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Adult student and tutor perceptions of academic advising at the Open Learning Institute McInnes-Rankin, Ethelyn 1986

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ADULT STUDENT AND TUTOR PERCEPTIONS OF ACADEMIC ADVISING AT THE OPEN LEARNING INSTITUTE by ETHELYN MCINNES-RANKIN B.A., University of Winnipeg, 1977 A THESIS SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF MASTER OF ARTS in THE FACULTY OF GRADUATE STUDIES (Department o-f Counselling Psychology) We accept t h i s thesis as con-forming to the required standard THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA July 1986 © Ethelyn D. Mclnnes-Rankin, 1986 In presenting this thesis in partial fulfilment of the requirements for an advanced degree at the University of British Columbia, I agree that the Library shall make it freely available for reference and study. I further agree that permission for extensive copying of this thesis for scholarly purposes may be granted by the head of my department or by his or her representatives. It is understood that copying or publication of this thesis for financial gain shall not be allowed without my written permission. Department of rmmcoi i -ir^ P ^ ^ I ^ The University of British Columbia 1956 Main Mall Vancouver, Canada V6T 1Y3 D a t e August 198ft ABSTRACT D i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n i s a r a p i d l y g r o w i n g d e l i v e r y s y s t e m w h i c h i s b e i n g u s e d t o s e r v e t h e n e e d s of a d u l t l e a r n e r s . T h e r e i s a l a c k o f i n f o r m a t i o n and r e s e a r c h a v a i l a b l e on a d v i s i n g t h e a d u l t l e a r n e r w i t h i n a d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n s y s t e m . T h i s s u r v e y of a d u l t s t u d e n t s and t u t o r s a t t h e Open L e a r n i n g I n s t i t u t e , a d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n i n s t i t u t i o n i n B r i t i s h C o l u m b i a , showed t h a t t h e r e were s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e s between f e m a l e and male s t u d e n t r e s p o n s e s t o i m p o r t a n t a s p e c t s o f a c a d e m i c a d v i s i n g and a d u l t s t u d e n t c o n c e r n s . The i t e m , i s o l a t i o n , seems t o be a c o n c e r n more o f O.L.I, t u t o r s t h a n O .L.I, s t u d e n t s . R e s u l t s s u g g e s t t h a t t h e a s p e c t s of a c a d e m i c a d v i s i n g s u r v e y e d were i m p o r t a n t t o b o t h t u t o r s and s t u d e n t s . i i TABLE OF CONTENTS Page ABSTRACT i i TABLE OF CONTENTS - i i i L I S T OF TABLES v i i L I S T OF FIGURES i x L I S T OF APPENDICES x ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS. x i CHAPTER 1. THE NATURE OF THE PROBLEM ...» 1 I n t r o d u c t i o n 1 P l a n o f t h e S t u d y 2 D e s i g n o f t h e S t u d y 2 D e f i n i t i o n o f Terms 4 C o u n s e l l i n g 4-A c a d e m i c A d v i s i n g . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7 A d u l t S t u d e n t 9 D i s t a n c e E d u c a t i o n 10 Summary • » 10 2. REVIEW OF RELATED LITERATURE . 12 I n t r o d u c t i o n 12 S t u d e n t S u p p o r t S e r v i c e s i n D i s t a n c e E d u c a t i o n . . 13 U n i t e d Kingdom. 13 A u s t r a l i a . . . 17 U n i t e d S t a t e s 19 Cein eftCf e& a R i • i i • i i i • t • • • i « > • « • • • • • « • • < • > • • ° « a • B • 20 i i i A l b e r t a - A t h a b a s c a U n i v e r s i t y 20 O n t a r i o » 21 B r i t i s h C o l u m b i a - Open L e a r n i n g I n s t i t u t e . . . 22 Summary. 22 Needs o f A d u l t S t u d e n t s and P a r t - T i m e S t u d e n t C o n c e r n s . 23 Ac a d e m i c A d v i s i n g 29 Summary 34 3. THE DESIGN AND DESCRIPTION OF THE STUDY 36 The P r o b l e m 36 H y p o t h e s e s and Q u e s t i o n s 37 D e s c r i p t i o n o-f t h e I n s t i t u t i o n and t h e P a p u l a t i o n 38 The A d v i s i n g S e r v i c e s . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 41 T u t o r i n g S t a f f . . . • 42 P o p u l a t i o n s . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 43 S t u d e n t s . . 43 T u t o r s 43 Sampl i ng • 44 S t u d e n t s 44 T u t o r s 45 F o r m u l a t i o n o f t h e R e s e a r c h T o o l . . . . 45 A d v i s i n g F a c t o r s 46 C o n c e r n s . - 47 A d v i s i n g C e n t r e S e r v i c e s . . . . . 48 D a t a A n a l y s i s 48 i v Limitations o-f the Study... 49 Summary. SO 4a FINDXNSSa a a B B a a B M B B B a a a B B B a a B B B a a a a B a B B S B B B B . a e a SI Questionnaire Returns 51 Overview o-f S t a t i s t i c a l Procedures 51 Hypotheses and Questions. 52 Aspects o-f Advising 53 Adult Student Concerns 58 Related Research Questions 65 Students 65 Tutors 78 Question - - S3 Other Findings 84 Aspects o-f Advising 84 Adult Student Concerns 86 Summary. 88 5. SUMMARY, CONCLUSIONS AND IMPLICATIONS. S9 Summary o-f Research Problem and Method 89 Results and Conclusions 91 Important Aspects o-f Academic Advising. 91 Adult Student Concerns 92 Advising Centre Services 93 Interpretation of the Results 93 Important Aspects of Academic Advising 93 Adult Student Concerns.... 94 v I m p l i c a t i o n s and Recommendations.............. 96 C o n c l u s i o n 101 BIBLIOGRAPHY . . 103 APPENDICES. . . . . . 108 A. A c a d e m i c A d v i s i n g S t u d e n t S u r v e y 109 B. A c a d e m i c A d v i s i n g S u r v e y ( T u t o r ) 114 C. S t u d e n t L e t t e r . . «•• 119 v i LIST OF TABLES Table Page 1. Tutor Responses to Important Aspects of Academic Advising 54 2. Student Responses to Important Aspects of Academic Advising 56 3. One-way ANOVA Comparisons for S i g n i f i c a n t Differences Between Adult Students and Tutors on Important Aspects of Academic Advising..... 57 4. Tutor Perceptions of Adult Student Concerns 59 5. Student Responses to Adult Student Concerns 61 6. One-way ANOVA Comparisons for S i g n i f i c a n t Differences Between Adult Students and Tutors on Adult Student Concerns 63 7. One-way ANOVA Comparisons for S i g n i f i c a n t Differences Between O.L.I. Students and Transfer Students on Important Aspects of Advising 66 8. One-way ANOVA Comparisons for S i g n i f i c a n t Differences Between O.L.I. Students and Transfer Students on Adult Student Concerns... 67 9. Comparisons of Student Responses. By Gender, to Important Aspects of Academic Advising 69 10. Comparisons of Student Responses, By Age, to Important Aspects of Advising 71 11. Comparisons of Students' Perceptions of Important Aspects of Academic Advising by Advisor Contact 73 12. A Comparison of Adult Students' Concerns, by Gender 74 13. Comparison of Student Responses, by Age, to Adult Students' Concerns 76 14. Comparisons of Adult Students' Concerns, by Advisor Contact 77 15. Comparisons of Tutor Perceptions, by Gender, of Important Aspects of Academic Advising 79 v i i 16. Comparison of Tutor Perceptions, by Years of Experience, of Important Aspects of Academic Advising 80 17. A Comparison of Tutor Perceptions, by Gender, of Adult Student Concerns 81 18. Comparison of Tutor Perceptions, by Years of Experience, of Adult Student Concerns 82 v i i i LIST OF FIGURES Figure Page 1. Levels of Advising and Counselling 6 2. Adult Concerns: Tutors/Students. 64 3. Adult Concerns: Female/Male Students 75 ix LIST OF APPENDICES Appendix Page A. Academic Advising Student Survey. 109 B. Academic Advising Survey (Tutor).... 114 C. Student Letter 119 x ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS The a u t h o r w i s h e s t o a c k n o w l e d g e t h e f i n a n c i a l s u p p o r t c o n t r i b u t e d by t h e Open L e a r n i n g I n s t i t u t e a d m i n i s t r a t i o n t o w a r d s t h e m a i l i n g c o s t s o f t h i s s t u d y . A p p r e c i a t i o n i s e x p r e s s e d t o w a r d s t h e Open L e a r n i n g I n s t i t u t e s t a f f and s t u d e n t s who p a r t i c i p a t e d i n t h i s s t u d y f o r t h e i r c o -o p e r a t i o n and s u p p o r t . G r a t e f u l acknowledgement i s made t o t h e Open L e a r n i n g I n s t i t u t e L i b r a r y s t a f f f o r t h e i r a s s i s t a n c e t h r o u g h o u t t h i s r e s e a r c h p r o j e c t . x i CHAPTER 1 The N a t u r e o f t h e P r o b l e m I n t r o d u c t i o n The f i e l d o f d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n i n Canada i s new. The C a n a d i a n A s s o c i a t i o n f o r D i s t a n c e E d u c a t i o n (CADE) was f i r s t e s t a b l i s h e d a s a s p e c i a l i n t e r e s t g r o u p w i t h i n t h e C a n a d i a n A s s o c i a t i o n f o r U n i v e r s i t y C o n t i n u i n g E d u c a t i o n (CAUCE) i n 1983. CADE became a s e p a r a t e o r g a n i z a t i o n i n J u n e , 1985. T h e r e i s v e r y l i t t l e C a n a d i a n r e s e a r c h i n d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n a v a i l a b l e . The m a j o r i t y o f t h e r e s e a r c h r e l a t e s t o t h e u s e of t e c h n o l o g y i n d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n ( e . g . u s e o f s a t e l l i t e t e c h n o l o g y , a u d i o o r v i d e o t e l e c o n f e r e n c i n g , c omputer c o n f e r e n c i n g a s d e l i v e r y s y s t e m s ) . T h e r e i s v e r y l i t t l e r e s e a r c h a v a i l a b l e r e l a t i n g t o a d v i s i n g and c o u n s e l l i n g s e r v i c e s i n d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n . An e x h a u s t i v e s e a r c h r e v e a l e d no p r e v i o u s s t u d i e s on a c a d e m i c a d v i s i n g i n d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n i n Canada. The l i t e r a t u r e a v a i l a b l e on a c a d e m i c a d v i s i n g i s p r i m a r i l y A m e r i c a n and i s c o n c e r n e d w i t h s t u d e n t s i n a f a c e ~ t o - f a c e d e l i v e r y s y s t e m . The m a j o r i t y of t h e l i t e r a t u r e a v a i l a b l e on s u p p o r t s e r v i c e s t o s t u d e n t s i n d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n ( t u t o r i n g and c o u n s e l l i n g ) i s f r o m t h e U n i t e d Kingdom (Open U n i v e r s i t y ) , W. Germany, ( F e r n U n i v e r s i t a t ) and i n s t i t u t i o n s i n A u s t r a l i a . T h e s e d e l i v e r y s y s t e m s a r e s i g n i f i c a n t l y d i f f e r e n t f r o m t h e s y s t e m t h a t has been a d o p t e d by t h e Open L e a r n i n g I n s t i t u t e i n B r i t i s h C o l u m b i a . T h i s s t u d y has 2 been d e s i g n e d t o d e t e r m i n e whether a d u l t s t u d e n t s i n d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n h a v e t h e same p e r c e p t i o n s o f i m p o r t a n t a s p e c t s of a c a d e m i c a d v i s i n g a s do t h e f a c u l t y ( t u t o r s ) i n a d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n i n s t i t u t i o n , a s w e l l as whether f a c u l t y ( t u t o r s ) and s t u d e n t s h a v e t h e same p e r c e p t i o n s o f a d u l t s t u d e n t n e e d s . As t h e r e i s a l a c k o f r e s e a r c h i n t h e a r e a o f a d v i s i n g and c o u n s e l l i n g s e r v i c e s t o s t u d e n t s i n d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n , i t i s hoped t h a t t h i s r e s e a r c h w i l l c o n t r i b u t e t o t h e knowledge a v a i l a b l e f o r u s e by s t a f f and a d m i n i s t r a t o r s i n t h e d e s i g n and d e l i v e r y o f s t u d e n t s u p p o r t s e r v i c e s i n d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n i n Canada. A d d i t i o n a l l y , i t i s hoped t h a t t h i s s t u d y w i l l e n l a r g e t h e s c o p e o f knowledge a b o u t t h e n e e d s o f a d u l t p a r t - t i m e s t u d e n t s . PLAN OF THE STUDY D e s i g n o f t h e S t u d y Most o f t h e r e s e a r c h on a c a d e m i c a d v i s i n g i n t h e U n i t e d S t a t e s i s c o n c e r n e