Advising FAQs

Who is my advisor?

You can always find out who your specific academic advisor is by looking at your degree audit on the web -- your advisor's name is included in the heading information.  The information below will provide information on how advisor assignments are made in the College of Business and Economics

New Freshmen:
New Freshmen majors entering Radford University in the fall receive initial advising information through the  QUEST, which is held during the summer.  Business majors will be advised through the Advising Center until the completion of the pre-business program.

Returning Freshman and Sophomore Business Majors:
All returning freshman and sophomore business majors will be advised by the College of Business Advising Center until they have completed the pre-business program, which is normally completed by the end of your sophomore year (see below what classes need to be completed before you are assigned a faculty advisor). These students also need to set up an appointment with the Advising Center 6-8 weeks prior to registration for each term.

Junior Business Majors:
Those junior business majors that have completed the pre-business program will be assigned a faculty advisor in their major (see below to find out what classes need to be completed before you are assigned a faculty advisor).  Students with faculty advisors need to be in contact with their faculty advisors at least six weeks prior to registration for each term.  If you are not sure who your faculty advisor is, stop by the Advising Center in BE 244 to find out.

Those junior business majors that have not completed the pre-business program will still be advised by the College of Business Advising Center.  These students also need to set up an appointment with the Advising Center 6-8 weeks prior to registration for each term.  They will not be assigned a faculty advisor until the pre-business program is completed.
Senior Business Majors:
All senior business majors should have the pre-business program completed and have a faculty advisor.  Students with faculty advisors need to be in contact with their faculty advisors at least six weeks prior to registration for each term.  Once again, if a student has not completed the pre-business program they will still be advised by the College of Business Advising Center. These students also need to set up an appointment with the Advising Center 6-8 weeks prior to registration for each term.   They will not be assigned a faculty advisor until the pre-business program is completed.

Economics Majors:
Advising for B.S. Economics majors is conducted from the freshman year through graduation by faculty advisors in the Department of Economics. You should contact Teresa Chapman in the Economics department at 540-831-5100 for additional information or stop by BE 266 prior to registration.

Pre-business requirements that need to be completed before a student will be assigned a faculty advisor (56 credit hours including the following):

  • MATH 126
  • STAT 200
  • ECON 205
  • ECON 606
  • ACTG 211
  • ACTG 212

What catalog do I use?

Catalog year refers to which catalog you are following to meet graduation requirements. Radford University policy states a currently enrolled full-time student may meet the graduation requirements listed in the undergraduate catalog in effect at the time of the student's initial enrollment at Radford, or the individual may select to meet the requirements in any subsequent catalog published between enrollment and graduation, as long as the catalog is no more than five years old. A student may not follow requirements for graduation listed in a catalog in effect prior to the student's enrollment at Radford.

Students who have been absent from the university for two continuous semesters must meet the degree requirements in force in the Radford University Undergraduate Catalog at the time of readmission.

Most students select the year they enrolled at Radford University as their catalog year. Whichever catalog year is used, the student must follow all degree requirements listed in that catalog.

What should I bring to an advising session?

Academic advising is a shared responsibility.  Both the advisee and the advisor have responsibilities.  The better prepared you are for the advising session, the more information you will get to cover with your advisor.  Therefore, the advising session is as much your responsibility as it is the advisor. It is in your best interest to be as prepared as possible. Come prepared with a written list of questions, notes from previous advising sessions, and any kind of documentation that you feel is appropriate.  If you are still working on the CORE requirements, bring a printout of acceptable CORE courses so you and your advisor can talk about which courses are most appropriate for you based on your academic and career plans.  Print the latest version of your degree audit and bring that also (found on the Student Information System). You should have your own copy of your progress sheet (found on the COBE Advising website) that you update regularly so you know which requirements you have already completed, which ones  you are currently completing, and what remains to be completed.  Keep all of your advising materials in a folder. That way you know where all of your paperwork is and it’s easy to get your hands on before your appointment.

I'm having trouble in one of my courses, what should I do?

The first thing you should do is approach the professor of the course. The professors here at Radford are wonderful about taking the time to get to know their students. Do not let a situation escalate to where it is out of control and beyond someone helping you. Make an appointment with the professor immediately to discuss the situation and try to develop a resolution. You will find that your professors want you to be successful and will offer advice and encouragement for your success. Your professor may give you some ideas on "how to study" for the course or refer you to the Learning Assistance and Resource Center (LARC) or refer you to a tutor from that specific department or refer you to your academic advisor or to form a study group. Your professor is your best resource when you are having difficulties in a course

What happens if I receive a poor grade in a course?

