Information for Prospective Students Information for First-Year Students Information for Transfer Students Information for International Students Learning Communities, Study Abroad, Theme Semester Calendars Quick Reference Forms Listings Table of Contents SAA Search Feature Academic Advising, Concentration Advising, How-tos, and Degree Requirements Academic Standards Board, Academic Discipline, Petitions, and Appeals SAA Advisors and Support Staff

02-03 LS&A Bulletin

Chapter II

Student Academic Affairs

LS&A Student Academic Affairs serves students, the College, the University and the larger society by contributing to the intellectual and personal growth of students in the liberal arts tradition. Our staff shares with teaching faculty and other academic departments the task of facilitating the student's academic path through the College. In achieving its mission, LS&A Student Academic Affairs:

  • Assists students in defining educational goals and in designing a plan to meet these goals.
  • Guides students in assuming responsibility for their education.
  • Teaches students to appreciate the values of a liberal arts education.
  • Provides accurate and accessible information to assist students in making informed decisions.
  • Articulates the standards of the College and assists students in meeting these standards.

LS&A students are encouraged to be actively involved in shaping their own undergraduate experience. To help them accomplish this, the College provides academic advising support to students for reaching their academic goals and objectives. Students are expected to meet with academic advisors to discuss course selections and the wider issues of educational planning. The Comprehensive Studies Program, the Honors Program, and the Residential College Academic Services are responsible for academic advising and, in the latter two units, for academic actions and academic auditing for students admitted to their respective programs, and each of these programs is described separately in Chapter VI.

LS&A Student Academic Affairs provides the following services: Academic Advising, Academic Standards, Academic Auditing, Academic Information and Publications, Central Files, and the Office of the Assistant Dean for Student Academic Affairs. Student Academic Affairs is responsible for helping undergraduates achieve the expectations and rewards of the liberal arts and science education afforded by the College. A liberal arts and science education, first and foremost, is a natural forum for an inquiring mind, and the staff of Student Academic Affairs serves students and contributes to their intellectual and personal growth by encouraging informed decision making, self-assessment, and the assumption of self-responsibility. The Student Academic Affairs staff also shares with the teaching faculty and academic departments and programs of the College in the task of facilitating the student's academic path through LS&A. Student Academic Affairs is committed to promoting the understanding and accomplishment of a liberal arts and science education, and will do all it can to succeed in meeting its service obligation to students.

The Office of the Assistant Dean for Student Academic Affairs

1228 Angell Hall
(734) 764-7297

Overall administration of LS&A Student Academic Affairs is the responsibility of the Assistant Dean. Policy and procedure matters are handled in this office and personal assistance is provided to students in special circumstances. The Assistant Dean also oversees the Academic Judiciary for Student Academic Affairs and is responsible for the administration of the Code of Academic Conduct. In addition, the Assistant Dean coordinates the communication and liaison efforts between Student Academic Affairs and the faculty and academic departments and programs of the College, as well as between Student Academic Affairs and non-LS&A units of the University.

The Academic Advising Center

1255 Angell Hall
(734) 764-0332


The Academic Advising Center serves LS&A undergraduates by:

  • Helping them make informed decisions about educational goals and LS&A curriculum.
  • Encouraging them to formulate an academic program appropriate to their individual interests and abilities.
  • Assisting them in evaluating their academic progress and performance.
  • Providing them accurate information about LS&A policies and procedures.
  • Furnishing them an opportunity to explore the purposes of a liberal arts education.

Students first meet their academic advisors during the orientation period prior to the first term. Student-advisor contact during orientation occurs over two days and includes a group meeting and two personal interviews. The group meeting is given over to a discussion of LS&A and its mission as a liberal arts college. The student and advisor become acquainted during the first interview and explore the student's interests and academic purpose. They then plan the student's first term elections during the second interview. The staff advisors follow up these contacts by inviting their orientation students to come in for an appointment after the fall term has begun. The expectation is that many students will want to discuss their adjustments to the academic challenge in the College with their advisors at this time. A similar outreach occurs during the winter term. Students generally choose to consult the advisors whom they met during Orientation but may elect to make an appointment with any advisor who is available. Students are free to see any advisor they prefer, but they are encouraged to find one advisor with whom they can relate well and to see that advisor on a regular basis. It may be that the advisor is assigned to the residence hall in which the student lives. The Academic Advising Center staff maintain regular hours in each of the residence halls. General advisors keep regular appointment hours in the Academic Advising Center (1255 Angell Hall).

First- and second-year students most often see general advisors with questions about course elections, College requirements, and with the first queries about how to choose a concentration or degree program.