d w i t h t h e t r a d i t i o n a l e i g h t e e n - t o - t w e n t y -two y e a r o l d s t u d e n t . An e x c e p t i o n i s t h e Ryan (1980) s t u d y on a d u l t s t u d e n t and f a c u l t y e x p e c t a t i o n s o f a c a d e m i c a d v i s i n g i n a n o n - t r a d i t i o n a l u n i v e r s i t y . Ryan s t u d i e d a d u l t s t u d e n t s aged 25 y e a r s and o v e r a t M e t r o p o l i t a n S t a t e U n i v e r s i t y i n M i n n e a p o l i s - S t . P a u l , M i n n e s o t a , an u p p e r — d i v i s i o n , a c c r e d i t e d , n o n t r a d i t i o n a l c o m p e t e n c e - b a s e d i n s t i t u t i o n . M e t r o p o l i t a n S t a t e U n i v e r s i t y i s u n i q u e i n t h a t i t has no campus and o n l y t w e n t y — f i v e permanent f a c u l t y members, who t e a c h , manage o r d e v e l o p s p e c i f i c p r o g r a m s and a c t a s a c a d e m i c a d v i s o r s . I t r e l i e s on community r e s o u r c e s i n c l u d i n g t h e l i b r a r i e s o f t h r e e d o z e n i n s t i t u t i o n s and a p p r o x i m a t e l y 350 p a r t - t i m e community f a c u l t y members w i t h s p e c i a l e x p e r t i s e , who t e a c h M e t r o p o l i t a n S t a t e U n i v e r s i t y c o u r s e s and a c t a s c o n s u l t a n t s o r e v a l u a t o r s f o r s t u d e n t s . S t u d e n t s d e s i g n and implement t h e i r own e d u c a t i o n w i t h t h e g u i d a n c e o f a f a c u l t y a d v i s o r a s s i g n e d by t h e i n s t i t u t i o n . L e a r n i n g s t r a t e g i e s o p t i o n s a v a i l a b l e t o s t u d e n t s i n c l u d e (1) g r o u p l e a r n i n g o p p o r t u n i t i e s (2) f a c u l t y - d e s i g n e d i n d e p e n d e n t s t u d i e s , (3) s t u d e n t - d e s i g n e d i n d e p e n d e n t s t u d y , (4) i n t e r n s h i p s , and (5) w o r k s h o p s . T h i s s t u d y h a s r e p l i c a t e d t h e Ryan s t u d y u s i n g a d i f f e r e n t p o p u l a t i o n , t h a t o f a d u l t s t u d e n t s e n r o l l e d i n t h e U n i v e r s i t y p r o g r a m c o u r s e s a t t h e Open L e a r n i n g I n s t i t u t e , where t h e m a j o r i t y o f u n i v e r s i t y - l e v e l c o u r s e s a r e d e l i v e r e d i n a d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n f o r m a t . B o t h M e t r o p o l i t a n U n i v e r s i t y and Open L e a r n i n g I n s t i t u t e a r e s i m i l a r i n t h a t t h e y a r e i n s t i t u t i o n s w h i c h h ave been c r e a t e d t o p r o v i d e a l t e r n a t i v e e d u c a t i o n a l o p p o r t u n i t i e s f o r a d u l t s . However, a t t h e Open L e a r n i n g I n s t i t u t e t h e r e i s no p r o v i s i o n f o r f a c e - t o - f a c e c o n t a c t between t u t o r s and s t u d e n t s . T h i s s t u d y e x a m i n e s whether t h e r e a r e any s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e s between a d u l t s t u d e n t and t u t o r p e r c e p t i o n s o f i m p o r t a n t a s p e c t s o f a c a d e m i c a d v i s i n g and t u t o r and s t u d e n t p e r c e p t i o n s o f a d u l t 4 s t u d e n t c o n c e r n s amongst U n i v e r s i t y p r o g ram t u t o r s and s t u d e n t s a t t h e Open L e a r n i n g I n s t i t u t e . S i n c e t h e s t a t e m e n t o-f t h e h y p o t h e s e s , s u b s i d i a r y q u e s -t i o n s , and f o r m u l a t i o n o f t h e r e s e a r c h t o o l h a v e been i n c l u d e d u n d e r t h e d e s c r i p t i o n o f methods i n C h a p t e r 3, t h e n e x t t o p i c d i s c u s s e d w i l l be t h e d e f i n i t i o n o f t e r m s . DEFINITION OF TERMS S i n c e t h e r e i s a m b i g u i t y i n b o t h t h e a c a d e m i c a d v i s i n g l i t e r a t u r e and d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n l i t e r a t u r e a s t o t h e t e r m s " a d v i s i n g " and " c o u n s e l l i n g " , some d e f i n i t i o n s and e x a m p l e s w i l l be g i v e n t o c l a r i f y how t h e s e t e r m s a r e u s e d i n t h i s s t u d y . C o u n s e l l i n g w i t h i n d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n i s v i e w e d a s a s p e c i a l k i n d o f h e l p i n g r e l a t i o n s h i p f o c u s s i n g on s u p p o r t f o r s t u d e n t s . The C o u n s e l 1 i n g - S p e c i a l I n t e r e s t Group a t t h e 19S5 I n t e r n a t i o n a l C o u n c i l f o r D i s t a n c e E d u c a t i o n (I.C.D.E.) c o n f e r e n c e i n A u s t r a l i a i d e n t i f i e d c o u n s e l l i n g t a s k s a s l y i n g w i t h i n t h r e e a r e a s , t u t o r i n g , a d v i s i n g and c o u n s e l l i n g . However, t h e t e r m ' c o u n s e l l i n g ' p e r s e , was n o t d e f i n e d . W i t h i n t h e f i e l d o f d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n , i t i s r a r e f o r s t a f f d e l i v e r i n g ' c o u n s e l l i n g ' s e r v i c e s t o have p r o f e s s i o n a l t r a i n i n g i n t h e a r e a o f c o u n s e l l i n g p s y c h o l o g y . W i t h i n t h e f i e l d o f c o u n s e l l i n g p s y c h o l o g y i n N o r t h A m e r i c a , t h e r e i s an e m p h a s i s on p r o f e s s i o n a l t r a i n i n g and q u a l i f i c a t i o n s f o r t h e d e l i v e r y o f c o u n s e l l i n g s e r v i c e s . T h i s p r e r e q u i s i t e i s 5 i l l u s t r a t e d by P a t t e r s o n ' s (1967) d e f i n i t i o n of c o u n s e l l i n g ! C o u n s e l l i n g or (psychotherapy) i s a r e l a t i o n s h i p , i n v o l v i n g v e r b a l i n t e r a c t i o n , between a p r o f e s s i o n a l l y t r a i n e d person and an i n d i v i d u a l or group of i n d i v i d u a l s v o l u n t a r i l y s e e k i n g he lp wi th a problem which i s p s y c h o l o g i c a l i n n a t u r e , f o r the purpose of e f f e c t i n g a change i n the i n d i v i d u a l s s e e k i n g h e l p . I t i s the view of the author of t h i s s tudy t h a t a l t h o u g h the term ' c o u n s e l l i n g ' has been used g e n e r i c a l 1 y i n the d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n l i t e r a t u r e , t h a t , i n f a c t what i s c a l l e d ' c o u n s e l l i n g ' i n d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n o f t e n i s a misnomer f o r a c t i v i t i e s t h a t c o u l d be d e f i n e d more p r e c i s e l y as ' a d v i s i n g ' or ' e d u c a t i o n a l c o u n s e l l i n g ' and s h o u l d be d i f f e r e n t i a t e d from the a c t i v i t i e s of ' p e r s o n a l c o u n s e l l i n g ' or psychotherapy a l t h o u g h a l l of these a c t i v i t i e s a r e subsumed under the a l1-emcompass ing term ' c o u n s e l l i n g ' . Hyde (1986) deve loped a model which d i s t i n g u i s h e s between l e v e l s of a d v i s i n g and c o u n s e l l i n g . T h i s model i s reproduced i n F i g u r e 1. In the c o n t e x t of t h i s model most of the scope of what i s c a l l e d ' c o u n s e l l i n g ' i n d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n and what i s d e s c r i b e d as 'academic a d v i s i n g ' i n the U n i t e d S t a t e s f a l l s under the domains of a d v i s i n g , c a r e e r c o u n s e l l i n g and e d u c a t i o n a l c o u n s e l l i n g as d e s c r i b e d i n F i g u r e 1. In Canada, u n l e s s s t a f f i n d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n have p r o f e s s i o n a l t r a i n i n g and q u a l i f i c a t i o n s a n d / o r the mandate to do ' p e r s o n a l c o u n s e l l i n g ' ( e . g . the c o u n s e l l o r r o l e a t Athabasca U n i v e r s i t y , A l b e r t a ) , p e r s o n a l c o u n s e l l i n g i s not assumed t o be a p a r t of d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n s tudent 6 LEVELS OF ADVISING AND COUNSELLING Levots of Assiatonca Type of Aasistsmoa Ejusmpt© Training / rWrwiorjpe Required RECEPTION AND CLERICAL SUPPORT Screening calls and drop-ins, acnedufing iwuiim new* tor appro-priate personnel, distributing bro-ChunM and applicatiofts. Redaction Needs to datarmine which Student Services area will best provide the requested assistance. Oertcet Support Needs brochures and application forms. "1 donl know who 1 should speak to. Can you hefp me7" "Could you please send me a brochure and application tor the Forestry program?* Requires recaption skills, know-ledge of oft ice procedures, clerical and keyboard skills and basic know-ledge of Student Services func-tions and procedures. CAREER ADVtSJNG Providing prospective students with information about training programs, and referring for further assistance as required. Career Advising Needs information, knows what he/she wants but not how to achieve it Irrfurrnation Seailoni fr4igh School Ltetson/Orienutiort/Toura Needs information about pro-grams, procedures and services at the Institute. Referral Needs information about the loca-tion and content of training pro-grams available at other institu-tions and/or needs in-depth coun-selling assistance. "1 want to study Electronics. What does the program involve? How do 1 apply? Will t require up-grading T "1 would like to see the campus and team about programs, ser-vices and procedures.'* "What do other programs entail and where could 1 study them? "Who could provide more in-depth assistance?" Requires in-depth knowledge ofi the Institute snd other post- j secondary institutions, career information collection and main-tenance skills, (e.g.. Career Resource Centre), interviewing and referral skills, writing and public speaking skills. CAREER COUNSELLING Assisting students and prospective students to develop information and decision-matting skills ana explore values, interests, apti-tudes, skills and life goals. Employment Counselling Needs help lo overcome barriers •n searcrttng lor employment. Career H eating/Counselling Needs help to explore and evaluate programs or career options and is not sure of his/her interests, values, aptitudes and skills. Special Needs Career Counselling Referred by a community agency and is disaoied or has some special needs mat must be considered when reviewing training and career options. "1 have had a lot of difficulty in finding and keeping a job" "I don't know how to search tor employment, write a resume ana prepare tor a job interview." **l can't find a job 1 like; nothing seems to appeal." **l wish 1 knew where my fife was going." "1 have been referred by the Workers' Compensation Board. 1 was injured in an accident and must now consider a new career direction." Requires a professional counsellor training program demonstrated group and individual counselling* skills, extensive knowledge of: career, educational and personal counselling strategies: effective consultation, liaison and advocacy strategies; standardized testing, interpretation ana assessment; career, educational, labour market and community resource informa-tion, stages of adult oeveiopment; learning styles: and special needs of disabled students. EDUCATIONAL COUNSELLING Assisting students ana consulting with instruct ora. when appropriate, to optimize learning efficiency and effectiveness. Educational Counselling Needs help to resolve difficulties which interfere with their ability to meet training requirements. Special Needs Educational Counselling Requires specialized support ser-vices and advocacy during training because of special needs due to a dissbility or deficiL "1 never learned how to study." "I'm having some problems with my course and want to talk to someone about it." "I'm considering withdrawal from my course." 