Each undergraduate student is assigned a faculty advisor upon entry into our program. All IMSE tenured or tenure-track faculty members who teach undergraduate students advise undergraduate students. During the spring 2011 semester, the typical advising load was less than 20 students per faculty member.
A student can expect to receive help from his/her advisor on matters such as course choices, internship opportunities, and career guidance. Unless a student specifically requests a particular faculty member, the department administrative assistant assigns the student to an advisor so that the advising load is balanced across the department. Students can request a change in advisor, but this option is not encouraged.
One of the assignments in our Introduction to Industrial Engineering class (IMSE 201) is for the student to draft a career plan. The instructor asks the student to review this plan with their faculty advisor. After the assignment is complete, the department copies these plans and puts them into the student's departmental record for future reference.
Each semester, during a designated pre-enrollment time, students meet individually with their advisor to monitor their academic progress and determine the courses they should enroll in for the following semester. Faculty advisors use various methods to have students sign-up for advising including posting open advising slots on their office door, posting an electronic sign-up sheet, and sending personalized email.
Students are expected to prepare for the advising session by bringing a tentative schedule with them to the meeting. No undergraduate student can enroll in courses without their advisor signing off on their schedule by raising their electronic enrollment flag. This action ensures that students have met with an advisor prior to pre-enrollment and ensures that faculty members are tracking student progress. This process makes it easy for faculty advisors to intervene when students are not progressing satisfactorily.
After the first week of class, IMSE students are required to get their advisor's signature in order to drop and/or add classes. This process ensures that the advisor knows what changes the student is making to their academic schedule.
The university conducts an advising survey of all students that must be filled out before a student can enroll. Information gleaned from this survey is reported by department. The survey provides useful information about the student's perception of the quality of the advising across the department.