Students in Bachelor of Arts (AB) or Bachelor of Science (BS) programs are expected to declare a concentration by the end of their sophomore year. They then meet with a concentration advisor and formally declare their concentration. Students must also have their concentration advisors sign a Concentration Release Form when they are planning to graduate. Concentration advisors are, most often, faculty or staff members from LS&A departments who help students shape and focus their academic goals. They discuss with students how best to progress in a concentration program and to utilize the skills acquired in the study of a particular discipline both in graduate or professional schools or on the job. Students meet with concentration advisors in their departmental offices.

Students pursuing a Bachelor in General Studies (BGS) degree may consult with general advisors, but are urged to make appointments with BGS advisors. The Academic Advising Center employs BGS advisors who are knowledgeable and experienced staff members familiar with the College rules, regulations, policies, and curriculum. BGS students should see a BGS advisor when they declare their degree program. It is strongly recommended that BGS students see a BGS advisor in the term in which they submit graduation materials. Many choose to see their advisors each term to discuss course elections and program planning.

All students are required to obtain advisor approval for their original elections and for any changes in elections during their first term enrolled in LS&A. After the first term, students are encouraged but not required to obtain approval of elections if they are enrolling for a program between 8 and 18 credits.

Academic Standards Board

1255 Angell Hall
(734) 764-0332

The LS&A Academic Standards Board is charged with supporting and interpreting the academic policies established by the College in the Faculty Code. Students are responsible for knowing College and departmental requirements described in this Bulletin.

The Board reviews and acts on petitions from LS&A students for exceptions to the College's rules and regulations. Students may meet with an Academic Standards Board member to discuss College requirements and to consider a petition for a waiver or modification of those rules. The written petition should state the request and present clear supporting evidence for an exception. Exceptions may be granted if the student presents evidence of unusual circumstances or has an alternative proposal to meet a specific requirement that is consistent with the spirit of the requirement. (Honors students petition the Honors Academic Board; Residential College students petition the RC Board on Academic Standing.)

Board members also meet and advise students who are applying for joint degrees with other schools or colleges, who are returning after long absences, or are encountering difficulty in making progress toward degree requirements and graduation. Board members act as consultants to faculty and staff on matters of College policy and interpret College rules for parents and other interested parties outside the College. (Individual student records are not discussed except when permission has been given in writing by the student.)

The Board is responsible for any academic discipline including probation, suspension, and reinstatement. At the end of each term, the Board reviews records of students who show evidence of academic difficulty and determines the academic status of those students based on the policies described in Chapter IV. Students who have been dismissed because of unsatisfactory academic performance must meet with a Board member before petitioning for reinstatement.

Academic Auditors

G255 Angell Hall
(734) 763-3101

The Academic Auditors are responsible for preparing the degree list which is forwarded to the Board of Regents for approval, and therefore deal primarily with questions and issues concerning graduation and graduation eligibility. The auditors check for the completion of all LS&A degree requirements once graduation materials have been submitted, inform students of their progress toward graduation, and authorize graduation. Students who wish (1) to postpone graduation, (2) to ask specific questions about residence policy issues, and (3) to ask specific questions about graduation procedures should contact the Academic Auditors. An information sheet about the Commencement Ceremony is available outside 1255 Angell Hall. Also, students whose names were removed from the degree list should see the Academic Auditors. Students who have met the degree requirements but have not yet been graduated may obtain a Verification of Graduation letter from the Academic Auditors in G255 Angell Hall. Such a letter is usually acceptable as evidence that requirements have been met and a degree will be awarded.

Office of Academic Information and Publications

1228 Angell Hall
POINT-10, (734) 764-6810

The Office of Academic Information and Publications is a College service distinguished by its focus on LS&A academic information. To maintain accurate and current information, the Office of Academic Information and Publications is in regular contact with the Academic Advising Center, the Academic Standards Board, the Honors Program, academic departments and programs, faculty members, and many University offices.

Academic Information and Publications maintains the Student Academic Affairs website (

LS&A Peer Academic Advising Office (PAAO)

G150 Angell Hall
(734) 763-1553

The LS&A Peer Academic Advising Office, staffed completely by undergraduates, offers a unique, comfortable atmosphere in which to obtain relevant academic information. Providing peer counseling, PAAO presents students with an opportunity to share and receive experiences in an informal fashion. The office maintains such resources as course evaluations and examinations. It disseminates information concerning the newest and most innovative classes. PAAO also stocks graduate catalogs from schools across the country as well as the latest in post-graduation materials.

Student Records


University of Michigan | College of LS&A | Student Academic Affairs | LS&A Bulletin Index

This page maintained by LS&A Academic Information and Publications, 1228 Angell Hall

Copyright © 2002 The Regents of the University of Michigan,
Ann Arbor, MI 48109 USA +1 734 764-1817

Trademarks of the University of Michigan may not be electronically or otherwise altered or separated from this document or used for any non-University purpose.