Transition Academic Programs

Advising Syllabus

Transition Academic Programs
General Studies, TAMU-Blinn TEAM, Aggie Gateway to Success
Advising Syllabus
Location:            Hotard Hall, 3rd Floor                 Phone: 979-845-5916
E-mail:                General Studies:    
Aggie Gateway to Success:
Hours:                  Advising Availability may vary:  See our website for details.
Phone lines are open from 8am-5pm, Monday through Friday, except holidays.
Advising Staff:
Amy Connolly
Franne Freeman
Andy Gibson (Explore)
Brittany Hensley
Gretchen Hubbard
Neva Hughes
Ali Ivins
LaToya McGowen
Jillian Mueller
Debbie Perez
Support Staff:
Sally Salazar (Front Office)
Rafael Aparicio (Administrative Coordinator)
Director Staff:    
Dr. Arthur C. Watson, Executive Director    
Dr. Karl P. Mooney, Director of Academic Advising    
Dr. Russ T. Graves, Director of Academic Programs    
Sherrice King, Director of Special Programs
Materials and Resources:
Texas A&M University Catalog:
Transition Academic Programs website:
Change of Major Website:
GPA Calculator:
TAMU-Blinn TEAM website:
Academic Calendar:,-Registration,-Scheduling/Final-Examination-Schedules 
Final Exam Schedule:
Student Rules:
Syllabi from all courses
University Identification Number (UIN) and Texas A&M University Student ID card
Please note:  To ensure proper and accurate academic advising, it is critical that you have all transfer work sent via official transcripts to the Texas A&M University Registrar’s Office as soon as grades are posted.  This includes any courses taken for “dual credit” or “co-enrollment” while in high school, International Baccalaureate credits, and credit by exam (i.e., CLEP, Advanced Placement (AP), etc.).
Statement on Academic Advising:  The primary purpose of academic advising at Texas A&M University is to assist students in their development of meaningful educational plans that are compatible with their personal abilities and goals.  The ultimate responsibility for making decisions about personal goals and educational plans rests with the individual student.
Transition Academic Programs Vision Statement:  Our vision is that all students will find that our advocacy contributes to a supportive environment at Texas A&M University.  Most students experience the uncertainties of the transition into a complex university.  Our students will identify new goals and objectives for their university experience, make progress toward personal, academic, intellectual, and professional aspirations, and become capable of moving into society as responsible citizens who understand the importance of lifelong learning in the development of character and ethical leadership. 
General Studies Application Process
General Studies (GEST) is designed to accommodate students needing one or two semesters to complete coursework necessary for entrance into a specific major course of study. Students are expected to identify a realistic major at the time of application and should meet with an academic advisor in the Transition Academic Programs office to help them make informed decisions about choosing a major. Approved students will be accepted in General Studies for only ONE semester. It is possible for students to earn a second semester in GEST; however, they must go through the application process again. Approval is not guaranteed. During the semester in GEST, students will have a registration hold placed onto their academic record that will require them to 1) Request a second semester in GEST in order to register for the following term or 2) Change major into their degree-granting major.  NOTE:  Former Gateway students who need a second semester in GEST are not exempt from having to submit an application. 
In order to earn a second semester in General Studies, students must:
  1. Make academic progress toward a designated major by
    • Improving cumulative grade-point average (GPA) toward the designated major
    • Completing course requirements for the designated major including minimum grade thresholds
    • Displaying the ability to complete a full semester of coursework
  1. Have a competitive GPA and realistic opportunity to meet change of major requirements to the designated major.
  2. Take appropriate courses for the designated major and post midterm grades that indicate significant progress.
What Students Can Expect from Academic Advisors - Advisors are:      
  • Knowledgeable about degree programs at Texas A&M University;
  • Familiar with rules and regulations;
  • Experienced with designing balanced course loads;
  • Here to listen to students’ concerns and respect individual student values and choices;
  • Experts in helping students create educational and professional objectives that suit the students’ demonstrated abilities and interests.
What Students Can Learn From Academic Advising:
  • How one’s interests can connect to academic majors
  • How to interact with faculty and administrators
  • The art of setting one’s priorities
  • That the University provides numerous opportunities to become involved
  • That doing things on time and ahead of schedule makes life easier
Remember:  It is OK to be undecided.  Research shows that students who enter college without a major, and take the time to explore their options, tend to graduate within the same time frame as students who enter with a major and then, on average, change majors twice.
Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) Policy –
The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) is a federal anti-discrimination statute that provides comprehensive civil rights protection for persons with disabilities.  Among other things, this legislation requires that all students with disabilities be guaranteed a learning environment that provides for reasonable accommodation of their disabilities.  If you believe you have a disability requiring an accommodation, please contact Disability Services, in Student Services at White Creek complex on west campus or call 979-845-1637.  For additional information, visit
Aggie Code of Honor – An Aggie does not lie, cheat, or steal or tolerate those who do.
Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA)
FERPA stands for Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974. It is commonly known as FERPA, the Privacy Act, or the Buckley Amendment. It is a federal law designed to protect the privacy of educational records. For further and current information about FERPA, please click on the following hyperlink:,-Policies-Procedures/FERPA/FERPA-Notice-to-Students.