Academic Advisor Frequently Asked Questions
How is my academic advisor assigned?
We try to assign you to an academic advisor based on your expressed area of interest on your Advising Survey on the NSO checklist. Please make sure you choose a department that interests YOU! When that is not possible, we look at additional factors to make pairings. Please keep in mind that all of our advisors are prepared to advise first-year students, regardless of intended major. You will choose a permanent (and possibly new) advisor when you declare a major during your sophomore year.
When and how will I be informed who my advisor will be?
By early August you will receive an email from the Coordinator of Academic Support and Advising. The e-mail will have the name of your academic advisor. Feel free to look up the faculty member on the Cornell website and learn about their academic interests. Most of our faculty members are not on campus during the summer. You may either call the Coordinator of Academic Support and Advising at 319-895-4382 or email if you have any questions before your arrival on campus.
When will I meet my advisor?
You will have the opportunity to meet your advisor for the first time during New Student Orientation. Additional meetings will be scheduled for you and your advisor during Orientation week. You will schedule your block 2, 3, and 4 courses during those meetings.
How often should I meet with my advisor?
This depends on your advisor and your own planning and initiative. Be sure to seek out your advisor any time you have an academic matter that you want to discuss; early contact and discussion is essential given the pace of One Course At A Time. If you need help of a personal nature, your academic advisor will help you find the appropriate resource(s). You can often get answers to your questions by phone or e-mail.
How do I change my advisor?
We recommend you do not change advisors until after your first semester at Cornell. But, if the need arises, it is easy to change advisors at any time by filling out a “Change of Advisor” card available on-line. Only your new advisor has to sign your card; you then return it to the Registrar's office for processing.
Do I have to keep the same advisor throughout my Cornell career?
Most students keep their assigned advisor until they officially declare a major – during the sophomore year. When you declare a major(s) you must obtain an advisor(s) in the department in which you have declared a major(s). If you need help finding an advisor, please contact the Coordinator of Academic Support and Advising.
Who can help me with advice if I can not find my advisor or my advisor is away from campus?
You can speak with any other faculty member in your advisor’s department. You also may speak with the Coordinator of Academic Support and Advising (Cole Library 309), the Registrar’s Office, or the Dean of Students.
What if I am not sure which major to choose so I don't know which advisor to choose during my sophomore year?
Contact the Office of Academic Support and Advising or the Career and Civic Engagement Office. Staff in both can help you think through possible majors and careers that fit your interests.
What are some important things I need to know to succeed on the One Course At A Time schedule?
- Take responsibility for your success as a student and advisee, your commitment is critical.
- Attend every class, planning is the key.
- Take delight in learning.
- Take advantage of the opportunities the College offers: study abroad, internships, faculty-student research, etc.
- For more tips and information go to the Advising Survival Skills Page.