The Colorado Department of Higher Education (CDHE) has launched Advisors LEAD - a professional development course designed to help Colorado's advisors increase their skills and competencies in four key areas: equity and inclusion-driven practices, math pathways literacy, purpose-driven advising, and effective virtual advising.
The course is free of charge, online, and self-paced. It provides interactive, pragmatic, and action-oriented content. Advisors LEAD was informed by a survey of Colorado advisors and co-created by CDHE staff, Student-Ready Strategies, and a cadre of NACADA-endorsed experts, with funding from Strong Start to Finish.
Learning Outcomes for Advisors
Effective Virtual Advising
- Recognize what supports all students need to be successful in a remote environment
- Create a virtual space in which students are able to engage as their authentic self
- Appropriately inquire about students’ non-academic challenges and needs
- Determine what additional supports may be needed to ensure equitable learning outcomes in these environments
- Make effective virtual referrals to institutional and external resources to resolve academic and non-academic challenges
- Understand the importance of prioritizing self-care, especially in personally challenging times
- Describe the importance of proactive academic planning, to include curricular and co-curricular activities, that is rooted in students’ professional and personal goals
- Facilitate students’ career exploration process with a focus on connecting their interests, skills, values, and personality with specific career goals
- Direct students to academic disciplines that are aligned with the students’ aptitudes and career interests
Math Pathways Literacy
- Describe the purpose of math pathways
- Explain the concept of math pathways in accessible, student-friendly language
- Distinguish among different gateway math courses, in terms of general content and applicability to various disciplines
- Advise students into appropriate math gateway courses aligned to their major or program of study
Equity and Inclusion-driven Practices
- Differentiate between asset-based and deficit-based language
- Identify how advising practices might unknowingly perpetuate dominant beliefs, unconscious biases, and microaggressions related to privileged and marginalized social identities
- Implement structures that are equity-oriented and culturally relevant with an understanding of students’ lived experiences
- Maintain an inclusive advising environment in which students are able to engage as their authentic self
Commitment and Timeline
Advisors can access this self-paced, asynchronous course at their own convenience for 12 months from the date the invitation is sent. Each of the courses’ four modules takes approximately 45-60 minutes to complete.
Course Access and Questions
Access to the course is by invitation only. Interested participants should fill out this form. CDHE staff will then reply with an invitation to the course.
For more information on the modules, contact Christina Carrillo, Academic Policy Officer and Advocate, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Request for Advisor Testimonials
Are you a student services professional -- academic advisor, high school counselor, or other -- who has completed the Advisors LEAD course? Click here to answer a short survey about your experience with the course.