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Northwest Missouri State University

Syllabus for Academic Advising

The syllabus for advising services is a template for student success in a collaborative effort with one or more professionals on our campus. Effective advising should assist the student in achieving their academic, professional and personal goals. Faculty advisors will strive to provide accurate and timely information, creating a framework which aids students in their academic program.


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Goals of the Academic Advising Program

  • To assist students to clarify educational, professional, and life goals and learn decision-making skills
  • To assist students with academic program planning, course selection, and registration
  • To review and monitor student academic progress.
  • To help students to understand academic policies, procedures, and requirements.
  • To inform students of campus resources, support services, and educational opportunities.
  • To promote student self-reliance.
  • To understand, respect, and respond to individual student advising needs.
  • To help students understand the College’s educational mission.
  • To collect and distribute relevant data about student needs and performance for use in institutional decision-making.

Advisee Roles and Responsibilities

  • Know and complete the requirements for your degree program and the Northwest Core
  • Understand and follow academic policies and procedures as published in the Northwest Missouri State University Undergraduate Catalog
  • Get to know your advisor. Schedule regular appointments with your advisor as needed; you are required to meet with your advisor at least once each semester to plan your academic program and select courses
  • Plan ahead and bring questions and relevant materials with you; be prepared for appointments with your advisor
  • Prepare a tentative course schedule prior to meeting with your advisor for course selection appointments
  • Know how to utilize current technology to access academic information such as Catpaws, Degree Works, and the online catalog
  • Be familiar with campus services and resources and use them as needed, especially if recommended by your advisor
  • Reflect upon your interests, abilities and educational, professional and life goals and discuss with your advisor
  • Monitor your academic progress
  • Contact your advisor if you have academic concerns or difficulties
  • Retain important documentation related to your academics
  • Check your Northwest e-mail regularly and create a schedule for success in outlook

Advisor Roles and Responsibilities

  • Get to know advisees; contact new advisees early in the semester
  • Post and keep office hours and inform advisees of the best way to be contacted
  • Know and understand the Northwest Core, academic program and professional requirements, as well as college policies and procedures; help advisees to understand all of these elements
  • Assist advisees in reflecting upon their interests and abilities and clarifying educational, professional and life goals through active listening
  • Monitor advisees’ academic progress and assist them in planning their programs to achieve their academic, professional and life goals
  • Inform advisees of appropriate campus resources, support services and educational opportunities
  • Encourage advisees to meet with the advisor before problems arise
  • Learn advising procedures, tools and technology by reviewing advising materials online and/or attending advisor training opportunities
  • Maintain advisement files
  • Support advisees’ applications for educational opportunities when appropriate
  • Sign college forms as necessary

Expected Student Learning Outcomes for Academic Advising

Through the academic advising experience, students will:

  • Make appropriate educational decisions and set realistic goals based on individual interests, skills, abilities, and values
  • Develop a meaningful educational plan based on goals
  • Monitor academic progress towards goals
  • Demonstrate an understanding of core, major, minor/specialization, certification and degree requirements
  • Identify and utilize campus resources, support services and educational opportunities, as appropriate
  • Become self-reliant regarding academic and wellness matters
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the philosophy behind the college’s core general education requirements and their relationship with professional programs

ACT Interest Areas and Northwest Majors Chart

All advisors at Northwest Missouri State University have access to students ACT scores and the interest inventory areas from ACT. The scores when combined with our World of Work map View PDF, can be a helpful resource for deciding students or those wanting to change majors or add a minor. Advisors will find these in CatPaws under each advisees test score tab.

Before Your Advising Appointment

  • Review your degree audit
  • Verify that your information is correct and attend to any inaccuracies
  • Update your personal education plan (4-year plan) or graduation plan
  • List questions and concerns for your advising session

Campus Resources

Student Success Center
2nd Floor B.D. Owens Library
660.562.1695 | 660.562.1726

Career Services
130 Administration Building

Office of Scholarships and Financial Assistance
273 Administration Building


Assessment Office
1930 Garrett-Strong