English Department Advising

 Academic Advising

Advising Forms

Working with your advisor and using the proper forms, you can easily measure how far you've progressed on your undergraduate degree path in English.

You should download and completee the appropriate Major option form which will help you understand the university's graduation requirements and how they relate to you.

You should make an appointment to meet with your advisor to verify that the information on your form — and your understanding of it — is correct and completee.

If you do not know who your advisor is, you can locate your advisor on COIN. If you can't locate your advisor on Coin or haven't been assigned one, you should contact the English Department's current Director of Advising.

Print 2 copies of the form for your Major Option. Then, prior to meeting with your advisor, fill in as much of the form as you can.


Forms, Tracking Sheets, and Senior Checklists

Tracking (advising) sheets, minor forms, and senior checklists for both the Literature, and Writing concentrations can be found on the Forms page. 

You must print and fill in the tracking sheets and checklists before you meet with your advisor; it will save both you and your advisor time. Your completed forms will serve to guide you when you make your academic and career choices.

You may find that you need your advisor's help to completee your degree progress evaluation accurately, especially if you are a transfer student. Make an appointment with your advisor early, so you have plenty of time to go over your requirements and discuss your options before you need to register for classes.

Meeting with your advisor regularly will help ensure that you've completed all required courses and are on track for graduation.

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Student/advisor assignments

Students should look up their advisors on COIN.

If students can't locate their advisor on COIN or haven't been assigned one, they should contact the current Director of Advising. Contact information for the Director of Advising is located in the "Contact Info" area at the bottom of each department webpage.

All members of the faulty must have scheduled conference hours posted on their office doors and are expected to be available during those hours to advisees; in addition, students may schedule appointments with their advisors at other times.

In many academic majors, the student retains the same academic advisor throughout the program. In others, students change their advisor as they progress in their degree program. At UMass Dartmouth, English majors generally retain the same advisor throughout their degree program.

In certain circumstances, a student will work with an advisor in addition to her or his main advisor, for example, if pursuing an academic minor, a special program such as teacher preparation, pre-medical or pre-law, or cooperative education. When a student has a double major, she or he will have a different advisor assigned for each major.

Student/advisor assignments are not always a perfect match, and students have a right to request a change in advisors. For questions or problems please contact the English Department's advising director listed in the contacts at the bottom of the page.

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The Student's Responsibility

Students have an obligation to know who their advisor is and to contact that advisor when required or when needing assistance. College students are expected to develop their own interests and ask questions. If a faculty member's door is closed, knock on it. If the office is empty, ask questions of available faculty members. Give the faculty person some leeway; he or she may be busy helping another student. Consider options and be persistent. As partners with their faculty advisors in the advising relationship, students have the final responsibility to understand the requirements for their major and degrees and the policies of the university. Policy statements can be found in the General Catalog.

English major students needing assistance with the advising system should go either to the office of the department Chairperson or to the University's Academic Advising Center. A current list of academic department locations and phone numbers is published annually in the Student Handbook. The Academic Advising Center will consult with any student on a walk-in basis and provides special guidance to those considering changing their major.

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Role of the Academic Advisor

 Students should consult their advisors for assistance with:

  • Forming their academic goals and career objectives.
  • Establishing an overall plan for their program of study.
  • Understanding and meeting degree requirements, specific academic program or major requirements, distribution requirements, college. requirements, and general education requirements.
  • Understanding academic regulations and procedures. 
  • Monitoring their progress toward completion of their degree.
  • Identifying campus services appropriate to their needs.
  • Planning for any special programs like an experiential learning experience or study abroad.

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Responding to academic difficulties

Students must see their advisor before they register each semester. In this contact, the advisor should review the student's academic progress, review the student's career plans, and assist the student in selecting the next semester's courses. The advisor must lift the student's advising hold before the student registers; the advisor often can register the student directly from his or her office.

Students may see their advisor at other times. The advisor can call a conference with the student at any time, with reasonable notice. The first stop for students who receive notice of academic warning or probation should be the office of their advisor.

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Student Record Review

Because the department chairperson, not the advisor, must approve each student for graduation, the English Department chairperson or designee should review the record of each student in the department at the point of completing 90 credits, or three-quarters of the requirements for the degree. It is the responsibility of the department chairperson or designee to inform the student of requirements that remain unfulfilled.

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Role of the Dean

The Dean of each college has ultimate responsibility for the academic advising system for the students in the program in his or her college.

Students may consult the office of the Dean of their college for information or inquiries about the departmental programs or academic requirements, regulations, and processes. A role of the Deans is to approve special academic petitions and requests or to waive an academic regulation, due to hardship or special conditions. Another role is to give assistance with any student's concerns, or to handle complaints and special appeals.

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Statement of Final Responsibility

Although faculty advisors and many others seek to guide and assist each student, it is the student, not the faculty advisor, department chairperson, or other university official who is ultimately responsible for seeing that his or her program fulfills degree requirements.

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Academic Advising Policy Statement

The Faculty Senate has adopted the following "Academic Advising Policy Statement" to encourage faculty in the philosophy and practice of developmental advising.*

The functions of academic advising at UMass Dartmouth include: Assisting students in self-understanding and self-acceptance (value clarification, understanding abilities, interests, and limitations). Assisting students in their consideration of life goals by relating interests, skills, abilities, and values to careers, the world of work, and the nature and purpose of higher education. Assisting students in developing an educational plan consistent with life goals and objectives (alternative course action, alternative career considerations, and selections of courses). Assisting students in developing decision-making skills.Providing accurate information about institutional policies, procedures, resources, and programs. Making referrals to other institutional or community support services. Assisting students in evaluation or reevaluation of progress toward established goals and educational plans. Providing information about students to the institution, colleges, and/or academic departments. Facilitating the student's successful attainment of educational and career goals. Facilitating the student's achievement of GPAs consistent with their abilities. Making students aware of the wide range of services and educational opportunities that may be pertinent to their educational objectives. Assisting students in exploring the possible short-range and long-range consequences of their choices. Assisting students in choosing educational and career objectives commensurate with their interests and abilities.

* Adopted from the National Academic Advising Association
Copyright English Department UMass Dartmouth 2001

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