Advising Syllabus

Our Advising Expectations

Advising is a collaborative relationship between the academic advisor and student to reach meaningful goals. Review our advising syllabus below.


  • Read your University of Arizona CatMail (email) daily.
  • Take the initiative to meet with your advisor at least three times per semester to discuss your progress and goals.
  • Be involved in the advising process by :
    • being prepared to discuss your goals and educational plans during meetings
    • bringing questions and necessary materials to meetings
    • being open to suggestions from your advisor
  • Execute an academic plan directed toward completing your degree.
  • Take responsibility for making your own academic and career decisions based on available information and advice, including your graduation plan.
  • Develop a working knowledge of policies, procedures, deadlines, and campus resources.
  • Review and become familiar with your major/minor requirements each semester and track your progress towards graduation.
  • Frequently visit the Office of Student Engagement and Career Development. Participate in their events and services.

  • Advise you in making academic decisions consistent with your interests, abilities, and goals, and relate them to academic majors and minors.
  • Accurately and effectively communicate college and university policies and processes, deadlines, and campus resources.
  • Listen responsively, and address questions, concerns, and problems; refer you to appropriate support services when needed.
  • Assist you in:
    • defining and/or clarifying your academic and career goals
    • creating short- and long-term academic plans consistent with those goals
    • evaluating transfer and study abroad credit
    • planning for graduation
  • Provide advice to help you deal with roadblocks and difficulties in your degree program.
  • Maintain confidentiality according to the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA).
  • Be available and accessible to answer questions in person, via e-mail, or by phone

Guiding Statements for Academic Advising Community: Mission, Vision, & Philosophy

The academic advising community at the University of Arizona has drafted three documents to describe our work. It begins with a mission statement to briefly explain the current focus and goal. The next document is a vision statement that offers future aspirations. The third document is a philosophy statement that shares values and locates the work of the academic advising community in theories, frameworks, and tools that offer direction for achieving student success. The goal of these documents is to provide stakeholders with a concise understanding of academic advising from those involved in delivery at The University of Arizona.

We, the academic advisors of The University of Arizona, are educators who use a collaborative, proactive approach to provide accurate information that empowers students to navigate the university and define their success. We serve students, their support systems, department and campus colleagues, and the greater community through transparent and open communication. Our responsibilities as we support the institutional mission of retention, graduation, and overall student success are sharing relevant and timely information; explaining curriculum, policies, and processes; identifying resources; advancing equitable practices; advocating for students; and engaging in continuous training and development.

We, the academic advisors of The University of Arizona, strive to maximize human potential, affirm a sense of belonging, and empower students and colleagues to thrive through partnerships grounded in the institutional mission of student success. As a community, we continuously examine, explore, and identify new theories, approaches, practices, and tools that will stimulate innovative ideas for interaction with students, colleagues, and partners. Driven by an equity-based lens, we champion future changes in policies and processes that promote development, growth, and readiness resulting in holistic student success.

We, the academic advising community at The University of Arizona, are a university-wide network of academic advisors, academic advising directors, faculty advisors, campus colleagues, and peer advisors dedicated to empowering students to achieve their academic goals. As a community, we are bound by shared values to guide interactions with students, colleagues, faculty, campus partners, and members of the broader community. These values nurture student success and are shared in the image below.

These foundational values (accuracy, consistency, empathy, empowerment, equity, honesty, inclusion, professionalism, respect, support, transparency, and trust) guide our practice for academic advising to support our community and care for ourselves.

The practice of academic advising is collaborative, respectful, proactive, and driven by a student-centered orientation. We view students through a growth mindset lens; encouraging students to thrive on challenges by embracing their unique assets as a launch pad for developing new abilities, skills, and talents. The student experience is at the core of our field. Surrounding this core is an aspirational goal to create relationships and spaces committed to respect, trust, empathy, and inclusion for all stakeholders. We believe it takes the entire university community to fully support students as they achieve educational goals.

We serve as translators for the University of Arizona culture by explaining university and college policies for both advocacy and information purposes. We identify campus and community resources that promote growth, development, and wellness. Our practice requires a holistic view of students to promote persistence and success leading to graduation as well as promoting institutional excellence.

As an academic advising community, we are influenced and informed by a variety of student development, identity-based, and learning focused theories. Academic advisors employ a variety of approaches, such as but not limited to appreciative advising, proactive advising, strengths-based advising, developmental advising as we engage as educators with students. Through kind and respectful partnerships with students, we build trust and tailor the experience to accommodate the unique needs of the student.

