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About Advising

At The University of Oklahoma

Student Being Advised

General advising for freshmen is provided by University College, a non-degree college that focuses on helping students make the transition to the university and provides them with academic advising and a variety of counseling activities to help them select a major and achieve academic success. During the freshman year, the OU Scholars Program in the Honors College provides specialized advising services to OU Scholars, National Merit, National Award and Conoco Phillips Scholars. 

Once students are admitted to a degree college, they are advised either by academic counselors in the college office or by professional or faculty advisors in the department in which they are majoring. 

A flowchart (PDF) of academic advising from the Graduation Planner can be helpful when moving from one academic unit to another.

In addition to formal academic advising, students may select from a wide variety of additional counseling and support services, including workshops offered by the Assessment Center, Learning Center, and the Center for Student Life; individual career advising by Career Services; and academic assistance through the Writing Center and several tutoring programs. 

The Who-How-Where of Advising

Why Get Advised

Academic Advising is one of the key components in reaching your goal of graduation. Your academic advisor is someone who can

  1. help you in selecting a major and career
  2. monitor your academic progress
  3. provide information in designing, developing, and implementing individual academic plans
  4. provide you with letters of reference when you are applying for graduate programs or looking for employment
  5. link you to resources in getting connected on campus and in the community


What is Full-Time Enrollment?

Although the institutional definition and the financial aid requirement for full-time undergraduate enrollment status is 12 credit hours per regular fall or spring semester, it is impossible to graduate with fewer than 15 credit hours per regular semester or 30 credit hours per academic year.

Most students are capable of taking 15 to 16 hours per semester, and OU encourages you to consider that. However, students who are not pacing their enrollments in such a manner should consider Intersession and/or Summer term enrollments. A student needs to average at least 31 hours of completed and applicable coursework each year to have any opportunity to graduate in four years.

Why Graduate in 4

Many students ask why it is important to graduate in four years. Following are reasons to consider.

  • A timely graduation benefits students who are applying to graduate schools. Many graduate programs only accept students for the fall semester, so a one semester delay can result in a one-year delay of entering and completing a graduate degree. 
  • A timely graduation benefits students who are seeking employment. It enables students to enter the workforce and begin to experience enhanced earning power that a college degree usually provides. 
  • Graduating in four years is much less expensive. Tuition and housing costs usually increase on an annual basis. Many students also do not realize that just housing and living expenses per semester often amount to $5,000 or more.