The goal of academic advising is to support students as they develop individualized paths through the curriculum, allowing students to meet their academic, personal, and professional goals. Academic advisers serve as a primary point of contact, working in collaboration with faculty, campus partners, and other resources to support students' academic success.
Every student is assigned to a College adviser, a full-time professional who helps undergraduates pursue their academic interests and guides them as they plan a program of study leading to a degree.
During the first year, College advisers help students to select Core Curriculum courses, balance study and extracurricular activities, and think about possible majors. Returning students can expect their advisers to provide guidance on campus opportunities like internships, scholarships, and ways to get involved with faculty research. Advisers also provide guidance on planning a curriculum, choosing a major, and staying on track to graduate.
Advisers also serve as a primary point-of-contact with UChicago College. Students should always inform their adviser if they are experiencing particular problems in class, suffering health issues that interfere with their studies, or are encountering other unforeseen events that pose a challenge to their academic success. Advisers work with their students to resolve the issues, often seeking assistance from administrators or partner offices, as necessary.
Beyond academics, advisers also provide guidance on achieving personal and professional goals. They often advise students on pursuits outside of the classroom and help students coordinate their academic choices with emerging career goals.
Students are encouraged to meet with their advisers as frequently as necessary. To establish an effective advising relationship, advisers need to know their students well; the better a student knows their adviser, the easier it is for the adviser to be of help.
Students are encouraged to schedule appointments with their College adviser whenever they have questions about courses and programs of study or UChicago College rules and regulations. Most students meet with their adviser a few times per academic year.
Advising meetings are scheduled for 30 minutes, and topics range from course selection and degree plan completion to career planning and personal development. Advisers are able to connect students to all of the resources necessary for success in the College.
Required Advising Conferences
Students in UChicago College meet with their advisers at least five times during their first year and at least once per academic year after that. The mandatory adviser meetings are as follows:
Students who do not complete a required conference by the end of 7th week are prevented from accessing the Course Request System. Students who do not attend a required conference by the end of 10th week are prevented from participating in add/drop period until that conference has been held. Students should schedule their appointments well in advance of the deadlines, as advisers are often unable to accommodate last-minute appointments.
Appointments with a College adviser can be scheduled through our online scheduling system. Advising appointments are available weekdays only and must be scheduled no later than 3:00pm the previous business day.
Students who have urgent questions or problems should contact their adviser directly. If their adviser is not available, students can ask to speak with the adviser-on-call.
Appointments with other members of the College Dean of Students Office other than advisers should be scheduled through the front desk on the second floor of Harper Memorial Library during business hours.
Students work with their College adviser to declare their major or minor. Unless otherwise specified by the department, the deadline for declaring a major is Spring Quarter of the third year, although students are urged to decide upon a major by the end of second year, which will allow for improved planning for study abroad opportunities, preparation for graduate or professional school, or competing for internships or fellowships.
To officially declare a major students need to:
Incoming first-year and transfer students are encourage to work with the College Academic Advising Office over the summer before they begin at UChicago. Incoming students will have a number of required tasks and placement tests to take during that summer and are encourage to be in contact with the College advisers during that time.
For more information, please review our New Student Advising materials.
Throughout every step of the academic journey, UChicago provides programs and support to ensure students achieve their full potential.