Improving tracking of and support for First-Time in College students at the University of Central Florida by revamping the advising function


How might we provide streamlined and consistent advising functions to better support first-time in college students?


Four-pronged effort:

  • Professionalized the advising staff
  • Hired more advisors and lowered the student:advisor ratio to ~300:1
  • Began centrally managing all first year student advising and collocated all first year advisors
  • Invested in student tracking and predictive analytics by establishing a 45 credit hour policy for students to declare a major and by creating targeted advising services for at-risk students, such as the Knight Watch Program which offers specialized advising to students with a 2.6 or lower GPA


  • After orientation, 92% of first time in college (FTIC) students met with an advisor (data from 2015)
  • Lowered turnover rates within advising staff and developed a more motivated team
  • Implemented a Major Exploration Program to provide students with personalized support to choose a major. FTIC undeclared students dropped by 20% from 2011 to 2015
  • Began offering mandatory advising appointments for students on probation. Probation rates declined from 8.2% in Fall 2011 to 6.3% in Spring 2016

Ready to take action?

Brainstorming prompts for you and your team to consider

Learn more about advising from our research




Pell Recipients


Students of Color


Net cost of Attendance

$22,849 (in-state)