1 am visually impaireo ano may need some assistance with mobility orientation, specialized equip-ment, and oral exams. Is this avail-able here?" PERSONAL COUNSELLING Assisting students with crisis inter-vention, problem solving and referral to agencies. Personal Counselling Needs help to resolve personal problems which may be intertenng with his/her ability to cope wrth training requirements. "My marriage Is falling apart." "1 cant concentrate on my course wont. What can 1 do?" "My parents just kicked me put." CONSULTATION/LIAISON Assisting institute, ertemal agency and other post-secondary per-sonnel to resolve concerns and access information regarding adaptation*, support and referrals tor students and prospective students. Consuttation/Uaison Needs support, information and assistance regarding career, educa-tional or personal issues whicn may affect the success of a stuoent or prospect rve student "1 am concerned about the ability of my client to cope with some aspects of the program he/she has applied for." "1 would like to discuss my con-cerns about the behaviour ana attitude of a student in my class." "What special faciiities/aervices do you have tor my client?" Figure 1 7 support s t a f f duties. Academic Advising Kramer (1984) portrayed the a c t i v i t y of academic advising as an educational service for students. Advisors are: . to provide information . to a s s i s t students with educational decisions . to monitor or check the progress of the individual student toward f u l f i l l m e n t of the requirements for the degree^ and . to help the student cope successfully with whatever bureaucratic mazes a p a r t i c u l a r college or university had created. Also, Crockett (1984) defined academic advising as ...a developmental process which a s s i s t s students in the c l a r i f i c a t i o n of the i r l i f e / c a r e e r goals and i n the development of educational plans for the r e a l i z a t i o n of these goals. It i s a decision-making process by which students r e a l i z e t h e i r maximum educational potential through communication and information exchanges with an advisor; i t i s ongoing, multifaceted, and the r e s p o n s i b i l i t y of both student and advisor. In the academic advising l i t e r a t u r e , there appears to be some blurring of the boundaries between the domains of "developmental advising" and "career counselling". Walsh (1979) stated that in order to perform the function of developmental advising, advisors must learn some unaccustomed roles (counsellor, advocate and guardian). He states: Advisors must be part counsellor. They need some background in counselling theory and they must learn counselling approaches and techniques that w i l l enhance the development of individuals...At the same time, they must know the differences between themselves and professional counsellors, p a r t i c u l a r l y the condensed time frame within which advisors must operate, and they must be able to i d e n t i f y students who should be referred 8 to professional counsellors. To the extent that advisors play a counselling r o l e they w i l l not be simple information b o o t h s — t h e i r emphasis w i l l be on teaching students a process of goal-setting and r e a l i z a t i o n . Developmental advising a c t i v i t i e s may have some overlap with counselling a c t i v i t i e s in the area of a s s i s t i n g students in decision-making and goal-setting. However, Winston, et al (1984) c l e a r l y state that academic advising does not include personal counselling. In support of t h i s statement, they present Shane's (1981) models There are four depths of involvement an advisor may have with a student: (1) informational, where the focus i s upon informing the student, providing data, usually about deadlines, procedures, or p o l i c i e s (communication i s usually one-way); (2) explanatory, where the focus i s upon helping the student understand college expectations, rules, and procedures (communication i s two-way); (3) an a l y t i c , where the focus i s upon the student and i s directed at helping the student analyze options available in the college environment and understand himself or herself in relationship to opportunities and options available; and (4) therapeutic or counselling, where the focus i s on values, commitments, and emotional preferences (often only marginally connected with college attendance) and may involve unusual or self-defeating kinds of behavi or. It seems quite appropriate for advisors to be involved in the f i r s t three types of intervention, but the l a t t e r type would require experience, knowledge, and s k i l l s not possessed by most advisors. Advisors who encounter students who have remedial concerns (requiring the fourth type of intervention), ....can best a s s i s t by r e f e r r i n g students to appropriate agencies on the campus that have personnel trained to deal with such concerns. In the United States, Winston, et al (1984) note that professional counsellors are most frequently mentioned by 9 i n s t i t u t i o n s a s p r o v i d i n g t h e c h i e f means o f s u p p o r t t o f a c u l t y o r o t h e r p r i m a r y a d v i s o r s . The d u t i e s w i t h i n t h e a d v i s o r r o l e a t t h e Open L e a r n i n g I n s t i t u t e c o n s i s t o f a c a d e m i c a d v i s i n g , l i a i s o n and p r o m o t i o n , and a d m i n i s t r a t i v e a c t i v i t i e s . A c a d e m i c a d v i s i n g a s an a c t i v i t y a t 0 . L . I . most c l o s e l y r e s e m b l e s t h e Kramer <19B4) d e f i n i t i o n o f a c a d e m i c a d v i s i n g r a t h e r t h a n t h e d e v e l o p m e n t a l a d v i s e m e n t p r o c e s s a s d e s c r i b e d by C r o c k e t t (1984) o r Walsh ( 1 9 7 9 ) . S t u d e n t s r e q u i r i n g ' p e r s o n a l c o u n s e l l i n g ' a r e r e f e r r e d t o p r o f e s s i o n a l s t a f f a t o t h e r a g e n c i e s . A d u l t S t u d e n t An a d u l t s t u d e n t h as been d e f i n e d a s a b e g i n n i n g o r r e t u r n i n g s t u d e n t who i s t w e n t y - f i v e y e a r s o f age o r o l d e r . T h i s age d u p l i c a t e s t h e d e f i n i t i o n i n t h e Ryan (1980) s t u d y and e l i m i n a t e s s t u d e n t s i n t h e t r a d i t i o n a l u n i v e r s i t y age g r o u p o f 18-24. The Chatham C o n f e r e n c e (1965) d e f i n i t i o n o f an a d u l t h a s been u s e d i n t h i s s t u d y ( c i t e d i n G o l d b e r g , 1980). An a d u l t h a s been d e f i n e d a s a p e r s o n who h a s assumed (whether by h i s own c h o i c e o r n o t ) some k i n d o f r e s p o n s i b i l i t y f o r s e l f , and p e r h a p s f o r o t h e r s , and some d e g r e e o f i n d e p e n d e n c e of p a r e n t a l a u t h o r i t y n o t , t o t h e same d e g r e e , c h a r a c t e r i s t i c of a d o l e s c e n t s . D i s t a n c e E d u c a t i o n Keegan (1980) s u g g e s t s t h a t t h e main e l e m e n t s i n any d e f i n i t i o n o f d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n a r e s 10 * The s e p a r a t i o n of t e a c h e r and l e a r n e r w h i c h d i s t i n g u i s h e s i t f r o m f a c e - t o - f a c e l e c t u r i n g * The i n f l u e n c e o f an e d u c a t i o n a l o r g a n i s a t i o n w hich d i s t i n g u i s h e s i t f r o m p r i v a t e s t u d y * The u s e o f t e c h n i c a l m e dia, u s u a l l y p r i n t , t o u n i t e t e a c h e r and l e a r n e r and carry t h e e d u c a t i o n a l c o n t e n t o f t h e c o u r s e * The p r o v i s i o n o f two-way s t u d e n t may b e n e f i t f r o m o r which d i s t i n g u i s h e s i t f r o m t e c h n o l o g y c o m m u n i c a t i o n s o t h a t t h e even i n i t i a t e d i a l o g u e , o t h e r u s e s o f e d u c a t i o n a l * The t e a c h i n g o f s t u d e n t s a s i n d i v i d u a l s and r a r e l y i n g r o u p s , w i t h t h e p o s s i b i l i t y of o c c a s i o n a l m e e t i n g s f o r b o t h d i d a c t i c and s o c i a l i s a t i o n p u r p o s e s * The p a r t i c i p a t i o n i n a more i n d u s t r i a l i s e d f o r m o f e d u c a t i o n ( b a s e d on t h e v i e w t h a t d i s t a n c e t e a c h i n g i s c h a r a c t e r i s e d by d i v i s i o n o f l a b o u r ; m e c h a n i s a t i o n s a u t o m a t i o n ; a p p l i c a t i o n o f o r g a n i s a t i o n a l p r i n c i p l e s ; s c i e n t i f i c c o n t r o l ; o b j e c t i v i t y o f t e a c h i n g b e h a v i o u r ; mass p r o d u c t i o n ; c o n c e n t r a t i o n and c e n t r a l i s a t i o n ) . SUMMARY T h i s c h a p t e r h a s r e v i e w e d t h e n a t u r e of t h e p r o b l e m and t h e d e f i n i t i o n o f t e r m s . A d i s t i n c t i o n h a s been made between t h e k i n d s of a c t i v i t i e s i n v o l v e d i n c o u n s e l l i n g w i t h i n d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n s o t h a t i n t h e r e v i e w o f t h e l i t e r a t u r e i n C h a p t e r Two, t h e c o n t e x t c a n be u n d e r s t o o d . D e f i n i t i o n s of a c a d e m i c a d v i s i n g and d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n have been p r o v i d e d . D i s t i n c t i o n s between t h e a c t i v i t i e s o f a c a d e m i c a d v i s i n g and c o u n s e l l i n g have been p r o v i d e d . T h i s s t u d y i n v e s t i g a t e d t h e d i f f e r e n c e s between Open L e a r n i n g I n s t i t u t e U n i v e r s i t y p r o g r a m a d u l t s t u d e n t s and t u t o r s ' p e r c e p t i o n s o f t h e i m p o r t a n t a s p e c t s o f a c a d e m i c a d v i s i n g . T h i s s t u d y a l s o i n v e s t i g a t e d t h e d i f f e r e n c e s between Open L e a r n i n g 11 I n s t i t u t e U n i v e r s i t y p r o g r a m a d u l t s t u d e n t s and t u t o r s ' p e r c e p t i o n s o-f a d u l t s t u d e n t c o n c e r n s . In C h a p t e r Two, t h r e e a r e a s w i t h i n t h e l i t e r a t u r e w i l l be r e v i e w e d : s t u d e n t s u p p o r t s e r v i c e s i n d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n ; n e e d s o f a d u l t l e a r n e r s ; and a c a d e m i c a d v i s i n g . CHAPTER 2 Review o f R e l a t e d L i t e r a t u r e i Q t r g d u c t i_gn U n t i l r e c e n t l y , t h e f i e l d o f a d v i s i n g a n d / o r c o u n s e l l i n g a d u l t s h a s been a n e g l e c t e d a r e a w i t h i n t h e l i t e r a t u r e . In t h e U n i t e d S t a t e s , G r a b o w s k i (1976) s t a t e d t h a t c o u n s e l l i n g a d u l t s i s one o f t h e most i m p o v e r i s h e d , b u t d e v e l o p i n g a r e a s i n a d u l t e d u c a t i o n . He s t a t e d t h r e e r e a s o n s : l a c k o f s e r i o u s commitment by t h e e d u c a t i o n a l community, l a c k of a d e q u a t e l i t e r a t u r e and l a c k of c l e a r — c u t r o l e d i s t i n c t i o n s . In A u s t r a l i a , T h o r n t o n and M i t c h e l l (1978) n o t e d t h e s c a r c i t y o f l i t e r a t u r e i n t h e e m e r g i n g f i e l d o f p r o v i d i n g c o u n s e l l i n g s e r v i c e s t o a d u l t d i s t a n c e l e a r n e r s . W i t h i n t h e f i e l d of d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n , t h e r e h a s been g r o w i n g r e c o g n i t i o n o f t h e need f o r r e s e a r c h and i n f o r m a t i o n e x c h a n g e on t h e t o p i c o f c o u n s e l l i n g t h e d i s t a n c e l e a r n e r . T h e r e have been two i n t e r n a t i o n a l w orkshops on t h i s t o p i c s t h e Open U n i v e r s i t y / I . C . D . E . c o n f e r e n c e , 20-22 September, 1983 a t C a m b r i d g e , U.K. and t h e p r e - I . C . D . E . c o n f e r e n c e a t G e e l o n g , A u s t r a l i a , 9—12 A u g u s t , 1985. T h e s e c o n f e r e n c e s h a v e h e l p e d t o s h a r e i n f o r m a t i o n a b o u t t h e p r o v i s i o n o f a d v i s i n g and c o u n s e l l i n g s e r v i c e s t o s t u d e n t s i n d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n . In t h e r e v i e w o f t h e l i t e r a t u r e , s e l e c t e d c o n t r i b u t i o n s f r o m t h e l i t e r a t u r e a v a i l a b l e on t h