Yale College urges all members of the faculty to make themselves as available as possible for the educational advising of students.
In freshman year, a student receives academic advice from a dean or a member of the faculty who is a fellow of the student's residential college. The residential college dean attempts to assign students to freshman advisers on the basis of the student's declared academic interests, although this is not always possible. A freshman adviser may have up to a half-dozen advisees.
In sophomore year, students select their own advisers. Students interested in majoring in one of the natural sciences, however, must have their course schedules approved by the directors of undergraduate studies or their delegates in the various science departments. Students may choose any member of the Yale College Faculty to be their adviser. Usually sophomores select their freshman adviser, an instructor of a course taken during freshman year, the director of undergraduate studies in their intended major, or a member of the faculty designated by their department to approve course schedules, such as departmental representatives in the residential colleges.
In addition to discussions between sophomores and their advisers about course schedules, sophomores are requested to discuss their long-range educational objectives with a member of the faculty during the spring term. This conference may or may not be with the faculty member who approved the student's course schedule. Such discussions have proved to be valuable to students, and Yale College hopes that any faculty member a sophomore invites to review his or her work to date and long-range educational objectives will consent to do so. Students majoring in subjects other than the natural sciences declare their majors at the beginning of junior year, at which point they make use of the advisory systems established by the various departments.