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Roles and Responsibilities

The following videos and guidance provide insight on roles and responsibilities in the advising relationship

Role Expectations

The following sections provide detail on each of the roles, for all parties, involved in supporting academic advising:

Role of the Academic Advisor

  • To assist students with the process of induction and orientation into academic life and the University community and respond promptly to any communication from him/her;
  • To work with students to build personal academic relationships;
  • To retain an interest in their students' personal and general academic and professional development throughout their academic careers while at the University, providing information and guidance on academic choice;
  • To monitor both academic performance and student engagement in a proactive manner and advise on constructive strategies to enable improvement, for example through the use of a personal portfolio or personal development plan;
  • To offer general academic advice to their allocated students on their general progress and development towards the fulfilment of the Purposes of a Manchester Education, and to signpost relevant careers and skills development provision to enhance employability;
  • To listen and offer students help and advice about pastoral/non-academic matters and to signpost students to other student services for further assistance if necessary;
  • To ensure that a note is kept of discussions at each meeting (with the student) and any follow-up actions agreed with the student;
  • To provide references.

Role of the Personal Advisor

  • A subset of the Academic Advisor’s role may be carried out by a Personal Advisor in order to offer supplementary advice on academic matters and personal problems. A Personal Advisor may, for example, provide advice on academic progress and employability, and discuss and refer on health and wellbeing issues as appropriate.

Role of Students

Students are expected to:

  • Attend and prepare for all arranged meetings with their Advisor and respond promptly to any communication from him/her;
  • Make appropriate use of all the support and guidance offered at the University;
  • Take the initiative in raising problems or difficulties (academic or personal) at the earliest possible opportunity;
  • Report promptly to their School or Advisor when they are ill or have other good reason for non-attendance or failing to meet deadlines;
  • Keep records of meetings and agreed actions.

Role of Senior Advisors

  • To act as a co-ordinating point for general communication between the School and central student and academic services, e.g., disseminating information about institutional student support and services;
  • To act as a second point of contact for a student in the event of the allocated Advisor's absence from the University, and in the event of complicated issues;
  • To act as a point of contact for other Advisors;
  • To report to the Faculty Teaching and Learning Committee on the annual evaluation of the operation of the Advising system within the School;
  • If requested by the Head of School, to consider requests by students to change their Advisor.

Role of the School

Each School is expected to:

  • Ensure that all students on taught programmes are assigned appropriately trained Advisor prior to or on arrival;
  • Ensure that accurate information about the purpose and operation of the Advising system is drawn proactively to the attention of students via degree programme handbooks and other sources and during the first meeting with the Advisor;
  • Ensure that all staff undertaking Advising have been given appropriate information on the expectations of the role and the supporting resources available and offered training if required;
  • Evaluate annually the operation of the Advising system within the School (collating student feedback through Student-Staff Liaison Committee and Boards of Studies where general feedback on the operation of the Advising system should be reviewed annually, and through questionnaires where these are used), indicating the ways in which University expectations are met, and to report on this, via the Senior Advisor, to Faculty Teaching and Learning Committee;
  • Ensure the Advising system is well communicated to students and all staff;
  • Co-ordinate Advising provision within the School;
  • Ensure continuity of Advising throughout a student’s degree programme as far as is possible. Where the role is re-assigned, the student should be informed immediately.

Role of the Head of School

  • To allocate Advisors to students in line with institutional principles and in accordance with the School's workload model. The recommended minimum time commitment per student adjusted depending on local agreement on tutorial formats (e.g., group tutorials) is as follows:
  • Minimum two meetings in Semester 1 (15-20 minutes each)
  • Minimum one meeting in Semester 2 (15-20 minutes)
  • Meeting preparation/record-keeping time - 1 hour
  • To identify a Senior Advisor for the School;
  • To ensure that appropriate training is provided for all Advisors;
  • To consider requests by students to change their Advisor.

Role of the Faculty

  • To monitor the implementation and effectiveness of the University’s expectations of the Advising system, via annual reports from the Senior Advisor to Faculty Teaching and Learning Committee on the implementation of the Advising system.

Role of the University

  • To maintain an overview of the implementation and effectiveness of the University’s Advising provision;
  • To support Advisors and Senior Advisors, the University will provide easily accessible information regarding relevant student support services as well as training and guidance on the areas expected to be covered by the Advising system;
  • To enable Advisors to easily access to relevant student information and data;
  • To ensure appropriate mechanisms are in place to recognise high quality performance in Advising via recognition within the academic promotions criteria, and an institutional award scheme for Advisors.

University Policy and Guidance

Please select these links to view pdfs of the University's Policy for Advising Taught Students and Guidance on Advising