How well will my advisee understand the Foundations and Core requirements?

Most freshmen will require help interpreting what is expected of them. I find it helpful to go over the Foundations and Core check sheet with students during every advising session. Checking off completed courses together visually reminds students of the requirements they have completed and those they have yet to tackle.

My advisee wants to delay taking certain Foundations and Core courses. Should I dissuade her?

Try to keep advisees from putting off requirements they fear, particularly those in math and foreign language. Remind them that it’s best to take such courses while they still retain some of their understanding from high school. Professors from both departments tell me that students who delay these requirements don’t perform as well.

My advisee wants to take Foundations and Core courses at his local community college. What does he need to do?

In their second semester, freshman advisees often share their intentions of completing general education requirements at other institutions over the summer. Tell them they have some leg work to do. Their first stop should be the Registrar’s Office. Registrar staff members will help them determine whether or not their desired course will transfer appropriately to GC.

A student stopped by my office panicked because he got a C on his first exam. He’s afraid of losing his scholarship. How should I respond?

Review the GPA requirements for retaining a scholarship in the catalog with your student (3.3 for students with half-tuition and above; 3.0 for students with less than half-tuition). Many are mistaken about what GPA they must earn to keep their funding. Remind him to focus on the immediate problem of improving his work in the course about which he is concerned. If it’s appropriate, point out that there is an appeals process that will keep him from losing his scholarship if he just misses the GPA requirement.

My advisee wants to major in Engineering. Can she do that?

Yes, Georgetown offers dual degree programs in Engineering and Nursing Arts. Your student will earn her degree by completing its requirements during three years at Georgetown and two at the University of Kentucky. Also, make sure she is in contact with the appropriate program coordinator (David Bowman for Engineering; Mark Johnson for nursing). This advisor should take over as her primary advisor as soon as possible.

My advisee placed in French 102 but wants to take French 101 as a refresher course. Should I let him do this?

Over the past few years, the World Languages department has experienced problems with students who insist on taking the introductory courses out of insecurity or for the sake of an easy “A.” For this reason, students who are placed in 102 or above cannot earn credit for taking the entry level course.

My advisee says she earned college or AP credit in high school, but it’s not on her transcript. Should I be concerned?

Occasionally high schools don’t get the information about credit earned to students. Because the problem is probably not an error by the Registrar’s office, have the student follow up with her high school.

What are my advisees’ options for fulfilling the math requirement?

The Foundations and Core curriculum requires MAT 100 or CSC100, or any MAT course at or above MAT107. The appropriate math course is dictated by the student’s major and high school preparation/ACT subscore. Typically, students who are not prepared for calculus or are not majoring in math, the sciences, or business enroll in MAT 111 (Elementary Probability and Statistics) or MAT115 (Liberal Arts Mathematics).

My advisee is working toward certification in education. What special concerns does this present?

Education students must arrange their schedules to leave time for their TA assignments. In addition, they must complete a curriculum that often requires more courses than a stand-alone major. Make sure your advisee has a copy of the teacher certification handbook and is taking the right set of courses for her or his area of certification. If you have trouble interpreting the appropriate curriculum contract, talk the matter over with the student’s education advisor.

Other than drafting a schedule, what should I discuss with advisees during their pre-registration appointments?

This is a good time to go over NEXUS totals and to check whether the student is on track to earn 39 upper-level hours. Students also appreciate your help with creating a four-year plan. Once they’ve defined their academic goals, you can help them write down every course they need to earn their majors and minors and then draft a tentative multi-year schedule based on semester course offerings.

My advisee came to me with a serious personal problem. What should I do?

Direct the student to the appropriate source of support – the Wellness Center, Student Life, Campus Safety, etc. If a student seems particularly distressed, it may be helpful to write down the phone numbers for him or her or to walk him or her to the appropriate office. Please remember that all GC employees are mandatory reporters.

My advisee showed up to her advising appointment without any idea of what to take for the next semester. How do I get her to take responsibility for course selection?

When you post your advising schedule, include a message that instructs students to bring a draft schedule.

An advisee stopped by and announced he is transferring. Should I try to talk him out of it?

An “I am on the verge of transferring” announcement can mean a lot of things. It might mean the student has not discovered what Georgetown has to offer. It might mean that the student is starting to worry about the debt he’s taking on to finance his education. It might mean that he’s heard other students talk about transferring. If you can, get the student to expound on his decisions. This is often the time to have the “wherever you go, there you are” talk with students, reminding them that their problems transfer with them. If a student indicates that he or she is thinking about transferring, please raise the appropriate flag in GConnect to notify the Office of Academic Success and, when appropriate, relay the student’s concerns to the Director of Academic Success for further attention.

My advisee is a sophomore majoring in biology, but I teach psychology. Can I insist that she change advisors?

Many students tend to become very attached to their freshman advisors and won’t make the move to an advisor in their major without being pushed. Take inventory of your advisees before advanced registration. If it’s time for one to move on, get a change of advisor form and fill out your part. Instruct the student to take the form to the advisor of his choice and get his or her signature. Send the yellow advising folder to the new advisor.