Academic Affairs

Academic Advising

Guide to Academic Planning

    The role of academic advising at Hendrix

    Academic advising is an integral part of the broader academic program and goals of the College. The aim of the advising program is to facilitate student academic success by providing appropriate advice and assistance throughout each student’s Hendrix career.

    The Hendrix advising system

    Each Hendrix student has a faculty advisor who serves as a central academic resource and mentor to the student. All Hendrix academic advisors are full-time faculty members, serving as advisors as a part of their teaching responsibilities at the College.

    At Hendrix, academic advising is a cooperative educational partnership between the faculty advisor and student advisee, grounded in mutual respect and a shared commitment to student growth and success. This relationship respects the autonomy and intellect of each student and acknowledges the broader developmental and educational contexts within which academic advising occurs.

    The work of advisors and advisees

    On a basic level, advisors assist advisees in developing their understanding of the academic curriculum, degree requirements, and expectations of the College. They provide their advisees with relevant information concerning Hendrix academic policies and procedures. They help advisees become familiar with the opportunities, assistance, resources, and programs available to Hendrix students, and encourage their engagement in Hendrix academic and community life.

    More broadly, advisors facilitate and support their advisees in their ongoing developmental process of identifying, clarifying, and evolving their individual academic, professional, and life goals and values. More specifically, advisors assist their advisees in developing a course of study in the liberal arts and sciences that is consonant with these goals and values, including the selection of an academic major consistent with their interests and abilities.

    Though advisors and advisees work together in all areas related to academic planning, final academic decision-making responsibilities, including the responsibility for meeting each of the graduation requirements of the College, rest ultimately with the student. Primary responsibility for timely, effective use of the academic advising system also remains with the individual student.


    To assist students and advisors in understanding the academic programs of the College, including appropriate sequencing of courses in each major, and to promote each student’s initiative and autonomy in directing his or her own academic program and progress, Hendrix publishes a Guide to Academic Planning each year. The Hendrix Catalog and Guide to Academic Planning are the two principal academic resource documents of the College.

    Selection and assignment of advisors

    Academic advisors are assigned initially through the Council of New Student Advisors (CNSA), a group of faculty selected and trained specifically to work with new students at the College. Each CNSA faculty member has an Academic Peer Mentor, an upperclass student who serves as an academic support and peer resource for that CNSA member’s new student advisees.

    Though students may change their advisor at any time after their initial course registration (forms for this purpose are available through the Office of the Registrar), most new students remain with their CNSA advisor at least through their first year of study. At an appropriate point in the first or second year of study, when an academic major has been identified and confirmed through work in courses and with faculty in that major, each student selects a faculty advisor in his or her major department. Juniors and senior students are expected to be advised by a faculty member in their major department.

    In closing

    Advisees and advisors view their work together within the context of a mutual commitment to student development and success at Hendrix and beyond. Advisees are expected to be self-directed, progressively autonomous, and committed to their academic and individual growth and success at Hendrix. Advisors share these expectations and commitments with their advisees, making their expertise and support available, as appropriate, to facilitate this student development and success. Advisors and advisees are encouraged to visit regularly on all matters of academic interest or concern.

    Questions and other inquiries concerning the academic advising program may be directed to the office of the Director of Advising.