Stay positive – students benefit from hope and knowing we believe in them while being realistic about how best to move forward
- Use growth mindset language/framing
- Highlight the student’s past successes (a lá strengths-based advising) to stress their potential
- Employ coaching conversation style open-ended questions to help get at the underlying issues AND student driven solutions
Get specific – both in terms of the problem(s) and the solution(s)
- Set realistic goals
- Vague thinking leads to vague action. Thus, it is important to guide the student to develop a concrete, actionable plan to return to appropriate academic standing.
- Put a summary of this plan in your AdRx notes.
Accountability – When meeting with students after the initial plan/goal setting phase, check on progress
- Check to see if SER feedback matches what they are telling you about how classes are going.
- Inquire to see what other progress might have occurred
- Recalibrate the plan if circumstances have changed
This information is also available in a printer-friendly PDF.
Probation meetings are different from other advising meetings, so the preparation should be different, too. The guidelines below are relevant to all probation meetings, including students on elevated probation who are monitored by the Office of Undergraduate Retention and Achievement. See also the detailed guidance from the Office of Undergraduate Retention and Achievement
- Review the student's record:
- CHER: Review current and previous AD statuses; note of the Major Credit Deficit located in the CHER Academic Difficulty V03 list; read probation letter
- AdRx: Review contact notes; check for SER feedback
- SIS-AAR: Review transcript, especially performance in probation semester and Major GPA (MGPA) courses; note courses, requirements, and content areas of particular concern
- Create an agenda: Based on the information you reviewed in CHER, AdRx, and SIS-AAR, create a list of topics and issues to cover during the meeting
- AdRx notes for probation meetings should include:
- Probation code (e.g., PR-sm1); see the quick reference list below or link to the AD status overview chart
- Current Cumulative GPA (CGPA)
- Current Major GPA (MGPA)
- Last Semester GPA (SGPA)
- Academic impediments
- Student’s planned actions to address impediments
- Academic dismissal risk
- Current enrollments
- Progress toward degree and in major (e.g., excessive Ws, repeated course work)
- Current academic impediments (e.g., work obligations, financial issues, family issues, health issues)
- Academic policies (e.g., benefit of Extended-X?, Incomplete Grade)
- Major Credit Deficit as listed in CHER Academic Difficulty V03 list
- College academic dismissal criteria
- Current term Auto-W and WAS deadlines (8W1, 8W2, and full-term)
- Actions (e.g., schedule adjustments, major exploration)
- Resources (e.g., WTS, MLC, CAPS, CHG, SAO)
- Referrals (e.g., faculty members, other College advisors, HPPLC)
- Student response to recommendations
- Removed or list of additional actions for student to complete
- As needed: Include other key information from the meeting not otherwise reflected
A GPA deficit is a number used by the College of Arts and Sciences to estimate the amount of work a student must undertake to raise their GPA to 2.000, the minimum required for both the College GPA and Major GPA to be in good academic standing. Read as “the number of credit hours that must be taken in which a B grade is earned to raise the GPA to 2.000 or higher.” Grades earned that are higher than a B will lower the deficit more quickly; C, C+, and B- grades will lower the deficit more slowly.
You can view the Major GPA deficit in your Academic Difficulty V03 list in CHER.
To understand how the GPA deficit is calculated:
- Two variables needed:
- t = Total credit hours (units) taken in major (exclude incompletes (I), Rs, Ws, S, P, Test, and in-progress (IP) courses; but do include F and regular X'ed grades)
- e = Total GPA points earned for courses counted above (see chart below)
- (t x 2) – e = deficit (for 000 goal)
- Always round answer up to the nearest whole number
Have questions related to a student's case and want to consult a person on the Retention & Achievement Team? Here is a chart to help you identify the best person to field your inquiry.
The College maintains a list of helpful resources that can benefit students in a variety of circumstances. Review this list to see if you want to refer a student to any of them as merited by the student's situation.
The College’s probation status and policy is part of its larger retention and persistence efforts. NACADA’s clearinghouse has a variety of resources that touch on retention and persistence; you may be able to glean additional ideas and insights to use with your students from these resources. The Advising Community on Probation & Dismissal also hosts a variety of helpful resources.