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B.A.: Choosing a Faculty Advisor

Going forward, whenever you have questions about the program and its requirements, please reach out to our datasciencemajor-inquiries [at] lists.stanford.edu (student services team). They will handle all questions about degree requirements, course substitutions, and four year planning.   

After you’ve declared the major, we also want to connect you with a Data Science & Social Systems faculty advisor. Your faculty advisor will be an excellent person to speak with about your academic interests and professional pathway. For example, you might want to speak with them about research opportunities on campus that you could get involved in, the names of other faculty working in areas related to your interests, courses you might want to pursue, and potential career paths.  

How to Choose a Faculty Advisor

1. Peruse your options.

Peruse the B.A. advisors and faculty on our website, including those in the “Other Potential Advisors” section. Research various people to learn more about their background, research, and fields of expertise. Choose one or two people who you think would be a particularly good fit as your faculty advisor. If you’re having trouble narrowing it down, please contact our student services team or Associate Director (Mallory Nobles) for guidance.

2. Reach out.

​​​​​The next step is to reach out to the potential advisor of your choice. (Please limit your inquiries to one or two potential advisors.) You have two options for making the initial contact:
 

  • Option A: Email the potential advisor directly to explain that you recently declared the Data Science & Social Systems B.A., and you’re interested in meeting with them to see if they would be a good fit as your faculty advisor. Please copy our student services team on this email. 
  • Option B: If you don’t feel comfortable reaching out to the person directly, you may email our student services team to let them know who you’d be interested in as your faculty advisor, and ask them to make the introduction. They’ll follow up by emailing you and the potential advisor to introduce you. You should then reply to that email to arrange a first meeting with your potential advisor.
3. Update the Student Services Team

After you and your faculty advisor have agreed that this would be a good fit, email our student services team to let them know, and copy your faculty advisor on the email.

When should I choose my faculty advisor?

We recommend officially choosing your advisor before the end of the quarter after you declared the major. For example, if you declared in autumn 2022, we encourage you to choose your advisor by the end of winter 2023. Please note that this is a guideline and not a hard deadline.