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Marathon Reading 2013

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College of the Liberal Arts will host live commencement ceremony on the web

For the first time, the College of the Liberal Arts will stream the commencement ceremony live on the web for families, friends, and graduates who cannot attend the ceremony at the Bryce Jordan Center. The entire ceremony can be viewed at starting at 6 p.m. on Saturday, May 4.

According to Christopher Long, Associate Dean for Undergraduate Studies, "Given how we have been using new media technologies in the College to amplify the Liberal Arts undergraduate experience, it just made sense to extend that to graduation itself. We hope the live stream will enable friends and families of our graduates to participate and celebrate the accomplishments of the class of 2013 even from a distance."

In addition, the live stream will make the commencement ceremony more accessible to the 163 World Campus students who will be graduating and their families.

The College of the Liberal Arts offers one associate degree program, ten bachelor's degrees, three certificate programs, and one master's degree through the World Campus. The bachelor's degrees comprise psychology, labor and employment relations, organizational leadership, economics, political science, law and society, and letters, arts, and sciences. The B.A. and B.S. in psychology are among most popular degrees, with more than 300 majors enrolled from 40 states and four countries.

Avis Kunz , Assistant Dean for Online Education and Outreach, said, "The College continues to provide innovative educational opportunities to our World Campus students and is excited to use live streaming technology to bring the commencement ceremony to them."

The commencement speaker will be the College Marshal Lindsay F. Wells, a Schreyer Scholar and Paterno Fellow, who will receive three degrees: Classics & Ancient Mediterranean Studies, Art History, and Medieval Studies.

Nominations Open for 2013 Excellence in Advising Award

It's time to nominate your favorite adviser for the Excellence in Advising Award given annually to one faculty adviser and one professional (non-faculty) adviser from the entire Penn State system. Nominating an adviser gives you the chance to recognize and thank an adviser for a job well done.

Nominations will be accepted through Monday, November 26, 2012 . To nominate an adviser, simply complete the short nomination form.  Please contact Michele Peese at or 814-867-1095 with questions.

This award is sponsored by the Penn State University Advising Council and the Office for Undergraduate Education.

Spanish Minor, Study Abroad Information Session

Tuesday, October 9, 2012, 4:00 p.m., 129A HUB

Are you interested in the Spanish Minor?  Are you thinking about studying abroad?

The Spanish Minor adviser from the College of the Liberal Arts, Julianna Chaszar, will host an information session during the Education Abroad Fair that will cover:
  • the Spanish Minor requirements
  • how study abroad credits can count toward the minor
  • how to declare the minor
For details about the EA Fair and a full list of information sessions, go to

New Adviser Joins Liberal Arts Advising Team

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We are pleased to announce that Kristie Kalvin has recently joined the Liberal Arts Advising Team.  Kristie will be advising Crime, Law, and Justice and Sociology majors.  Kristie has previously worked in Communication, Arts and Sciences/ Philosophy, and most recently, advised students in Meteorology.  Kristi is excited about her return to the College and joining the advising team.  She looks forward to working together with students interested in learning about or pursuing majors in Crime, Law, and Justice and Sociology.  Please join us in welcoming Kristie to the College!

Students can schedule an advising appointment with Kristie by visiting the College of the Liberal Arts Advising Appointment Scheduling System. 

Name the Adviser and Win Free Ice Cream

Free Ice Cream For One Lucky Winner:

The weather in Happy Valley might actually be warming up...and that means a trip to the Creamery is in order. But, wait! You could get an ice cream cone for FREE. How? It's amazingly simple. Be the first student to correctly identify the three Liberal Arts academic advisers who appear in this video:

Send an email to Drew Yingling at with your answers and see if you're the lucky winner of a Creamery gift card. Good luck!

Exactly Who is My Adviser?

Remember that you can find the name of your assigned adviser in two easy ways. First, you can use the Adviser Information application on elion ( You'll also see your adviser's name and email address printed on the first page of your degree audit which you can also access from elion.

If you're still exploring majors and minors and would like to know which adviser to connect with in a particular academic area, you can find that information on the LAUS website. And, there's more--if you'd like to know a bit about the person with whom you'll be meeting, you can click on the adviser's name.

