AcAdv, AdvTech, nacada

NACADA TechTalks: Connecting 1:1 – Using Digital Tools to Enhance Advising

NACADA

The NACADA Technology in Advising Commission is pleased to announce our next “NACADA #AdvTech Talk” happening on Friday, February 21st at 1 pm CST.

You may have joined us for previous NACADA TechTalks; however this upcoming event we will be piloting a few new technology platforms, such Google +Hangout ON AIR and the #advtech Twitter backchannel.

Connecting 1:1 – Using Digital Tools to Enhance Advising

{You can watch this event as we STREAM LIVE from this blog post, directly broadcasting from the NACADA #AdvTech YouTube Channel, or find the event on NACADA #AdvTech on Google Plus!}

About the upcoming NACADA #AdvTech Talk:

This interactive one-hour session will introduce you to a student-focused approach for using social media and other digital tools for academic advising.  Learn how to increase your accessibility for students by effectively communicating one-on-one via digital tools like instant-messaging, tweeting, and texting… all without overwhelming…

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AcAdv, nacada

What’s On the Horizon for Academic Advising?

Last week, I shared my thoughts about what academic advising might look in the future in higher education with an advising group.

Based on Lowenstein’s (2013) “Vision, Not a Prediction” description in his Academic Advising Approaches chapter, I shared my ideas of how the field of academic advising COULD contribute to evolution of post-secondary education. Lowenstein shares a number of insights and examples about how advising as a profession can move forward, so my talk focussed on HOW (specifically with examples) where faculty and professional advisors can enhance student development in terms of:

  1. Interaction with students to  contribute and encourage learning outside their curriculum.
  2. Influence to changes and developments on their own campuses.
  3. Integration into the broader focus and purpose of academia.

Much of this session discussed how higher education institutions and administrators would be the only ones to lead advising changes, unless the advising profession asked the following questions themselves:

  • What is the role of advising or the advisor in post-secondary education?
  • What will advising look like in 5, 10, or 20 years?
  • What do YOU want the profession of advising to look like?
  • What sort of advising “profession” do YOU want to participate in?
  • How can YOU contribute to the change and develops occurring in higher ed, specifically with regards to how advising is organized?

In thinking about my own responses to the above prompts, I know that advisors can be at the forefront of institutional and organizational change. A number of advisors I interact with and know are very forward thinking, innovative problem-solvers who want to contribute to research, teaching, or service initiatives for the profession. It is this type of critical thinking and resilience of this generation of advisors, that we need to step up to debate practices, contribute ideas, and become active participants in how the role of advising at our institutions.  Does this mean increased advising training and development, enhance qualifications, or greater expectations for advisors? Perhaps. I think the advising community of practice can decide that, and should before some one else in the post-secondary sector decides to take this challenge on without consulting advisors altogether.

 

Reference

Lowenstein, M. (2013). Chapter 14: Envisioning the future. In J. K. Drake, P. Jordan, & M. A. Miller (Eds.), Academic advising approaches: Strategies that   teach students to make the most of college. (pp. 243-258). San Francisco,   CA: Jossey-Bass.

 

 

AcAdv, nacada, NACADA Tech

#AdvTech at #nacada13…More Than Just a Hashtag!

AdvTech Puts A Hashtag on It

 

Well, I’ve had some travel & packed appointment days, so here’s my delayed RECAP post from the 2013 Annual NACADA Conference (#nacada13) in Salt Lake City, UT. I proudly passed the NACADA Technology in Advising Commission (#AdvTech) chair torch to Julie Larsen (@julieclarsen); however I thought I would highlight some of the great things from our commission, steering committee, and general happenings at the #nacada13 conference:

So I just want to say…

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Are you interested in getting involved with the #advtech commission? The #AdvTech NACADA Technology in Advising Commission Sign-up for 2013-2014 is still open http://bit.ly/advtech13.  Please complete this form to let us know HOW you want to be involved this year. Talk to our #advtech steering committee leaders if you have questions, ideas, or suggestions for our commission!

AcAdv, nacada, NACADA Tech, Social Media

The Global #AdvTech Discussion at #nacadaINTL … And Then Some #acadv

At the beginning of June, I was fortunate to participate in the first International NACADA Conference in the Netherlands. The conversations (#nacadaINTL – archived tweets!) and sharing of ideas on how to advise and support students is universal. A number of countries and institutions were represented, and surprising enough, many of us face similar institutional challenges for effective student development.

I was happy to return to Maastricht, where I studied as a student, to present social media research, moderate a technology in advising panel, and facilitate a workshop on communication strategies for advising students.

Q: What do @ 4 am when you cant sleep? A: Go on a Maastricht walkabout to see what you remember from grad school circa 2004.

