Biology Student Services & Academic Advising


Biology Student Services

Biology Student Services Office

The Biology Student Services office is located in Bessey Hall, room 103.  Our office hours are generally from 8:00 am to 5:00 pm on weekdays (M-F).  We are open all year round, except for University holidays.  Staffed by professional advisors and biologists, we are here to help you with any issue you might be needing assistance with.  You can also drop by just to chat; we love hearing stories about your adventures and talking about biology!  We are often available on a walk-in basis, but you may also schedule an appointment to meet with us.  If you are a current student in Biology, you may make appointments with an advisor using the ISUAppointments system in AccessPlus.  Appointments may also be scheduled with our office secretary, Sue Sprong, either in-person or by giving her a call at 294-1064.  If you leave a message, be sure to leave a call back number.  Appointments are not scheduled by E-mail. 

Working with your Academic Advisor

What can my academic advisor help me with?

Your academic advisor is a faculty or staff member who assists you during your journey as a Biology major at Iowa State.  They can help answer any questions you might have about University or College policies, career paths in the biological sciences, degree planning and course options, opportunities around Iowa State and the greater Ames community, and more.  All of our biology advisors are biologists themselves, so they can serve as teachers and mentors within the field as well.  

Who is my academic advisor?

You can learn who your assigned academic advisor is by logging in to AccessPlus, navigating to the “Student” tab, and selecting “Current Student Information” from the left-hand menu.  Students who become Biology majors directly from high school are typically advised by Sarah Wehner during their first year, while external transfer students are typically advised by Em Kapler and internal transfer students by Lauren Ramos.  Students in good standing after their first year may be assigned a faculty advisor in EEOB or GDCB. 

How do I arrange a meeting with my advisor? 

If you have a faculty advisor, please discuss with them their preferred method of setting up meetings or appointments.  

If your advisor is one of our Student Services staff members, we are often available in a walk-in basis to address your needs and concerns.  Our office hours are generally 8:00 am to 5:00 pm on weekdays.  If you want to be sure your staff advisor is available, or during periods when we are especially busy (i.e., class registration time), current Biology majors may schedule an appointment using the ISUAppointments system in AccessPlus.  After logging in, click the "Student" tab and find "ISU Appointments" in the left hand menu.  Read the message on the screen and click "continue" then select the "request appointment" and make your selection.  This handout provides more instructions about how to use the online appointment system.  Anyone may also schedule appointments with our office secretary, Sue Sprong, either in-person, or by calling 294-1064.  If you leave a message, be sure to leave a call back number. Appointments are not scheduled by E-mail.

How do I change my advisor?

You may request a change of advisor by talking to Sue Sprong at our front desk.  Other Biology Student Services staff may also process this change for you.