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Training Academic Advisors: Conceptual, Relational & Informational Issues Tom Brown

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Presentation on theme: "Training Academic Advisors: Conceptual, Relational & Informational Issues Tom Brown"— Presentation transcript:

1 Training Academic Advisors: Conceptual, Relational & Informational Issues Tom Brown

2 Objectives Understand the Conceptual, Relational, and Informational elements necessary to design and implement comprehensive advisor development programs for faculty advisors, professional advisors, counselors and other providing academic guidance and support to students. Understand concrete, tangible examples and strategies for addressing issues that can produce more effective advisor development programs and academic advisors Understand how to design and implement advisor development programs to meet the needs of advisors with differing levels of experience, willingness to participate, etc.

3 Implementation Guide: Action Planning 1.List the main ideas and strategies from the session. 2.Select an idea to adapt or a strategy to implement. 3.List specific goals and objectives you want to achieve. 4.Who will be your collaborators and how will you engage them?

4 Implementation Guide: Action Planning 5.What/who are the main obstacles or antagonists? How will you reduce, eliminate, or engage these? 6.What resources will you use to “make the case”? 7.What will be your timeline for implementation? 8.How will you assess your progress?

5 Academic Advisors: Lights in the Labyrinth

6 Maze or Labyrinth? The term labyrinth is often used interchangeably with maze…

7 TRIAD FOR STUDENT SUCCESS High Quality Teaching Comprehensive Support Programs Developmental Advising Program

8 DEVELOPMENTAL ACADEMIC ADVISING Evaluation/ Assessment Recognition & Reward Advisor Development

9 Status of Academic Advising National surveys have found academic advising programs are least effective in the following areas: Advisor development/training Assessment & evaluation Recognition & reward

10 Training/Development It is impossible to do a job well if… no one sets expectations or provides you with skills, tools or resources to do the job

11 Many key competencies are developed after educators arrive on campus. Therefore, colleges must assume the responsibility for teaching and developing their own educators to enhance student learning inside and outside the classroom by providing professional development programs. Brown & Ward, 2007

12 The majority of institutions do not require advisor development programs. Those that do, offer programs at the beginning of the Fall term for one day or less. Sixth National Survey on Academic Advising

13 Most faculty report having had little or no training or other preparation prior to beginning their work in advising….

14 58% of campuses have programs in place for advisor training. Advising Needs Report Noel-Levitz, 2006

15 When I first began to advise, I had adequate preparation and training. (n=1570) Strongly agree/agree30% Disagree/strongly disagree53% Brown Survey of Faculty,

16 The Principle All individuals engaged in academic advising should participate in pre-service and/or in-service development programs.

17 What’s needed is a different way of thinking about professional development— not as special occasions offered on a periodic basis but as an integral part of institutional work. Strengthening Pre-Collegiate Education Carnegie Foundation, 2008

18 Advisor Development Programs ConceptualInformational Relational

19 Without understanding (conceptual), there can be no context for advising. Without information, there is no substance for advising. Without interpersonal skills (relational), the quality of the advising interaction is left to chance…. Habley, 1995

20 Outcomes for Advisor Development Cognitive: Behavioral: Affective:

21 Factors in planning advisor development programs CONTENT AUDIENCE TECHNIQUES

22 Professional Development for Advisors Conceptual Informational Relational

23 Conceptual Elements Definition of advising Role of advising and student development Relationship of advising to persistence Connections: advising and support services Student expectations of advising Roles/responsibilities: advisors and advisees Career issues in advising

24 Redefining academic advising: From an event to a process that is integrally linked to student engagement and learning. Much more than a service that supports registration….

25 A Classic Definition of Academic Advising a systematic process based on a close advisor student relationship intended to aid students in achieving their personal, educational, and career goals…. focuses on helping them acquire skills and attitudes that promote their intellectual and personal development. assists students to make full use of campus and community resources in the process. Developmental Academic Advising Winston, Miller, Ender, Grites & Associates. 1984

26 Academic advising is: Multi-dimensional and intentional Grounded in teaching and learning Has its own purpose and content Has specified learning outcomes for student learning National Academic Advising Association

27 Advising is more meaningful when treated as a teaching process rather than a product. Academic Advising for Student Success: A System of Shared Responsibility Susan Frost. 1991

28 Shared Goals of Teaching & Academic Advising Increase knowledge Enhance critical thinking abilities Skills acquisition Increase problem solving abilities Integration of learning: making connections and finding meaning Broaden perspectives

29 Integration of Learning

30 The faculty members students identify as having had a powerful influence on their thinking and on their lives are those who helped them make connections between the curriculum and their personal lives, values, and experiences. Light, 2001

31 Integration of Learning Do Students recognize the value of general education requirements? (n=1555) Strongly agree/agree21% Disagree/strongly disagree52% Brown Survey,

