At Aquinas Institute of Theology every student, degree or non-degree, is assigned an academic adviser. The role of the academic adviser is to offer guidance to the student regarding program requirements and selection of appropriate courses in accord with the student’s academic and professional goals.
Students are asked to formulate academic, professional, and spiritual development goals as they begin their theological study. The Proseminar provides the framework for this process. Advisers assist students in the initial and subsequent formulation of these goals during the regular advising sessions, and they will review each advisee’s goals with them on a yearly basis. These goals, in conjunction with their program goals and the five practices, serve as the criteria when the student applies for Admission to Candidacy.
Students bear primary responsibility for their own progress and fulfillment of requirements toward the degree which they are seeking. However, it is the role of the adviser to assist students in carrying out their responsibilities. Because the advisor’s role is so important, students are required to meet with their advisors before registration for courses – to review goals, plan for future classes and obtain approval for the following semester’s course registration. The following procedures guide the academic advising process:
- Advisers are available to see students by appointment at any time, but especially at registration times.
- It is the student’s responsibility to make the appointment to see the adviser.
- The adviser and student should keep a progress record of the student's advancement toward the degree.
- While the student always remains free to choose courses as he/she wishes, the adviser's recommendations should be carefully weighed.
- If the student is experiencing difficulty in academic work, he/she should consult with the adviser as to the best
- course of action to take.
- If the student is in danger of failure, the adviser is required to inform the Academic Dean of this in order to see if assistance can be given to the student.
- The adviser assists the student in fulfilling the non-course aspects of the student's program: arranging for
- ministry practica, internships, CPE placement, the taking of comprehensive examinations where required, finding a director for thesis or major paper, and applying for graduation. In some of these instances a person other than the adviser may be more directly involved (e.g., the Director of Field Education, the Director of the MA Program, the Academic Dean); however, the adviser is the person to begin with when the student is unsure.