Title: Academic advising at a distance: student communication preferences

Authors: Bart Beaudin, Jeanne Breiner

Addresses: Adult Education & Training, School of Education, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, CO 80523 V1588 USA. National Technological University, Fort Collins, Colorado, USA

Abstract: The purpose of this research was to explore the relationship between the demographic characteristics of NTU distance learning post-graduate engineering students and the effectiveness or preference of communication methods used by advisors. A mailed survey was sent to 200 NTU distance learning students with a response rate of 39%. The results revealed that e-mail was the most effective and preferred method when communicating with advisors. The results are not statistically generalisable but would be a valid starting point for discussion related to advising in continuing engineering education. A 6-item communication method rating scale was developed and the homogeneity of scales was calculated using Crombach|s coefficient alpha (0.87). No significant statistical relationships between various demographic variables (age, gender, ethnic origin, living situation, major, and employer) and communication effectiveness ratings were found.

Keywords: communication methods; academic advising; distance education.

DOI: 10.1504/IJCEELL.2001.000388

International Journal of Continuing Engineering Education and Life-Long Learning, 2001 Vol.11 No.1/2, pp.128-134

Published online: 16 Jul 2003 *

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