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Tip of the Week: Academic advising increases interaction between the student and the teacher

Academic advising supports goal-oriented studying. It promotes interaction between academic personnel and the staff of the Learning Services.

How?

An academic advisor is appointed to each student from among the professors and lecturers of the university. There are over 80 advisors, meaning that each academic year, there are around 4 students for each advisor out of the 300 admitted students. During the three-year period, the number of students under guidance amounts to a cumulative 12.

An academic advisor meets his or her students twice per academic year. The Learning Services proactively offer the service to the students who are not reached by academic advising. Therefore, academic advising always finally covers 100% of the students. The academic advisors are able to reach around 90% of the first-year students and around 80% of second-year students. The third academic year for academic advising has only just started.

What is it suitable for?

Academic advising is suitable for supporting goal-oriented studying. It entails creating six occasions in the three-year period where students stop and think about what they are doing there, what their goals are and how they are making progress in relation to their goals.

Academic advising allows staying in contact with the student at different stages of studies. The meetings involve explaining the special features related to the stages. This practice also accommodates interaction between the student and teacher.

Benefits?

The practice has a lot of benefits. First, the student is appointed an official contact person from among the academic staff and receives information and perspective of the advisor's field of science. In return, the academic advisor receives information about the ideas bachelor's degree students have regarding their studies and future plans. The advisor also gets an opportunity to tell the students about his or her research and teaching. The Learning Services get better at recognising different-year students from the statistics and will be able to better target their information to students. The Learning Services will also become aware of who actually study in the programmes at any given time as well as who are in the most dire need for help and support in their studies.

What is required?

The practice requires an academic leader (dean or vice dean) and the process owner from the Learning Services. An information system for managing student lists and academic advisors already exists and is available for all Aalto's schools.

Further information:

Project Manager Ville Kivimäki, Aalto ENG, [email protected]

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