Academic Advising

a RISD student and faculty member talk at a workstation inside the Apparel Design studios

All RISD students receive academic advising from full-time faculty who guide you toward successfully completing your program of study. Throughout your studies, advisors help you cultivate critical thinking, scholarship, innovative practices and a drive for personal growth.

Finding your advisor

RISD students are assigned an academic advisor at the beginning of their studies and, in almost all cases, work with multiple advisors as they progress through their degree program. At all stages of your RISD education, you and your advisors will work together to review curricular options, select courses, discuss professional pathways, and connect with support offices and resources across the college.

To find your advisor, as well as information about your academic plan and progress, log into the Student Planning portal using your RISD credentials. The Registrar’s Office also offers guidance on accessing your Student Planning account and advisor information.

Find your advisor

Undergraduate advising

Undergraduate students at RISD work with three or more academic advisors over the course of their degree program: a first-year advisor in Experimental and Foundation Studies; a faculty member from the student’s degree program department; and, in the sophomore year, a Liberal Arts faculty advisor. Students who enroll in an interdisciplinary or liberal arts concentration will also work with a concentration coordinator/advisor. 

As you pursue your degree, your faculty advisors also work cooperatively with one another to facilitate unique academic experiences. Please familiarize yourself with the student and faculty expectations for academic advising, and click on the correct link below for details about advising at your stage of undergraduate study.

Advising FAQ

Student and faculty expectations

Basic guidelines for advisors and advisees to ensure a positive, productive advising experience.

First year

Meet your first-year advisor, select a degree program, explore Liberal Arts and interdisciplinary concentrations.

Sophomore year

Begin coursework in your major, work with your degree program and Liberal Arts advisor, explore internships.

Junior year

Explore global learning opportunities, review your degree progress, begin planning for senior projects.

Senior year

Closely track your degree progress, research post-RISD options, get ready to graduate.

Fifth year

Specific information for Architecture majors and Brown|RISD Dual Degree program students.

Graduate advising

Graduate advising is typically conducted between the student and their department’s graduate program director (GPD). Some programs may assign you a full-time advisor other than or in addition to the GPD. When you reach the thesis stage you will have the opportunity to choose a committee chair who provides guidance specific to the master’s thesis.

Advisors and advisees are expected to follow the student and faculty expectations throughout the student’s academic experience. Our advising FAQ is also a great source of immediate information.

Grad advising