Academic Planning

Click on the link below for an alphabetical listing of career-advising guides. The guides describe the field of study and typical starting salaries, list skills and attributes of people who work in the area, suggest related occupations and extracurricular activities that can help students explore the area further, and refer students to resources where they can get additional information.

Career Advising Guides

Overview of Academic Advising

Academic advising is one of the most important influences on students' collegiate experiences. Through regular contact with students--whether face-to-face, through the mail, on the telephone, or through computer-mediated systems--advisors gain meaningful insights into students' academic, social, and personal experiences. Advisors use these insights to help students become part of the academic community, develop sound academic and career goals, and ultimately, to be successful learners.

It is the philosophy of Shippensburg University that good academic advising enhances the retention and satisfaction of students. Academic advising facilitates student development and helps students determine their goals. Advisors can assist with a student's decision-making process, not only at the beginning of their first year, but also throughout their college career.

Advisors are the link to the academic system and its rules and regulations. Advisors know the requirements of the General Education Program as well as the general requirements within each major. They can enhance your collegiate experience, refer you to campus resources to help you with problems, and save you from wasting time, effort, and/or money. Good academic advising involves more than just scheduling classes. Your advisor is your "significant other" on campus, the person who can help you realize your full potential by helping you establish important career, personal, and life goals.

All students are assigned to an academic advisor. Faculty within the academic departments provide academic advisement for students in their majors programs. Undeclared students are advised by faculty and administrators who volunteer to work with undeclared students. If you do not know who your academic advisor is or if you want to change your advisor, see the chair of the department; if you are undeclared, go to the Office of Undeclared Students in Horton Hall, Room 112.

Advisor/Advisee Responsibilities

Advising is a joint responsibility. It is your advisor's job to be knowledgeable about the university programs and services, to be available to you at scheduled times, and to assist you with your academic concerns. It is your responsibility to know your advisor's office hours, to make and keep advising appointments, to prepare questions and bring any appropriate materials or concerns to the meetings, and to see your advisor whenever you have questions. Do not assume that you or your friends know an answer to an advising question. See your advisor regularly.

How often should I see my advisor? 

Studies indicate that there is a high correlation between students who are academically successful and those who work with their advisors; there is an equally high correlation among students who ignore their advisors and academically fail. Your advisor can help you get the most out of your education. Give your advisor a chance to get to know you. Ideally, you should meet with your advisor at least once a month, more often if necessary.

Suggested Schedule of Meetings with your Advisor 

You should meet with your advisor before the deadline to drop/add to make necessary schedule changes. Other times include: to get acquainted early in the semester; to review your academic progress at midterm and to withdraw from a course, if necessary; to request any personality, career or major assessment; to revise your class schedule and to seek referrals for academic assistance if you are on academic probation; and, of course, to schedule classes for next semester.

Advisors can: 

  • help you become familiar with the general education program and paired course requirements.
  • help you with major and career decision-making. Your advisor can provide you with a variety of personal interest assessments, both on campus and through the internet, and can discuss your results with you or refer you to on-campus experts.
  • help you deal with a personal issue that is impacting on your academic performance. Your advisor may be able to help or he/she will refer you to someone who can.
  • listen to your concerns and help you determine the best course of action.
  • serve as a mentor, write a job recommendation, inform you of an internship opportunities or the availability of a scholarship, and help you with your resume.
  • be a friend.

Finally… most advisors want to help students, but they are busy people and they cannot chase you in order to do it! Don't wait until the last minute to see your advisor and then complain that you can never find him or her. Getting a college education is a journey that is exciting and rewarding but also confusing and overwhelming. Give your advisor the opportunity to help.