Date Approved

5-10-2016

Embargo Period

5-12-2016

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

M.A. Higher Education

Department

Educational Services and Leadership

College

College of Education

First Advisor

Sisco, Burton R.

Second Advisor

Walpole, Marybeth

Subject(s)

Educational counseling; Vocational guidance; Experiential learning; Education, Humanistic

Disciplines

Higher Education

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to investigate the role of professional academic advising in the liberal arts. This study focused on the impact of professional academic advising in the liberal arts. This study also focused on the extent to which professional administrators are involved in supporting the professional academic advisors. This was a Total Population Study since all five College of Humanities and Social Sciences embedded advisors participated in this study and the four administrators participated in this study. Qualitative research, through the use of 30 minute individual interviews, was used to collect data. Interview questions focused on demographic information, advising role, advising skills and education, post-graduation options, degree value, and any suggested changes. The research questions presented in Chapter I of this study were used to inform and develop the interview questions. Qualitative content analysis techniques, per Sisco (1981), were used in order to classify and categorize themes. Themes were presented through tables and illustrative quotes. The major finding of this study is just how critical experiential learning is to the success of Liberal Arts students. Additionally, professional academic advisors are critical in linking Liberal Arts students to these opportunities.

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