r e e t o p i c s 12 13 r e l e v a n t t o t h i s s t u d y a r e p r e s e n t e d ! s t u d e n t s u p p o r t s e r v i c e s i n d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n ; n e e d s o f a d u l t s t u d e n t s and p a r t - t i m e s t u d e n t c o n c e r n s ; and a c a d e m i c a d v i s i n g . In t h e f i r s t a r e a of t h e l i t e r a t u r e r e v i e w , s t u d e n t s u p p o r t s e r v i c e s i n d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n , t h e s t u d i e s a r e c a t e g o r i z e d by c o u n t r y o f o r i g i n . STUDENT SUPPORT SERVICES IN DISTANCE EDUCATION A. U n i t e d Kingdom Much o f t h e l i t e r a t u r e on c o u n s e l l i n g t h e a d u l t s t u d e n t i n d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n i s d o m i n a t e d by t h e p u b l i c a t i o n s o f t h e Open U n i v e r s i t y i n t h e U n i t e d Kingdom. The Open U n i v e r s i t y was c r e a t e d a s a c o r r e s p o n d e n c e o r d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n i n s t i t u t i o n t o s e r v e t h e n e e d s o f w o r k i n g c l a s s a d u l t s . A f t e r s e v e n y e a r s o f p l a n n i n g , t h e U n i v e r s i t y a c c e p t e d i t s f i r s t s t u d e n t s i n 1971. From i t s v e r y i n c e p t i o n , " c o u n s e l l i n g " was i n c l u d e d a s an i n t e g r a l p a r t o f t h e Open U n i v e r s i t y ' s s e r v i c e s t o a d u l t s t u d e n t s l e a r n i n g a t a d i s t a n c e . S e w a r t (1978) d e s c r i b e d t h e i n i t i a l c o n c e p t i o n o f t h e f u n c t i o n o f t h e c o u n s e l l o r a s l i s t e d i n t h e R e p o r t o f t h e P r o j e c t W o rking Group on C o u n s e l l i n g and T u t o r i a l S e r v i c e s p r e s e n t e d t o t h e U n i v e r s i t y S e n a t e i n December 1969s i > P e r s o n a l c o n t i n u i n g r e l a t i o n s h i p w i t h s t u d e n t - c o n t a c t and e n c o u r a g e m e n t . i i ) To h e l p s t u d e n t s w i t h g e n e r a l s t u d y p r o b l e m s . T h i s need n o t i m p l y s p e c i a l i s t knowledge. 14 i i i ) P e r s o n a l and s o c i a l n e e d s o f s t u d e n t , i n c l u d i n g d o m e s t i c and p e r s o n a l p r o b l e m s . i v ) H e l p where n e c e s s a r y i n r u n n i n g s t u d y c e n t r e s . v) C r e a t e c o n d i t i o n s i n w h i c h s t u d e n t s may meat i n f o r m a l l y . v i ) E n s u r e c o n d i t i o n s whereby r e s o u r c e s o f s t u d y c e n t r e s - r a d i o , t e l e v i s i o n , l i b r a r y , c o m puter t e r m i n a l s and o t h e r a i d s - a r e a v a i l a b l e t o s t u d e n t s . v i i ) C r e a t e c o n d i t i o n s f o r i n f o r m a l s t u d e n t g r o u p d i s c u s s i o n s . v i i i ) G u i d e s t u d e n t s on r e m e d i a l h e l p a v a i l a b l e i n t h e Open U n i v e r s i t y . i x ) Keep p e r s o n a l r e c o r d s o f s t u d e n t s and e n s u r e t h e s e r e c o r d s a r e u s e d a s i n s t r u c t e d by t h e R e g i o n a l D i r e c t o r . x) Make c o n t a c t w i t h s t u d e n t s u n a b l e t o a t t e n d s t u d y c e n t r e s . x i ) P r e v e n t d r o p - o u t s and f o l l o w up n o n - o r i r r e g u l a r a t t e n d a n c e . x i i ) A d v i s e s t u d e n t s on v o c a t i o n a l and f u r t h e r e d u c a t i o n o p p o r t u n i t i e s . x i i i ) A d v i s e s t u d e n t s f o r f u r t h e r Open U n i v e r s i t y c o u r s e s . As t h e Open U n i v e r s i t y d e v e l o p e d , t h e r o l e o f t h e c o u n s e l l o r c h a n g e d . From 1972 onwards, t h e c o u n s e l l o r was g i v e n a d e f i n e d t u t o r i a l r o l e i n r e l a t i o n t o t h e s u b j e c t c o n t e n t o f one f o u n d a t i o n c o u r s e . A f t e r t h e f i r s t f o u n d a t i o n c o u r s e , t h e s t u d e n t was a s s i g n e d t o a n o t h e r t u t o r , b u t r e m a i n e d w i t h t h e i n i t i a l c o u n s e l l o r t h r o u g h o u t t h e u n d e r g r a d u a t e c a r e e r . T h i s new s y s t e m was composed o f two p a r t - t i m e s p e c i a l i s t s : t u t o r - c o u n s e l l o r s and c o u r s e t u t o r s . 15 The r o l e of t h e t u t o r - c o u n s e l l o r was d e s c r i b e d by S e w a r t (1978) a s f o l l o w s s When he commences h i s s t u d i e s a s t u d e n t i s a s s i g n e d t o a t u t o r — c o u n s e l l o r a t t h i s l o c a l s t u d y c e n t r e . . . T h e t u t o r — c o u n s e l l o r i s a v a i l a b l e on a f a i r l y r e g u l a r b a s i s a t t h e s t u d y c e n t r e f o r f a c e -t o - f a c e c o n t a c t , and t h i s c o n t a c t w i l l be e x t r e m e l y v a r i e d i n i t s c o n t e n t r a n g i n g f r o m t h e s t r i c t l y a c a d e m i c c o n t e n t o f t h e c o u r s e t o t h e b r o a d e r e d u c a t i o n a l c o n t e x t o f t h e s t u d e n t as an e f f e c t i v e u s e r o f a complex t e a c h i n g s y s t e m . As a s u p p l e m e n t t o t h i s f a c e - t o - f a c e c o n t a c t , and a s a s u b s t i t u t i o n i n c a s e s where s t u d e n t s c a n n o t o r c h o o s e n o t t o a t t e n d t h e s t u d y c e n t r e , c o n t a c t between t h e t u t o r -c o u n s e l l o r and t h e s t u d e n t i s m a i n t a i n e d by o t h e r means i n c l u d i n g c o r r e s p o n d e n c e and t e l e p h o n e . I n d i c a t i o n s a r e t h a t t h e r o l e o f t h e t u t o r — c o u n s e l l o r i s b e i n g f u r t h e r r e d e f i n e d . R o b i n s o n (1981) commented, Even t h o u g h c o u n s e l l i n g h a s been i n s t i t u t i o n a l i z e d w i t h i n t h e U n i t e d Kingdom Open U n i v e r s i t y , i t must be s a i d t h a t i t s p r e c i s e n a t u r e and f u n c t i o n c o n t i n u e s t o be a m a t t e r o f u n c e r t a i n t y and d e b a t e , (p. 157) The Open U n i v e r s i t y T e a c h i n g and C o u n s e l l i n g Committee R e p o r t (1984) p r o p o s e d t h a t t h e u n d e r l y i n g a s s u m p t i o n be c h a n g e d t o a c k n o w l e d g e t h a t most p o s t - f o u n d a t i o n s t u d e n t s w i l l p r o b a b l y n o t need t h e s e r v i c e s o f a c o u n s e l l o r i n most o f t h e i r l a t e r y e a r s of s t u d y , o n c e t h e y h a v e become e s t a b l i s h e d d i s t a n c e l e a r n e r s . U n i v e r s i t y r e s o u r c e s and p a r t - t i m e s t a f f e f f o r t d e v o t e d t o s t u d e n t s u p p o r t s h o u l d t h e n be d i r e c t e d t o t h e e a r l i e r y e a r s o f a s t u d e n t ' s s t u d y i n t h e U n i v e r s i t y where i t i s a n t i c i p a t e d t h a t i t w i l l be most e f f e c t i v e . Gagan (1984) a r g u e d t h a t i f r e s p o n s i b i l i t i e s were t o be removed f r o m t u t o r - c o u n s e l l o r s a t t h e Open U n i v e r s i t y , t h e y must be t r a n s f e r r e d e l s e w h e r e i f t h e q u a l i t y o f t h e s u p p o r t 16 s e r v i c e was t o be ma in ta ined o r , b e t t e r s t i l l , improved . He suggested a system o-f r e f e r r a l s to s p e c i a l i s t s i n a r e a s such as s tudy s k i l l s , v o c a t i o n a l gu idance and the problems of the s o c i a l l y , m e n t a l l y and p h y s i c a l l y d i s a d v a n t a g e d s t u d e n t . Woodley (1985) d e s c r i b e d the n a t u r e of the Open U n i v e r s i t y undergraduate p a p u l a t i o n i n a n a t i o n a l sample survey of mature s t u d e n t s i n 1981 as f o i l o w s : 1) At the Open U n i v e r s i t y men outnumbered women (547. t o 46"/) among the undergraduate s t u d e n t s ( i . e . a c c u m u l a t i n g c r e d i t s towards a d e g r e e ) . 2) 72'/. of the Open U n i v e r s i t y undergraduate s t u d e n t s were between the ages of 21 and 40. 3) 75% of O . U . undergraduate s t u d e n t s were i n p a i d work; 15% were housewives . 4) S c i e n c e was the most p o p u l a r s u b j e c t f o r O . U . undergraduate s (45%). 31% were e n r o l l e d i n A r t s and 24% i n S o c i a l S c i e n c e . 5) V o c a t i o n a l reasons f o r t a k i n g the c o u r s e were l i s t e d by 38% of the s t u d e n t s . 24% i n d i c a t e d the reason was i n t e r e s t i n the s u b j e c t . Now t h a t the c o n t e x t of the Open U n i v e r s i t y tutor— c o u n s e l l o r r o l e and the Open U n i v e r s i t y s t u d e n t p o p u l a t i o n has been e s t a b l i s h e d , some r e l e v a n t j o u r n a l a r t i c l e s w i l l be d i s c u s s e d . N i c h o l s o n (1977) d e s c r i b e s the O . U . s t u d e n t problems t h a t a r e of r e l e v a n c e t o the c o u n s e l l o r as f o l l o w s : d e f i c i t s i n s k i l l s ( e . g . d e f i c i t s i n l i t e r a c y , mathematics and the t e c h n i q u e s of s tudy such as essay w r i t i n g , n o t e - t a k i n g , r e a d i n g , w r i t i n g exams, the management of t i m e ) ; r o l e c o n f l i c t s ( e . g . competing demands of s tudy and home l i f e or 17 work l i f e ) ; m o t i v a t i o n a l p r o b l e m s ( o v e r — m o t i v a t i o n and u n d e r — m o t i v a t i o n ) ; p r o b l e m s of e m o t i o n a l a d j u s t m e n t e.g. ( p r o b l e m s w i t h f e a r o f f a i l u r e o r need t o a c h i e v e ) ; p r o b l e m s o f i d e n t i t y and p e r s o n a l d e v e l o p m e n t ( e . g . p r o b l e m s w i t h d e a l i n g w i t h p e r s o n a l i t y o r l i f e s t y l e c h a n g e s due t o l e a r n i n g ) . M u r g a t r o y d ' s s t u d y (1978) ( c i t e d i n R o b i n s o n , 1981) of p r o b l e m a r e a s r e p o r t e d by a s a mple o f o v e r 1,000 s t u d e n t s i n t h e Open U n i v e r s i t y l i s t e d t h e f o l l o w i n g d i f f i c u l t i e s i n d e c r e a s i n g o r d e r o f f r e q u e n c y : l a c k o f t i m e ; d i f f i c u l t i e s i n c o n c e n t r a t i o n ; f a m i l y commitments; o r g a n i s a t i o n o f t i m e and p l a n n i n g ; low l e v e l s o f m o t i v a t i o n ; s t u d y s k i l l s ; r e s o u r c e s ; a n x i e t y ; i s o l a t i o n . Sweet (1981) compared O.L.I and O.U. n o n - c o m p l e t e r s t u d e n t v i e w p o i n t s o f t h e a t t r i t i o n p r o c e s s and f o u n d a p o s i t i v e r e l a t i o n s h i p between t h e r a n k i n g s o f b o t h g r o u p s on t h e f a l l o w i n g f a c t o r s : work p r e s s u r e s and r e s p o n s i b i l i t i e s ; a c a d e m i c l e a r n i n g p r o b l e m s ; d o m e s t i c i n t e r r u p t i o n s and demands; l a c k o f t i m e and e n e r g y ; p e r s o n a l r e a s o n s o r i l l n e s s . Sweet comments, "These r e s u l t s s u g g e s t t h a t e i t h e r t h e c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s o r s i t u a t i o n s o f a d u l t s t u d e n t s a r e a l i k e o r t h e i r r e a c t i o n s t o t h i s f o r m of i n s t r u c t i o n a r e s i m i l a r . " B. A u s t r a l i a Gough and C o l t m a n (1979) s t a t e t h a t "new s t u d e n t s f a c e q u e s t i o n s a b o u t t h e i r p e r s o n a l c ompetence, a b o u t c h a n g i n g r o l e s and r o l e c o n f 1 i c t , c h o i c e of c o u r s e s , s c h e d u l i n g of 18 t i m e and a s s i g n i n g o f p r i o r i t i e s , e f f e c t i v e s t u d y t e c h n i q u e s and u n d e r s t a n d i n g ' t h e l o n e l i n e s s o f t h e d i s t a n c e l e a r n e r ' . " The S o u t h A u s t r a l i a n C o l l e g e o f Advanced E d u c a t i o n ' s G r a d u a t e D i p l o m a i n D i s t a n c e E d u c a t i o n U n i t 7, S t u d e n t S u p p o r t T e c h n i q u e s i n D i s t a n c e E d u c a t i o n ( c i t e d i n C a s t r o , A. L i v i n g s t o n , K. & N o r t h c o t t , P., 1983) l i s t s t h e f o l l o w i n g t y p i c a l c o n c e r n s o f an i n d i v i d u a l a s s/he p r o g r e s s e s t h r o u g h a d i s t a n c e l e a r n i n g c o u r s e s D i s t a n c e L e a r n i n g C o u r s e The S t u d e n t ' s C o n c e r n s P r e - e n r o l m e n t E n r o l m e n t F i r s t D e s p a t c h I n t e g r a t i o n / G e t t i n g T h r o u g h What c o u r s e ? Why? G e n e r a l a n x i e t y . I n s e c u r e , n o t y e t c o m m i t t e d , e a s i l y p u t o f f ; l a c k i n g s e l f - c o n f i d e n c e ; o c c u p a t i o n and f a m i l y l i f e m a j o r c o n c e r n s , l e a r n i n g m i n o r ; S p e c i f i c a n x i e t i e s s what w i l l t u t o r / s t h i n k of met how much t i m e r e q u i r e d ; how w i l l I r a t e w i t h o t h e r s t u d e n t s ; w i l l I be a b l e t o g e t r e s o u r c e s ? W e i g h i n g up t h e d e c i s i o n , f u t u r e unknown U n c e r t a i n t y , w a i t i n g , w a n t i n g t o b e g i n . E a g e r l y a w a i t e d / a n t i c i p a t i o n h i g h . A r r i v a l , r e a l i t y h i t s , demand known-O r g a n i s i n g s t u d y t i m e . Making commitment o r d r o p s o u t . R e c u r r e n t c h o i c e p o i n t s H a r m o n i o u s e q u i l i b r i u m (home and s t u d y ) o r u n s e t t l e d c o n n e c t i o n ; D e v e l o p i n g s t u d y s k i l l s ; O c c a s i o n a l u n f o r e s e e n p r o b l e m s , a c c i d e n t , i l l n e s s , f a m i l y c r i s e s , j o b c h a n g e , e t c . ; A n x i e t y r e a s s e s s m e n t ; W r i t t e n i n t e r a c t i o n - l e a r n i n g how; U n d e r e s t i m a t i o n o f t h e t i m e r e q u i r e d ; L a c k o f r e s o u r c e s ; M o t i v a t i o n wavers; How do I r a t e w i t h o t h e r s t u d e n t s ? 