Give Now

Academic Development of Student-Athletes

About Us

The Center for the Academic Development of Student- Athletes (ADSA) is responsible for providing the academic support services to the sports of Football, Men’s and Women's Basketball, and Rowing. The ADSA staff consists of 4 Academic Counselors (2 Football, 1 each for Men’s and Women’s Basketball), 3 Reading/Writing Specialists, 1 Tutor Coordinator, 1 Tutor Specialist, and 1 Administrative Assistant.

Mission Statement

The Center for the Academic Development of Student-Athletes (ADSA) is responsible for providing academic support services to the sports of Football, Men’s and Women’s Basketball, and Rowing. The ADSA recognizes the unique demands placed on student-athletes, therefore, our support services are designed to provide academic counseling, tutoring, and academic skill development while stressing the importance of individualized plans for each athlete’s quest for academic excellence.

Academic Support Services

Academic Counseling – Each academic counselor is responsible for advising their specific students each semester. Class schedules are built with practice times, travel, and in-season/out-of-season schedules all factoring into the process. Additionally, counselors advise students with consideration of their NCAA eligibility requirements and work directly with athletics personnel to ensure all requirements are met.

Academic Mentoring – Counselors provide academic mentoring to their specific caseload of students. Freshmen are the primary focus of the mentoring piece as the goal is to develop proper academic habits such as organization, time management, and prioritization. During weekly appointments, students create a weekly to do list using their academic planners, and grades are reported from previous assignments and exams. Students may be required to check in more than one time per week to show their To Do list items are completed.

Learning Specialists
– The ADSA employs two reading specialists and one writing specialist. Specialists administer literacy assessments to all incoming freshmen, identify students with reading/writing difficulties, and design targeted interventions for those students in need. Specialists meet with students up to 5 times per week depending on student need.

Tutoring – The purpose of the tutor program is to provide student-athletes with subject-specific tutors who serve as a supplement to the classroom experience and help student-athletes to better understand specific course content. The Tutor Coordinator is responsible for all tutoring operations, including the hiring and training of tutors as well as the scheduling for each term. Adjunct professors and graduate students make up the majority of the tutor population. Appointments are typically tailored for the individual and last 45 minutes each.

Study Hall – The ADSA suite is a fully equipped computer lab and study area with 34 desktop computers and two printers. These resources are available to all student-athletes to utilize during the specified hours. Additionally, all tutoring and learning specialist appointments take place in our study hall offices. Resources such as: laptops, calculators, voice recorders, and headphones are available to all student-athletes to check out for a specified time period. 

Summer Bridge – All incoming freshmen that join the Mustang family in the summer term will attend Summer Bridge programming. During this time, students will grow accustomed to the demands of a student-athlete before the semester begins. Students will participate in daily study halls, be introduced to guest speakers, and visit other offices on campus. The aim of this programming is to help students learn to balance their academics with athletics, acclimate to the college environment, and learn about the different resources and opportunities that SMU has to offer.