32 Integration of Learning Field of Study vs. The Major

33 The question students should seek to answer through advising... NOT…. “What courses do I need to take?”

34 The question students should seek to answer...

35 Hierarchy of Advising Life goals, values, abilities, interests, limitations. Career/vocational opportunities Academic Programs/Field of Study Course selection Class scheduling Terry O’Banion, 1972, 1994

36 Broaden Perspectives Students need to understand that process is important, not just getting the answer—or the grade. Faculty Viewpoint Understanding University Success, 2003

37 The Curriculum of Academic Advising The curriculum of academic advising ranges from the ideals of higher education to the institution’s mission, culture and expectations…. White 2006

38 Conceptual Elements Definition of advising Role of advising and student development Relationship of advising to persistence Connections: advising and support services Student expectations of advising Roles/responsibilities: advisors and advisees Career issues in advising

39 An overview of student development and student development theory should be included among the conceptual elements of an advisor development program.

40 Student development is far too important to be viewed only as a role for student affairs professionals. Evans, Forney, Guido-DeBrito Collaborative efforts [with] faculty are necessary to provide developmental programs and services. Chickering and Reisser

41 Psychosocial Development Models Adults:Schlossberg; Taylor, Marienau & Fiddler Gay/Lesbian: Cass Minorities: Ruiz; Cross; Sue & Sue Bi-Racial: Poston Women: Belenky, Gilligan

42 Conceptual Elements Definition of advising Role of advising and student development Relationship of advising to persistence Connections: advising and support services Student expectations of advising Roles/responsibilities: advisors and advisees Career issues in advising

43 Four Indicators of Success 1. Retention 2. Graduation 3. Transfer 4. Career Placement

44 What students say about advising? Next to the quality of instruction, academic advising is consistently the next most important area of the college experience to students. National Student Satisfaction Report Noel Levitz 2006

45 National Student Satisfaction & Priorities Reports 2012 Academic Advising is: #1 Public colleges and universities #2Private colleges and universities #2Career and proprietary institutions #2Adult students #3Community and technical colleges

46 Most faculty agree there is a relationship between advising and retention….

47 There is a relationship between advising and retention. (n=1594) Agree/strongly agree86% Disagree 4% Brown Survey,

48 Relationship between advising and retention? More faculty members need to know this…. Brown Survey of Faculty

49 Even if there are no conventional rewards for conscientious performance, faculty members can be motivated if the issues are significant, and they can feel they are making a contribution. Derek Bok, Harvard University Universities in the Marketplace, 2003

50 Conceptual Elements Definition of advising Role of advising and student development Relationship of advising to persistence Connections: advising and support services Student expectations of advising Roles/responsibilities: advisors and advisees Career issues in advising

51 Campus & External Relations The academic advising program must establish, maintain and promote effective relations with relevant campus offices and external agencies Effective academic advising cannot be done in isolation Peggy King

52 Academic Advising Counseling Financial Aid Assessment Learning Center Faculty TRIO/SSS Orientation Registration Multicultura l Affairs Career Center

53 Referral Skills Know how to refer and when Don’t refer too quickly Know referral resources Clarify reasons for referral Explain what referral resource will provide Refer to a specific person Assist in making the appointment Follow-up

54 Conceptual Elements Definition of advising Role of advising and student development Relationship of advising to persistence Connections: advising and support services Student expectations of advising Roles/responsibilities: advisors and advisees Career issues in advising

55 Student Expectation of Advisors Availability/Accessibility Knowledge Care and Concern

56 Why do students leave college? Isolation Inability to connect with significant members of the campus community….

57 Students don’t have interactions with institutions, they have a series of encounters and interactions with individuals that constitute their campus experience and enhance or undermine their commitment to persist.

58 Conceptual Elements Definition of advising Role of advising and student development Relationship of advising to persistence Connections: advising and support services Student expectations of advising Roles/responsibilities: advisors and advisees Career issues in advising

59 Advisor Responsibilities Help students define and develop realistic goals Identify special needs Connect students to available resources Assist students to plan consistent with their goals, interests, aptitudes & limitations Monitor progress toward goals Discuss linkage between academic preparation and careers

60 Advisee Responsibilities Gather relevant decision making information Clarify goals, interests, and values Become knowledgeable about programs, policies, requirements and procedures Accept responsibility for decisions

61 Academic advising is assisting students to share the responsibility for academic planning with faculty, with students finally being able to find their own answers and use their advisors as sounding boards. Academic Advising for Student Success Susan Frost

62 A Model: Shared Responsibility

63 Environment & Changing Students 1 st Year2 nd Year 3 rd Year4 th, 5 th, 6 th Year PRESCRIPTIVE DEVELOPMENTAL Lynch, 1989; Brown& Rivas, 1994; Creamer, 2000; Brown, 2006 Need for Information Need for Consultation Changing Needs for Advising Moving InMoving Through Moving On I I/ S I/S S/ I S I = Faculty, advisors, etc. S = Student

