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University of Minnesota Driven to Discover
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Office of Undergraduate Education (OUE) April 2017


Financial Support Available

Undergraduate Research Symposium

Paul Siliciano, Director of Undergraduate Research and Department of Biochemistry, Molecular Biology, and Biophysics

The Undergraduate Research Symposium will be held on Thursday, April 20 in the Atrium of Northrop Memorial Auditorium. Please stop by to see the remarkable work your students have been doing.

There will be three sessions:
Session 1: 10:30 am - 12:00 pm
Session 2: 12:30 - 2:00 pm
Session 3: 2:30 - 4:00 pm

Most students from CDES, CEHD, CFANS, CLA, and CSOM will present in the first session, while students from CBS and CSE will be primarily presenting in the second and third sessions. Students will be thrilled to describe their work to their advisor, so please try to attend.

Financial Support Available

Effective U

Lynell Williams, SMART Learning Commons

Students need guidance and training at the intersection of academic and mental health when campus offices are closed. A new collaboration is underway at the University of Minnesota to make relevant and engaging tools available to students 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Effective U is a collection of self-paced, highly interactive, online tutorials. Completion of each tutorial produces a tangible take-away related to the content. Effective U engages students on their own terms, in a familiar format, and at their own pace, while developing the skills they need to address the two most significant reasons that undergraduates leave the University, as identified by OFYP’s Leavers’ Study.

Four topics are available now:

Four more topics are currently under development:

  • Establish Productive Study Habits
  • Get Ready for Finals
  • Improve Your Concentration & Memory
  • Read Like a Scholar

Effective U has been developed in collaboration by the SMART Learning Commons, Student Academic Success Services, the University Libraries, and the Office of Undergraduate Education. You can review the tutorials and refer your students to

Would you like to join this project or know someone who would? The team is seeking content contributors for developing future topics. Interested persons should contact Lynell Williams at

Financial Support Available

Advising Questions in SERU

LeeAnn Melin, Office of Undergraduate Education

This year's Student Experience in the Research University (SERU) Survey includes measures regarding students' advising experience on campus. These prompts were vetted through the Advising Steering Committee and include the following:

  • How often do you typically meet with an academic advisor?
  • My advisor was useful in helping me develop an academic plan.
  • How satisfied are you with your overall advising experience on this campus?
  • Please describe your overall academic advising experience.

You may have noticed a recent AAN email from Krista Soria, coordinator of the SERU survey, who shared some initial qualitative responses speaking to the high quality and value of academic advising.

The SERU survey is open until June 15, so please encourage undergraduate and graduate students to participate. Final results of the SERU survey will be shared with the advising community during Fall semester.

Financial Support Available

Connecting Research to Practice

Kate Diamond, doctoral student, and Michael Stebleton, Associate Professor, both of the College of Education and Human Development’s Department of Organizational Leadership, Policy, and Development, recently published an essay in The Mentor, an academic advising journal run out of Penn State.

The essay, Do You Understand What It Means to be Hungry?” Food Insecurity on Campus and the Role of Higher Education Professionals, is centered on the role of academic advisors and other higher education professionals in addressing food insecurity among students.

We hope you find this essay informative to your advising practice. If you find an advising-related article or essay that would be beneficial to share with the U of M advising community, please email We welcome all submissions but please be sure to share those written by U of M community members.

APLUS Update

Colin Delong, College of Liberal Arts

In the past month, the APLUS Advisory Committee, Functionality Working Group, and development team have focused on the changes described below.

  • Duo opt-in: Duo two-factor authentication is now available in APLUS. Opt-in to DUO by going to the APLUS preferences tab, and check “Yes, enable Duo Two-Factor Protection” at the bottom of the page. You will also find a link underneath to learn more about Duo and all of the options for authentication.
  • Leave of Absence process: In the past, advisors received a “Student on LOA” notification six weeks into the semester. This will now be changed to an alert, so that the notification does not disappear, and advisors will need to resolve the alert with a note or contact.
  • Gmail thread option: Users will soon have the option to group email conversations in APLUS, similar to Gmail threads. The feature should be ready in the next month and there will be a separate communication about it to APLUS users with more information.
  • Retention risk tag: Many units have been trained to apply the retention risk tag if necessary after meeting with a student. This tag application will generate a notification to the advisor of record. This will provide the advisor with earlier indications of the retention risks for students. Examples of units include: International Student and Scholar Services, Study Abroad, Parent/Family Programs, Off-Campus Living, Interfraternity and Sorority Life, Multicultural Center for Academic Excellence, President’s Emerging Scholars, McNamara Academic Center for Student Athletes, Student Degree Progress, Honors, Center for Academic Planning & Exploration, and Housing and Residential Life.

Help us welcome future new advisors across campus by submitting their information. New advisors will be mentioned in a future Advising Update and invited to join the new advisors group.

Fill out the New Advisor form >>

Undergraduate Research Symposium

Advisor Training: Focus on Orientation