Tips for Receiving Excellent Academic Advising:

A recent article in the New York Times by Glenn C. Altschuler (November 11, 2001, section 4A, p. 17) offered the following advice for students on how to obtain the best academic advising. 

Students can increase their chances of finding good advisers and get more out of the relationship if they take some initiative and adjust their expectations:

·When possible, institutions match the academic interests of students with those of their advisers, but mismatches are frequent, especially in the most popular departments. Starting with an adviser on neutral ground, however, may actually be helpful since as many as 70 percent of undergraduates abandon the major they identified when they applied to college. 

·Expect to meet with an adviser during orientation week and before enrolling each term. Consult with your adviser whenever you add or drop a course, even if his [or her] signature is not required. In addition to these visits, make an appointment within two weeks of the beginning of the semester, whether or not there is a problem, and at least two more times each semester to talk about ideas or assignments that excite or puzzle you. Orientation [and registration are] the worst time[s] for advisers and advisees to get to know each other; students are focused exclusively on choosing courses, and professors are overbooked. 

·The very first appointment with an adviser sets the tone for all that will follow. When a student stands at the door, glancing nervously at other freshmen in the hall waiting for their appointment, with an arm stretched out clutching a form, the adviser is almost certain to say, "Where do I sign?" and end the session. Come prepared with a succinct introduction, describing intellectual passions, academic aptitudes, extracurricular interests, career aspirations and issues of special concern before turning to course selection.