Advising

Academic advisers can assist you with degree requirements, internships, major changes, Study Abroad options, schedule planning, academic resources, continuing education – or anything else relating to your educational experience at MSU.

 

  • Schedule an Appointment

    To schedule an appointment with an adviser, go to student.msu.edu

     Please follow these instructions on how to navigate the new advising site:

    1. Log in at student.msu.edu
      1. Complete the 2factor process: https://spartanslearn.msu.edu/tech-training/two-factor/index.html
    2. Click on Academic Progress
    3. Click on Advising/Tutoring Appointments
    4. Click on Create New Appointment
    5. Select the following appointment details:
      1. Category: Select Advising
      2. Advising/Tutoring Unit: Select College of Social Science Advising
      3. Appointment Reason: Click the look-up/magnifying glass icon and select one of our four majors (Political Science, Political Science Pre-Law, World Politics, Public Policy)Do not search for Political Science in the text box.
      4. Appointment Duration: This will default to 30 minutes. 
      5. Additional Information (required): Please enter the reason for your appointment to help the advisor prepare, e.g. scheduling classes, graduation check, etc.
      6. Appointment Type: Select your preference of an in person, phone, Zoom, or walk-in appointment. We encourage you to select a Zoom appointment if you have the option to call so we can share screens and discuss information if necessary.
      7. Click Select Advisor: Krista Zeig or Heather Wilson
        1. Choose your preferred date and time with any of the Political Science advisors and click Select Time. You may need to scroll down the page to view the complete list. Use the Next Days hyperlink to see more available dates.
    6. Review all appointment information, including any advisor notes, and click Book it! at the bottom of the page.

    For all questions, please contact Political Science Academic Advisors Krista Zeig or Heather Wilson.

  • Drop-in Schedule and Standards

    Acceptable Topics for Drop-In Advising during Peak Times

    • Degree requirement review and confirmation of class schedule if you have recently seen an advisor 
    • Major exploration for freshmen and sophomores
    • Course selection and questions for freshmen and sophomores
    • Advisor signature for internship and independent study forms
    • Study Abroad course evaluation

     

    Unacceptable Topics for Drop-In Advising during Peak Times 

    • Junior and senior program planning and degree checks
    • Major exploration for juniors and seniors
    • Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) form completion
    • Academic probation conferences
    • Career and graduate school planning beyond a few quick questions
    • Study Abroad course selection and planning
  • Role of Advisors
    The undergraduate advisor's primary focus is to help undergraduate students with matters pertaining to academic progress and career goals. While students are responsible for understanding University, College, and Department requirements, advisors can provide current information about requirements, options, and procedures. The advisors recommend that students review the requirements with them at least once a  semester.  In addition to reading the Political Science website on a regular basis, students should read their e-mails to look for new programs and opportunities within the department through our weekly newsletter. The Political Science advisors want to assist students in preparing a solid undergraduate experience. Make sure to get to know them!

Department of Political Science 368 Farm Lane, S. Kedzie Hall, East Lansing MI 48823

 

 

Frequently Asked Questions

  • How do I change my major?

    If you are interested in changing your major to one of the four majors within the Department of Political Science (Political Science General, Political Science Pre-Law, World Politics, Public Policy), or would like to add one of our four majors as either an additional major or second degree, please schedule an appointment with a political science advisor on student.msu.edu. 

    If you are currently a major within the Political Science department and are looking to change your major to something outside of the PLS department, please make an appointment with an advisor for the major you plan to change into. The advisor for your new major can review degree requirements and help with the major change. 

  • How can I request an override into a class?

    If you are looking to get an override into a PLS course, please email the instructor of the course requesting the override. If the instructor approves, please forward that approval email to a PLS advisor, and the advisor can add you into the course. Permission for overrides is determined by the instructor, not by advisors. Political science advisors are not able to add students into classes without instructor permission, and also cannot add students into classes outside of PLS.

    If you are looking to get an override into a non-PLS course, please visit that department’s website first, as some departments have override request forms on their website. For example, ISS, IAH, ISB, and ISP all have specific override email addresses and/or override forms to complete a request. If you do not find an override policy on the website, contact the instructor of the course or the department offering the course for permission. 

  • How can I meet the experiential learning requirement?

    All students within the College of Social Science must complete an experiential learning requirement. The experiential learning requirement may be satisfied either within or outside the requirements of the major. The requirement may be met by completing a 3 or 4-credit experiential learning course, approved by the College of Social Science Committee on Curriculum and Academic Policy or its designee. A list of approved courses is maintained by the College of Social Science on their website. Many students complete this requirement by successfully completing a study abroad, a study away, an internship, or by conducting research with a faculty member.

    Many PLS students choose to complete the experiential learning requirement by participating in a politically-based internship and enrolling in PLS 494. More information about PLS 494 and how to apply for the course can be found here. In order for the experiential learning requirement to be met, students must complete the experience and the experiential learning course in the same semester. 

  • How do I declare a minor?

    All students in the College of Social Science are required to complete an interdisciplinary minor. To declare an interdisciplinary minor, please contact a PLS advisor via email, or indicate in an advising appointment, the minor you would like to add. Your PLS advisor can then submit a request for your minor to be added to the College of Social Science. Advising appointments are not required to declare interdisciplinary minors.

