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Advising & Mentoring

Faculty advising student
Stanford News

Academic advising by Stanford faculty is a critical component of all graduate students’ education.

The nature of advising varies across disciplines and degrees as well as at different stages in a degree program, but certain shared values, goals, and responsibilities, outlined below, apply to all advising relationships.

Graduate programs are required to state explicitly their advising expectations and to follow other university policies. The documents below and these Advising Practices & Resources can guide departments and faculty in establishing expectations. Additional problem-solving resources can be found here.


Advising vs. Mentoring

Faculty also serve in mentoring roles for students and postdocs, who themselves may act as mentors to others. Mentoring relationships often extend beyond academic topics and provide more "holistic" guidance on both professonal and personal topics. A student's advisor may also be a mentor, depending on the nature of the advising relationship. Students are encouraged to seek mentoring from other faculty, staff, postdocs and peers, and if they desire, to mentor others.

Explore Mentoring Resources to help you become a more effective mentor - or to seek out the mentoring you need.


Shared Values, Shared Goals & Shared Responsbilities

Shared Values

  • Educational excellence
  • Academic and research integrity
  • Spirit of exploration and collaboration
  • Respect and care for others
  • Professionalism in all aspects of advising relationships

Shared Goals

  • Academic progress and graduation of student or appointment completion for postdoctoral scholar
  • Mastery of the subject material
  • Advancement of knowledge and skills
  • Professional development and personal growth
  • Career success and satisfaction

Shared Responsibilities

  • Uphold and abide by department, School, and University policies
  • Maintain a respectful and inclusive learning environment
  • Abide by highest professional standards
  • Foster a culture of open and honest communication and collaboration
  • Use Stanford resources appropriately