19 W i t h d r a w a l L o s s o f f a c e ; S e n s e o f f a i l u r e ; Impact on f u t u r e c a r e e r / r e t u r n t o s t u d y ; S u p p o r t f o r t h e r e a s o n s w h i c h may be r e l a t e d t o s s t u d y - l a c k o f s a t i s f a c t i o n / p r o g r e s s ; p e r s o n a l c r i s e s ; o u t s i d e e v e n t ; i n a b i l i t y t o c ope; i r r e l e v a n c e o f c o u r s e c h o i c e ; p e r s o n a l g o a l s have been a c h i e v e d . C o u r s e C o m p l e t i o n F u r t h e r s t u d y ; F u t u r e c a r e e r o p t i o n s ; R e c o g n i t i o n ; Impact of c h a n g e r e s u l t i n g f r o m a l t e r e d a t t i t u d e s may a f f e c t f a m i l y r e l a t i o n s h i p s , o c c u p a t i o n . The a u t h o r s n o t e t h a t more i n s t i t u t i o n a l i n t e r v e n t i o n s a r e needed a t t h e w i t h d r a w a l and c o u r s e c o m p l e t i o n s t a g e s . C. Uni.ted S t a t e s Worth <19S2) d e s c r i b e s t h e s t u d e n t s u p p o r t s y s t e m of t h e E m p i r e S t a t e C o l l e g e / S t a t e U n i v e r s i t y o f New Y o r k C e n t e r f o r D i s t a n c e L e a r n i n g . O r i e n t a t i o n i s c a r r i e d o u t by a s e l f -d i r e c t e d l e a r n i n g p a c k a g e w h i c h p r o v i d e s f a c t u a l i n f o r m a t i o n on p o l i c y and d e g r e e p r o g r a m r e q u i r e m e n t s a s w e l l a s a d v i s o r y m a t e r i a l s on s t u d y s k i l l s . The s t u d e n t i s a c a d e m i c a l l y a d v i s e d by a f u l l - t i m e f a c u l t y member a d v i s o r , who a l s o f u n c t i o n s a s a c o u r s e d e s i g n e r . The a d v i s o r d e a l s w i t h s u c h m a t t e r s a s a d m i n i s t r a t i v e p r o c e d u r e s and r e q u i r e m e n t s f o r d e g r e e p r o g r a m s . A d v i s o r s r e m a i n w i t h s t u d e n t s t h r o u g h o u t t h e i r d e g r e e p r o g r a m . D a t a on E m p i r e S t a t e C o l l e g e s t u d e n t s i n g e n e r a l , between 1974 and 19S2 i n d i c a t e t h a t 717. were s t u d y i n g p a r t -t i m e ; 607. of t h e s t u d e n t s were women. The g o a l s t h a t s t u d e n t s f e l t most i m p o r t a n t were: t o l e a r n (687.) , t o i m p r o v e t h e i r p r o f e s s i o n a l s t a t u s (647.) and t o a t t a i n s p e c i f i c s k i l l s 20 u s e f u l on t h e j o b (587.) . D. Canada A l _ b e r t a - A t h a b a s c a U n i v e r s i t y . A t h a b a s c a U n i v e r s i t y i s a d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n i n s t i t u t i o n i n A l b e r t a w h i c h o f f e r s d e g r e e s a t t h e u n d e r g r a d u a t e l e v e l t o w a r d s a B a c h e l o r of A r t s , B a c h e l o r o f A d m i n i s t r a t i o n , and B a c h e l o r o f G e n e r a l S t u d i e s . Most A t h a b a s c a U n i v e r s i t y s t u d e n t s a r e w o r k i n g a d u l t s who s t u d y on a p a r t - t i m e b a s i s . A p p r o x i m a t e l y 60% o f t h e s t u d e n t p o p u l a t i o n a r e f e m a l e , and 70% a r e between t h e a g e s o f 25 and 44. S t u d e n t r e s p o n s e s t o t h e q u e s t i o n "main r e a s o n f o r w a n t i n g a u n i v e r s i t y e d u c a t i o n " h a v e been c a t e g o r i z e d a s f o l l o w s : p r e p a r a t i o n f o r f u t u r e c a r e e r ( 3 7 % ) ; c r e d i t t r a n s f e r o r A.U. d e g r e e ( 1 5 % ) ; P e r s o n a l d e v e l o p m e n t ( i n t e r e s t , s e l f - i m p r o v e m e n t ) ( 2 1 % ) . ( A t h a b a s c a U n i v e r s i t y S e r v i c e s O r i e n t a t i o n G u i d e b o o k , 1983) The G u i d e l i n e s f o r P r o v i s i o n o f S t u d e n t S e r v i c e s a t A t h a b a s c a U n i v e r s i t y l i s t s d i r e c t s e r v i c e s t o s t u d e n t s a s i n f o r m a t i o n s e r v i c e s ; c o u n s e l l i n g ( i n d i v i d u a l - p r o v i d e s a s s i s t a n c e w i t h e d u c a t i o n a l , c a r e e r , f i n a n c i a l , p e r s o n a l and s o c i a l p r o b l e m s . Hay i n v o l v e u s e o f p s y c h o l o g i c a l t e s t s ) , g r o u p p r o g r a m s ; s t u d y s t r a t e g i e s a s s i s t a n c e ; a c a d e m i c p r e p a r e d n e s s and r e f e r r a l ; f i n a n c i a l a i d ; s t u d e n t awards; o c c u p a t i o n a l and e d u c a t i o n a l i n f o r m a t i o n ( M c I n n e s - R a n k i n and B r i n d l e y , 1986). Some o f t h e p u b l i s h e d r e s e a r c h f r o m A t h a b a s c a U n i v e r s i t y i n t h e a r e a of s t u d e n t s e r v i c e s has been 21 r e l a t e d t o t h e n a t u r e o-f c o u n s e l l i n g i n d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n ; c o m m u n i c a t i o n e f f e c t i v e n e s s i n d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n c o u n s e l l i n g <Mi s k i man, 1983; 1984.); o r i e n t a t i o n p r o g r a m s i n d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n ( D e l e h a n t y and M i s k i m a n , 1983)5 t h e u s e o f p r o j e c t i v e s i n t e l e p h o n e c o u n s e l l i n g ( B r i n d l e y , 1983)5 c o m p l e t i o n and a t t r i t i o n i n d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n < B r i n d l e y , 1985). S t a f f i n g i n S t u d e n t S e r v i c e s c o n s i s t s o f p r o f e s s i o n a l s t a f f ( c o u n s e l l o r s ) and s u p p o r t s t a f f ( a d v i s o r s ) . A d v i s o r s d e a l w i t h s t u d e n t e n q u i r i e s r e g a r d i n g c o u r s e s and p r o g r a m s , s t u d e n t f i n a n c e and e n v i g i l a t e e x a m i n a t i o n s . S t u d e n t s who i n d i c a t e a l a c k o f g o a l c l a r i t y a r e r e f e r r e d by a d v i s o r s t o c o u n s e l l o r s . The c o u n s e l l o r ' s r o l e i s t o h e l p t h e s t u d e n t a s s e s s t h e i r s i t u a t i o n and a l t e r n a t i v e s , and t o t e a c h d e c i s i o n - m a k i n g and g o a l p l a n n i n g s k i l l s . S t a f f i n t h e R e g i s t r y p r o v i d e a s s i s t a n c e t o s t u d e n t s w i t h t h e i n t e r p r e t a t i o n o f u n i v e r s i t y p o l i c y on t h e t r a n s f e r o f c r e d i t f r o m o t h e r p o s t - s e c o n d a r y i n s t i t u t i o n s and w i t h t h e a d m i n i s t r a t i v e e n q u i r i e s s u c h a s r e g i s t r a t i o n , w i t h d r a w a l s , c o u r s e a v a i l a b i l i t y , f e e s , e t c . O n t a r i o S m i t h and Snowden (1983) i n t h e i r Review o f D i s t a n c e E d u c a t i o n i n O n t a r i o U n i v e r s i t i e s s t a t e t h a t " t h e age d i s t r i b u t i o n o f t h e s t u d e n t g r o u p i s s i m i l a r t o t h a t o f t h e g e n e r a l p o p u l a t i o n w i t h t h e l a r g e s t p r o p o r t i o n i n t h e 25 t o 44 age r a n g e . " The m a j o r i t y o f t h e p e r s o n s e n r o l l e d i n 22 d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n i n O n t a r i o u n i v e r s i t i e s a r e women- The main r e a s o n s -for p u r s u i n g u n i v e r s i t y s t u d y a r e c a r e e r advancement, e d u c a t i o n a l o b j e c t i v e s and p e r s o n a l o b j e c t i v e s . C a r e e r advancement i s t h e p r i m a r y m o t i v a t o r . B r i t i s h C o l u m b i a H a r r i e s (1985) s u r v e y e d a t o t a l o f 962 0.L.I. s t u d e n t s i n t h e J a n u a r y 1985 s e s s i o n r e g a r d i n g s t u d y s k i l l s . The m a j o r i t y o f r e s p o n d e n t s (73.157.) i n a l l t h r e e p r o g r a m a r e a s i n d i c a t e d t h a t t h e y had d i f f i c u l t y w i t h s t u d y s k i l l s . In t h e U n i v e r s i t y p r o g r a m a r e a , a l m o s t 817. i n d i c a t e d t h a t t h e y had d i f f i c u l t y w i t h s t u d y s k i l l s . 687. o f t h e u n i v e r s i t y p r o g r a m s t u d e n t s i n d i c a t e d d i f f i c u l t y w i t h t i m e management. I t would a p p e a r t h a t s t u d y s k i l l s and t i m e management a r e s i g n i f i c a n t c o n c e r n s o f a d u l t s t u d e n t s i n t h e Open L e a r n i n g I n s t i t u t e s y s t e m where t h e r e i s a s i x month d e a d l i n e f o r c o m p l e t i o n o f c o u r s e s . Summary A l t h o u g h t h e r e a r e d i f f e r e n c e s i n s t u d e n t s u p p o r t s e r v i c e s s t a f f i n g , r o l e s , i n t e r p r e t a t i o n s o f a d v i s i n g and c o u n s e l l i n g , and i n s t i t u t i o n a l d e l i v e r y s y s t e m s , a common p r o f i l e of t h e a d u l t l e a r n e r a t a d i s t a n c e a p p e a r s t o be one of a p e r s o n who i s employed f u l l - t i m e and t a k i n g c o u r s e s on a p a r t - t i m e b a s i s ; whose p r i m a r y r e a s o n s f o r e n r o l l m e n t a r e v o c a t i o n a l r e a s o n s o r p e r s o n a l i n t e r e s t ; who i s f e m a l e , ( s i n c e w i t h t h e e x c e p t i o n o f t h e Open U n i v e r s i t y , women s t u d e n t s t e n d t o be a s l i g h t m a j o r i t y ) ; and between t h e ages 23 o f 21 - 40. Some common s t u d e n t c o n c e r n s a p p e a r t o be l a c k o-f r e a d i n g , w r i t i n g , o r m a t h e m a t i c s s k i l l s ; t h e management o f t i m e s m o t i v a t i o n (low o r h i g h l e v e l s ) ; s t u d y s k i l l s ; a n x i e t y ? d i f f i c u l t i e s w i t h i s o l a t i o n ; and c o m p e t i n g demands of f a m i l y , s t u d y o r work commitments. S i n c e t h e n e e d s o f a d u l t s t u d e n t s a t a d i s t a n c e h a v e much i n common w i t h t h e n e e d s o f a d u l t l e a r n e r s and p a r t - t i m e s t u d e n t s a t t r a d i t i o n a l i n s t i t u t i o n s , a r e v i e w o f t h e a v a i l a b l e l i t e r a t u r e r e l a t e d t o a d u l t and p a r t - t i m e s t u d e n t c o n c e r n s f o l l o w s . NEEDS OF ADULT STUDENTS AND PART-TIME STUDENT CONCERNS C a m p b e l l (1984) n o t e d t h a t a d u l t p a r t - t i m e l e a r n e r s i n c r e d i t and n o n c r e d i t c o u r s e s h a v e t o d a y become t h e m a j o r i t y of s t u d e n t s i n C a n a d