In addition to theories and scholarship, we employ technology as a tool for connecting advisors, students, and resources. Advisors leverage technology to document the student journey and provide customized support. Additionally, we encourage students to use technology for self-advocacy and empowerment.
We, as educators, recognize the importance of on-going advisor development focused on relevant theories, approaches, models, and specific campus content, which is communicated through scholarly literature, campus resources, professional organizations, and other appropriate outlets. Through this learning-focused perspective, we continue to refine our practice, enhance the student experience at the University of Arizona, and educate stakeholders about the field of academic advising.

How to Meet with Your Advisor

  • Appointments usually last 30 minutes, to discuss course scheduling, career plans, internships, study abroad, pre-professional questions, etc.
  • Appointments are scheduled in advance, via our online scheduling system or via phone at 520-621-7763. Please have your student ID number ready.
  • If you are unable to meet in person, Zoom appointments may be scheduled.

When you need an answer to a quick question (e.g., Would NSC 101 fulfill my last T1 NATS requirement?); meetings tend to last less than 10 minutes. Consultation is available on a first-come, first-served basis with the advisor or paraprofessional (student peer advisor) on call.

  • Monday, Tuesday, Thursday: 12pm-3pm
  • Wednesday: 10am-2pm
  • Friday: 10am-1pm

When you have a short, general question that requires a brief, one-line answer (e.g., Does ARH 329 count for both Tier 2 INDV and Tier 2 Humanities?). Please refer to our website and/or the University of Arizona website first, as many questions are already answered for you there.

Quick advising and email/telephone should NOT be used for questions such as, “What General Education classes do I have left?” These questions seem deceptively simple, but may entail large amounts of information that are best explained in person. The only exception to this is if you physically cannot come in to meet with an advisor (e.g., you are not in Tucson, away on an internship or study abroad, etc.).

Communication Etiquette

  • Arrive promptly for your appointment and check in at the front desk.
  • Cancel online or by calling, in advance, if you cannot make it to your appointment.
  • Make your appointment WELL IN ADVANCE of your first day to register for classes!
  • Write down a list of topics/questions you want to address.
  • Prepare a list of courses you are considering.
  • Keep all your advising information organized in a folder and bring it to appointments.
  • Bring paper and pen to take notes.
  • Bring a laptop, if you have one.
  • Turn off/silence your cell phone before you walk into your advisor’s office

  • Use your University of Arizona CatMail account.
  • Use a clear subject line such as “Question about my schedule.”
  • Include your full name as well as your student ID number.
  • Include the course numbers of any classes you are having difficulty registering for, along with any error messages you may be receiving.
  • Keep your questions clear, short, and to the point.
  • Don’t be too casual with your advisor when using e-mail. Proof-read and spell check!
  • Allow 24 hours for a response, excluding weekends and holidays.

  • Leave your name, student ID number, phone number with area code, repeated twice, along with the nature of your question.
  • Speak slowly and clearly.

  • Meet with your academic advisor
  • Explore interests, strengths, and potential careers
  • Make a tentative plan of classes, year by year
  • Build a resume
  • Get involved in clubs, organizations, volunteering, etc.
  • Look into study abroad, internships, and/or research opportunities

  • Meet with your academic advisor
  • Develop relationships with faculty and mentors
  • Finalize and declare major(s) and minor(s)
  • Update resume
  • Seek internships, research opportunities, and/or study abroad programs
  • Stay involved in activities that suit your interests and goals

  • Meet with your academic advisor
  • Research career options and graduate programs
  • Talk to pre-professional advisors or career services
  • Update resume
  • Continue research, internships, volunteering, and involvement in clubs and organizations
  • Take graduate exams (LSAT, GRE, MCAT, GMAT)

  • Apply for graduation online in UAccess
  • Meet with your advisor to complete your degree check
  • Finalize career, professional, or postgraduate plans
  • Apply for graduate or professional schools
  • Submit resumes, begin interviewing

Dates and Deadlines

Student Academic Responsibilities for the Semester

Before term begins: Identify your goals and finalize your semester schedule.

  • Week 1-2: If necessary, make any last-minute changes to your schedule; check academic deadlines on the Registrar’s website regarding adding and dropping courses. Check with your advisor about any course changes.
  • Week 3-6: Visit your instructors during their office hours before your first exam.
  • Week 4: Evaluate how you are doing in your classes; usually the drop deadline occurs around this time.
  • Week 5-7: Get ready to register for next term by setting up an appointment with your academic advisor. Re-evaluate how you are doing in your current courses; usually the final withdrawal deadline occurs around this time.
  • Week 8-12: Get ready for midterms. Look up your Enrollment Appointment on UAccess and enroll in courses for the next term.
  • Week 13-16: Complete any projects due at the end of the term. Verify final exam dates/times and begin exam review. Visit instructor office hours and Think Tank for extra help.
  • Finals Week: Good luck on your exams!