Get to know the new African American Studies Department this summer!

The new Department of African American Studies is offering a full slate of summer courses, all of which carry GH, US, or IL credits. During Maymester (May 7-June 4) a section of Blacks in the 20th Century (AFAM 100) is available, with an online section following during Summer I (May 14-June 22). During Summer II(June 27-August 8), courses in Racism and Sexism (AFAM 103), Hiphop Music and Culture (AFAM 297X), and African American Religion (AFAM 145), along with an online section of Racial and Ethnic Inequality (AFAM 409), will be offered.  For more information, please contact Lisa Batchelor at 814-863-4243 or via email at   Hope to see you in class!  

Link UP: March 24

Saturday, March 24
10:00 AM-4:00 PM
HUB-Robeson Center

Want to find out more about the amazing University Park campus? Link UP is an opportunity for first-year, second-semester Penn State students considering a campus change to visit University Park and learn more about their intended major and the change-of-campus process.

Specifically, the event provides prospective change-of-campus students with an opportunity to:
  • Visit the University Park campus and learn about campus resources
  • Meet with representatives of their academic colleges
  • Learn more about the change-of-campus process
  • Begin to understand the advanced planning and timing necessary for a successful transition
  • Discover which other Penn State campuses offer their intended major
  • Meet other potential change-of-campus students
Registration must be completed by Friday, March 2 through students' current campus of enrollment.

For more information, please contact
 Cyndy Biek at New Student Programs at

Scheduling Advising Appointments

Now that the Drop/Add period is over, all Liberal Arts advisers are available for individual appointments, along with their scheduled walk-in hours. It is important that you see your adviser at least once per semester to check your progress and discuss your fall semester classes. However, if you have any other concerns or questions, you should make it a point to see your adviser as often as necessary, or just stop in to let us know how your semester is going. Due to high demand, adviser availability will be reduced as the semester progresses, so don't wait until the last minute to schedule an appointment! The earlier in the semester you see your adviser, the higher the likelihood that you are prepared to schedule your classes when you are eligible. If you aren't sure who your assigned adviser is, you can look it up on eLion under Adviser Information.  You can also find useful information about Liberal Arts advisers and their walk-in hours on Departmental websites and on the Appointment Scheduling System.

You can schedule appointments by visiting the following Web site:

  1. Click on "Appointments"
  2. Register
Your username and password for this website do not need to be the same as your Penn State account. Remember to write them down, as you will need them for the next time you schedule an appointment.

Appointments are meant for issues that you know will take longer than 10 or 15 minutes. Examples of topics that could be covered in an appointment include:

  1. Change of major or concurrent major paperwork
  2. Long-range planning
  3. Study abroad plans 
  4. Major/career exploration
  5. Class schedules for the upcoming semester 
  6. Other topics that you want to discuss in detail and would like a designated time to do so
A few important points:
  • Appointments are made in ½ hour blocks.
  • If you are assigned a specific adviser, you should schedule an appointment with that adviser.  
  • If you are considering changing your major or declaring a second major, you should schedule an appointment with an adviser in your area of interest.
There has been a significant increase in e-mail interactions with students in the last few years. Below are a few guidelines to help you determine if email is the appropriate way to handle your concern.  Additionally, there are tips for you to follow should you determine that email correspondence is appropriate:

  • Send your email from your PSU account.
  • Include your name, a greeting, and your Penn State ID number.
  • Clearly outline the problem/question. Please do not use text message lingo--we can't understand your emails if they include partial words. This is something you should get used to--your future employers will expect the same.
  • We are happy to answer quick questions via email. We cannot, however, replace an advising meeting with email correspondence. For example, discussing possible courses for the next semester is something that you should do in person rather than through email correspondence. If your question is too difficult to explain through email, or involves additional questions and an extensive reply, we'll ask you to schedule an appointment. Please limit your e-mails. If you have several questions, e-mail them all at once.
We'll do our best to answer your questions as quickly as possible, but we might not be able to answer them on the same day, especially during peak advising times.  This is why it is important that you do not wait until the last minute to see your adviser.