i a n u n i v e r s i t i e s . However, t h i s phenomenon ha s gone l a r g e l y u n n o t i c e d on t h e campus t h o u g h i t marks a s i g n i f i c a n t change. The r e c e n t S e c r e t a r y of S t a t e p u b l i c a t i o n , A c c e s s i b i l i t y t o P o s t s e c o n d a r y E d u c a t i o n i n Canada (1985) s t a t e s p a r t - t i m e a d u l t s t u d e n t s a r e i n c r e a s i n g l y b e c oming an i m p o r t a n t c l i e n t e l e f o r p o s t s e c o n d a r y i n s t i t u t i o n s . C a n a d i a n r e s e a r c h c o n c e r n i n g t h i s s t u d e n t body i s i n f r e q u e n t and m o s t l y d e s c r i p t i v e . G i v e n t h e d e m o g r a p h i c d e c l i n e o f t h e t r a d i t i o n a l 18-24 age g r o u p , r e s e a r c h s t u d i e s t h a t f o c u s on t h e i r m o t i v a t i o n s and c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s a r e needed, (p.214) Humphreys and P o r t e r (1978) c o n c l u d e t h a t t h e r e e x i s t t h r e e d i s t i n c t g r o u p s who m i g h t f o r m t h e f u t u r e 24 c l i e n t e l e -for p a r t - t i m e s t u d i e s . T h o s e who want t o u p g r a d e t h e i r q u a l i f i c a t i o n s e i t h e r b e c a u s e t h e y a r e n o t s a t i s f i e d w i t h t h e l e v e l of e d u c a t i o n t h e y now have o r b e c a u s e t h e i r e d u c a t i o n h a s became o u t d a t e d i n l i g h t of t h e c h a n g i n g knowledge, t h e i n v e s t m e n t o r i e n t e d g r o u p ; t h o s e who w i s h t o t a k e u n i v e r s i t y work f o r t h e i r own p e r s o n a l e n r i c h m e n t , t h e c o n s u m p t i o n o r i e n t e d g r o u p ; and t h o s e who had no h i g h e r e d u c a t i o n a t a l l , t h e d i s a d v a n t a g e d g r o u p . T h e s e s e n t i m e n t s a r e e c h o e d by t h e G r a v e s and G r o v e s (1980) s t u d y i n w h i c h t h e f i n d i n g s i n d i c a t e t h a t t h e r e a s o n s g i v e n t o p r o f e s s o r s by m a t u r e a d u l t s f o r a t t e n d i n g e d u c a t i o n a l p r o g r a m s were: t o s a t i s f y an i n q u i r i n g mind; t o s e c u r e p r o f e s s i o n a l advancement, and t o s u p p l e m e n t a n a r r o w p r e v i o u s e d u c a t i o n . Of t h e r e a s o n s g i v e n , t h e s t r a n g e s t was t o s e c u r e p r o f e s s i o n a l advancement. H e f f e r n a n (1981) l i s t s some o f t h e c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s t h a t c a n be u s e d t o d i s t i n g u i s h between a d u l t l e a r n e r s and y o u n g e r 1 e a r n e r s . 1) A d u l t s t e n d t o be more u t i l i t a r i a n and g o a l -o r i e n t e d i n t h e i r l e a r n i n g a c t i v i t i e s ( j o b o r c a r e e r r e l a t e d c o n c e r n s ) . 2) A d u l t s have l e s s c o n t r o l o v e r t h e i r t i m e and a r e more bound t o a p a r t i c u l a r p h y s i c a l l o c a t i o n t h a n a r e y o u t h s . 3) R e s e a r c h i n d i c a t e s t h a t l a r g e numbers of a d u l t s a r e u n c e r t a i n a b o u t t h e i r a b i l i t i e s a s l e a r n e r s and t e n d t o u n d e r — o r o v e r e s t i m a t e t h e i r c a p a c i t i e s a s s t u d e n t s . 4) A d u l t s have a m b i v a l e n t a t t i t u d e s t o w a r d e d u c a t i o n a l i n s t i t u t i o n s . They o f t e n need an a d v o c a t e who w i l l h e l p them w i t h t h e i r e n t r y . H e f f e r n a n a l s o s t a t e s t h a t s u p p o r t s e r v i c e s f a r a d u l t s a r e i n c r e a s i n g l y b e i n g p o r t r a y e d a s t h e c r i t i c a l e l e m e n t s 25 t h a t a f f e c t how a d u l t s u t i l i z e and b e n e f i t f r o m l e a r n i n g o p p o r t u n i t i e s . A d u l t s u p p o r t s e r v i c e s m e n t i o n e d i n c l u d e f i n a n c i a l a s s i s t a n c e , i n f o r m a t i o n - g u i d a n c e - a d v o c a c y s e r v i c e s , and e d u c a t i o n a l - o r i e n t a t i o n s e r v i c e s . K n i g h t s and McDonald (19S2) n o t e t h a t i n f o r m a t i o n i n c a l e n d a r s a r e n o t a l w a y s t h e most s t r a i g h t f o r w a r d r e a d i n g f o r a d u l t s t u d e n t s u n a c c u s t o m e d t o t h e s y s t e m . O l s k i (1980) s u g g e s t s t h a t a d u l t s u s i n g non-t r a d i t i o n a l methods may need t o c o n s i d e r i s s u e s s u c h a s s e l f -m o t i v a t i o n and i n d e p e n d e n t l e a r n i n g s t h e need t o f i n d t h e i r own p s y c h o l o g i c a l and e m o t i o n a l s u p p o r t when t h e r e i s no d a i l y c o n t a c t w i t h c l a s s m a t e s o r i n s t r u c t o r s ? women's i s s u e s s u c h a s g u i l t , low a s p i r a t i o n l e v e l s , u n c e r t a i n t y o f g o a l s , r e s t r u c t u r i n g o f t i m e ; and a t t i t u d e s o f f a m i l y and f r i e n d s w h i c h a r e v e r y o f t e n n e g a t i v e t o w a r d s a d u l t s who want a d e g r e e . K. P a t r i c i a C r o s s (1981) has summarized t h e b a r r i e r s t y p i c a l l y e x p e r i e n c e d by a d u l t l e a r n e r s a s s i t u a t i o n a l , d i s p o s i t i o n a l and i n s t i t u t i o n a l . The f i r s t r e f e r s t o t h e p a r t i c u l a r s i t u a t i o n o f a d u l t s ' l i v e s a t any g i v e n p o i n t i n t i m e , t h e s e c o n d t o a t t i t u d e s and s e l f - p e r c e p t i o n s , t h e t h i r d t o p a r t i c u l a r p r a c t i c e s and p r o c e d u r e s of h i g h e r e d u c a t i o n i n s t i t u t i o n s . C r o s s n o t e s s i t u a t i o n a l b a r r i e r s a r e m e n t i o n e d more f r e q u e n t l y . C o s t and t i m e l e a d a l 1 o t h e r b a r r i e r s (but may be s o c i a l l y a c c e p t a b l e r e a s o n s ) . A major f i n d i n g of t h e A s l a n i a n and B r i c k e l 1 (1980) 2 6 r e s e a r c h c o n d u c t e d i n 1978 was t h a t a d u l t s l e a r n i n o r d e r t o c o p e w i t h some change i n t h e i r l i v e s . R e g a r d l e s s o f t h e i r d e m o g r a p h i c c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s , a l m o s t a l 1 t h e a d u l t l e a r n e r s i n t e r v i e w e d p o i n t e d t o t h e i r own c h a n g i n g c i r c u m s t a n c e s a s t h e i r r e a s o n s f o r l e a r n i n g . O n l y 17 p e r c e n t s a i d t h e y were l e a r n i n g s i m p l y f o r t h e s a k e o f l e a r n i n g . E v e r y a d u l t who l e a r n e d b e c a u s e o f a t r a n s i t i o n p o i n t e d t o a s p e c i f i c e v e n t i n h i s o r h e r l i f e t h a t s i g n a l l e d , p r e c i p i t a t e d , o r t r i g g e r e d t h e t r a n s i t i o n and t h u s t h e l e a r n i n g ( e . g . a c a r e e r change; t r a n s i t i o n f r o m m a r r i e d t o s i n g l e l i f e ; o r r e t u r n i n g t o s c h o o l a f t e r a p e r i o d o f homemaking f o r t r a i n i n g t o r e e n t e r t h e j o b m a r k e t ) . S c h l o s s b e r g (1981) d i s c u s s e s how t h r e e s e t s o f f a c t o r s seem t o i n f l u e n c e a d a p t a t i o n t o t r a n s i t i o n : 1) t h e c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s o f t h e t r a n s i t i on i t s e l f , i n c l u d i n g r o l e c h a nge ( g a i n o r l o s s ) , a f f e c t ( p o s i t i v e o r n e g a t i v e ) , s o u r c e ( i n t e r n a l o r e x t e r n a l ) , t i m i n g ( o n - t i m e o r o f f - t i m e ) , d u r a t i o n ( permanent, t e m p o r a r y , o r u n c e r t a i n , and d e g r e e of s t r e s s ; 2) t h e c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s o f t h e p r e - and p o s t -t r a n s i t i o n s u p p o r t s ( i n t e r p e r s o n a l and i n s t i t u t i o n a l ) , and p h y s i c a l s e t t i n g ; and 3) t h e c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s o f t h e i n d i v i d u a l , i n c l u d i n g p s y c h o s o c i a l c o m p e t e n c e , sex (and s e x -r o l e i d e n t i f i c a t i o n ) , age (and l i f e s t a g e ) , s t a t e o f h e a l t h , r a c e / e t h n i c i t y , s o c i o e c o n o m i c s t a t u s , v a l u e o r i e n t a t i o n , and p r e v i o u s e x p e r i e n c e w i t h a t r a n s i t i o n of a s i m i l a r n a t u r e . I t would seem t h e r e f o r e , t h a t f a c t o r s s u c h a s r o l e c h a n g e , 27 s e x , age (and l i f e s t a g e ) , a f f e c t , t i m i n g , i n s t i t u t i o n a l and i n t e r p e r s o n a l s u p p o r t , and p r e v i o u s e x p e r i e n c e need t o be c o n s i d e r e d when a s s i s t i n g t h e a d u l t l e a r n e r t o d e a l w i t h t h e t r a n s i t i o n o f e n t r y o r r e - e n t r y t o f o r m a l l e a r n i n g . A l t h o u g h l i f e s t a g e t h e o r i s t s s u c h as G o u l d ( 1 9 7 2 ) , L e v i n s o n (1974, 1978), and Sheehy (1976, 1981) have p r o v i d e d a s t r u c t u r e f o r v i e w i n g t h e a d u l t y e a r s as one of d e v e l o p m e n t and s t a g e s , i t may be u s e f u l t o c o n s i d e r a l t e r n a t i v e t h e o r i s t s s u c h a s N e u g a r t e n (1979) who s t r e s s t h e s o c i a l d e t e r m i n a n t s o f a d u l t b e h a v i o u r ( s o c i a l c l o c k ; p s y c h o l o g y o f t i m i n g ) and t h e i n f l u e n c e of i m p o r t a n t l i f e e v e n t s . S c h l o s s b e r g w r i t e s : D i a m e t r i c a l l y o p p o s e d t o t h e v i e w t h a t t r a n s i t i o n s a r e i n e x t r i c a b l y bound t o c h r o n o l o g i c a l age o r t h a t t h e y f a l l o w an i n v a r i a b l e s e q u e n c e i s B e r n i c e N e u g a r t e n , who e m p h a s i z e s i n s t e a d v a r i a b i l i t y o r what s h e c a l l s " i n d i v i d u a l f a n n i n g o u t . " N e u g a r t e n s t a t e s : B e i n g on t i m e o r o f f t i m e i s a c o m p e l l i n g b a s i s f o r s e l f - a s s e s s m e n t . Men and women compare t h e m s e l v e s w i t h t h e i r f r i e n d s , s i b l i n g s , work c o l l e a g u e s , o r p a r e n t s i n d e c i d i n g w h e t h e r t h e y have made good, b u t i t i s a l w a y s w i t h a t i m e l i n e i n mind. I t i s n o t t h e f a c t t h a t one r e a c h e s 40, 50, o r 60 w h i c h i s i t s e l f i m p o r t a n t , b u t r a t h e r , "How am I d o i n g f o r my a g e ? " T h i s a d u l t p e r s p e c t i v e c an be s e e n i n t h e a d u l t l e a r n e r ' s q u e r i e s , "Am I t o o o l d t o r e t u r n t o s c h o o l ? " ; "Am I s t i l l c a p a b l e of l e a r n i n g ? " ; "Can I compete w i t h y o u n g e r s t u d e n t s ? " F o r some r e t u r n i n g s t u d e n t s , p a r t - t i m e s t u d i e s may be t h e t e s t i n g g r o u n d f o r what E r i k s o n (1963) c a l l s " g e n e r a t i v i t y v e r s u s s t a g n a t i o n " i s s u e s . F o r o t h e r s , t h e i s s u e s may be 28 more p r a g m a t i c s u c h a s unemployment, i n c r e a s e d s k i l l r e q u i r e m e n t s due t o t e c h n o l o g i c a l c h a n g e , o r c a r e e r advancement. A d u l t l e a r n e r s b r i n g a c o m p l e x i t y o f c o n c e r n s t o t h e e d u c a t i o n a l p r o c e s s . The R e p o r t o f t h e T ask F o r c e on M a t u r e S t u d e n t s (19S3) a t t h e U n i v e r s i t y o f A l b e r t a r e v i e w e d s i t u a t i o n a l p r o b l e m s e x p e r i e n c e d by mature s t u d e n t s s u c h a s t i m e p r e s s u r e s ; b a l a n c i n g m u l t i p l e r e s p o n s i b i l i t i e s ; f i n a n c e s , c h i l d c a r e ; l a c k o f e n c o u r a g e m e n t f r o m f a m i l y and p e e r s ; d i s r u p t i o n o f f a m i l y l i f e ; l a c k o f p e e r g r o u p c o n t a c t . A c a d e m i c c o n c e r n s s u r v e y e d were e x a m i n a t i o n s ; e s s a y w r i t i n g ; s t u d y h a b i t s ; u p g r a d i n g and r e