The charter's main commitments are:
Core Academic Advising Goals
The core goals of academic advising are:
- to help students to identify and understand their own aspirations and aptitudes;
- to define and refine their academic and career goals;
- to take maximum advantage of their prior learning experiences; and
- identify their most effective and efficient route to academic success, degree completion, and a future career.
Commitments and Responsibilities
Academic advising is an aspect of the broader learning partnership, in which students’ commitments can be summarized as “Learn Actively, Think Broadly, Act Ethically, and Engage Respectfully.”
Students, academic advisors, faculty mentors, and the institution at large are the four key players in the academic advising process. “While all three roles are important, the role of the learner is most fundamental to the learning partnership.”
Students are responsible for
- seeking the advice and support that they need, when they need it.
- providing advisors with sufficient personal or circumstantial information to enable them to offer the most appropriate advice.
Students are free to accept or reject academic advice or offers of support, but (except in cases where the advice can be shown to have been erroneous) they are accountable for their own outcomes.
Academic advice is imparted by a wide representation of the campus community. At the core of advising activities, however, there exists a formal role on campus for the group of academic services specialists known as “academic advisors”. The University of Saskatchewan is “a unique community of learning and discovery, where people can embark on a process of development through which they grow, create, and learn, in a context characterized by diversity.” Academic advisors will honour and embrace this diversity – of academic programs, of ways of knowing and learning, and, above all, of the individual learners they encounter.
Academic advisors will help students choose the academic path that best aligns with their individual aspirations, aptitudes, and prior learning experiences, and which offers the most effective and efficient route to academic success, degree completion, and a future career. In professional colleges, academic advisors also share in the responsibility of communicating the standards of the profession. Trained student peer advisors assume a supporting role, delivering carefully delineated advising assistance under the direction of professional academic advisors within a college.
“The University of Saskatchewan offers a diversity of academic and professional programs that is matched by few other institutions of learning.” No academic advisor can be expected to master the academic standards and regulations pertaining to all of the university’s many programs. Academic advisors will, however, have sufficient training, experience, and expertise (including awareness and understanding of relevant university and college policies) to provide timely and accurate advice appropriate to their particular advising role.
Academic advisors will also know the limits of their particular advising responsibilities and expertise, and know when, where, and how best to direct students to the specific advice and support they need.
Faculty mentorsFaculty play a key mentorship role in contributing to academic success by helping (particularly senior) students identify disciplinary and interdisciplinary degree pathways as well as providing guidance on potential academic and/or professional career trajectories. The role of faculty mentor is not limited to department heads and/or undergraduate chairs but rather, extends to all faculty as teacher-scholars.
In keeping with the University’s commitment to provide appropriate academic and other supports to students, the institution will ensure that sufficient staff with the necessary skills are available to provide timely and accurate academic advising attuned to the individual needs of each student, along with the technological support necessary to extend the availability and enhance the quality of advising.
In the event that a student has followed documented advice from a designated academic advisor that proves to have been incorrect and to have had adverse consequences that could reasonably have been foreseen, the institution will work with the student to rectify the error and, if possible, minimize any negative academic impacts, while honouring the commitment to fairness and equity for all students.