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dr_alcott:
The SLAC I attended had WI courses 25 years ago.

octoprof:
Quote from: lucero on May 24, 2013,  4:40:11 pm

Quote from: kaysixteen on May 24, 2013,  1:12:02 pm

1) Is it common nowadays for unis to divide courses into 'WI' and non-WI, and require a certain number of courses taken to be the former?  I have never encountered such nomenclature or distinctions before.

2) It seems pretty unreasonable to expect freshmen to navigate all these complexities themselves, and to know what to take, when, etc., as though they were grad students.  They need to be taught slowly, and the advisors need to advise properly.  "They're adults now" seems to me to be an excuse for laziness on the part of advisors.  These kids coming out of hs know no better, and will not learn it on their own, at least not most of them, and not right away.


I went to college in the 1980s and we had WRITING INTENSIVE sections of courses.  We had advisors, but we chose them.  I had a different advisor practically every semester and the person never discussed any courses with me, they just signed my schedule. I don't know if that was standard practice at my university, but it was what happened with me. We were basically supposed to read the catalog and the requirements and choose our own courses, getting a signature (and maybe in some cases "advice") before we registered.  But that was a different era. There was no hand holding. We also did not have any "notification" system, like many schools have now, to tell the student and the advisor that the student is not attending class, in danger of failing, etc. If you couldn't figure that out yourself, too bad.

Where I teach now, students are assigned advisors when they are freshmen and they basically choose the courses for the freshmen. I suppose the students have some input. These freshmen advisors are supposedly trained to know the requirements and that is ALL they do, they are not faculty. I've worked at some other schools in which advising from Freshmen through seniors (regardless of majors) was done by these "professional" advisors, whose sole job is to advise students.


We appreciate the fact that our freshpeeps are advised by professional advisers, honestly. We only get the students to (officially) advise once they've entered the major (completed the business core of freshman and sophomore courses). The professional advisers understand those general/core/business core requirements way better than we do, honestly. We, of course, understand the major courses better and have a good idea about the students and what they can handle as they go through the upper level courses (no one gets through the accounting major without having me at least once, and that's true for all our accounting faculty, I think).

Like you, we had no official professional or otherwise specific advising when I was earning my bachelors degree. We were given a program of study for our major and we were expected to follow it. Period. If we didn't it was our own fault. When registering for the final semester, one applied to graduate and was told it was possible or not.

Back then, almost all were full time traditional students and my undergrad university was definitely not open enrollment (state flagship). Many of us now teach at (more or less) open enrollment universities these days and the typical university student is very different from what we were (many working part or full time while going to school full time).

cc_alan:
Quote from: octoprof on May 25, 2013, 11:07:57 am

Like you, we had no official professional or otherwise specific advising when I was earning my bachelors degree. We were given a program of study for our major and we were expected to follow it. Period. If we didn't it was our own fault. When registering for the final semester, one applied to graduate and was told it was possible or not.


This and I received my undergrad degree a couple of decades ago at an open enrollment university.

<disclaimer: the fulltime advisors at my college rock>

In my experience, degree requirements are spelled out in detail. General education requirements are given in large detail- take 1 from the following list, 2 from the following list, etc. A big challenge is transfer classes either to another institution or to our institution.

Alan

lohai0:
Quote from: octoprof on May 25, 2013, 11:07:57 am

Like you, we had no official professional or otherwise specific advising when I was earning my bachelors degree. We were given a program of study for our major and we were expected to follow it. Period. If we didn't it was our own fault. When registering for the final semester, one applied to graduate and was told it was possible or not.


We were given an index card. On the front was a list of the required courses and electives list for the major. On the back was a prerequisites flowchart. We were told that if we needed more help than that to figure out classes, we shouldn't be math majors.

ranganathan:
I went to a VSLAC in the early '90s and it was pretty easy: here's your checklist, check off the boxes as you do it, hold onto it.* 

But at my current regional state university, advising seems much more complicated. We have lots of students transferring in and out, which means being very familiar with Articulation agreements, and then there's dual enrollment, AP, what about this CC class I took over the summer, etc.  Add in some major curriculum overhauls within the past few years, and there are plenty of headaches.

Even in the "good old days", students still messed up. My faculty adviser said I was a pleasure because I was the only one of her students who didn't save a math or science requirement until senior year, really mucking up their schedules as they tried to graduate on time.

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