Advising is an integral part of the teaching and learning mission of MSU. In the one-on-one
advising relationship, students are guided in the kind of systematic thinking, knowledge
integration and decision making they will need throughout their college career.
New students coming to MSU are often not sure about what they are interested in learning. Many who choose a major at the beginning of their freshman year change it at least once before they graduate. Advisors in the Academic Advising Center (AAC) help students explore their interests and strengths so that when they do choose a major, the choice is one that makes sense for them individually.
Advising for New Students
Advisors understand the sometimes overwhelming choices facing freshmen. At the AAC, students meet with a professional advisor and talk through their academic aptitudes, individual interests and career plans. Based on this discussion, students choose a program of study that is right for them.
Students may meet with an advisor as many times as they would like to in order to craft an academic plan suited to their personal goals as well as career goals.
Advising for Students-in-Transition
What about students who start out in one major and later decide they want to change? Advisors in the AAC will ease the transition by helping them plan a course of study that is a better fit for them individually, and will assist them in integrating the courses they have already taken into a new major.
Students transferring to MSU from other institutions can also meet with AAC advisors to ask initial questions about courses and programs at MSU. Although the AAC does not make decisions on transfer equivalencies, advisors are knowledgeable about departmental programs of study and are skilled at assisting transfer students in making the transition to a new major.
Advising and College Success
Education theorist Richard Light maintains that "Good advising may be the single most underestimated characteristic of a successful college experience." An advisor who can guide the new or transitioning student through the many questions and decisions of academic life is often a key factor for a student's success in college.
AAC advisors can help students who are in any of the following situations, regardless of their major:
- exploring major options
- transitioning between majors
- completing CORE 2.0 requirements
- planning a course schedule for a future semester
- transferring to or from other institutions
- interested in majors not offered at MSU
- experiencing limited access to departmental advising
- conditionally admitted to MSU
- seeking admission to competitive degree programs
- interested in programs for academic enhancement or support
- enrolled in University Studies
How to Get Advising Assistance at the AAC
Many advising needs are met through walk-in advising; for more extensive sessions, appointments are also available. Call 994-3532, or come to the Academic Advising Center office, 130 Gaines Hall. Advisors are available 8:00 am to 5:00 pm, Monday through Friday, every day the University is open for business. The Academic Advising Center is closed on Wednesdays from 8:30-9:30 for a staff meeting.