shortcut to content
Minnesota State University, Mankato
Minnesota State University, Mankato

About Advising

Page address:

The Office of New Student & Family Programs uses a developmental advising model that focuses on a wide range of student's personal and academic issues including academic progress, career and life planning, development of study skills, and appropriate course selection. The role of academic advising within our office is to supplement faculty efforts and to advise students who are undecided. Academic advising also provides support to students experiencing academic or personal difficulties that interfere with their academic success.

Learn more about Developmental Advising- NACADADevelopmental Advising

Why is academic advising important?

Academic advising can assist students in a variety of different ways during their educational career. Some of the most important benefits of advising allow students to do the following:

  1. Make connections to the University
  2. Broaden interests
  3. Gain a better understanding of personal values
  4. Develop academic and career goals
  5. Identify major areas of academic interest
  6. Create realistic plans of study
  7. Enhance critical thinking skills
  8. Increase decision-making skills
  9. Take responsibility for academic direction
  10. Become more successful learners


Even though advisors are available to help with decisions, students are ultimately responsible for their own academic choices and success. During the first year, there are several ways in which students can enhance their likelihood of succeeding in college. There are also several ways in which advisors can assist students in their success, should students seek their advice.

The responsibilities of first-year students include:

1. Initiate and maintain contact with your advisor.

It is your responsibility to set up a time to meet with your advisor. Set aside time early each semester to visit your advisor; don't wait until the day before registration. Make an appointment and bring a list of questions and courses you are interested in.

2. Read all University and departmental materials (i.e. the current Undergraduate Bulletin, etc.).

Final responsibility for planning a course of study and for fulfilling all requirements and regulations rests with you. It is your responsibility to familiarize yourself with the University's policies and procedures. If you are not sure of a policy or a procedure, call the Office of New Student & Family Programs at 507-389-5498.

3. Get to know your professors.

Don't be shy; use established office hours to visit your faculty to discuss problems and questions. Some classes are large and the professors have a hard time getting to know each student individually. Meeting with them can help them put a face with a name and give you individualized assistance.

4. Start your college career off with a good GPA.

Choose classes that interest you, and make an effort to avoid overloading yourself with too many difficult courses all at once. If your GPA suffers, it may be more difficult for you to obtain acceptance into a major once you decide the direction of your academics. Don't be afraid to seek out assistance if you need it. Minnesota State University, Mankato's Center for Academic Success can provide resources and tutoring assistance in a variety of different subject areas.

5. Schedule an appointment with the Career Development Center.

Minnesota State University, Mankato's Career Development Center (CDC) is an excellent resource to help you explore areas of interest and identify major/minor options that match your career aspirations. It is never too early to begin thinking about your academic direction. Waiting too long to decide an academic course of study may cause you to fall behind and spend more time and money than you need to.

The responsibilities of advisors include:

  1. Help assist students fulfill their academic goals and objectives.
  2. Assist students with their academic decision-making process.
  3. Help students choose classes and make suggestions for their academic plans.
  4. Assist with registration, major, and advisor changes.
  5. Refer students to other offices for additional assistance when necessary.