64 Conceptual Elements Definition of advising Role of advising and student development Relationship of advising to persistence Connections: advising and support services Student expectations of advising Roles/responsibilities: advisors and advisees Career issues in advising

65 Students who are trying to make decisions about a major, career, or both need assistance answering some basic questions. Betsy McCalla Wriggins, 2000

66 Students usually have a realistic understanding of careers and how to prepare for them. (n=1574) Agree/strongly agree58% Disagree17% Brown Survey,

67 What do employers look for? In many occupations, your major will not be an issue. More desirable are the “transferable skills” developed, such as organising your time efficiently to meet deadlines, working well on your own and in a group. Undergraduate Prospectus University of Oxford

68 ADVISOR DEVELOPMENT PROGRAM Conceptual Informational Relational

69 Informational Elements Who are your students? Academic and co-curricular programs Institutional/Program policies and procedures — especially changes Referral resources: campus and community Student information systems Resources for advisors FERPA

70 Advisor Resources Catalogue/bulletin Advising handbook/ website Computer degree audits Academic planning worksheets Advising meeting records and notes

71 Asynchronous Delivery Web pages E and V mail Cybercasts Listservs Bulletin boards Kiosks Video/Audio tapes Facebook

72 Training in information is still the primary area of focus and content for advisor development programs. Training focused on informational aspects of academic advising perpetuates the idea that advising is information giving rather than a teaching relationship.

73 ADVISOR DEVELOPMENT PROGRAM Conceptual Informational Relational

74 Relational issues tend to be least often included. National Surveys of Academic Advising

75 Relational Elements Interview Skills Communication Skills Rapport Building Referral Skills Decision-making process Pluralistic Advising Skills (ethnicities, gender issues, disability issues, etc.)

76 Advisor Skills Listening--Comfortable with silence Open-ended questions Providing clarification and feedback Being positive Appropriate self-disclosure Offering options and alternatives

77 Relational Elements Interview Skills Communication Skills Rapport Building Referral Skills Decision-making process Pluralistic Advising Skills (ethnicities, gender issues, disability issues, etc.)

78 Treating everyone the same may be equal treatment,

79 Pluralistic Advising Skills Understand, acknowledge, value difference. Self-assess biases and attitudes. Increase knowledge base of diverse groups (in the communities you serve….) Use culturally appropriate strategies. Avoid over-generalizations. Brown & Rivas, 1994, 2004

80 Advisor Topics of Greatest Concern Relationship between advising and retention Going beyond class scheduling Early identification of student needs Engaging faculty in advising Communication and relational skills in advising Noel-Levitz, 2006

81 Elements of Content Conceptual: What advisors should UNDERSTAND Informational:What advisors should KNOW Relational:What advisors should DO

82 Successful advisor development programs integrate 1. content areas 2. skill levels & experience 3. willingness to participate

83 Audience Factors To what extent do advisors understand and apply basic principles necessary to perform as an advisor? High Medium Low

84 Audience Factors What is the experiential level of advisors?HighMediumLow Are experienced advisors the best advisors?

85 Audience Factors To what extent are the advisors willing to participate in training? High Medium Low

86 Advisor Development Cube Skill Willingness Experience LM H L M H L M H

87 Preferred Advisor Development Format Group setting84% Noel-Levitz, 2006

88 Advisor Development Techniques External presenters Internal presenters Readings and discussions Quizzes Consensus building Panel discussions Brainstorming issues Role play Simulations Group discussions Case studies Video/CD presentations; webinars; conferences

89 Use multiple approaches and offer multiple sessions.

90 Techniques Approaches to Training and Development Dugan Laird Addison-Wesley Publishing

91 Learner Listens and Watches lecture reading (assignments, handouts) demonstrations (live, filmed, or with modeling by trainer)

92 Learner Talks, Writes, and Responds note-taking programmed instruction structured discussion panel discussion with advisors on panel panel discussion with guests on panel open forum question-answer session

93 Learner Manipulates demonstration with learner imitating instructor performance tryout

94 Learner Makes Decisions brainstorming action maze case study jigsaws in-basket incident process team task (decision) team task (set agenda) fishbowls role-play simulation games clinic critical incident t-groups hot role-plays OD data gathering

95 Additional Training Considerations Conduct needs assessment Connect training to issues which arise from evaluation Involve advisors in planning Involve advisors in delivery Secure administrative support

96 Additional Training Considerations Clearly communicate the objectives Stress benefits of participation Use multiple communication channels Send invitations from chief administrators Schedule to avoid conflicts Select an appealing location Schedule multiple sessions

97 Prime Opportunities for Professional Development Opening of the academic year events (e.g., colloquia, symposia) Orientation programs for new faculty and staff In-service days At key junctures in the academic year (e.g., pre-registration, advising weeks, midterm report periods)

98 Make on-going professional development an institutional responsibility and part of the job description of educators, fulltime and part time. Carnegie Foundation, 2008

99 Questions? Comments? Effective Strategies?

100 Tom Brown


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