IU Bloomington

Guided by NSSE 2019 Annual Results showing that the quality of academic advising is far more important than the number of advising visits, IUB advising leaders explored the effect of longer appointment times as a way to encourage more meaningful discussions. Advisors found that slightly longer appointment times – by as little as 15 minutes – had positive outcomes. For example, they:

  • Contributed to the establishment of deeper interpersonal connections.
  • Encouraged a greater likelihood of addressing topics beyond transactional exchanges (e.g., "How do I drop a class?") to students’ goals and explorations into the IU programs and opportunities that will help them achieve their goals.
  • Helped advisors implement more best practices, including aspects from coaching models and appreciative advising.

Notably...the focus on a longer advising appointment enhanced the critical relationship dimension of advising quality.

Notably, advisors reported that the focus on a longer advising appointment enhanced the critical relationship dimension of advising quality, including engendering students’ trust in the advisor’s ability to help, demonstrating how much advisors care about students as individuals, encouraging students to broach topics they think may not be related to advising, but that affect their educational experience, and promoting greater receptivity to any advising outreach.

The investment in advising resources needed to facilitate longer appointment times has a two-fold payoff in that both students and advisors appreciate the depth of resulting interactions. Finally, the test of the differences made by varying appointment lengths to improve overall quality helped create an environment in which students feel that their academic success matters and that the institution has a vested interest in their progress.

Evidence-Based Improvement in Higher Education

Center for Postsecondary Research
Indiana University School of Education
201 N. Rose Avenue
Bloomington, IN 47405-1006
Phone: 812.856.5824