AcAdv, AdvTech, StudentAffairs

Supporting Learners with Technology: Perceptions and Practices of Technology in Advising

It is a critical time to assess how campus stakeholders are employing digital resources to scaffold learners beyond the course curriculum and learning environments. A growing number of colleges and universities want to advance how they offer student support using technology outside the “classroom.” This campus change is impacting more student success and academic advising programs as they consider the best technology to provide advising content and service delivery for learner-centered approaches. By researching technological trends and challenges, conducting campus-wide assessments, and establishing strategic plans, higher education stakeholders can effectively integrate technology into student support practices to align with individual advising objectives and to further the goals of the institution.

#advtech

Surveying Institutional Perceptions and Practices on Advising
 To understand the impact technology has on student support and practice The Global Community for Academic Advising (NACADA) association, specifically the NACADA Technology in Advising Commission sponsors semi-regular surveys for the NACADA membership (e.g. 2002, 2007, and 2011). In 2013 a new survey instrument was designed to capture data, specifically to identify how higher education advising staff and senior administration employ technology to support their practices. A total of 990 respondents completed the survey; however 65% identified as an academic advisor/counselor. The other respondent’s role on campus included advising administrators (22%) and faculty (4%).

Key findings from this study:

  • Top 3 advising technologies: desktop computers, campus storage networks, & Wi-Fi
  • Technology tools/platforms the institution wants advisors to use: learning management systems (46%) and laptops (40%)
  • Technology tools/platforms utilized by advisors: 24% use scanners and 23% use social networks (e.g. Twitter and Facebook).
  • Advisors communicate with technology (daily) primarily with: other academic advisors/counselors (86.35%) and students (89.88%).
  • Advisors less frequently use technology to communicate with: academic administrators (58.08%), faculty (47.22%), & student affairs administrators (37%).
  • Daily advising practices include: e-mail (99%); face-to-face interactions (91%); locally installed word processor, spreadsheets, etc. (80%); phone (73%) and Facebook (30%).
  • Less frequently used advising technology (< 2%): licensed video-conferencing (e.g. Adobe Connect, Wimba, Zoom), retention software, photo-sharing websites, and podcasts.

Overall, we found the advising community communicates with campus stakeholders across their institutions and to stay connected to professional peers outside the institution:

  • 70-90% think advising technology supports information distribution on campus, and sharing knowledge and maintaining connections within higher education.
  • 24% indicated that advising technology tools do not help with communication and student scheduling.
  • 80-92% believe advising technology helps them work faster and more efficiently, produce higher quality work, store advising information, simplifies the academic advising administrative processes, and contributes positively to their academic advising role.

Technology Needs to be Location-Free, Build Rapport, and Use Current Systems

When asked what their “ideal technology in advising practice” to support students and advising functions, respondents wanted advising technology to:

  • Be integrated into current systems and existing campus technologies.
  • Create opportunity and access for student support and advising regardless of physical location, time, etc.
  • Help build an advising rapport, make connections, and support communication.
  • Support transparent knowledge sharing and degree completion information.
  • Scaffold effective online and blended models of academic advising.
  • Address the needs and challenges related to advisor and learner preferences and/or practices for student support/services.
  • Capture the holistic view of the student learning experience, which is essential to enhance academic advising practices and institutional outcomes.

It is imperative that campus decisions about technology and learning also include design and delivery methods that are inclusive of academic advising needs. From this research, it there is both a need and desire to improve front-line advising and student support practices in higher education using technology. Beyond soliciting input during the technology purchasing and implementation phase, institutions need to consider HOW student support is organized and ASSESS current advising practices and models.

To integrate or update technology for advising, our institutions will need to also consider how they will provide additional support, offer advisors training, and create job aids or resources to scaffold technology use for the students, staff, and faculty user experience. In the efforts to expand this research and distribute this knowledge for higher education technology for advising, the survey instrument, data, and white paper (also shared on Academia.edu) from this study are shared by the researchers with a Creative Commons license. Thanks for the support of the NACADA #AdvTech Commission, and co-author George Steele.

Reference:
Pasquini, L. A., & Steele, G. (2016). Technology in academic advising: Perceptions and practices in higher education. figshare. Retrieved from https://dx.doi.org/10.6084/m9.figshare.3053569.v7

Note: A version of this blog post was also shared on the NACADA Blog and the WCET Blog. In the coming months, I look forward to working with research collaborators on an updated version and replication of this study.  

#3Wedu

The @3Wedu Podcast No. 5: Men Who Support Women in Higher Ed #3Wedu

26998029442_01d77790da_oAn article from the Harvard Business Review discussed how so many incompetent men become leaders and shared that:

female managers are more likely to elicit respect and pride from their followers, communicate their vision effectively, empower and mentor subordinates, and approach problem-solving in a more flexible and creative way (all characteristics of “transformational leadership”), as well as fairly reward direct reports.

Women’s path to leadership positions are paved with many barriers including a very thick glass ceiling. But what we have NOT discussed, on the #3Wedu podcast, is that there ARE a growing number of men in higher ed who ARE attempting to remove these career obstacles.