I shared recent collaborative research on guiding social media from @tjoosten & @lindseyharness, and how our institutions rarely think about learning when it comes to policy. It was good to discuss challenges and ideas on how other campuses manage social media practices, and my faculty advisor will be happy to learn that I gave me some direction for my dissertation work. 🙂

Poster Session: Guiding #socialmedia at Our Institutions on by @tjoosten @lindseyharness & moi at #nacadaINTL #acadv #highered

In thinking about actual engagement, I discussed communication plans and ideas for reaching and teaching our students. I do not think that social media is the only solution; however this workshop discussed comprehensive communication planning.

Much of what we fail to do is think holistically about this at our institutions, and I am certain that advising units can lead the way and be a strong example on campus.

This workshop discussed ideas, examples, and practical strategies – here is the digital handout and the presentation:

Finally, I would like to thank the #AdvTech Panel (left to right), Richard Sober (from Teesside University,UK), Joel Shelton (from Zayed University, UAE), Nicolai Manie (University of Maastricht,  NL), Catherine Mann (University of Melbourne-AUS), George Steele (The Ohio University, USA), and Jennifer Joslin (University of Oregon, USA) for joining in the vast conversation about technology in advising. Interested in meeting the the panel? There’s an open, Google doc for that HERE.

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Although the assigned panel topic was technology in learning, much of the discussion dealt with managing institutional objectives, supporting learning outcomes, considering effective communication strategies, and workflow solutions to make advising practices shared and developmental. The first question posed to the group  was to set the tone and give the participants an understanding of how varied and fluid “technology” is for our advising experiences.

Question:

Answers:

Immersive, necessary, potentially useful, collaborative, student-centered, electric, difficult, powerful, accessibility & connected. {What is YOUR word?}

Much of the panel discussion and general conversations at the conference around technology really involved our shared experiences for our student needs. It was not really the WHAT or HOW, but rather the reasons WHY technology is utilized at each of our institutions.

Different practices and trends for technology in advising have emerged; however an agreement on costs, advising models, student demand, and resource issues were common topics. More advising units around the globe seem to be moving towards holistic needs that require system-wide, institutional technologies to track student success, encourage mobile learning, and identify administrative solutions to make advising workflow easier. Are all institutions doing this? No. Not many at all.

I look forward to continued discussions beyond #nacadaINTL as we dig into what lies ahead for advising and technology on a global scale, specifically:

  • How can we best determine technology needs and use for advising practice?
  • What technology in advising resources will be used or should be used if they were available?
  • How is your institution attempting to respond to these questions and challenges in higher education?

Let’s keep the conversation going #advtech …

Higher Education, nacada, Professional Development, Training

Passing the Torch: Leadership Transition in Our Professional Organizations

In many professional organizations and associations (both formal and informal), leadership positions are fluid and change frequently. Whether it is an elected position, scheduled appointment, or a professional move, it is important to consider how your organization manages leadership succession and transition to sustain the association.

Passing the Torch

In thinking about transitioning out of my current role with NACADA, I was asked to share my experiences and resources* for incoming leaders for in the association. I figured I might as well share a few of these ideas with others who might be transitioning or transferring of roles in their professional organizations as well:

I. Build Your Professional Posse – No leader can do it alone, nor should they. Surround yourself with some great people who share similar interests and passions in your professional area. You know who they are – you have met them at a conference, attended one of their presentations, connected with them online, or heard about the great work they are doing – so reach out and get these members involved.

  • Recruit members at annual conferences/meetings in-person and online. We used a shared Google Form to invite others, e.g. the  #AdvTech Technology in Advising Commission Sign-up for 2012-13

  • Pass on and share the names, contact information (email, phone numbers, Twitter handles, etc)

  • Find out HOW members want to be involved with your group. Be open to suggestions and areas of interest that you have not thought about.

 

II. Take Note — Document, Organize & Archive – Be sure to keep notes, capture screenshots, record meetings, and file take notes, take screenshots, record online, and file information in an organized way throughout your elected/appointed term.

  • Save and file emails into folders from the professional association, members, and more – you never know when you will need to refer back to them

  • Organize information by projects, deadlines, and responsibilities

  • Store and save your files in an accessible space for your group to review

  • My “go to” spaces of organization for NACADA included:

 

III. Mentor While You Lead – Succession planning does not have to start at the beginning or end of your elected/appointed term. Consider involving members in your professional organization early and often.

  • Encourage point people for sub-groups, committees, or projects

  • Recommend collaboration within and outside your specific group

  • Involve participants in activities, presentations, research and development with your interest/commission area (psst you should not do it alone).

