Understanding graduate student constructs for finding meaning in the advising experience : a qualitative case study of incoming master's of social work students

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Sarah Marlyne Naylor (Creator)
Institution
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
Web Site: http://library.uncg.edu/
Advisor
Gerald Ponder

Abstract: "The purpose of this study was to uncover the mental constructs (i.e. the effects of prior learning experiences that yield anticipations for the advising process) that master's level social work students bring to the academic advising process and how these constructs impact their construction (i.e. understanding and interpretation) of the advising experience. One central research question guided this study: How do the mental constructs brought to academic advising by master's of social work students shape their construction of the advising experience? Several supporting research questions were asked:What prior experiences with academic advising do MSW students bring to the advising process? What are MSW student expectations for the role of the advisor in the advising relationship? What are MSW student expectations for the role of the advisee in the advising relationship? What are MSW student expectations for early, middle, and later advising experiences as they progress through the program? What impact do MSW students expect their advising experience will have? An instrumental qualitative case study research method (Stake, 1995) was employed. The boundaries of the case were the mental constructs from students' previous advising experiences and their expectations for the MSW advising experience. The sample population consisted of the entire population of fall 2006 incoming full-time MSW students (n=80) at UNC-Chapel Hill School of Social Work. Data collection occurred between May and July 2006 and consisted of two rounds of in-depth interviews and a survey. Seventeen interview participants were identified through purposeful sampling, and all incoming first-year MSW students were asked to complete the MSW Academic Advising Inventory. Patterns identified through the first interviews and the survey were clarified in the second interviews. Findings suggest that incoming students bring to the MSW advising experience what they have learned from previous advising relationships and the hope that their advisor will establish a comfortable advising environment, be equipped with an advising strategy, engage and empower students, and help students focus on their post-MSW career goals. Based on these findings, experiential learning theory and adult learning theory have been proposed as possible conceptual frameworks for graduate student advising."--Abstract from author supplied metadata.

Additional Information

Publication
Dissertation
Language: English
Date: 2007
Keywords
mental constructs, effects, prior, learning, experiences, anticipations, advising, process, master's level, social work, students, academics
Subjects
Counseling in higher education--United States--Psychological aspects
Graduate students--Vocational guidance --United States