Academic advising is central to the educational mission of the University of St. Thomas and embodies respect for the dignity of human persons, unified in their several roles as student, family member, citizen, and professional. Every student entering UST is assigned to a faculty advisor and is also supported by the resources of the Academic Advising Center. The Office of Academic Advising specializes in high quality advising and offers special help with major selection and degree planning as well as course scheduling and registration. Students are encouraged to explore their natural gifts, desires, and goals and are guided in crafting an appropriate, individual academic plan in keeping with those goals.
All freshmen entering the University of St. Thomas participate in the First Year Experience program. It is designed to prepare incoming students for success in the University environment. Incoming students attend a Freshman Advising and Registration session to develop a personalized course of study for their first semester. They learn about the University’s core curriculum, major options, develop an initial plan of study, while becoming acquainted with expectations they will be challenged to meet as University of St. Thomas students. They also become familiar with some of the support services available on campus.
Freshmen are placed with highly qualified and dedicated First Year Experience advisors. These advisors are not major specific advisors; rather, they offer their expertise in helping freshmen develop their academic plans for the current and coming years at the University of St. Thomas. Students meet with their First Year ExperienceAdvisor throughout their freshman year.
Transfer Student Advising
Transfer students are assigned to the chair of the department in which they have expressed a primary interest. Students process their Declaration of Major Form in consultation with the chair, who may continue as academic advisor or appoint a faculty member within the department. A student should meet with this academic advisor at least two times each semester to discuss progress, review degree plans, explore graduate school and professional opportunities, and select courses for the following semester.
Major Program Advising and Declaring a Major
New students to UST may declare a major, minor and/or pre–professional program at the point of initial advising and class registration in consultation with an academic advisor. Particular majors may have specific requirements and/or additional admissions processes, which must be fulfilled prior to a formal declaration of major. Students who have reached 60 credit hours without having declared a major will be prevented from future registration. If a student has reached 60 credit hours and is still undecided, they may be granted an additional semester to register by requesting a formal extension through the Office of Academic Advising. Declaration of major will not be official until appropriate documentation is submitted to the Registrar’s Office.
Changing a Major
Students may change their major at any time in consultation with the current advisor and the chair of the newly selected department. Before changing majors, students should consult the Academic Advising Center to review degree plans to assess any additional degree requirements, time and cost associated with a change in major.
Adult students are assigned to the chair of the department in which they have expressed primary interest. A student processes the Declaration of Major Form in consultation with the chair, who may continue as academic advisor or appoint a faculty member as advisor. A student should meet with the academic advisor at least two times each semester to discuss progress, review degree plans, explore graduate school and professional opportunities, and select courses for the following semester.
DEGREE PLANS AND INTENT TO GRADUATE
Students who have accrued 60 credit hours toward a bachelor’s degree at the University of St. Thomas must have a proposed degree plan on file in the department of their major or with their academic advisor. The degree plan must include core curriculum requirements as well as all requirements related to completion of the student’s academic program or major field of study.