Online Advising Pilot at the Community College of Vermont

Kimberly Nolan

Abstract

As more colleges add online courses and fully online programs, the need to offer online supports to students becomes more apparent. The connection to an adviser is critical for all students, but for online students it can serve as their primary connection to the institution. In Fall 2011 a pilot study was conducted at the Community College of Vermont (CCV) to examine online advising through a Moodle course site. Although this pilot study represented a small online advising cohort, 56 of the total 155 online students, it illustrates implications for practice and research. The advising cohort showed a slightly higher retention rate than the overall online population. Based on survey results students reported a strong desire for an adviser who stays with them throughout their educational career at the college. In Fall 2012, CCV institutionalized online advising and began a systematic approach to assisting online students. Five advisers added online students to their work assignments and all CCV advisers were informed of what services CCV would be offering online. When students applied to CCV and selected online (ONL) as a home location, they were contacted via email with an explanation of the online services available to them so that students could make a more informed decision about their home location. In Fall 2012, 286 students selected ONL as their home location and were contacted by staff. 256 students chose to remain online.

Keywords

Online support, Advising, Community college

Annotation

In Fall 2011 a pilot student was conducted at the Community College of Vermont to examine online advising through a Moodle course site. 56 students participated. The advising cohort showed a slightly higher retention rate than the overall online population. Based on survey results students reported a strong desire for an adviser who stays with them throughout their educational career.
● As of fall 2011, CCV offered no formal advising for online students unless they contacted an academic center on their own.
● A random sample of 74% degree students and 26% non-degree students were chosen to match CCV’s current student profile.
● Fur sections of online advising were created with a Moodle classroom where there were weekly announcements to students, responses to questions, and check-ins with students.
● Attendance was monitored and returning students were offered assistance in selecting spring classes.
● Of the 56 students in the advising cohort, 54% returned to CCV in Spring 2012. This can be compared to the Fall 2010 to spring 2011 college-wide retention rate of 67% and an online Fall to Spring retention rate of 53%.
● At the conclusion of the Fall semester, student were sent a survey via Survey Monkey to gauge their satisfaction with their online advising. Thirty-nine percent of the students from the online advising cohort responded to the survey.
● These data show that one-half of the respondents did not report contact with their advisers.
● Students did not agree that online students do not need an adviser

APA Citation

Nolan, K. (2013). Online Advising Pilot at the Community College of Vermont. Journal of Asynchronous Learning Networks, 17(1), 47-51.

About the Study

Links to Article https://scholar.google.com/scholar?hl=en&as_sdt=5%2C50&sciodt=0%2C50&cites=15303976406219441266&scipsc=&q=Online+Advising+Pilot+at+the+Community+College+of+Vermont.+&btnG=
https://files.eric.ed.gov/fulltext/EJ1011369.pdf
Mode Online
Publication Type Journal Article
In Publication Journal of Asynchronous Learning Networks
Type of Research Mixed methods
Research Design Experiments, Survey research (qualitative or quantitative)
Intervention/Areas of Study Advising and other institutional support
Level of Analysis Student-level
Specific Populations Examined
Peer-Reviewed Yes
Specific Institutional Characteristics of Interest 2-year institution
Specific Course or Program Characteristics
Outcome Variables of Interest Retention, Satisfaction
Student Sample Size 0-99
Citing Articles https://scholar.google.com/scholar?cites=9314517493270419951&as_sdt=5,50&sciodt=0,50&hl=en


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