Advising Remotely

Advising remotely: 
Some ideas from the Office of Campus Advising Coordination

  1. Ensure that staff have the equipment (in most cases this will include a computer/laptop, wi-fi, etc.) to work remotely. 

  2. If staff are not already using the campus VPN to ensure secure access to campus systems, it is important to install it prior to accessing FERPA-protected student information remotely.

  3. Ensure all staff have both the necessary software to provide remote advising via Zoom, and ensure staff are trained in how to use Zoom effectively. Zoom can be an effective tool either for staff working at home OR for remote advising should a student not be able to travel to campus. Holly Williams has created a document that includes guidance for setting up Zoom for advising. Note that all students, faculty, and staff were automatically upgraded to Zoom Pro on March 26th

  4. Consider setting up Unified Messaging to ensure timely responses to voicemail. With Unified Messaging voicemails are sent to the email inbox. If offices are not using Unified Messaging, ensure all staff know how to change their outgoing voicemail message remotely, and ensure that outgoing messages always include accurate information about whether someone is checking and responding to messages.

  5. Provide a Zoom option for all meetings (staff, department, committee, etc.).

  6. Reduce or eliminate reliance on physical student files so necessary information can be accessed online - using Slug Success for advising notes is the best solution for this.

  7. Ensure that all staff have Adobe Acrobat on their work computers, which includes functionality to sign forms electronically.

  8. If it is necessary for advisers or students to share sensitive information such as medical documentation, use FileLocker and not email. 
  9. Consider whether or how student workers might be able to work from home, realizing that for many of them their on-campus job is important to their financial ability to continue in school. If possible, identify projects that they can work on remotely if necessary.

  10. Update websites to include the best way to access an adviser.

  11. Ensure that students receive timely responses to email and voicemail messages; create an environment in which traveling to campus is not always the fastest way to get something done.

  12. Review NACADA's resources in response to COVID-19 for ideas and best practices.