 

IV. Meet with Your Members – You will want to organize a regular meeting schedule with your committee, group or advisory board. Inquire about these at the start of each academic semester or quarter, and try to keep them on a regular schedule. Save the date(s) in advance.

  • Determine when you can meet. Try using a Doodle to sort out your meeting schedule.

  • Find the best space to “meet” for your group as they may not be anywhere near one another geographically:

    • Conference Call? There are a few free ones like http://www.freeconferencecall.com/ out there

    • Professional Association or institutional online web conferencing available? NACADA uses the Adobe Connect platform

    • I also am a fan of Google Plus Hangouts – free group video chat for 10 people and the ability to have IM chat and shared documents from Google Drive and/or screen sharing capability

  • Put out your agenda a week in advance to remind others of meeting, where/how you are meeting, and to give time to prepare/read over meeting information

    • I use Google Docs for shared agendas to encourage members to add discussion topics, questions, or updates

 

V. Create a Communication Plan – Consider making a communication plan for your professional group. This will help you understand the how, where, when and why for communication. This will also help you to disseminate information, seek out information, ask questions, and engage the members of your professional group.

  • Survey your group to find out WHERE they want to stay connected and informed. This can be at an annual conference/meeting or online. {We asked at the annual meeting, and on the digital sign-up sheet.}

  • Create welcome messages for email, Facebook or other networks to tailor and respond to interested members ASAP, for e.g.

Hello ________________,

Great to hear that you are interested in getting involved in the NACADA Technology in Advising Commission (#AdvTech)! Our #AdvTech Commission would love to have you join in the fun. To help identify your interests for involvement in the commission, please complete the NACADA Technology in Advising Commission Sign-up for 2012-13 {insert URL}

Also, be sure to connect to our commission  Facebook Group: {insert URL} There are a number of great conversations, questions and opportunities to share resources in this space. Finally, we do have an option to sign up to the commission listserv and information on the NACADA Technology in Advising Commission web page

Looking forward to getting you connected and involved soon!

Best,

Laura Pasquini

NACADA Technology in Advising Commission Chair 2011-2013

  • Get SOCIAL (media) – find an online, connected space that works for your group. Our group was interested in a moderated/closed Facebook Group; however I have seen Google Plus Communities, organizational listservs, Facebook Pages, LinkedIn groups (e.g. Advising Veterans), or hashtags on Twitter (e.g. #firstgen) to bring professional groups together. Just be sure to keep up with the conversation in whatever space you choose to use.

  • Be open for members to reach out to you for questions, ideas, suggestions, and getting involved. I often connected with members via email, Skype, on the phone, Google Plus, or another social network. Keep the conversation going, and consider hosting “office hours” or regular ways to connect with you.
  • Think outside the communication box. Consider offering different means for sharing member information and updates. We tried out the NACADA Tech Talks of 2012, and after the NACADA 2010 conference members of our group initiated the the #AcAdv Chat weekly Twitter conversations.


*There are a number of different tools and online resources to help with professional organization workflow. I am just sharing the specific ones I used with my NACADA Technology in Advising Commission the past couple of years. Figure out your purpose, then find the appropriate tool that will work for you.

AcAdv, nacada

#UNT InHouse: Portrait Gallery

A couple weeks ago I was featured in the UNT InHouse Portrait gallery for my one of many hats I wear on campus. Here’s a bit more about the Portrait Gallery and my interview for the online publication:

It’s not possible to know everyone on a big, busy campus. So InHouse periodically publishes Portrait Gallery features to help us learn about our colleagues and their contributions to the university’s success. Send suggestions for Portrait Gallery subjects by email to InHouse with “Portrait Gallery” in the subject line.

Portrait Gallery: Laura Pasquini, Academic Counselor
Laura Pasquini helps students find an academic home as a mentor for undeclared majors. She’s also the first UNT representative to be chosen for the Emerging Leader Program with The Global Community for Academic Advising.  

What is your official title, and how long have you been at UNT?

I am an academic counselor and instructor for the Office for Exploring Majors in Undergraduate Studies and I have been working at the University of North Texas since June 2009.

What is your background?

I have been supporting students as an academic advisor/counselor with major or career decision-making since fall 2003. I have been fortunate to support a variety of student populations at Niagara University, Miami University, University of Toronto Scarborough, University of Texas Arlington and UNT. Before joining the new office for exploring majors team, I was an academic advisor with the College of Business Advising Office.

What will you do as a mentor?

I was selected as a mentor for the Emerging Leader Program with The Global Community for Academic Advising for the 2012-2014 class. As a mentor, I will collaborate with other advising professionals and faculty within the association from other institutions. I will help emerging leaders develop their connections to the advising profession, encourage leadership opportunities, assist colleagues in working toward their professional goals and give back to the professional association that has helped me thrive personally and professionally.

