Make the Most of Your Academic Advising

Academic advising at Bradley University is an essential aspect of every student’s college experience.  Advisors want to assist you in planning your academic coursework.  To fulfill all the necessary requirements for graduation, there are several items that each student must complete to ensure that advising sessions are productive and helpful.

Academic advising consists of two highly integrated parts:

  1. Exploring academic and career opportunities
  2. Identifying requirements to create short term and long term schedules

Pre-Advising:

  • Update your local address, phone numbers, and directory information (this can be done at anytime through Webster).
  • Make an appointment with your academic advisor at least one week prior to your registration.
    • Contact your academic department to find out who your advisor is if s/he is not listed in the Schedule of Classes.
    • If you have a second major, or minor, meet with your academic advisor in those departments as well.
  • Check your account on Webster for any holds (this prevents you from registering)
    • Call the department for which the hold was placed.
    • Provide payment for outstanding fees if that is the case.
    • Meet with your academic advisor if it is an academic hold.
  • While on Webster, review and print a copy of your DARS (Degree Audit).
    • Review all general education courses you need to complete.
    • Review major requirements that you need to complete.
    • Review additional University requirements that you must fulfill.
  • Review your Course Catalog for “suggested” coursework and various course descriptions.
  • Obtain a copy of the Schedule of Classes or go online - http://www.bradley.edu/classes/
    • Review time options for the courses you need.
    • Make note of all prerequisites for the courses.
    • Create a schedule based on courses needed and their availability.
    • List possible alternatives to courses.
  • Prepare a list of questions to ask your academic advisor, such as:
    • Do the classes I have chosen adequately cover my major, gen. ed., and University requirements? In case some classes are closed, what are some alternatives I can use?
    • Have I met the prerequisites for these courses?
    • What can I do with this major?
    • Who are some employers that hire people like me who major in………….?
    • I really don’t like my major anymore! What should I do?
    • Does my course schedule look OK? Can I register now?
    • Was my academic hold removed?
    • Can I study abroad and still receive general education or elective credit?
    • Can I take classes at a community college or at a four-year school back home and will these courses come back as General Education classes/courses for my major/elective credit?
    • Did my AP courses transfer in?
    • Can we map out a four-year plan so that I can graduate on time?
    • If I change my major, how long will it now take me to graduate? 

Academic Advising Appointment:

  • Be on time, or call to cancel if you are unable to meet.
  • Bring your DARS, schedules, and list of questions.
  • Discuss your goals (major/minor, career and personal goals, graduation dates).
  • Discuss any academic challenges you may be facing.
  • Show your schedule and discuss it.
  • Discuss the course load and mixture of courses.
  • Discuss any coursework you are considering taking over the summer or winter terms and obtain all forms needed.
  • If you are a senior, discuss graduation requirements and complete the Application for Graduation form (which is in the Schedule of Classes as well as online at the Registrar’s Office:  http://www.bradley.edu/registrar/graduation/

Post-Advising:

  • Follow through on plans of action identified during the advising session.
  • Register at the allocated time slot or anytime after.
  • If the classes are full:
    • Wait list courses.
    • Check Webster schedule in two weeks for update on classes.
    • Follow up with academic advisor in two weeks if wait listed courses are not listed on your schedule for suggestions.
    • Check with the department chairperson of the courses needed.
  • If you are confused, contact the Advisement Hotline at 677-2420.
  • Ultimately, YOU are responsible for meeting all the prerequisites and academic requirements for graduation.