When an individual aspires to someday become an academic advisor, he dreams of influencing young lives for the better. Being an academic advisor is therefore a noble calling, and demands not only mental and intellectual capability, but as well emotional and psychological soundness. All these can be achieved only by enrolling and undergoing training and education in a competent academic institution, which you can now acquire through some online courses.
But before you jump into the first step of this endeavor, you have to first see to it that you have a thorough comprehension of the roles of this profession. The following are some of the major responsibilities of an academic advisor:
- Provide guidance for students as they create personal and academic goals.
- See to it that students are enrolling in an academic program that is in line with their strongest skills and interests.
- Monitor and maintain the overall well-being of enrollees, and endorse them to other members of the academe should they require assistance or professional advice.
- Keep track of advisees’ progress towards their professional and academic goals.
- Ensure that every course and program is relevant to the advisees’ career of choice.
As mentioned earlier, becoming a good academic advisor relies on the quality of education one has acquired in his pursuit of such career. One good news is that the recent years have already transcended conventional methods of learning – thanks to the Internet. Today, it is possible to be trained and further educated for a career in the field of education, medicine, and many other fields of interest through online courses. For example, an ACU masters degree in higher education and student affairs qualifies holders for any academic advising position. Eligibility to an academic advising career may be achieved with a bachelor’s degree; however, certain positions require a degree that is specified for a chosen area of practice. Some of these include the following:
- College Student Personnel
- Higher Education Administration within Student Affairs
- Higher Education
- Social Work
Just as in any other career or profession, a particular set of skills is required in order for an individual to be an effective academic advisor. The following are among the most common skills required in this profession:
- Satisfactory interpersonal skills
The job of an academic advisor entails constant interpersonal interaction since he or she will have to be communicating with his or her advisees. A person who does not have the right interpersonal skills will most likely be unable to effectively communicate with students, which can be a huge impediment to the position’s goals.
- Impressive communication skills
As mentioned earlier, it’s very important for an advisor to be good at communicating because this will basically be his or her main tool in achieving goals and responsibilities towards students. Hiring a bad communicator to do the job will defeat the purpose because in the first place, transformation and development highly depend on healthy communication.
- Genuine drive to serve
Being an academic advisor entails guiding other individuals to ensure that they are on to the right path. A person who is only concerned about personal gain is most likely not for this job because personal interests can interfere with student welfare goals.
Cedric Loiselle is a passionate and talented writer who takes pleasure in providing up-to-date information about information technology, education, and other niches. For a master’s degree in higher education, he highly recommends Abilene Christian University’s online curriculum