Today (5/18) on the @3Wedu Podcast we will chat about the Men Who Support Women in Higher Ed, specifically the male advocates, mentors, support, and more we have had in our careers.  Please join us here for the LIVE broadcast, hosted in Niagara Falls, Canada at 3 pm PST // 5 pm CDT // 6pm EST:

UPDATED: Here is the Google+ ON AIR Event Page where for the live event to post comments, our Google Doc for show notes http://bit.ly/3Wedu5 and share YOUR own experiences and thoughts about today’s topic.  Of course, the podcast hashtag: #3Wedu for those who tweet along the backchannel, and you can now follow the @3Wedu Twitter Account as well! Here are ALL THE TWEETS shared during the show tonight.

If you are interested in staying connected to be up-to-date on the monthly WomenWhoWine.edu (#3Wedu) podcast and other events — just  let us know!  Please complete the following #3Wedu Podcast Community Google Form

#AcDigID, #AcWri, #phdchat, Academia, Higher Education, networkedscholar

#AcDigID: Academic Digital Identity Matters

Over the last few weeks, you might have noticed the #AcDigID hanging off a few of my social posts. In between #OLCInnovate conference wrap-up work and the end-of-semester fun, I was designing a new workshop I’ll be facilitating via the Online Learning Consortium. This 7-day, asynchronous, online workshop is designed to support digital identity development for faculty and staff in higher education.

#AcDigID_hashtag

Developing Your Social Media and Digital Presence

Workshop Description: What does your online identity look like today? Have you Googled yourself lately? In academia, it is becoming increasingly vital to publish and share your teaching, service, and research knowledge. Besides developing an online presence and utilizing social media for professional development, faculty and staff are actively utilizing open and digital channels to support, learn, and contribute a thriving network of connected scholars. In this workshop, you will explore meaningful ways to craft an active, online persona, learn about strategies to effectively include social media and digital resources for your professional development, and understand how an online community of practice can enhance the work you do.

Learning Objectives:

  • Evaluate social media and digital platforms for faculty professional development, connected learning, and research impact.
  • Establish effective strategies for developing an online digital identity for open, networked scholarship.
  • Outline the benefits and challenges of open and digital scholarship while using social

Dates Offered: May 16-22, 2016 and September 26-October 2, 2016; Registration Page (if interested in signing up)

Initially, I was asked to create a workshop around social media; however I thought this could be more. There’s actually a lot more than just social media needed when becoming a networked scholar and in crafting your digital persona. Academic social networks are on the rise and there are a number of reasons why scholars use social media and digital resources (Van Noorden, 2014). This is an important topic we to talk about with our peers in higher ed, as we are all public intellectuals now – at least in some shape or form.

If you have ever attended a webinar and/or concurrent session with me on the topic, there’s way too much to share in just 45-60 minutes – so I was thrilled to think about these issues in an extended format and to figure out how to best support academics interested in building their digital presence. It’s been fun planning this workshop, as it has made me return back to my blog archive, review the articles I have curated, visit texts I’ve read, and also pick up a couple of new ones to learn more (future blog posts to review these books soon!).

Here’s the outline for the #AcDigID workshop this coming week:

  • Why Does Social & Digital Identity Matter in Academia?
    • Getting started, digital identity development, and state of scholars online
  • The Tools of the Digital Academic Trade: Social Media
    • Twitter, hashtags, blogging, podcasting, LinkedIn, and more!
  • Being a Connected and Digital Scholar
    • Digital research impact and influence, ORCID iD, academic social networks designed for scholars, and measuring impact.
  • Openness in Academia: Benefits & Challenges
    • Being open in higher education, the tension between challenges and affordances of online, and experiences from networked scholars.
  • Building Your Social and Digital Presence Online
    • Creating your own space and place for scholarship (at least 3 platforms)
  • Developing Your Digital Academic Identity
    • Bonus: ways to aggregate and showcase your digital/social profiles

I am looking forward to sharing ideas and strategies for digital scholarship and identity online this week in the #AcDigID workshop. I don’t claim to know all, and I continue to learn – however I will say I am grateful for those networked scholars who have supported my digital developing along the way. That being said, I know some of you might have suggestions, experiences, stories, and more when it comes to academic digital identity development. I welcome this. If you are or have been a higher education faculty/staff who is/was on social media, academic networking sites, or just online – please consider giving some advice to my #AcDigID workshop participants.

#AcDigID ADVICE and RESOURCES WANTED for how you share your teaching, service, and research scholarship online:

  • ADD TO THE LIST: to my “Academics Who Tweet” Twitter list? I would like to get a variety of scholars from all disciplines and areas in higher education. Let me know if YOU or someone else should be added.
  • SUGGEST A HASHTAG: Do you follow a particular academic hashtag that my #AcDigID community should know about?

