Advising Sessions

What should I bring with me to meet with an advisor?
That depends on what type of help you need. If you need to register for classes, make sure to bring your registration form (available at the Registrar's Office or at UAOnline). Fill out as much of the form as you are able to. If you know what classes you need/want, go ahead and write them down. If you don't know which classes or need help, you can at least fill out your name and Student ID number and look through the schedule to find out when courses are offered. If you are considering applying to UAF and want some information, bring all of your transcripts, test scores and anything else that you want to have looked at and gone over.

Who is my advisor?
If you have a major, your advisor is someone in your department. If you have never talked to an advisor before, or don't remember who you saw, you should contact the department office for help determining who your advisor will be. If you have not declared a major, you can see an advisor at the Academic Advising Center, Tanana Valley Campus or Rural Student Services. The Academic Advising Center has advisors available on a walk-in basis during the school year (appointment basis in the summer). You can request a specific advisor or you can see the advisor that is available at a time when it is convenient for you to come in.

Can I change advisors?
If you have trouble contacting your advisor or your interests don't really match, you can switch to another advisor within the department. There is no official form, but you can approach an instructor or professor in your department and ask for help. It is a good idea to consistently see the same person once you have settled on an advisor. By getting to know you, that advisor can provide letters of recommendation, offer ideas for internships and job possibilities that match your interests and let you know about student opportunities within the department.

Do I have to take a placement test?
Yes. For admission to a bachelor's degree program, you must take an ACT or SAT test.  For admission to an associate's degree you can take ACT, SAT, COMPASS or ASSET.  The test is used to determine course placement, particularly for math and English courses.  Scores are most accurate if the test is taken within one year of when you intend to start classes.  For placement purposes, anyone can take the COMPASS test at the Academic Advising Center, Rural Student Services or Tanana Valley Campus and get scores immediately then meet with an advisor to determine what math or English course you should start with.

Where can I go for help in deciding on a major?
There are a variety of resources available to you for deciding on a major. The Advising Center has a program called DISCOVER that begins with an aptitude inventory, and uses your answers to suggest career areas, majors, schools and financial aid options. Stop by 509 Gruening or call 474-6396 for a token to access DISCOVER. The Career Services office publishes an annual Graduation Report, so you can look up actual UAF graduates to see where they are working and how much they are making. Pay attention to the courses that you really enjoy and ask yourself what it is about the courses that appeals to you, talk to instructors and professors about course and career options, and talk to advisors about the availability of majors in your areas of interest. Also, visit either the Advising Center to take the Strong Interest Inventory ($10).  This will match your interests with individuals are satisfied and happy with the field they are in.

How do I change/declare a major?
If you want to change to a major at the same level (I.e. switch from one bachelor's degree program to another) you need to fill out a Change of Major form (available at the Registrar's Office or the Academic Advising Center). It should be signed by the department that you are changing to. If you want to change levels (i.e. from an Associates to a Bachelor's degree, a Bachelor's to an Associate's or from pre-major status) then you need to complete a new application for Admission.  You do not have to pay $40 for admission again, so be sure to go through the Admissions Office website and not UAOnline.

When should I declare a major?
UAF does not require you to declare before a certain time or credit hour.You should declare a major as soon as you are reasonably sure that is the area you want to pursue. This is recommended to give you the opportunity to get to know the faculty and students in the department, so that they can be a resource for you as you near graduation.

Where can I get pre-professional advising if I am interested in going to medical (or dental, veterinary, law, or physical therapist) school?
Use the pre-professional information pages for details on suggested course and majors and important links to be aware of for preparing for professional programs. Advisors in the Academic Advising Center can help point you in the right direction and give you some tips, but you will want to make sure to research the options that will work best for you.

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