major; determining that you have had adequate preparation (e.g., prerequisite courses) for courses that are recommended;
- Assisting you in the continual monitoring and evaluation of your progress toward your degree;
- Assisting you in clarifying your values and goals and to better understand yourself;
- Recommending college services, campus involvement or other opportunities, in order for you to make the most of what is available to you.
YOU, too, have a special responsibility in the advising process. You should take initiative to seek advisement and to develop a relationship with your advisor. To do your part well, you should do all of the following:
- Learn the name and location of your academic advisor. Introduce yourself to your academic advisor(s) early in the semester, and have a short conversation about how things are going so far.
- Call or visit your advisor at the first sign of a question, concern, or problem. Advisors are excellent sources of support, referral, and information about campus resources, policies, and courses specific to your field of study.
- Login to MyPlattsburgh very regularly and to check Plattsburgh e-mail and important announcements about advising from the College and from advisors;
- Attend to the many announcements about "course advisement period" that occurs during the two weeks following midterm grades. Each student visits their advisor's office to sign up for an appointment, during which the advisor assists with course selection, reviews midterm grades, and issues a registration PIN code. Missing course advisement period prevents you from access to priority registration for the next semester.
- Prepare for advisement by keeping track of your Degree Works audit (which always lists satisfied and outstanding degree requirements), searching the online master schedule of courses offered in the next semester, and keeping on hand your copy of the College Catalog which lists all academic policies that apply to your admission year.
- Keep track of your progress toward degree completion (by using the above mentioned tools), as it is ultimately your responsibility to ensure that all requirements have been met.
Other Advisory Resources
Your advisor is not an isolated resource for academic or other assistance! You may also consult with (in no particular order):
- Your Department Chair - if your advisor is unavailable and you have a major-specific question or concern that requires immediate assistance.
- Academic Advising Office - if you are unclear about an academic policy, need a second opinion, need clarification about advisement/registration procedures, or have academic difficulties that cause you to consider a course or college withdrawal.
- The Learning Center - if you could use an academic boost through free tutoring, or an Academic Personal Trainer to assist with notetaking, study skills, time managemet, goal setting
- Residence Life Staff (such as a CA or RA/RD) - especially if you are new and unfamiliar with navigating your way around campus or are unsure about how advisement works.
- Student Health & Counseling Center - if a medical, psychological, or other personal issue is interfering with your ability to focus on your schoolwork or has/will affect your academic performance.
- Career Development Center - if you are not satisfied with your current major path and are contemplating a different direction, or if you are satisfied with your current major but want information about the next step in your professional/career planning.
- Student Support Services - if you have a documented learning/physical disability, or if you now believe you have a disability, and require assessment or accommodated services to assist you in your academic pursuits.
As you can tell, SUNY Plattsburgh has abundant resources available to you - for academic advising and much more! All you need to do is ask.
Office Location: Feinberg 101-103
Phone: (518) 564-2080
Fax: (518) 564-2079