Articles

Applying Choice Theory to Academic Advising

When academic advisers feel frustrated by unsuccessful attempts to guide students toward the “right” course of action, the advisers may be suffering under an external control psychology, which creates a lack of satisfaction in their role. Hopefully this frustration is not an everyday experience, but unless all students are superior problem solvers and are self-motivated, advisers likely have experienced it often enough to wish for a solution.

Changing from an External Control worldview to a …

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Evidence-Based (Simple but Effective) Advice for College Students: Microaction and Macrochange

Sung Hee Kim, University of Kentucky

Introduction

Excellent advice for college students abounds. A simple Amazon search for “advice for college students” yields more than a thousand results, including book titles that range from How to Become a Straight-A Student, 6 Days to Better Grades, and A Guide for Academic Success to Becoming a Master Student. Most of these resources offer outstanding, practical advice. In addition to a wide array of advice books, college students …

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Promoting Trust through Effective Advising Administration

Jeffrey L. McClellan, Frostburg State University

Introduction

In business, one frequently hears that the best way to take care of a customer is to take care of the people who serve the customer. While the notion of students as customers may not be widely accepted in higher education, the need for advisers to serve them well is paramount. Furthermore, as the quality of advising is dependent on the quality of the relationship that …

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Rewarding Excellence in Academic Advising

Now more than ever, quality academic advising is lauded as essential to undergraduate student success. According to Hossler and Bean, “no student service is mentioned more often in research on student persistence than academic advising” (as cited in Brown, 2008, p. 309). Considering this, it is not surprising that many institutions purport to value the work of academic advisers. Unfortunately, few institutions actually formally recognize the achievements of these professionals. When they do, too many …

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Micro-affirmations in Academic Advising: Small Acts, Big Impact

Abstract

Rowe (2008) defined micro-affirmations as small acts in the workplace fostering inclusion, listening, comfort, and support for people who may feel unwelcome or invisible in an environment. Within the context of higher education, micro-affirmations can communicate to students that they are welcome, visible, and capable of performing well in the college environment. Micro-affirmations have the potential to fuel optimal student development and thriving in college. Academic advising offers an opportunity to apply micro-affirmations to …

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Walking-Talking: The Closed-Door Option

Introduction

We often hear that effective relationship building and promoting trust are based on the “open door.” If you open it, they will come. Proponents of this perspective see the open door as a metaphor for welcoming students and being willing to create a more open relationship by removing barriers to communication. Students benefit from engagement with academic advisers (Young-Jones, Burt, Dison, & Hawthorne, 2013), and advisers can gain work satisfaction from developing stronger relationships …

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Not All Blacks Are African American: The Importance of Viewing Advisees as Individuals in a Culturally Mosaic Context

When an advisee walks through the door, it is important for an adviser to consciously refrain from making possibly fallacious assumptions about the advisee’s racial heritage on the basis of skin color. Of course, this is also a mistake that may also be made by the advisee. One author of this paper, who is from the Caribbean, was selected as a preferred adviser by many undergraduate African American advisees, because they felt, as one of …

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Comparing Undergraduate Satisfaction with Faculty and Professional Advisers: A Multi-Method Approach

Abstract

Given that “the quality of academic advising is the single most powerful predictor of satisfaction with the campus environment,” it is disturbing to note that college students rank advising so unfavorably (Carey, 2008, p.12). Using a mixed-method approach (survey data followed by focus group interviews), this article addresses an important paradox: While student satisfaction with faculty advising is very polarized, tending to rate this kind of interaction very favorably or very poorly, students’ experience …

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Learning and Changing: My College Experience, Part 11 (Beginning a New Journey)

Editor’s Note: While numerous academic advisers and administrators have written about the advising endeavor, the voice of the student is often missing in the academic literature. In September 2009, The Mentor began publishing a series of articles by Taryn Noll, a Penn State undergraduate student who volunteered to share her thoughts, observations, challenges, and strategies while navigating the University, making decisions, and experiencing educational opportunities. Below is Taryn’s eleventh journal entry, which marks the end of her …

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Thoughts from a Coaching Perspective

My background is in coaching, not advising. Since my childhood in Canada, I have wanted to be involved in sports, and for the past twelve years, this dream has come true. I have coached at a number of different levels throughout the United States. Throughout my coaching career, I have worked with brilliantly innovative coaches, as well as those who made me cringe. I have made many mistakes and learned several key lessons that have …

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     ISSN: 1521-2211