m e d i a t i o n . L a c k o f c o n f i d e n c e was r e p o r t e d a s a p r o b l e m by women more t h a n men i n t h e s t u d y . More t h a n t h r e e - q u a r t e r s o f t h e r e s p o n d e n t s i n a l l c a t e g o r i e s i n d i c a t e d t h a t t i m e p r e s s u r e s were a p r o b l e m . Over 70% o f m a t u r e s t u d e n t s r e p o r t e d p r o b l e m s i n b a l a n c i n g t h e i r m u l t i p l e r e s p o n s i b i l i t i e s . Nayman and P a t t e n (1980) have c a t e g o r i z e d t h e most p r e v a l e n t c o n c e r n s i n t o p s y c h o l o g i c a l , d e v e l o p m e n t a l , and i n s t i t u t i o n a l f a c t o r s a s f o l l o w s : PsYJ=b9i99i<=J§i F a c t o r s - D i m i n i s h e d s e l f - c o n f i d e n c e - S t e r e o t y p e d a t t i u d e s t o w a r d age o r sex r o l e s - F e a r o f f a i l u r e o r s u c c e s s - U n r e a l i s t i c e x p e c t a t i o n s D e v e l o p m e n t a l F a c t o r s - M i d l i f e t r a n s i t i o n - R o l e change c o n f l i c t 29 - S h i - f t s i n p h y s i c a l c o n d i t i o n -Change e v e n t s , d i v o r c e , m i d - c a r e e r s h i f t , r e t i r e m e n t - A d j u s t m e n t t o a c a d e m i c e n v i r o n m e n t I n s t i t u t i o n a l F a c t o r s - A c c e s s t o s e r v i c e s - D i f f e r e n t t r e a t m e n t o f f u l l - and p a r t - t i m e s t u d e n t s - S c h e d u l i n g o f c l a s s e s -Course l o a d r e q u i r e m e n t s - E d u c a t i o n a l , v o c a t i o n a l and p e r s o n a l c o u n s e l l i n g - F i n a n c i a l a i d p o l i c i e s - L e a r n i n g a s s i s t a n c e s k i l l s ( r e a d i n g , s t u d y , and c o m m u n i c a t i o n ) A l l o f t h e above f a c t o r s need t o be t a k e n i n t o c o n s i d e r a t i o n by s t a f f p l a n n i n g p r o g r a m s o r d e l i v e r i n g a d v i s i n g o r c o u n s e l l i n g s e r v i c e s t o a d u l t l e a r n e r s . ACADEMIC ADVISINB The NACADA p u b l i c a t i o n S t a n d a r d s f o r A c a d e m i c A d v i s i n g ( c i t e d i n C r o c k e t t , 1984) d e f i n e s t h e p u r p o s e o f a c a d e m i c a d v i s i n g a s " t o a s s i s t s t u d e n t s i n t h e i r p u r s u i t o f m e a n i n g f u l e d u c a t i o n a l p r o g r a m s w h i c h w i l l a s s i s t them i n f u l f i l l i n g t h e i r l i f e g o a l s , i n c l u d i n g career c o n s i d e r a t i o n s . " I t f u r t h e r s t a t e s A d v i s i n g a s s i s t s s t u d e n t i n (1) u n d e r s t a n d i n g i n s t i t u t i o n a l s u p p o r t s e r v i c e s a v a i l a b l e t o them, (2) u n d e r s t a n d i n g i n s t i t u t i o n a l p o l i c i e s and p r o c e d u r e s (3) making d e c i s i o n s b a s e d on a v a i l a b l e i n f o r m a t i o n , and (4) e x a m i n i n g t h e i r p r o g r e s s t o w a r d t h e r e a l i z a t i o n o f t h e i r g o a l s . M c L a u g l i n and S t a r r (1982) f o u n d t h a t a l a r g e p r o p o r t i o f t h e r e s e a r c h on a c a d e m i c a d v i s i n g c o n s i s t s o f s u r v e y s , a l t h o u g h a body of r e s e a r c h on t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p o f a d v i s i n g t o s t u d e n t r e t e n t i o n i s d e v e l o p i n g . Most of t h e a c a d e m i c 30 a d v i s i n g r e s e a r c h d e a l s w i t h t h e t r a d i t i o n a l c o l l e g e age s t u d e n t i n t h e U n i t e d S t a t e s , C r o c k e t t and L e v i t * (1983) r e p o r t t h a t "as was t r u e i n 1979, f a c u l t y a d v i s i n g c o n t i n u e s t o be t h e p r e d o m i n a n t a d v i s i n g d e l i v e r y mode a t a l l t y p e s o f i n s t i t u t i o n s " They a l s o i n d i c a t e d t h a t t y p i c a l l y between 1 and 19 s t u d e n t s a r e a s s i g n e d t o e a c h f a c u l t y a d v i s o r . The F e b r u a r y , 1985 N a t i o n a l A c a d e m i c A d v i s i n g A s s o c i a t i o n (NACADA) n e w s l e t t e r i n f o r m e d members t h a t NACADA was i n t h e p r o c e s s o f c r e a t i n g a T a s k F o r c e on A d v i s i n g A d u l t S t u d e n t s s i n c e i t a p p e a r e d t h a t many a d v i s o r s wanted i n f o r m a t i o n on t h e n e e d s o f t h e o l d e r t h a n a v e r a g e s t u d e n t , and were s e e k i n g ways i n w h i c h t o more e f f e c t i v e l y meet t h e s e a d v i s e e n e e d s . B i t t e r m a n (1985) w r i t e s ; To be an e f f e c t i v e a d v i s o r o f a d u l t s t u d e n t s , t h e p r o f e s s i o n a l s t a f f o r f a c u l t y member s h o u l d u n d e r s t a n d some o f t h e b a s i c c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s o f t h e a d u l t l e a r n e r : a) an a d u l t s t u d e n t b r i n g s a w e a l t h o f e x p e r i e n c e t o t h e c l a s s r o o m b) a d u l t s a r e v e r y " a p p l i c a t i o n " o r i e n t e d ( t h e y w i l l c h o o s e a c o u r s e t h a t i s i m m e d i a t e l y a p p l i c a b l e t o t h e i r l i v e s ) ; c) an a d u l t s t u d e n t o f t e n a t t e n d s p a r t - t i m e , b e c a u s e o f h e a v y j o b , home and community r e s p o n s i b i l i t i e s ; d) a n x i e t y w i l l o f t e n be p r e s e n t i n t h e a d u l t s t u d e n t who f e e l s he o r s h e i s t o o o l d t o l e a r n , o r i s e m b a r r a s s e d by a p r e v i o u s m e d i o c r e s c h o o l r e c o r d ; e) he o r s h e i s l i k e l y t o t a k e a d v i c e o r c o u n s e l more s e r i o u s l y t h a n y o u n g e r s t u d e n t s e n r o l l e d i n s i m i l a r c o l l e g e p r o g r a m s ; 31 f ) he o r s h e e x p e c t s most i n f o r m a t i o n t o be a c c u r a t e , c o n c i s e and u p - t o - d a t e . M c C l e n e g h a n ( 1 9 7 4 ) , Simono ( 1 9 7 8 ) , and H i g g i n s o n (1981) a l l f o u n d t h a t s t u d e n t s p l a c e d a h i g h v a l u e on a c a d e m i c i n f o r m a t i o n and c o u n s e l l i n g i n c o m p a r i s o n t o o t h e r s t u d e n t s e r v i c e s . In Canada, T a y l o r and M e l d o n ' s (19B2) s u r v e y of u n i v e r s i t y s t u d e n t s i n B r i t i s h C o l u m b i a d i s c o v e r e d t h a t a c a d e m i c a d v i s i n g (and t h e b o o k s t o r e ) were g i v e n more i m p o r t a n c e by p a r t - t i m e s t u d e n t s i n t h e i r r a t i n g o f u n i v e r s i t y s e r v i c e s t h a n by f u l l - t i m e s t u d e n t s . A l s o , a h i g h e r p r o p o r t i o n o f f e m a l e t h a n male u n i v e r s i t y s t u d e n t s a t UBC and SFU r a t e d a c a d e m i c a d v i s i n g s e r v i c e s a s t h e most i m p o r t a n t s e r v i c e . K o z l o f f (1985) r e p o r t e d on a s u r v e y o f 147 c o l l e g e - a g e s t u d e n t s a t t h e U n i v e r s i t y o f N o r t h e r n C o l o r a d o i n w h i c h s t u d e n t s were a s k e d t o i n d i c a t e what a d v i s i n g f u n c t i o n s t h e y c o n s i d e r e d most i m p o r t a n t . T h o s e a d v i s i n g f u n c t i o n s w h i c h were c o n s i d e r e d a s "most i m p o r t a n t " by more t h a n f i f t y p e r c e n t of t h e r e s p o n d e n t s f o c u s s e d on d e g r e e r e q u i r e m e n t s o r j o b o p p o r t u n i t i e s e.g. ( i n r a n k o r d e r ) d i s c u s s i n g d e g r e e r e q u i r e m e n t s ; d i s c u s s i n g j o b o p p o r t u n i t i e s ; g r a d u a t i o n c h e c k ; s e l e c t i n g c o u r s e s n e x t term; d i s c u s s i n g c a r e e r a l t e r n a t i v e s ; d i s c u s s i n g c o n t e n t o f c o u r s e s . T h e r e was a l a c k o f p r i o r i t y g i v e n t o s u c h i s s u e s a s d i s c u s s i n g p e r s o n a l c o n c e r n s ; d i s c u s s i n g p e r s o n a l v a l u e s and g e t t i n g t o know ea c h o t h e r . S t u d e n t s r a n k e d t h e s e f u n c t i o n s much 1ower t h a n t h e more 32 p r a c t i c a l a d v i s i n g f u n c t i o n s o f d i s c u s s i n g c o u r s e s f o r t h e f o l l o w i n g t e r m . A t t h e U n i v e r s i t y of M i c h i g a n , Dean M o r r i s r e p o r t e d on t h e r e s u l t o f a s t u d e n t p o l l i n w h i c h s t u d e n t s i n d i c a t e d what t h e y wanted f r o m t h e a d v i s i n g p r o c e s s ( c i t e d i n C r o c k e t t , 1984, pp. 4 3 - 4 7 ) . The f o i l o w i n g p a r t i a l l i s t r e f l e c t s t h e s t u d e n t r e s p o n s e s i n d e s c e n d i n g o r d e r o f i m p o r t a n c e . Inf9nfD:§ti.gn Gi.vi.ng - Be f a m i l i a r w i t h c o u r s e s and t h e i r c o n t e n t - P r o v i d e i n f o r m a t i o n a b o u t good c o u r s e s r e l e v a n t t o my i n t e r e s t s - Be a s o u r c e o f i n f o r m a t i o n - Make me aware o f o p p o r t u n i t i e s s u c h a s new c l a s s e s - Convey n e c e s s a r y i n f o r m a t i o n - Be f a m i 1 i a r w i t h t h e r e q u i r e m e n t s and p r o g r a m s o f v a r i o u s g r a d u a t e s c h o o l s - Make o p p o r t u n i t i e s known Sb.9C.tztsrm C o u r s e S e l e c t i o n - S u g g e s t , b u t d o n ' t impose, c o u r s e s ; d o n ' t s i m p l y e n d o r s e my c h o i c e - P o i n t up a l t e r n a t i v e p a t h s open t o me by t a k i n g c e r t a i n s e t s of c o u r s e s - H e l p me work o u t r e g i s t r a t i o n - H e l p me t o s e l e c t c o u r s e s a c c o r d i n g t o c o u r s e l o a d and t h e d i f f i c u l t y o f my o t h e r e l e c t i o n s - G u i d e me t o c o u r s e s which w i l l h e l p me t o d e c i d e my a r e a s o f i n t e r e s t - P u t t h e d e c i s i o n c l e a r l y i n my hands - P l a n a s c h e d u l e o f c o u r s e s w i t h me c o n s i d e r i n g my s t r e n g t h s and n e e d s - C a u t i o n a g a i n s t o v e r l o a d In t h e a c a d e m i c a d v i s i n g l i t e r a t u r e , t h e r e have n o t been many s t u d i e s t h a t have e x p l o r e d whether o r n o t t h e r e a r e d i f f e r e n c e s between a d u l t s t u d e n t s and c o l l e g e - a g e s t u d e n t s i n p r e f e r e n c e s o r r a t i n g s o f t h e i m p o r t a n c e o f v a r i o u s a s p e c t s o f a d v i s i n g s e r v i c e s . Mangano and C o r r a d o (1981) 33 i n v e s t i g a t e d t h e n e e d s and s a t i s f a c t i o n s o f a d u l t s t u d e n t s i n New Y ork S t a t e t w o - y e a r c o l l e g e s . R e - e n t r y a d u l t s t u d e n t s ( t w e n t y - f i v e y e a r s and o l d e r ) , t r a d i t i o n a l c o l l e g e age s t u d e n t s (up t o t w e n t y - f o u r y e a r s o f a g e ) , and f a c u l t y and s t a f f were s u r v e y e d u s i n g two q u e s t i o n n a i r e s d e s i g n e d by t h e p r o j e c t s t a f f s t h e S u r v e y o f S t u d e n t Needs and t h e S t u d e n t S a t i s f a c t i o n S c a l e . A d u l t s t u d e n t s g a v e h i g h e r r a t i n g s ( i n d i c a t i n g g r e a t e r p e r c e i v e d need) t h a n y o u n g e r s t u d e n t s t o i t e m s s u c h a s v o c a b u l a r y and math improvement; l i f e e x p e r i e n c e c r e d i t ; p r e r e g i s t r a t i on o p p o r t u n i t i e s ; and s p e e d y r e g i s t r a t i o n p r o c e d u r e s . The y o u n g e r s t u d e n t s t e n d e d t o e m p h a s i s e t h o s e i t e m s t h a t d e a l t w i t h e x t r a - c u r r i c u l a r a c t i v i t i e s and p e r s o n a l - s o c i a l d e v e l o p m e n t c o n c e r n s . B o t h g r o u p s e x p r e s s e d a h i g h need f o r s t u d y s k i l l improvement; f o r r e l a x e d , i n f o r m a l , e n c o u r a g i n g i n s t r u c t o r s ; and f o r many c o u r s e s p r o v i d i n g s p e c i f i c j o b s k i l l s . The f a c u l t y and s t a f f i n g e n e r a l p e r c e i v e d t h e n e e d s o f a d u l t s t u d e n t s a s much more i m p o r t a n t t h a