Faculty Advising Resources

Placement Testing:  

New Math placement test: ALEKS

ALEKS is a powerful artificial-intelligence based assessment tool that zeros in on the strengths and weaknesses of a student’s mathematical knowledge, reports its findings to the student, and then provides the student with a learning environment for improving this knowledge to an appropriate level for course placement.

The ALEKS Math Assessment ensures students' readiness for particular math, statistics, and chemistry courses at Penn State. Since these courses are demanding, it is important for students to begin in the course most likely to lead to success.

Academic advisers can see an individual student’s score via the eLion Placement Test application. For more info on ALEKS check out this site: http://dus.psu.edu/aleks/  


No separate chemistry placement test:

Many science, engineering, and health-focused programs require CHEM 110. CHEM 110 is a rigorous course involving significant mathematical manipulation and algebra proficiency.  Chemistry placement will be based on previous exposure to chemistry in high school, the results of any honors or AP chemistry exams, and performance on the ALEKS Math Assessment.

Students who do not have previous chemistry studies, should begin with CHEM 101, since CHEM 110 is not an introductory course. If students have gaps in math and/or chemistry preparation, they will need additional preparation before taking CHEM 110.  


Information on concurrent majors (double majors):

Two programs--concurrent majors and sequential majors--allow a baccalaureate or associate degree candidate to earn degrees in more than one Penn State major. When completing concurrent majors, the student simultaneously completes all academic requirements for his/her majors and graduates with two (or more) degrees in the same semester. More info on the policy and procedures for approval is on this site: http://handbook.psu.edu/content/concurrent-majors-program .


English 202 A or B or C or D?  

There are four different types of English 202 classes: English 202A, English 202B, English 202C, and English 202D.   


  • At Abington, enrollment in one of these courses is often restricted to students in their fourth semester or higher.
  • A student may take only one course for credit from ENGL 202A, 202B, 202C, and 202D.
  • Students should be advised to base the specific type of English 202 class that they take on their major (or intended major).


English 202A: Writing in the Social Sciences. English 202B: Writing in the Humanities. English 202C: Technical Writing (for our Engineering and Science students, IST students can take English 202C or 202D). English 202D: Business Writing.   If a student has not chosen a course wisely, he or she may find that they need to retake the appropriate section of English 202 for their major and will not receive credit for their first course that they took.  


What is the difference between CAS 100, 100A, 100B and 100C?


  • At Abington, CAS 100 sections are usually taught off campus and are reserved for students in one of our continuing education programs.
  • CAS 100A has an emphasis on public speaking & presentations.
  • CAS 100B focuses on group problem solving & group presentations.
  • Some campuses offer CAS 100C which involves message evaluation and analysis. CAS 100C is not offered at Abington at this time.


Abington degree seeking students should choose between CAS 100A or CAS 100B based on their interests and skills.



Who are my advisees? How many advisees do I have? What are their gpa's? What is their semester standing?  

If you would like to see a snapshot of your advising load you can download your “advising roster” in excel. This not only will provide you with a count of your advisees for the current semester which can be helpful at FAR time. But it can also help you to look at your advisees as a group. You can then sort by gpa or semester standing to see any trends and any students that you may need to reach out to.  


Student’s email addresses are listed to make it easier for you to contact them. It is a very quick process to email yourself the cvs file and then paste and sort it into the excel spreadsheet.   Here is a link to the page to find the excel spreadsheet.

The spreadsheet contains easy to follow step by step instructions: http://dus.psu.edu/manual/alpha/excel_roster.php    Some faculty get in the habit of pulling this info each semester to help with their advising and also so that they have it handy at FAR time. This system only provides you with information on your current advisee load. It does not go back to prior semesters.

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