Tips for Managing Your Academic Plan

One of the commonly voiced concerns of students is that despite getting advisement, navigating the academic maze is anything but easy. Here are some things you can do to make your academic plan more manageable and also meaningful:

What should I Understand about the program?


  1. Every academic program is a planned enterprise. Find out how the courses are ordered and take courses in that sequence. As a rule of thumb, take courses in the ascending order of their numbers (i.e., from lowest to highest).

  4. The core courses in the Child Development program are ordered in the following manner and students are strongly encouraged to follow the core sequence: CHDV 140, CHDV 200, CHDV 210, and CHDV 220, CHDV 340.  Take 400 level courses after completing the 300 level courses as far as possible.  CHDV 496 should be the last class in the program.


  1. You will receive a program sheet of your degree plan at the very first advisement meeting. Do not lose it. If you have not received a program sheet, please see an adviser and get one immediately. Always have this program sheet with you when meeting with an adviser. Child Development advisers will expect you to have your program sheet with you for your appointment.

  2. Prepare a folder that has all the relevant materials for your academic plan. This folder should include:
    1. A program sheet of your academic plan.
    2. Grade reports you receive from Cal State LA
    3. Unofficial transcripts from the community college you attended if you are a transfer student.
    4. d. Every single letter or notification you receive from the Registrar's office (including the Admissions and the Records offices).

  3. Keep a copy of the syllabi of all the courses that you take. Syllabi are very useful to advisers while making decisions regarding course transfers and substitutions.

  4. If you are a transfer student, do not discard the course catalog of the community college you attended.

What is important for me to Read?


  1. Almost every piece of information you will ever need is published in the Cal State LA General Catalog (available at the University Bookstore) as well as on the web, and the Schedule of Classes printed quarterly. Always look for the answers to your questions in these two sources before you see an adviser.

  2. Friends are a very good source of information about courses and program requirements. However, do see an adviser at regular intervals to make sure you are on the right track. Program requirements may differ depending upon the catalogue year of the program and courses taken at a community college.

What is the best Plan of action to take?


  1. Plan your program. Decide what courses you want to take for at least the next three quarters.
  2. Keep checking where you are at in the program with the help of the program sheet.
  3. Plan your meetings with advisers. If you have multiple questions, write them down.
  4. When you have made an appointment with an adviser, always confirm it a day in advance.
  5. Remember the names of the advisers who help you (write down their names if you need to). This information is useful to advisers if they need clarification on decisions made earlier.
  6. Be on time to your advisement appointments.

What is perhaps the Most Important advice?

Most Important

Do not hesitate to ask any question related to your program, however trivial it may seem to you.