How to Prepare for Advising

Academic and career advisors are there to support you as you work towards your goals at PSU.  Meet with your advisor early and often. The better your advisor knows you, the better they will be able to offer advice that addresses your needs. Here are some tips to make the most of your advising experience:


Academic advising should bring together personal, career, and academic interests. The more aware you are of your own interests, goals and academic abilities, the better equipped you will be to assess what academic courses are right for you.


Before you seek out an advisor, familiarize yourself with graduation requirements and resources available to you. Run a Degree Audit (DARS) in Banweb to see how your courses apply towards your requirements, and bring this with you to any appointment where you want to create a plan. Write down specific questions that you have.


You should keep the following in a personal advising file, either in paper or electronic form:

  1. DARS reports or advising worksheets you have reviewed with an advisor
  2. Transcripts (or grade reports) from other colleges 
  3. Copies of all petitions or forms you submit and the response you receive
  4. Any correspondence received from the University.


Because of its complexity and importance, you should seek advising regularly to assist you in making appropriate academic decisions. During your first year at Portland State, you will be required to meet with your advisor once - during your first two terms; more often is even better. The schedule for the next term comes out around Halloween, Valentine’s Day, and Mother’s Day, so these are good times to schedule your appointment. Advisors are especially busy in the weeks leading to registration and can be booked out 3 weeks or more, so do not delay scheduling your appointment. Consult the Academic Calendar to work around priority registration dates.


Advisors are here to support you no matter what, but you are responsible for your academic decisions. PSU offers a wide range of resources to help you make the right decision regarding your academic pursuits, but ultimately you must decide what is best for you.