Helpful Tips for Academic Advisors
Tip #1: Familiarize yourself with LionPATH and Starfish
LionPATH is Penn State’s student information system, which provides students with access to their academic, registration, and financial records. Familiarize yourself with LionPATH using the online tutorials.
Starfish is the suite of academic advising tools selected by Penn State to integrate with LionPATH and replace ISIS and eLion advising features that currently deliver advising notes, early progress reports (EPRs), and online scheduling of advising appointments. Learn more by accessing the Starfish How-To Guides and the Starfish Quick Guide.
Tip #2: Advising Meetings
- Review the student file and Starfish and LionPATH prior to meeting with an advisee. If you do not have access to Starfish and/or LionPATH, please contact your department.
In your first advising meeting, consider asking the following questions to get to know the student:
- How are things going? What’s your favorite class this semester?
- How has college met your expectations?
- Are you still considering xxxx major(s)?
- What classes are you considering taking next semester?
- Would you like to share anything about your personal background?
- Do you have AP or college credits?
- Are you living on campus or off-campus?
- How are you adjusting to the transition?
- Are you participating of athletics?
- What’s your work schedule?
- How well are you able to manage your time to make sure you are studying?
Have you gotten involved on campus? If not, why haven’t you been able to do so?
Source: University Advising Council 5/05
- After the advising meeting, enter notes into Starfish. The advising notes that you enter should reflect what took place during the meeting.
Advising Updates are news releases intended to notify academic advisers of new or discontinued majors and minors, as well as changes in policies or procedures affecting academic advising.
More Tools & Resources
- DUS Advising Manual
- Earning Academic Credit at Penn State (transfer/IB/AP/military)
- General Education Advising Handbook
- Health Professions Matrix
- Historical Course Offering
- LionPATH Course Catalog
- Major/Minor Program Codes
- The Mentor: An Academic Advising Journal
- NACADA: The National Academic Advising Association
- Transfer Course Evaluation Guide
- Undergraduate Degree Programs Bulletin
- University Undergraduate Advising Handbook