The best thing you can do to prevent this from happening is to be extremely proactive. It is up to you! Talk to the professor, talk with your advisor, use the services provided by the Learning Assistance Resource Center (LARC). If you still end up receiving a poor grade, make an appointment with your advisor. Remember you do have options when you find that you are doing poorly in a course.  Two academic policies which may serve you well in this situation are the class withdrawal policy and the repeat policy.  See the undergraduate catalog for more information on these policies.  Then if you have questions or need assistance understanding the policies, talk to your academic advisor. You and your academic advisor can develop a plan of action based on your individual situation.

Can I take a course at a community college or another four-year school and transfer it back to Radford?

Definitely.  Remember:  It is always best to discuss taking any course at another institution with your academic advisor who can help you make appropriate plans based on your program and your progress in your program. We find that students tend to take courses that are going to be used to fulfill general education requirements rather than major requirements at other institutions and transfer them back to RU.  Many students take courses at their community college close to home during the summer to get ahead in their program or even to catch up if necessary. There may even be a few courses required for your major that are offered at a community college or other four-year institution close to your home that you could take during the summer.  You should always check with your advisor or the Advising Center before you select any courses to take so that we can confirm that it is an acceptable/appropriate course. Even though you can find a class at another institution, it may be that your advisor will recommend that you take the course at RU but then may help you to find another course you could take at home during the summer.

A list of acceptable courses offered by Virginia's community colleges can be found at the Office of the Registrar. You will need to complete a "Transfer Approval" form before taking any courses at another institution. This form, when processed through the Advising Center, will confirm that the course will transfer to RU and that it is an acceptable course for your program.

What grades do I need this semester to earn a certain GPA?

This is really something you should discuss with your advisor. You may also use a GPA calculator to help in this process.  Once you have keyed in the requested information, it will calculate a GPA based on that information. Remember the GPA calculator is only as accurate as the information you enter -- follow the directions carefully.

What is a Degree Audit?

The Degree Audit is located in your Student Information System under Degree Works, then select Process New/View to view your audit.  This audit will show what courses you have taken and will match it up with the program that you are pursuing.  It will show what has been completed and what needs to be completed for your program.  It also shows your Overall GPA, your In-major GPA (may not be accurate depending on program) and your advisor.

What is a course withdrawal?

A student may withdraw from a course that they feel they are not doing well in and will receive a grade of "W".  This grade will show up on the transcript as "W".  The student will need to obtain a withdrawal form from any advising center or the registrar's office and fill out the information and get their academic advisor to sign the form and return it to the registrar's office prior to the withdrawal deadline to receive a "W".  The student is allotted five withdrawals for their whole academic career at Radford University.

What do I need to do to change my major?

The student needs to fill out the Declaration of Major/Minor Form which is located in any advising center or the registrar's office.  This form needs to be turned into the advising center in which you plan to change your major.

How many credits do I need to be a freshman, sophomore, junior or senior?

Students with 26 semester hours will be classified as sophomores, with 56 semester hours as juniors, and with 86 hours as seniors.

What is an incomplete ("I") grade?

At the faculty member's discretion the letter "I" may be entered on the student's transcript for a course whenever some portion of the required woke has not been completed by the end of the semester. A written statement of the requirements for removal of the grade "I" must be signed by the faculty member and student and filed in the office of the chairperson of the department in which the course is taught, with a copy submitted to the registrar along with the faculty member's grade sheet.  The grade of "I" will automatically revert to a grade of "F" if not satisfactorily removed by completing all coursework needed by the last day of classes of next semester (fall or spring) semester.

What are HOLDs on my account?

Students may have holds placed on their account by either not having paying a fine or bill, or not returning library books.  A hold on your account will prevent you from registering for classes and doing other important tasks. You can see if you have holds on your account by using the Student Information System and viewing Academics, then selecting Academic Status.  The holds will be listed in the bottom of the page.  It will only tell you which office placed the hold on your account, but will not state why.  You need to contact the specific office and see what needs to be done to remove that hold.  This could prevent you from graduating as well, so make sure you take care of it!

What are the different types of credit loads?

To be considered fulltime you need to carry 12-18 credit hours.  If you drop below 12 hours, this categorizes you as part-time and this can affect your financial aid, and other services on campus.  You need to check with different departments on campus before you decide to drop below 12 hours.  You may also carry more than 18 hours; this is called an overload and has to be approved by the dean of the college you are in.  The overload forms can be picked up in the advising offices