Give Now

Academic Development of Student-Athletes

About SMU
ADSA is responsible for providing the academic support services to the sports of Football, Men’s Basketball, and Women’s Basketball. 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, 1 Administrative Assistant, and 1 intern.

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 - 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 in need. Specialists meet with students between 1 and 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 all individual and typically last 45 minutes each.

Study Hall – ADSA, a full computer lab and study area, is equipped with 34 desktop computers and two printers. All tutoring and learning specialist appointments take place in the various offices in study hall, and student-athletes may come in at any time to use the space for studying. Additionally, laptops, calculators, voice recorders, and headphones are available for student-athletes to sign out.