page banner

COSAM » Departments » Student Services » Parents » FAQs


What do Academic Advisors do?

Academic Advisors know about university policies and procedures so they can help your son/daughter understand how to interpret the Bulletin and other university publications. Advisors also help your son/daughter navigate the core curriculum, brainstorm about majors and careers, and strategize about how to get out of academic trouble (if necessary). An advisor is someone for your son/daughter to come to with almost any problem because he or she knows where students can get all kinds of help. Our job is to advise and help students make sound academic decisions. Much like professors, we do not "take the test" for the students. Rather, we teach them to become good "test takers".

What do Academic Advisors expect of students?

Advisors expect your son/daughter to be aware of their core and major requirements and to come to meetings with some ideas written down about classes to take each term. Advisors are impressed when students come with a list of questions, which shows that they are interested in being in college and getting the most out of it.

What academic support services are available?

The Academic Support Services runs a very successful academic support system for all Auburn students.  They provide all kinds of help to get students back on track with their academics including: academic coaching, supplemental instruction and tutoring.  For more information please call, 334-844-5972 , or visit their website: .

How can I find out how my student is doing academically?

The best way to find this out is to have clear communication with your son/daughter. The Federal Educational Rights Privacy Act (FERPA) prohibits the disclosure of private information like grades, even to a student's parents.  We encourage parents to talk to their son/daughter if there is a question regarding their academic progress.

What does academic warning mean?

Academic warning means that a student has fallen out of good academic standing due to a low GPA. At Auburn, if a student's cumulative GPA on Auburn course falls below a 2.0, they will be placed on warning. For more information on Academic Warning please refer to Explanation of Common Policies and Terms . Students on academic warning should always work closely with their advisors to make sure they understand the most effective ways to get out of academic trouble!

May my student take classes at another school during the summer?

Your son/daughter may take classes at another school as long as he/she gets permission from Auburn before doing so. Getting permission protects him/her because it ensures that they are taking courses that will transfer back to Auburn. Students are generally granted permission unless they are not in good academic standing. In that case, the student would probably want to do coursework at Auburn in order to boost his or her GPA. The GPA in courses from another school does not affect the GPA at Auburn. In addition, some departments may prefer that they take certain courses at Auburn so that they are better prepared for upper level classes.  It's a good idea for your son/daughter to consult their advisors before taking coursework at another school.

What is the process for my student to take courses at another institution during the summer?

The process for students to take courses at another institution is quite simple. Your son/daughter needs to meet with their academic advisor to make sure the courses that they plan on taking will transfer back to Auburn. He/she will then need to fill out a transient form, which needs to be signed off by the academic advisor and once signed, the form needs to be submitted to the Registrar's office. Then they would send the form to the respective institution where the transient work will be taken.

What if my student wants to take some time off from Auburn?

Sometimes taking time off from school is a good way for students to get a new perspective on why they are in school and what their goals are. Your son/daughter should talk to their advisors about taking a semester off; but, in general, coming back to school after some time away is not difficult. It involves filling out a short form through the Registrar's office; students DO NOT need to fill out a complete application for admission.

What if my student drops below full-time status?

Students must be enrolled in 12 hours to be considered full-time students. If they drop below that, their financial aid eligibility may be affected as well as their eligibility to be covered by parents' insurance. Your son/daughter should contact Financial Aid and talk to their parents about the insurance issue before dropping below 12 hours of credit.

If I am paying for my son's or daughter's education, why can't I get a copy of their records?

The same laws that give parents access to and control over a child's educational records during elementary and high school transfer ownership of the records to your son/daughter at the college level.

According to FERPA (Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act, also known as the Buckley Amendment), college students are considered responsible adults and are allowed to determine who will receive information about them. Under this law, parents who want to receive a copy of their student's academic or financial records can do so if their student signs a release form.

In order for my son or daughter to continue their health insurance through my employer, the insurance company wants proof that they are enrolled full time. Also, my auto insurance company needs proof of their grade point average so that we can keep their "good student discount." Where do we get that proof?

Enrollment verifications or letters of good standing are usually done to officially verify information about students for scholarships, loan deferments, car insurance, health/medical insurance, or future employment. We can verify degrees earned, dates of enrollment, credits earned, grade point average, and more! Your son/daughter will need to visit the Registrar's office to find out more information on how to obtain an enrollment verification form, or they can also access this information through their Tiger i account.

My son or daughter is not doing well academically. How can I help?

Students, particularly freshmen, can encounter academic difficulties. First year students often face difficult transitions and adjustments to college, including separating from family members, adjusting to new living arrangements, and accommodating to the University's higher academic standards.

Students are encouraged to find someone to talk to on campus. There are many great resources on campus to help students; these include: Student Affairs office, Student Health Services, academic advisors, as well as others.

My son or daughter has taken Advanced Placement/IB Test and Dual Enrollment. Will they get credit for their work?

Yes. Students with AP or IB credit are responsible for providing an official copy of their test scores to Auburn. For dual enrollment credit, the student will need to have an official transcript sent from the institution where they have taken courses and have it sent the Auburn Registrar's office. For more information about AP/IB credit, please contact the Office of Admission and Records. Telephone: (334) 844-2528 or visit: .  For more information about dual enrollment credit please contact the COSAM Student Services Office, by visiting our webpage: , or contacting us at 334-844-4269.

Is there ever an appropriate time for the parent to contact the academic advisor directly?

Yes, but please be cognizant of FERPA regulations.  These federal regulations limit what an advisor can discuss with parents without your son/daughter's permission. 

If your son/daughter is sick or is expected to miss class for any length of time, it is important to contact their academic advisor for assistance in notifying their instructors.

If my student cannot get into a course that he/she needs, what can they do?  If he/she is on the waiting list for a course, what will happen?

It is VERY important for your son/daughter to not wait until the last minute to register for courses. They should register for courses as soon as their time ticket opens for registration.  If a course that they need is closed, it is VERY important that they contact the department and get on a waiting list for the course. Waiting lists are the most efficient way for them to get into courses that they need.  We use them to prioritize enrollment and also as a measurement of demand to justify opening additional sections of a course.

Where can students and parents find information on the registration process, including drop/add?

Students are encouraged to come talk to an advisor if they have questions about registration.  But general information about registration is available online through the Registrar's office and also on the COSAM Student Services webpage.

Where can a student go for assistance exploring major options? 

Auburn's Career Development Services offer one-on-one support and other resources to help with major and career decision-making. Professors are also an excellent source of advice. For more information visit:

How does a student drop a class? Are there deadlines?

Before dropping a class, students should meet with their academic advisor to discuss ramifications and possible alternatives. There are important deadlines that all students should know. Please refer to Explanation of Common Policies and Terms for more information.

If a student has a disability, where can he/she go for assistance?

Students with disabilities should register with Program for Students with Disabilities. This office will coordinate accommodations to ensure Auburn's programs are accessible to all students. For more information visit:

If a student is ill and misses classes, what should they do?

The student should contact professors, explain the situation and determine how to make up the work. If a student is too ill to notify professors, a family member should contact the student's academic advisor to assist with contacting the faculty members.If the illness causes the student to miss an exam or other course requirment the studen will likely need to provide official documentation of the illness.

Should parents contact professors to discuss a students' academic performance?

We do not advise parents to contact professors. It is very important for your son/daughter to develop good relationships with their professors. Whenever they are concerned about academic progress or have questions regarding a class, parents should encourage them to follow-up directly with the professor.

Last Updated: 08/07/2018