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Voices of the Global Community


Roberta 'Bobbie' Flaherty, NACADA Executive Director 

CERTIFICATION - the much used word within NACADA these days and the most often confused. As the Association strives to bring greater professional recognition to advisors, it is exploring a number of ways to recognize the knowledge and skills that advisors attain and utilize in providing effective academic advising.

Currently, there are four distinctly different initiatives being considered that in some way involve a form of the word certificate. They include a 'participation certificate', an 'advising certificate program', a 'graduate certificate program in advising', and 'advisor certification'. Now do we see why folks might be confused?

The participation certificate is simply a NACADA certificate given for completion of a specific NACADA professional development event such as the Academic Advising Summer Institute and/or the Advising Administrators' Institute. It simply denotes that a person participated in that event and hopefully that they gained some advising knowledge from that participation. That knowledge, however, is not assessed in any way.

An advising certificate program is being explored by the Professional Development Committee as an opportunity for members to obtain recognition for having participated in a series of professional development activities that would cover a broad spectrum of advising information. A 'certificate' might then be awarded to verify exposure to this broad spectrum of knowledge. Again, this knowledge would not be assessed or verified in any way.

The Graduate Certificate Program in Academic Advising is a totally independent Graduate Program offered by Kansas State University. Participants in this program earn academic credit and upon completion of the five courses, receive a Graduate Certificate from Kansas State University verifying completion of the program. Of course, each course includes knowledge assessment.

Advisor Certification is the subject of the work of a NACADA Task Force charged with exploring the potential for a 'professional' certification program and designation for academic advisors. This Task Force is identifying the knowledge and skills that effective academic advisors should possess and how this knowledge and these skills can be assessed to earn the designation as a 'Certified Advisor'. Any or all of the above programs might serve as leading toward the professional certification designation through the attainment and assessment of the knowledge and skills presented by each along with experience and other learning opportunities. The Executive Office is seeking estimates from 'certifying' entities as to the costs that would be incurred in assessing the advising competencies as identified by the Task Force and other expenses to anticipate in the administration of such a program. That information will be utilized to determine if such a program would be cost effective and viable for academic advisors.

I hope this helps everyone understand the many uses of the word 'certificate' and how your association is working to enhance the recognition you deserve for your continued education and your expertise. We welcome any suggestions for synonyms!

Roberta 'Bobbie' Flaherty
NACADA Executive Director

NACADA Journal Seeks Editorial Board Members

A. Purpose and Overview
The NACADA Journal, the journal of the National Academic Advising Association, seeks to enrich the knowledge, skills, and professional development of people concerned with academic advising and student success in higher education. Through its journal and other activities, NACADA is dedicated to the enhancement of student development by supporting the professional growth of academic advisors and the advising profession.

B. Qualifications
Publications in peer-reviewed journals (preference for NACADA Journal publication)
Experience in academic advising
Interest and strength in quantitative and/or qualitative research methodology
Active membership in NACADA
Terminal degree (preferred)

C. Expectations
Review manuscripts for significance, appropriateness, research design, analysis, and quality of writing within 30 days of receipt.
Provide constructive feedback to authors in order to improve manuscripts.
Ability to use Microsoft Word and email with attachments.
Annual attendance at the Editorial Board meeting held during the NACADA National Conference each year. (Preferred)

D. Appointment
Editorial Board members serve three-year terms that begin and end at the national conference. An Editorial Board member may serve non-consecutive terms.

E. Application
Applicants familiar with the field of academic advising who are interested in seeking membership on the Editorial Board should submit an email message to [email protected] stating interest in and rationale for serving as a member of the NACADA Journal Editorial Board. A professional resume prepared in Microsoft Word '.doc' format should be attached.

Applications will be considered on a rolling basis until all positions are filled.


Newly Appointed NACADA Leaders

NACADA President Ruth Darling has appointed the following members to leadership positions beginning in October 2003. Congratulations to you all and a BIG thank you for agreeing to serve your organization!

Administrative Division Representative: John Mortensen
Regional Division Representative: Brian Glankler
Journal Co-Editors: Terry Kuhn and Gary Padak

Administrators' Institute Advisory Board:
Susan Campbell (Chair), Alice Reinarz, Rich Robbins, Gene Calderon, Lynn Freeman, Vicki McGillin, Carolyn Collins, Tom Grites, Albert Matheny

Summer Institute Advisory Board:
Wes Habley (Chair), Nancy King, Susan Campbell, John Burton, Tom Kerr, Dorothy Turk, Wanda Martin, Peggy King, Casey Self, Betsy McCalla-Wriggins

In addition, Barbara Bucey is Program Chair for the 2004 National Conference.


CAS Standards Revision Announced

The Council for the Advancement of Standards in Higher Education (CAS) announces the release of a major revision of its landmark publication, the Book of Professional Standards for Higher Education, and an updated version of the CAS Self-Assessment Guides (SAGs). Available August 29, the new 2003 book of standards and guidelines incorporates significant updates, including new general standards with greater detail about desired outcomes in student learning and development. The standards for Academic Advising are presently under going a major revision as well. Newly revised self-assessment guides (SAGs) feature an effective means for measuring how these standards are being met in all 30 functional areas. SAGs are available in both print and interactive CD-Rom formats (both PC and Mac). The CD-Rom also includes a new PowerPoint presentation and an E-learning course to assist institutional staff and faculty members in completing the SAGs.

Further information and online orders are available through the CAS web site (http://www.cas.edu). The book, which replaces the 2001 edition, is available separately or in a special package with the interactive CD-Rom including the full set of SAGs. The SAGs are also available for individual purchase and immediate download. The book and SAGs can be ordered from CAS, One Dupont Circle, NW, Suite 200, Washington, D.C. 20036-1188. Telephone: (202) 862-1400, Fax: (202) 296-3286.

The National Academic Advising Association is a member of CAS and strongly endorses these standards to its members. Founded in 1979, CAS is a consortium of educational associations that promotes quality educational practices through the promulgation of standards and guidelines for 30 programs and services in higher education. Individuals and institutions from the 32 CAS member organizations comprise a professional constituency of well over 100,000 professionals. Excellence in educational practice is a central goal of CAS that is achieved through the implementation of standards in all areas of practice in higher education. This vision for excellence is consistent with contemporary goals for accountability and bring an effective approach-the CAS approach-to program assessment. The CAS approach is based on concepts of self-regulation and self-assessment, and all CAS materials are geared to this approach to quality assurance in higher education.

CAS serves higher education programs and services by providing:

  • Descriptions of state-of-the-art programs and services
  • Designs for programs and service development and assessment
  • Criteria for institutional self-studies and preparation for accreditation
  • Opportunities for staff development
  • Outcomes for student learning and development
  • Frameworks for accountability

Visit http://www.cas.edu for orders for all CAS materials, a full account of the work of CAS, links to each member association Internet sites and to the leadership of CAS, and a brief PowerPoint presentation providing an overview of the CAS approach.

Cite this article using APA style as: Flaherty, R. (2003, December). From the executive office. Academic Advising Today, 26(4). [insert url here]


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Academic Advising Today, a NACADA member benefit, is published four times annually by NACADA: The Global Community for Academic Advising. NACADA holds exclusive copyright for all Academic Advising Today articles and features. For complete copyright and fair use information, including terms for reproducing material and permissions requests, see Publication Guidelines.