32-00 Advising Policy


32-00 Advising Policy

The policies of Section 32-00 define the goals and purposes of the university’s academic advising program.

The objectives of the university’s academic advising program are to help advisees identify and achieve their academic goals, to promote their intellectual discovery, and to encourage students to take advantage of both in-and out-of class educational opportunities in order that they become self-directed learners and decision makers.

Revised: 12/18/79
Revised: 3/22/97
Revised Editorially: 4/10/07

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32-10 The University’s Advising Program

The policies of Section 32-10 describe the structure of the University’s advising program.

Oversight of the University’s academic advising program rests with the University Advising Council. This Council will be appointed by the Vice President and Dean for Undergraduate Education and will consist of two faculty who are members of the Senate Committee on Undergraduate Education, two students, two academic advisers, and two administrators. One representative from each of the following units will be appointed as an ex-officio member: Office of the University Registrar, World Campus, and Continuing Education.The Council will have sufficient authority to aid all academic units in improving the delivery of their advising programs in accordance with the criteria for effective advising listed below. The Council will guide the following policies and assess the quality of the University’s advising program.

B-1 Structure of the University’s Advising Program
B-6 College, Campus, and Administrative Advising Information and Communications

Revised: 12/18/79
Revised: 2/5/80
Revised: 5/5/81
Revised Editorially: 4/10/07
Revised Editorially: 9/22/08
Revised: 12/8/09
Revised: 3/16/10

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32-20 The Nature of the University Advising Program

Each academic unit will establish an academic advising program designed to meet the goals set forth in 32-00. An effective academic advising program possesses the following elements:

  1. POLICY. An advising policy stating the program’s philosophy and practice and what students can expect from the advising program.
  2. STRUCTURE. An organizational model for the delivery of effective advising.
  3. SUPPORT. Appropriate information, resources, and electronic systems to work effectively with students.
  4. PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT. On-going professional development for all advisers within a comprehensive development program.
  5. DELIVERY. Strategies to accommodate the specific advising needs of the unit’s advisees.
  6. FIRST YEAR STUDENTS. Assurance that all students in their first two semesters of study at the University, including all transfer students, will consult with an academic adviser.
  7. FREQUENCY OF CONSULTATIONS. Workable guidelines concerning the ratio of advisees to adviser and the frequency with which they should consult.
  8. RECOGNITION AND REWARD. Recognition of academic advising in the general rewards structure.
  9. ASSESSMENT. A comprehensive assessment to measure the effectiveness of the advising program.

B-2 The Nature of the University Advising Program
B-5 Academic Information System

Revised: 12/18/79
Revised: 5/5/81
Revised Editorially: 4/10/07

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32-30 Responsibilities of Advisers and Advisees

The policies of section 32-30 delineate the responsibilities of advisers and advisees within each of the various university advising systems.

Both advisers and advisees share responsibility for making the advising relationship succeed. By encouraging their advisees to become engaged in their education, to meet their educational goals, and to develop the habit of learning, advisers assume a significant educational role. The advisee’s unit of enrollment will provide each advisee with a primary academic adviser, the information needed to plan the chosen program of study, and referrals to other specialized resources.

Responsibility for providing the student with a primary academic adviser is as follows:

  • Degree Students

University Park – The college in which the student is enrolled or the Division of Undergraduate Studies is responsible for providing the student with a primary academic adviser.

Commonwealth Campuses – The campus where the student is enrolled is responsible for providing the student with a primary academic adviser.

  •  Non-degree Conditional Students

University Park – The college where the student is seeking reinstatement and/or re-enrollment is responsible for providing the student with a primary academic adviser.

Commonwealth Campuses – The campus where the student is enrolled is responsible for providing the student with a primary academic adviser.

  • Non-degree Conditional Students who have never been enrolled in degree status at Penn State and all Nondegree Regular Students

University Park – The college to which the student seeks admission or the Division of Undergraduate Studies (if the student is undecided or exploring curricular options) is responsible for providing the student with a primary academic adviser.

Commonwealth Campuses – The campus where the student is enrolled is responsible for providing the student with a primary academic adviser.

  • Degree-Seeking Provisional Students

University Park–The Division of Undergraduate Studies is responsible for providing the student with a primary academic adviser.

Commonwealth Campuses–The Division of Undergraduate Studies designee at the campus where the student is enrolled is responsible for providing the student with a primary academic adviser.

The college or department also will monitor the progress of its advisees towards satisfactory completion of all graduation requirements. Advisees in turn will routinely contact their advisers each semester and will assume final responsibility for course scheduling, program planning, and the successful completion of graduation requirements.

B-3 Responsibilities of Advisers and Advisees

Revised: 9/9/75
Revised: 5/5/81 (as 32-90)
Revised Editorially: 4/10/07
Revised: 12/8/09
Revised: 3/16/10
Revised: 4/29/14

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32-40 Assignment of Adviser

  • Degree Candidates

University Park – Responsibility for assignment of adviser for every student with degree status rests with the college in which the student is enrolled or the Division of Undergraduate Studies.

Commonwealth Campuses – Responsibility for assignment of adviser rests with the campus where the student is enrolled.

  • Degree-Seeking Provisional Students

University Park – Responsibility for assignment of adviser rests with the Division of Undergraduate Studies.

Commonwealth Campuses – Responsibility for assignment of adviser rests with the Division of Undergraduate Studies designee at the campus where the student is enrolled.

  • Non-degree Conditional Students previously enrolled at Penn State

University Park – Responsibility for assignment of adviser rests with the college to which the student seeks reinstatement and/or re-enrollment.

Commonwealth Campuses – Responsibility for assignment of adviser rests with the campus where the student is enrolled.

  • Non-degree Conditional Students not previously enrolled in degree status at Penn State and all Non-degree Regular Students

University Park – Responsibility for assignment of adviser rests with the college to which the student seeks admission or with the Division of Undergraduate Studies if the student is undecided or exploring curricular options.

Commonwealth Campuses – Responsibility for assignment of adviser rests with the campus where the student is enrolled.

B-4 Assignment of Advisers

Revised: 12/18/79
Revised: 1/31/06
Revised: 12/8/09
Revised: 3/16/10
Revised: 4/29/14

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32-50 Audit of Unfulfilled Requirements

The degree audit report is an important advising tool that specifically tracks progress to completion of degree requirements. The degree audit report combines the official academic record with the student’s declared academic program to identify those program requirements that are completed and those program requirements that are unfulfilled. Each undergraduate degree candidate (Baccalaureate or Associate) must have access to a current copy of that student’s degree audit report each semester the candidate is enrolled.

L-1 Senate Mandated Degree Audit
L-2 Degree Checking

Revised: 3/25/97 (as 32-80)

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