    If you would like to add a minor outside of those on the interdisciplinary minor list as an additional minor, please contact the advisor for that minor. The advisor for the minor can provide you with any required steps to get the additional minor added.

  • What is the difference between an additional major and a second degree?

    Adding additional majors and/or second degrees is a great way to enhance your degree plan at MSU! Additional majors still require students to graduate with the required minimum of 120 credits. Students with additional majors also still receive one diploma. The additional major is not noted on the diploma for the primary degree, but is noted on the transcript upon graduation.

    A second degree requires 150 credits to graduate, so an additional 30 credits from what is typically required. Requirements for the second degree may be completed alongside those for the primary degree, or one degree may be completed before the second degree. Upon graduation, a student with a second degree will receive two diplomas, one for each degree.

    If you are interested in adding either an additional major or second degree, please schedule an appointment on student.msu.edu with an advisor for the major/degree you intend to add. That advisor can outline requirements for the major/degree and discuss the timeline to graduation.

  • Can I drop a class?

    There are multiple points in a semester when students can drop a class. Depending on when you are looking to drop a course will determine the parameters attached with dropping the class. A complete list of dates for refunds, billing, dropping classes, and more can be found on the MSU Academic Calendar

    Open/Add Period: During the first week of a semester, students are able to drop and add classes on their own. Many students use the first week of classes to make shifts in their schedule, add classes that have recently opened, and change days and times of classes. After the first week of a semester has ended, students are no longer able to add classes to their schedule but can still drop classes if interested.

    Drop Class with Refund: There are two times after the open/add period ends, when students can drop classes. The first is typically in the first 3 weeks of a semester. At this time, students are able to drop classes for a full refund.

    Drop with No Grade Reported: Students can still drop classes with no grade reported until the middle of a semester but are not refunded for classes if they drop a class and fall out of the flat rate tuition (flat rate tuition covers 12-18 credits).

    After the middle of the semester, if a student is interested in dropping a class, there are a couple of options available.

    Deans Drop: First, a student can request a Dean’s Drop through the College of Social Science. A student may drop a course or withdraw after the middle of the term of instruction only to correct errors in the enrollment or because of events of catastrophic impact, such as serious personal illness. If the student is passing the course, or there is no basis for assignment of a grade at the time of the drop, a W grade will be assigned. If failing, a 0.0 (or N in a P-N graded course) will be assigned. The course will remain on the student’s academic record.

    Please note submitting a request for a Dean’s Drop is not guaranteed to be approved, it is a case-by-case basis. To start the Dean’s Drop process, please contact the College of Social Science Student Affairs Office at 517-355-6676.

    Medical Withdrawal: To initiate a late drop or withdrawal, the student must obtain approval from the office of the associate dean of their college. If a student is looking to withdraw from all classes in a semester, students can apply for a medical withdrawal through the Office of Student Support and Accountability.

  • How do I apply to graduate?

    Students apply for graduation through student.msu.edu. Once logged in, click on the “Academic Progress” tile. On the left hand side, towards the bottom, students should see a tab titled “Graduation.” Selecting that tile will then allow students to select the semester in which they plan to graduate, and complete the graduation application. 

    Students also need to register to participate (walk) at the graduation ceremony. There are two graduation ceremonies- one in December for fall graduates, and one in May for spring and summer graduates. Students should plan to register and walk at the ceremony for the semester in which they plan to complete requirements. More information about graduation can be found on the MSU Commencement website. Questions about graduation, including questions on arrival time, walking in a different ceremony, cap and gown, etc, should be directed to the MSU Commencement Office.

  • Can I opt for a pass/fail grade for a course?

    Yes, students can select to move a course from a graded course to credit/no credit. However, the only courses that students can request to be moved to credit/no credit are elective credits. Courses taken for university requirements, College of Social Science requirements (courses for minor and experiential learning), and courses for majors cannot be taken as credit/no credit.

    To move a course from graded to credit/no credit, students must submit a request in the MSU Registrar’s Office by the middle of the semester in which the course is taken. The deadline to request that a course be moved to credit/no credit can be found on the MSU Academic Calendar

  • How can I repeat a course?

    You can repeat any course you wish regardless of the final grade you earned. Students are allowed to take up to 20 repeat credits. If you receive a 0.0, you do not earn credit for the course, but a 1.0 or higher does earn credit. You cannot enroll in a repeat course until a grade is posted for the current course.

  • How does the waitlist for classes work?

    If you are interested in taking a class that is full, consider adding yourself to the waitlist for that course. By joining the waitlist, students are then automatically to that course from the waitlist as seats open. You can find more information on adding yourself to the waitlist for classes and finding your position on the waitlist on the Waitlist Quick Guide

    Some important reminders about the waitlist:

    • Placing yourself on the waitlist does not guarantee enrollment
    • It is the student’s responsibility to keep track of their waitlist position, as the system does not notify students
    • when they become enrolled, are denied entry or when their position changes.
    • Enrollment status (full-time vs. part-time) is determined only by enrolled credits, not wait listed credits.
    • No enrollments will occur from the waitlist any later than the fifth day of class.
    • If a student has a time conflict, it will move to the next person on the waitlist to fill the vacant seat.