As your relationship with your faculty advisor is a critical component of your education at Penn, your advisor ideally should be the faculty member who best knows you and your work. Beyond being the person who signs off on your major, your advisor can be one of your best resources for selecting courses, concentrations, and even second majors.
Choosing Your Advisor
You and the Undergraduate Chair will agree upon a faculty advisor for you when you officially declare the major. Whenever possible, your advisor will be a professor with whom you have taken, or are now taking, a course.
Which Advisor to Choose?
Ideally your advisor will specialize in the area of literary study that interests you most, but this is not a necessity. Choose someone who is not already overburdened. You may wish to consult the Index of Majors' Faculty Advisors to find a faculty member who seems particularly congenial to you.
Changing Your Advisor
If at anytime you wish to change your advisor -- or if somehow you find yourself without one -- please call Loretta Williams immediately at 898-7343.
Keeping in Regular Contact
You should meet with your advisor at least during every pre- registration period. Since your advisor will eventually approve courses taken within your concentration, you had better not surprise your advisor with your course choices in the concentration. These should be worked out well in advance. You might also find your advisor to have excellent and even creative ideas about courses outside the department that are perfect for your concentration. If you don't stay in touch, your advisor may rightly refuse to sign your concentration form, especially if you haven't been working with her or him all along. If you have simple questions in between meetings, stay in touch with your advisor by e-mail.