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  • TELL YOUR #AcDigID STORY: Interested in coming to talk about your #AcDigID development? How did you become a networked scholar? Want to share your issues, challenges or affordances for your academic online self? Let me know – happy to have you during a synchronous, online meeting.
  • JOIN THE #AcDigID TWITTER CHAT: Join us for the live Twitter chat this coming Friday, May 20 from 1-2 pm EST – We will, of course, use the #AcDigID to ask questions and discuss the issues, challenges, and affordances of being a scholar online.

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  • USE the #AcDigID HASHTAG this week to introduce yourself, say hello, share resources, or offer advice.

Reference:

Van Noorden, R. (2014). Online collaboration: Scientists and the social network. Nature, 512(7513), 126-129.

#OLCInnovate, Learning Technologies, Reflections

The #OLCinnovateSDS: Our Re-Cap of the Plan, Design, & Pitch at OLC Innovate 2016

The inaugural OLC Innovate (#OLCInnovate) conference brought over a thousand educators, EdTech-innovators, and learning designers to New Orleans. This year was the inaugural Solution Design Summit (SDS) in which diverse teams of institutional stakeholders, campus partners, and EdTech innovators came together to solve learning challenges. Nine teams were selected to participate in the summit and pitch their learning solutions.

About the Solution Design Summit

Following OLC Emerging Technologies conference (2015) ideas from the “Teacher Tank,” we wanted to know, “How can we use the pitch format to design a solutions-based space for teams to work on solving a learning problem?” What resulted was the 2016 Solution Design Summit.

The SDS call for team proposals required participants to submit a learning challenge and a proposed solution to be worked on by an interdisciplinary team. The nine selected SDS teams then produced a 2-minute video trailer to describe their project. You can watch the 2016 SDS Video Trailers on YouTube or review the full SDS program here: http://bit.ly/olcinnovatesds16

Design Thinking Is A Process

During the Summit, a 3-hour pre-conference working session, the teams identified critical success factors for their learning solutions, gathered feedback from external stakeholders, and used design thinking to refine their “pitch” presentations. During the #OLCInnovate conference, teams delivered their 10-minute pitches in one of three concurrent sessions. The SDS pitches were evaluated by a panel of invited judges and audience participants.

OLCinnovateSDS_2016_Montage

The SDS challenges

The Solution Design Summit asked teams to work on increasing learner success in one of the following four areas: personal and adaptive learning; professional learning and development; the impact of open learning; or choose your own learning challenge.

Listed below are the nine SDS teams. Click on any of the titles to find out about each SDS team’s challenge and solution:

And the Winners are…

The 2016 SOLUTION DESIGN SUMMIT WINNING TEAM is . . .

OLCSDSWinner

Image mashup c/o Tony Dalton from the SDS Muhlenberg College Team

Creating Pathways to Digital Peer Leadership in the Liberal Arts

Team members:  

  • Lora Taub-Pervizpour, Associate Dean for Digital Learning, Professor of Media & Communication at Muhlenberg College
  • Kathy Harring, Dean of Institutional Assessment & Academic Planning, Professor of Psychology at Muhlenberg College
  • Sean Miller, Manager of Media Services at Muhlenberg College
  • Thomas Sciarrino, Manager of Instructional Technology and Digital Learning at Muhlenberg College
  • Anthony Dalton, Digital Cultures Media Technician, Digital Media Design Lab Instructor at Muhlenberg College

Summary: Like many liberal arts institutions, Muhlenberg College is exploring the role of the digital in our mission, goals, and practices.  We believe that digital spaces, pedagogical practices, and tools can amplify our liberal arts mission and values, and support deep relationships between teaching and learning, appreciation for diverse ways of knowing, and an education that prepares students for citizenship and lifelong learning. At the heart of our student-centered environment is a nationally recognized peer-mentor model.  Our goal is to create an innovative peer education model that empowers students to develop the relationships, skills, and competencies the need to excel as leaders in digital learning contexts.

Kudos to the COMMUNITY CHOICE award for….

If You Build It, Will They Come?

Team members:  

  • Tracy Stuntz, Instructional designer, lead LMS trainer at California State University, Fresno
  • Jean-Marie Venturini, Instructional designer, lead LMS trainer at Otis School of Art and Design
  • Rex Bartholomew, New Model Development Administrator at Toyota

Summary: The challenge we’re facing is faculty/client attendance at non-mandatory (but needed) training events is low. The focus is on reasons for faculty/client lack of attendance, and how to reach and motivate participants.

Thank You To All Who Played In the Solution Design Sandbox!

A big thank you to the invited stakeholders, judges, audience members, and the SDS planning team who supported this program. Kudos to ALL the SDS teams for your amazing pitch presentations! By asking teams to work on a solution before meeting together and then creating iterations of their work, we know that this type of conference project proposal was not simple. We hope each team received valuable input, feedback, and considerations to bring to their institutions and companies. This was the first year of the Solution Design Summit, and we hope to see a similar track at OLC Innovate 2017 and anywhere educators, designers, and ed tech innovators gather at a conference.

Thanks and much love from the #OLCInnovateSDS: 2016 SDS Planning Team,