Advising the Students of Today

BethAdvising the Students of Today is an academic advising certificate program designed for staff already working in an academic advising position at UC Santa Cruz. The program, developed by the Division of Undergraduate Education’s Office of Campus Advising Coordination, aims to support advisers in building general foundations of advising including NACADA “core competencies,” and essential skills for working with the students who make up our diverse undergraduate population.

By ensuring the academic advising community at UC Santa Cruz has an opportunity to be developed not only in concepts such as academic advising strategies and student development theory, but also in concepts such as stereotype threat, recognizing microaggressions, and the power of a growth mindset, we are better positioned to effectively support our students’ sense of belonging and ultimate academic success.

How was the program developed?

The Office of Campus Advising Coordination successfully applied for funding from UC's Office of the President designed to support access and retention of students from LCFF+ high schools - this population typically includes low-income, first-generation, and underrepresented students. Ensuring that our academic advising staff is well-trained in supporting these populations is a key part of improving their experience and progress to graduation.
The funding was used to hire a NACADA consultant, who developed a report with recommendations for the curriculum. We worked with other consultants who developed the online modules. We are very appreciative both to the UC Office of the President and to NACADA for their support in developing this program.

Who can participate?

In 2018-19, the second year of the program, it will be open to college and department advisers. There is a possibility it may be expanded beyond that in future years.

How will participants be chosen?

We are aiming for a cohort of 12 participants, with an even balance between college and department/major advisers. Because this is just the second year the program will be offered, we are particularly interested in participants who are willing to offer constructive feedback on the program so we can improve it in future years. To achieve this, we will be aiming for a cohort that includes both newer and more seasoned advisers.

How much time does it take?

The program is completed over the course of a year. There are three modules in each quarter of the regular academic year (FWS), and one module in summer; each module consists of about 4 hours of independent online work that can be completed at any time (readings, viewing videos, etc.), followed by a 2-hour facilitated discussion which all participants must attend. One additional meeting may be required in fall quarter, for a total of 4 meetings in fall. You may miss no more than two meetings and still earn the certificate. The culminating project will be to develop your own personal philosophy of advising.

Facilitated discussions will take place on the following dates. All discussions will be from from 10:00 a.m. - 12:00 noon unless indicated differently:

Fall Winter Spring Summer
October 12 January 25 April 12 July 12
November 2 February 15 May 8
November 30, 8:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. March 8 May 31
December 7

What topics will be covered?

The topics will be consistent with NACADA’s conceptual framework for adviser training, and will include conceptual, relational, and informational topics:


•   Advising as a teaching and learning activity
•   Retention and engagement theories
•   Overview of student development theory
•   Exploration and development of awareness of inequities
•   Structure of an advising session


•   Examining larger systems of inequity, and application to our advising practice
•   Identity awareness; exploring self and others
•   Culture matching, and student messaging to foster a growth mindset
•   Understanding microagressions


•   Campus resources, services, and opportunities
•   Advising partnerships
•   Policies in action: case studies on specific academic advising policy and procedure

How much does it cost?

There is no cost to advisers or their units to participate.

How can I apply?

A call for applications will go out soon from the Office of Campus Advising Coordination, with an application deadline of Tuesday, September 18.