Stay On Track

Suggestions to Help Your Student Graduate on Time


Begin by setting expectations.

Telling your student you expect them to graduate in two years for an associate degree or four years for a bachelor's degree is simple, but it works.  To complete a degree on time, the student needs to enroll in at least 15 credits a semester, consult with an advisor, choose a major early, take courses that fit their major and get involved in campus life.


What can parents do when grades suffer?

Make sure that you understand the problems your student is having and what they have been doing to correct these problems. The many services the university provides for students are useful only if students seek help in a timely manner. Encourage your student to contact their professors and academic advisors for help with study habits, test-taking skills and time-management skills. If your student is struggling with the material covered in their courses, encourage them to seek help as soon as possible by utilizing their professors' office hours or visiting one of the many tutoring options available.


Can students change classes?

At some point, your son or daughter may find it necessary to add or drop a course. This may be due to a change in his or her work or activity schedule or the recognition that a different class would be more beneficial.

Questions related to dropping classes should be directed to their college advisor. If a student withdraws from a class after the drop/add period, he or she is still responsible for paying the appropriate enrollment fees and tuition for the dropped class.


Can my student catch back up?

The University of Alaska offers numerous resources to assist your student. In the end, though, education is the student's responsibility. Encourage your student to take the time to sketch out a rough two-year or four-year plan, keeping in mind that students must complete an average of 15 credit hours per semester to finish the minimum number degree credit hours (some majors require more) in time. Taking summer and mini-mester classes can help compensate for semesters in which they need to take fewer hours.

Resources for Parents

    Don’t Tell Me What to Do, Just Send Money: The Essential Parenting Guide to the College Years
    H.E. Johnsons, C. Schelhas-Miller (2011)

    The iConnected Parent:  Staying Close to Your Kids in College (and Beyond) While Letting Them Grow Up
    B.K. Hofer, A.S. Moore (2011)

    Happiest Kid on Campus: A Parent’s Guide to the Very Best College Experience (for You and Your Child)
    H. Cohen (2010)


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