At the October 2014 NACADA Board of Directors meeting, the Board approved the creation of a collaborative task force with Kansas State University’s College of Education to investigate the feasibility of establishing a center for research and excellence in academic advising. The task force is co-chaired by NACADA Executive Director Charlie Nutt and KSU College of Education Dean Debbie Mercer.
Research in the field of academic advising is imperative to the future of higher education through its focus on student learning and completion to graduation. Research continues to be a major strategic goal of NACADA as well as a focus of Kansas State University’s 2025 Strategic Plan. While NACADA has traditionally awarded research grants, published the NACADA Journal, and in recent years hosted two-day research symposiums, there is presently no entity focused specifically on research in the field of advising. Mercer and Nutt brought the proposal for the task force to the Board of Directors because of the close partnership between NACADA and KSU College of Education as well as the fact that KSU created the first online graduate certificate and master’s degree in academic advising in higher education.
The task force is working during this year to identify what the vision, mission, and goals might be for such a center, to investigate research centers that exist at other higher education institutions, and to develop an action plan for the creation of a center. This would include such issues as the feasibility of a center, the structure of a center, potential financial implications for both NACADA and the College of Education, and the timeline for the opening. The task force will present a preliminary report to the Board of Directors at the Mid-Year meeting to be held at Kansas State University, as well as present a final report and possible proposal at the October 2015 Board of Directors meeting.
The task force will provide opportunities for member input in a variety of ways, including at the regional conferences. This is an exciting endeavor, and we encourage member with ideas and questions to take part in these opportunities for input.
PHOTO: Wendy Troxel leading discussions at a NACADA research symposium held at the University of Maastricht in June 2014.