Academic Advising Syllabus University of Minnesota, Morris

Name: Michelle Page Office: 108 Education Building
Advising Hours:  During Office Hours (check online calendar)

My job as your advisor, as I see it, is to help you achieve your goals and dreams, not to create them for you. As such, I want to equip you with the tools to engage in planning and problem solving. I do not choose courses for you--you make those decisions and I can double-check with you and assist you to make sure that those decisions will help you to meet your goals. I can help you brainstorm and problem solve about career paths and academic plans and can advise you about the job market in education. I strongly encourage you to meet with me often and ask lots of questions. Come prepared with your plan or list of questions and I will be able to help you better. My goal is to see you be successful at UMM and to be happy and fulfilled, whatever major or career leads to that. To assist in that, please see the resources and advice below:


UMM is committed to developmental academic advising. Caring interaction and good communication is encouraged between students, faculty and staff. Advising is broadly defined to include activities and interaction between faculty and students that will:

  • help students clarify educational goals
  • inform them of the range and scope of experiences available to them
  • help assess strengths, weaknesses and exploration of how decisions affect personal and occupational goals


Many students will have primary advisers in their major and will only consult me as a secondary adviser. If I am your PRIMARY adviser, I expect you to do the following so that I can provide the best assistance to you:

  • Meet with me when you have questions or concerns or to approve your plan of study, usually about once each semester
  • Check your UMM email and post offic box frequently
  • Promptly inform me of changes to your major and any concerns about your program
  • Make and be responsible for your own decisions
  • Observe the following deadlines:
    • Cancel or A/F-S/N change
    • Withdraw (W on transcript)
  • Know the requirements for staying in good standing (see the Academic Progress section below)
  • Know about FERPA - Student Records Privacy


If I am your PRIMARY adviser, you can expect me to do the following:

  • Help you clarify your educational goals.
  • Inform you of the range and scope of experiences available to you
  • Help you assess your strengths and weaknesses, and help you explore the ramifications of your decisions for your future occupational goal.
  • Familiarize you with policies and regulations which might influence your program.
  • Communicate to you what decisions you will have to make at what stages of your academic career. You need to understand how today's decisions may limit possible alternatives later on.
  • Initiate a continuing evaluation of the adviser-advisee relationship. As you develop more clearly defined educational and occupational goals, you may change advisers, perhaps several times. Thus you and your adviser must assess the extent to which the advising relationship is meeting your needs and goals.


  • Go to class every day. Get to know your professors.
  • Balance school with the rest of your life. Plan enough study time to do well in your classes.
  • Have good study habits and get academic assistance early if needed.
  • Understand the impact of dropping classes--academically and financially.
  • Make a plan for graduation early.




This is a suggested advising timeline. At a minimum, advisers should meet with advisees at these times and may schedule additional meetings as they are needed.

  • August: Meet with your new adviser at the scheduled session during Orientation.
  • September: Returning students use this time to reconnect with your adviser; let your adviser know how your classes are going; be aware of drop/add dates and other deadlines.
  • October-November: Meet with your adviser to plan for spring semester. Meet with your adviser if you receive academic alerts. Seniors are should complete the on-line graduation application and advising survey. Register during your assigned registration time.
  • January: Welcome back for spring semester. Contact your adviser if you have questions or concerns about your fall semester grades or if you need to change your class schedule.
  • March: Meet with your adviser for annual planning. You will review your academic goals and make a plan for the coming year; first or second year students with fewer than 60 credits must meet with their adviser before registration. Register during your assigned registration time.
  • April-May: Seniors need to complete the advising survey if you have not done so; returning student s should register for fall semester before leaving campus in May.


Financial Aid (105 Behmler Hall) is very important to many students who attend UMM. If your grades slip or you fail to complete 75% of your classes, you will be in danger of having your financial aid cut (you are also not eligible for financial aid if you have over 180 credits). Since these requirements for financial aid are a federal government standard, they may change from time to time. You should make it your job to be aware of the requirements for good standing if you are on financial aid while at UMM. If you are planning to drop a course, check with financial aid to see how this affects your situation. If you get midterm alerts, check with financial aid to see how this affects your situation. The direct link to Financial Aid Satisfactory Academic Progress is on the SAP web page.