Has any of your experience at UNT helped you prepare for this position?

Both as an academic advisor in the College of Business and in my current role, I have been fortunate to connect with students, staff and faculty to support my own personal and professional development. As a former executive officer and member of the University Counselors Advisors Network, I was able to collaborate, learn, and connect to a wide variety of ideas that will enhance my mentoring. Most recently, I had the opportunity help coordinate the Spring 2011 Advising Retreat, the UNT Advising Conference and the Advisor Spring 2012 training day. I appreciate interacting with and learning from a variety of staff and faculty who love working with students on a daily basis.

Are you the first UNT representative to be a mentor for the Emerging Leader Program?

I am the first person at UNT to be an ELP Mentor; however Carol Pollard, senior counselor in the College of Music, was part of the inaugural ELP cohort in 2007-2009 as an Emerging Leader.

What do you do as an academic counselor for undecided majors?

The Office for Exploring Majors supports students in their journey to learn more about their major/career options. As a counselor, I help support students who are undecided, undeclared and uncertain about their degree options. We often work with new students who want to learn more about their academic choices; however we frequently work with students who want to change their major or transition to another path. I enjoy providing academic/occupational resources and information to empower our students to make choices, and support them in their exploration.

What commonalities/differences do undeclared majors share?

Our undeclared/undecided students are very intelligent, bright and interested in a number of options. These students often have too many choices and are undecided to allow some time to explore majors, meet faculty, understand degree requirements and discover more about their own interests. Over the last year, I have come to really appreciate the interest and enthusiasm that our students bring to the First Year Seminar, during workshops, or  counseling.

Do you have success stories?

A recent one would be with Lisandry Ortiz, who was in my First Year Seminar class Fall 2011.

Lisandry came into the class with different ideas about her major/career from her family, friends and others. During the course of the semester and in her first year, Lisandry went out to interview professionals, research occupational trends, and tried out a few classes to help her find her direction that would be best for her. She was interested in Biology, English, Creative Writing, Journalism, Kinesiology and Rehabilitation Studies with a double minor in Kinesiology and Addictions.

Although she had a challenging second semester at UNT, Lisandry managed to stay on top of her studies and credits the connections to friends and resources from the first year seminar class.

I am happy to say that Lisandry has earned junior class standing and has officially declared Rehabilitation Studies as her major with the College of Public Affairs & Community Service.

Along with her academic progress, Lisandry is working on campus as a housing ambassador in Maple Hall and she is now an Office for Exploring Majors Student Ambassador who will support undecided students with their major/career journey.

AcAdv, nacada, NACADA Tech

The @NACADA TechTalk Series – #AdvTech in 140 Characters Or Less

The @NACADA TechTalk Series is sponsored by the NACADA Technology in Advising Commission. These free, online webcasts were designed to introduce advising professionals and faculty to ideas and suggested practices for using technology in advising. **Join the Twitter backchannel & conversation using the #AdvTech hashtag**

Here is the NACADA TechTalk program run down for the week with descriptions in 140 characters or less and the archived recording, notes & more from each session:

Monday, August 6 – The Speech that was Never a Blog Post: Trends and Future for Technology in Advising

Join @NACADA President @uoadvdir as she shares future #AdvTech trends in #HigherEd that will impact your campus & advising #AcAdv
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Tuesday, August 7 – What the Tweet?: @AcAdvChat & the #AcAdv Community Using Twitter for Professional Development

Have u followed @AcAdvChat on Twitter? @peacox , @HowardSJ & @BilMorrill will share the conversation & community that is #AcAdv Chat #advtech

Wednesday, August 8 – Advising Technology Mythbusting: Guidance and Challenges for Using Social Media on Campus

Communications 101 + #SocialMedia Strategy + Privacy Concerns + #AdvTech Mythbusting = Web #AcAdv Tips from @julieclarsen@EricStoller

Thursday, August 9 – Advising Reflections & Sharing: Blogging to Support our Profession & Student Learning Outcomes

Blogs are for sharing, reflection & more! Listen to #AcAdv @jbarkemeyer , @sally_garner & @EstherChung2 tell their #AdvTech blogging tales.

Friday, August 10 – Technology Adoption & Life Cycle: From Implementation to Evaluation of Technology in Advising

So you have an #AdvTech idea? @gsteele1220 & @cschwenn have a plan for that! Come learn about #AcAdv tech life cycle from start to finish.

THANK YOU FOR ALL WHO CONTRIBUTED TO THE NACADA TECHTALK SERIES!

What an amazing and fun time we had. I hope you find the above resources helpful, and be sure to let us know what Technology in Advising issues you want to learn more about if we offer more NACADA TechTalks in the future.