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Academic Advising Guide

This Academic Advising Guide outlines the important academic planning resources and advising opportunities that you are expected to consult during the study abroad program selection and application process. These steps will help you determine how your study abroad experience will fit into your degree program(s) at Northwestern.

Step 1: Degree Planning

Start by figuring out what degree requirements you need to fulfill while abroad.

  • DO YOUR RESEARCH: Review the School and Major Advising Resources for your degree(s). These resources provide information and advice specific to your school and/or major/minor department, as well as some recommended study abroad programs that may work for your academic plan.
  • WHAT TO CONSIDER: Do you need to earn major or minor credit abroad to be able to make progress in your degree? Do you need to fulfill distribution, theme, or other school-level requirements abroad? Are there course sequences you must take that would interfere with your ability to study abroad during a particular term? What courses do you need to take on campus before and after study abroad?

Step 2: Preliminary Course Planning

Now develop a preliminary plan for the courses you intend to take on your study abroad program.

  • DO YOUR RESEARCH: Review the course offerings available through your study abroad program(s) via the program website. Also review the Choosing Courses to Take Abroad and Registration & Credit pages of the GLO website for important academic planning considerations. If you have questions about finding or interpreting course information for a program, contact your GLO Adviser.
  • WHAT TO CONSIDER: Are there courses available in the subjects you wish to take and at the level you need? Can these courses fulfill major, minor, distribution, or other degree requirements? Do you have a backup plan, in case you are not able to register for the courses you want? Consider any and all courses you would be interested in taking while on your program, including alternate course options.

Step 3: Consult with Academic Adviser(s)

Review your study abroad course and program plans with your academic adviser(s), so that you understand how how study abroad may impact your degree progress and how potential study abroad courses may fulfill degree requirements.

Major/Minor Advising

Seek advising from your major/minor adviser if you intend to apply course credit from study abroad toward major or minor requirements or if you need assistance with mapping out course planning for your major or minor.

  • DO YOUR RESEARCH: Review academic information and instructions pertaining to your major and/or minor on the School and Major Advising Resources pages of the GLO website and on department websites.
  • WHAT TO CONSIDER: Do you understand the department's rules and policies for earning major or minor credit from study abroad? If you have questions, it is your responsibility to consult with your major/minor adviser about your study abroad course plans, whether/how these courses can count for major and/or minor credit, possible course substitutions, and remaining degree requirements. 
  • WHO TO CONTACT: See the chart below, organized by school.
    • If you have a Weinberg College major or minor, consult with your Weinberg Department Adviser(s) first about your study abroad course plans, then meet with your School Adviser.
    • If you are a Weinberg College student without a declared major, meet with your School Adviser first.

School Advising

All students must meet with and obtain an electronic signature from their School Adviser(s). By signing off on your application, your School Adviser(s) are indicating that they have discussed your study abroad plans with you, that you are in good academic standing and making satisfactory progress towards completion of your degree, and that they believe your study abroad plans make sense academically, considering your overall plan of study at Northwestern.

  • DO YOUR RESEARCH: Review academic information and instructions pertaining to your school on the School and Major Advising Resources pages of the GLO website and on school websites.
  • WHAT TO CONSIDER: Do you understand your school's rules and policies for applying credit from study abroad toward distribution, theme, or other school-level requirements? You must meet with your School Adviser to discuss your study abroad course plans, whether/how these courses can count for distribution or theme credit, fulfilling foreign language or other requirements for your school, possible course substitutions, and remaining degree requirements. 
  • WHO TO CONTACT: See the chart below, organized by school. Dual degree students (students receiving degrees from two schools or colleges) must meet with and get signatures from both School Advisers.

Academic Advisers

Academic Advisers
College or School

School Adviser(s)
*Advising meeting required

Primary Major Adviser(s) Secondary Major/Minor Adviser(s)
Bienen School of Music Linda Jacobs Same as School Adviser See School and Major Advising Resources
School of Communication Communication Sciences & Disorders: Jeannette Ortiz

Communication Studies: Harold Gulley, Sarah Syversen

Performance Studies: Roxane Heinze-Bradshaw

Radio/TV/Film: Catherine Carrigan, Kalisha Cornett, Freda Love Smith

Theatre & Dance: Catherine Carrigan, Vanessa Champagne, John Haas, Roxane Heinze-Bradshaw, Justin Zullo

Same as School Adviser See School and Major Advising Resources
School of Education & Social Policy Caitlin Burnett, Shelena Johnson, Meg Kreuser, Susan Olson, Ken Powers Same as School Adviser See School and Major Advising Resources
McCormick School of Engineering & Applied Science Ashley Motta See School and Major Advising Resources See School and Major Advising Resources
Medill School of Journalism, Media, Integrated Marketing Communications Joy Fernandez, Daniel MacKenzie, Jessica Scott Same as School Adviser See School and Major Advising Resources
Northwestern University in Qatar Nadiyah El-Amin

Students with NU-Q as your home campus.

Same as School Adviser Same as School Adviser
Weinberg College of Arts & Sciences Your Weinberg College Adviser. Set up an appointment at: https://advising.northwestern.edu See School and Major Advising Resources See School and Major Advising Resources