Hopefully, your spring is off to a great start.  We look forward to working with you throughout the semester!

Spring 2012: Welcome Back, Students!

We hope you had an enjoyable and relaxing break. We're happy to have you back on campus, and we're excited for the Spring 2012 semester to start. Beginnings typically involve transitions, and advisers are ready to help, whether you're transitioning from high school to college, another university to Penn State, another campus to University Park or even if the transition involves adjusting back to your academic life after a great winter break. We hope to see you at least once during the semester to discuss your current and future schedules, but we also encourage you to see us if you have other questions or concerns. And, every so often, let us know how the semester is going for you; we'd like to know how you are doing.

The start of the semester marks the beginning of the Drop/Add period which refers to the first ten days of the semester. During this "crunch time," all Liberal Arts advisers will hold standard walk-in hours Monday-Friday for students who have concerns about their current schedules or need to discuss an issue that is time-sensitive and needs immediate attention.
Spring 2012
Drop/Add Walk-in Hours
January 9 - January 19, 2012
8:30 am -11:30 am 1:00 pm - 4:00 pm

If you need to see your adviser during the Drop/Add period and aren't sure who your assigned adviser is, log into eLion and select Adviser Information from the menu on the left side of the screen. You can also find out where you adviser's office is located here.

Please be assured that after the first ten days of classes, you will be able to schedule an appointment with your adviser.

So, what is the Drop/Add period? You might wonder why it's significant or what you can (or should) do during this time period. Think back to when you put your spring schedule together--it was some time ago, right? You probably made the best scheduling choices you could at the time based on your degree requirements, interests, and course availability. The Drop/Add period gives you the opportunity to make changes to your schedule--in light of new information and new course openings-- without any penalties. You can use the Drop/Add period effectively by

  • attending all your scheduled classes to assess their goodness-of-fit for you and your learning style.
  • reviewing the syllabus for each class to better understand the instructor's expectations. 
  • evaluating the overall workload of the courses you've scheduled; you might view the combination of courses differently once you have more information about individual courses. 
  • paying attention to openings in courses that you wanted to add previously but which were full when you registered for classes.
It's important to note that although there is no limit on how many changes you can make during the Drop/Add period, you should be mindful of how dropping courses may affect your financial aid. With that in mind, please familiarize yourself with the Federal Student Assistance Satisfactory Academic Progress Standard found on this web-site: .

As you make changes to your schedule, you may be working quickly to adjust your schedule, so make sure you are dropping and adding the correct classes. Once you've inadvertently dropped a course, especially a popular course, the likelihood of re-adding it may be slim.

And--this is important--what happens after the Drop/Add period ends? You should view your schedule as a fairly completed project at that point. Any changes to your schedule after January 19 will involve a $6.00 fee and dropping any courses will involve using your late-drop credits. More information on the late drop process will be discussed in an upcoming blog.

There are a few more Frequently Asked Questions we advisers hear during Drop/Add. The responses below might clarify a few of your own concerns.

Questions Answers

If I want to change my schedule, is the
process any different during Drop/Add?

No.  You'll add and drop classes just as you did during your registration time period.  Log into elion use the Drop/Add feature, located on the left side of the screen under "D."  To add a new course, simply enter the new 6-digit schedule number and hit the add button. 
I think I dropped a course from my schedule, but I want to be sure.  What should I do?
After making any changes to your schedule, select the Student Schedule feature on elion and view your schedule via the Weekly Calendar option or Course Information option.
I really want to add a class, but it's still full. What should I do? Consider using the Course Watch List feature on elion to be notified when a seat opens in a particular section.  The article "Strategies for Scheduling a Course That's Full" contains some additional helpful tips. And, always have a back-up plan in case it is not possible to gain entrance into the full section(s). 
I keep seeing that some courses are "controlled." What does that mean?

Some departments limit enrollment in certain courses for a special population (e.g., students with a particular semester standing and/or in a certain major). Generally, these course controls are fairly strict, but you may request an exception by taking a completed registration drop/add form  to the department offering the course for instructor's approval and for processing.


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