There are also Academic Progress Requirements, which must be met. These policies ensure you are meeting the minimum academic requirements set by the Scholastic Committee to be a student at UMM. If you fall short of the minimum academic progress requirements, you can be put on academic probation or suspension. You should note that it is possible to be on financial aid probation/suspension, and yet still be in academic good standing at UMM. These are two separate criteria, one aimed at determining your eligibility for financial aid, and one aimed at determining your academic progress.


What is annual planning? It is choosing the courses you want to take in the future, and ensuring that you meet all the requirements for graduation. What does this mean to you? Depends how far along you are in your studies. Here are the important details.

Some students will need my approval (signature usually) to register. If you are a returning sophomore next fall, you will need to plan your next year. If you are a returning junior next fall, you will need to plan your next two years. If you have fewer than 60 credits, or are on academic probation, you will also need to talk with me about annual planning. All of these students need my permission to register. My permission is granted once we have met to talk about your academic plans for the upcoming year(s). It's that simple!

One thing to note, especially if you are a freshman, is that courses are numbered based on the level of the course--1xxx is a freshman level course, 2xxx is a sophomore, 3xxx junior, and 4xxx senior. Higher level courses will expect more from the students, possibly moving at a faster pace, requiring more independence from the students, or more involved work outside of class to complete assignments. As a freshman, it is usually unwise to register for courses above the 1xxx level, even if you have taken all the prerequisites for the course. If you do want to enroll in a course that is at a level beyond 1xxx, I would recommend talking to the instructor of the course and making sure that they feel you will be able to succeed in the course before you enroll.

If you are a returning senior in the fall, you do not need my permission to register. However, if you would like to meet with me to talk about your senior year I would be glad to discuss it with you.

If you are a current senior who is going to be graduating this spring--make sure your APAS will have no minuses on it by the time you finish your current courses. If you've planned carefully in the previous years, this will not be a problem. The things to keep in mind as you do your annual planing are the following:

  • I will not pick courses for you. I am here to help you, but I want you to have thought deeply about your planning before we meet. UMM offers many diverse opportunities, and I want you to seek out the ones that appeal to you.
  • Learn to read and understand your APAS (Academic Progress Audit System). It shows what requirements you have met, and more importantly, what requirements you still need to meet in order to graduate. You will have to turn every minus into a plus before you graduate.
  • If you are unsure about exactly what to take, refer to the four year plan for your major.
  • Make sure you are meeting General Education Requirements.
  • If you have transfer credits from another institution, or AP credits, make sure they are being properly applied in your APAS.
  • Deal with any errors on your APAS immediately! They will not fix themselves, and sometimes they aren't errors. For example, if you mistakenly think something should be a plus but it really is a minus, you need to know that as soon as possible so you can incorporate that minus into your planning.
  • You can use the Graduation Planner to help you keep track of your course plan for graduation.


Teacher Education students have fairly concrete lists of requirements-I cannot change these requirements as they are state-mandated and therefore I do not help you choose those courses. Not all of the courses that you need for your content area are offered every semester or every year-take licensure courses immediately when they are available. Different majors/license areas have different courses that are less frequently offered and I can help you to find the ones that are urgent (for example, Geometry in Math or Oral Interpretation in Communication Arts and Literature).

You should come to any advising meeting prepared with a list of courses you plan on taking, a list of questions about the programs, etc. I expect you to use the many tools that are available to help you-both Elementary and Secondary Education programs have guides on their web sites, as well as summaries of program admission procedures, and other materials. Use these materials to find answers to your questions. Then, if you have additional questions or require clarification or guidance, make an appointment with your advisor. Secondary Education students should also consult with advisors in the major to ensure that both major requirements and licensure requirements are being met-in many cases, these are not the same.

Finally, note that there are GPA requirements for both Elementary and Secondary Education programs: You must maintain a 2.5 GPA overall, 2.75 in your major and/or licensure areas, and 2.75 in Education program and prerequisite courses.

Center for Advising and Learning
Academic Advising
University of Minnesota, Morris
328 Briggs Library
600 E. 4th Street
Morris, MN 56267
Phone: 320-589-6178
FAX: 320-589-6473
Hours: Monday - Friday, 8:00 - 4:30

Office Hours:
Ed 108

Mondays 12-2 PM, Tuesdays 4-5PM, and Fridays 9-11 AM.

Please check my calendar for an appointment slot.

Sign up for an appointment slot on my calendar. If no slots work for you, check my online weekly schedule and send me an email with a time you would like to meet. I will reply with confirmation on the meeting time.


(I do not use voicemail)