Academic Advising

Yale College urges all members of the faculty to make themselves as available as possible for the academic advising of students.

In freshman year, a student receives academic advice from a member of the faculty or professional staff who is a fellow of the student’s residential college. The residential college dean assigns students to freshman advisers on the basis of the student’s declared academic interests or other factors. A freshman adviser has on average three advisees, although some have as few as one or as many as five.

In addition to a freshman adviser, first-year students are advised within their residential colleges by the residential college dean and freshman (peer) counselors. Each dean may be responsible for up to 125 freshmen, while each freshman counselor (“FroCo”) is generally assigned between 10-15 students.

In sophomore year, students select their own advisers. Only faculty members from the Faculty of Arts and Sciences or deans in Yale College may serve as sophomore advisers. Because of the requirement-heavy and sequential nature of math, science, and engineering majors, students interested in majoring in those subjects are encouraged to select the relevant director of undergraduate studies or his or her delegate as sophomore advisers. Usually sophomores select an instructor of a course taken during freshman year, the director of undergraduate studies in their intended major, or their freshman adviser.

In addition to discussions between sophomores and their advisers about academic goals and courses, sophomores meet with their adviser or another member of the faculty in April to discuss their long-range educational objectives. Such discussions have proved to be valuable to students, and Yale College hopes that any faculty member a sophomore invites to review his or her work to date and long-range educational objectives will consent to do so.

Students majoring in subjects other than the sciences or engineering declare their majors at the beginning of junior year, at which point they make use of the advisory systems established by the various departments.

Refer to Resources for Academic Advising for more information on freshman and sophomore advising, or contact Assistant Dean Risa Sodi, the Director of Advising and Special Programs. Contact the residential college dean or head of your college if you are interested in becoming a freshman adviser.