n t h e a d u l t s t h e m s e l v e s d i d . In t h e Ryan (1980) s t u d y , f a c u l t y p e r c e i v e d a d u l t s t u d e n t c o n c e r n s a t a much h i g h e r l e v e l on t h e s c a l e t h a n d i d s t u d e n t s . A d u l t s t u d e n t s r a n k e d t h e f o l l o w i n g a s p e c t s o f a c a d e m i c a d v i s i n g a s most i m p o r t a n t : be aware o f my p r o g r e s s on my d e g r e e p l a n ; make l e a r n i n g o p p o r t u n i t i e s known t o me; p r o v i d e c a r e e r i n f o r m a t i o n ; and be a s s i g n e d t o me b e c a u s e o f s i m i l a r e d u c a t i o n o r work b a c k g r o u n d . T h e s e r e s u l t s seem t o s u p p o r t t h e Mangano and C o r r a d o s t u d y where i t was f o u n d t h a t 34 r e e n t r y a d u l t s t u d e n t s t e n d t o be t a s k - o r i e n t e d a c a d e m i c a l l y and v e r y p r a g m a t i c i n t h e i r a s s e s s m e n t of p e r s o n a l - s o c i a l d e v e l o p m e n t n e e d s ( e . g . a f i r s t - o r d e r c o n c e r n was " g e t t i n g A' and B's i n my c o u r s e s ; a s e c o n d o r d e r c o n c e r n was " i m p r o v i n g my s e l f - c o n f i d e n c e " ; a t h i r d - o r d e r c o n c e r n was " f i t t i n g i n w i t h o t h e r s t u d e n t s " . ) SUMMARY In t h i s c h a p t e r , s e l e c t e d l i t e r a t u r e on s t u d e n t s u p p o r t s e r v i c e s i n d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n , n e e d s o f a d u l t s t u d e n t s and p a r t - t i m e s t u d e n t c o n c e r n s and a c a d e m i c a d v i s i n g h a s been r e v i e w e d i n o r d e r t o p r o v i d e a c o n t e x t and t h e o r e t i c a l b a s i s f o r t h i s s t u d y on a d u l t s t u d e n t and t u t o r p e r c e p t i o n s o f i m p o r t a n t a s p e c t s o f a c a d e m i c a d v i s i n g i n a d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n s y s t e m , and s t u d e n t and t u t o r p e r c e p t i o n s o f a d u l t s t u d e n t c o n c e r n s . S t u d i e s c i t e d r e l a t i n g t o a c a d e m i c a d v i s i n g were C r o o k s t o n (1972); H e f f e r n a n (1981); Shane (1981); Worth (1982); C r o c k e t t (1984); B i t t e r r n a n (1985); K o z l o f f (19B5); s t u d i e s r e l a t i n g t o a d u l t s t u d e n t c o n c e r n s were N i c h o l s o n (1977); M u r g a t r o y d (1978); Sough and C o l t m a n (1979); N e u g a r t e n (1979); D l s k i ( 1 980); C r o s s ( I 9 B 1 ) ; Mangano and C o r r a d o (1981); Sweet (1981); Task F o r c e on M a t u r e S t u d e n t s : R e p o r t (1983); C a s t r o , e t a l (1985) and H a r r i e s ( 1 9 8 5 ) . T h e s e s t u d i e s have been u s e d t o d e v e l o p and r e f i n e i t e m s on t h e r e s e a r c h q u e s t i o n n a i r e w h i c h i s i n c l u d e d i n C h a p t e r T h r e e . A r e v i e w o f t h e t u t o r - c o u n s e l l o r r o l e i n t h e U n i t e d Kingdom, t h e c o u n s e l l o r r o l e a t A t h a b a s c a 35 U n i v e r s i t y i n A l b e r t a , Canada and t h e f a c u l t y a d v i s o r r o l e i n t h e U n i t e d S t a t e s h a s been s e t f o r t h i n t h i s c h a p t e r . In C h a p t e r T h r e e , a d e s c r i p t i o n o f t h e Open L e a r n i n g I n s t i t u t e a d v i s o r and t u t o r ( f a c u l t y ) r o l e s and s t u d e n t p o p u l a t i o n w i l l be p r e s e n t e d . The m e t h o d o l o g y f o r t h i s s t u d y w h i c h w i l l e xamine d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n a d u l t s t u d e n t and t u t o r p e r c e p t i o n s o f t h e i m p o r t a n t a s p e c t s o f a c a d e m i c a d v i s i n g and t h e n e e d s o f a d u l t s t u d e n t s w i l l be d e s c r i b e d i n d e t a i l . CHAPTER 3 The D e s i g n and D e s c r i p t i o n of t h e S t u d y The P r o b l e m T h e r e h a s been v e r y l i t t l e r e s e a r c h i n t h e a r e a o f d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n s u p p o r t s e r v i c e s f o r s t u d e n t s i n Canada s i n c e t h e f i e l d o f d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n i n Canada i s a f a i r l y new phenomenon o f t h e 1980's. A l t h o u g h t h e r e i s some r e s e a r c h i n t h e U n i t e d S t a t e s on a c a d e m i c a d v i s i n g , t h e r e i s v e r y l i t t l e r e s e a r c h on t h i s t o p i c i n Canada. A d d i t i o n a l l y , t h e t o p i c i s c o m p l i c a t e d by t h e f a c t o r t h a t , f o r t h e most p a r t i n t h e U n i t e d S t a t e s , a c a d e m i c a d v i s i n g i s d e l i v e r e d by f a c u l t y members. In Canada, a c a d e m i c a d v i s i n g i s u s u a l l y s e p a r a t e d f r o m t e a c h i n g o r t u t o r i n g d u t i e s . A t t h e Open L e a r n i n g I n s t i t u t e , t h e f u n c t i o n s a r e s e p a r a t e d . F a c u l t y a r e r e s p o n s i b l e f o r t u t o r i n g s t u d e n t s ; a d m i n i s t r a t i v e s t a f f a d v i s e s t u d e n t s . The m a j o r i t y o f t h e s e a c t i v i t i e s a r e c a r r i e d o u t a t a d i s t a n c e f r o m t h e s t u d e n t , by t e l e p h o n e and by m a i l . T h e r e i s a need f o r f u r t h e r r e s e a r c h t o d e t e r m i n e w h i c h a s p e c t s o f a c a d e m i c a d v i s i n g i n d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n a r e c o n s i d e r e d i m p o r t a n t by s t u d e n t s and t u t o r s . Most s t u d e n t s e n r o l l e d i n p o s t - s e c o n d a r y d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n c o u r s e s a r e a d u l t s , e n r o l l e d i n c o u r s e w o r k on a p a r t - t i m e b a s i s . L i t t l e r e s e a r c h has been r e p o r t e d c o n c e r n i n g t h e c o n c e r n s of t h e p a r t - t i m e a d u l t s t u d e n t i n Canada. In t h e d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n l i t e r a t u r e i n 36 37 Canada, t h e r e h a s been no r e s e a r c h on t u t o r p e r c e p t i o n s o-f t h e c o n c e r n s o f t h e p a r t - t i m e a d u l t d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n s t u d e n t . S i n c e t h i s i n f o r m a t i o n would be u s e f u l b o t h ' f o r s t a f f and a d m i n i s t r a t o r s i n t h e d e s i g n and d e l i v e r y o f s t u d e n t s u p p o r t s e r v i c e s , i t seems w o r t h w h i l e t o s u r v e y t h e c o n c e r n s o f a d u l t s t u d e n t s i n d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n , and t h e p e r c e p t i o n s t h a t t h e s e s t u d e n t s and t u t o r s h a v e of t h e r e l a t i v e i m p o r t a n c e o f v a r i o u s a s p e c t s o f t h e a d v i s i n g p r o c e s s . In t h i s s t u d y , t h e r e has been a r e p l i c a t i o n ( w i t h some m o d i f i c a t i o n s f o r t h e a n o m a l i e s of d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n ) of a s t u d y p r e v i o u s l y u n d e r t a k e n by Ryan (1980) i n t h e U n i t e d S t a t e s on " A d u l t S t u d e n t and F a c u l t y E x p e c t a t i o n s of A c ademic A d v i s i n g i n a N o n t r a d i t i o n a l U n i v e r s i t y " . HYPOTHESES AND QUESTIONS T h i s s t u d y was u n d e r t a k e n i n c o o p e r a t i o n w i t h t h e A d v i s i n g S e r v i c e s o f t h e Open L e a r n i n g I n s t i t u t e i n o r d e r t o g a i n more i n f o r m a t i o n a b o u t s t u d e n t and t u t o r p e r c e p t i o n s o f a d u l t s t u d e n t n e e d s and t h e i r p e r c e p t i o n s o f t h e i m p o r t a n t a s p e c t s o f t h e a d v i s i n g p r o c e s s . The I n s t i t u t e r e q u e s t e d t h a t a r e s e a r c h q u e s t i o n be i n c l u d e d on p o t e n t i a l a d v i s i n g s e r v i c e s b e i n g c o n s i d e r e d f o r s t u d e n t s . Two n u l l h y p o t h e s e s were f o r m u l a t e d . d y f i Q t h e s e s (1) T h e r e a r e no d i f f e r e n c e s between a d u l t s t u d e n t and 38 t u t o r p e r c e p t i o n s o f i m p o r t a n t a s p e c t s o f a c a d e m i c a d v i s i n g . (2) T h e r e a r e no d i f f e r e n c e s between s t u d e n t and t u t o r p e r c e p t i o n s o f a d u l t s t u d e n t c o n c e r n s . Bf?L«|ted R e s e a r c h Q u e s t i o n s ( 1 ) A r e t h e r e any d i f f e r e n c e s i n r e s p o n s e s between • . L . I . s t u d e n t s and T r a n s f e r s t u d e n t s t o t h e i t e m s on i m p o r t a n t a s p e c t s o f a c a d e m i c a d v i s i n g and p e r c e p t i o n s o f a d u l t s t u d e n t c o n c e r n s ? (2) A r e t h e r e any d i f f e r e n c e s i n r e s p o n s e s by s t u d e n t s on a c a d e m i c a d v i s i n g f a c t o r s o r p e r c e p t i o n s o f a d u l t s t u d e n t c o n c e r n s on t h e b a s i s o f s t u d e n t s ' g e n d e r , age o r a d v i s o r c o n t a c t ? (3) A r e t h e r e any d i f f e r e n c e s i n r e s p o n s e s on a c a d e m i c a d v i s i n g f a c t o r s , o r c o n c e r n s on t h e b a s i s of t h e t u t o r members' g e n d e r o r number o f y e a r s s e r v e d a s a t u t o r ? Q u e s t i o n ( 1 ) What a d d i t i o n a l A d v i s i n g C e n t r e s e r v i c e s would be u s e d by a d u l t d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n s t u d e n t s i f t h e y were o f f e r e d ? DESCRIPTION OF THE INSTITUTION AND THE POPULATION •gen L e a r n i n g I n s t i t u t e The Open L e a r n i n g I n s t i t u t e was e s t a b l i s h e d by t h e B r i t i s h C o l u m b i a P r o v i n c i a l Government i n J u n e 1978. I t was 39 c r e a t e d t o p r o v i d e e d u c a t i o n a l o p p o r t u n i t i e s f o r t h e l a r g e number of B r i t i s h C o l u m b i a n s who were u n a b l e t o a t t e n d t r a d i t i o n a l i n s t i t u t i o n s f o r r e a s o n s s u c h a s work o r d o m e s t i c commitments, g e o g r a p h i c i s o l a t i o n o r p h y s i c a l d i s a b i l i t y . • . L . I . o f f e r e d i t s f i r s t s e v e n p i l o t c o u r s e s i n September, 1979. R e g i o n a l a d v i s i n g c e n t r e s were s e t up i n Richmond, Kelowna and P r i n c e G e o r g e i n 1979. A f o u r t h c e n t r e was added i n V i c t o r i a i n 1980. In 1986, t h e r e were 7 f u l l -t i m e a d v i s i n g s t a f f members and a p p r o x i m a t e l y 14,000 p a r t -t i m e s t u d e n t c o u r s e e n r o l l m e n t s . About 120 p a r t - t i m e t u t o r s were under c o n t r a c t i n 1984-85 t o s e r v e t h e U n i v e r s i t y , C a r e e r - T e c h n i c a l - V o c a t i o n a l , and A d u l t B a s i c E d u c a t i o n p r o g r a m a r e a s . The m a j o r i t y o f t u t o r s were employed f u l l -t i m e by o t h e r e d u c a t i o n a l a g e n c i e s ! u n i v e r s i t i e s , c o l l e g e s , i n s t i t u t e s , s c h o o l d i s t r i c t s . O.L.I, o f f e r s b a c c a l a u r e a t e d e g r e e s , p r o g r a m s o f s t u d y i n career, t e c h n i c a l and v o c a t i o n a l a r e a s , and p r o g r a m s o f s t u d y i n a d u l t b a s i c e d u c a t i o n . The d i s t r i b u t i o n o f s t u d e n t s between t h e main p r o g r a m a r e a s i n 1985-86 was a s f o l l o w s : U n i v e r s i t y p r o g r a m s 32.3 '/. C a r e e r , T e c h n i c a l , V o c a t i o n a l 45.6 V. A d u l t B a s i c E d u c a t i o n 22.1 "/. 100.0 A l m o s t a l 1 o f t h e s t u d e n t s e n r o l l e d w i t h t h e Open L e a r n i n g I n s t i t u t e a r e p a r t - t i m e s t u d e n t s . ( P a r t - t i m e i s d e f i n e d as b e i n g i n e n r o l l e d i n t h r e e o r f e w e r c o u r s e s ) . 40 The s t u d e n t p r o - f i l e r e p o r t f o r t h e J a n u a r y 1986 s e s s i o n l i s t e d t h e d i s t r i b u t i o n by age o-f s t u d e n t s a s - f o i l o w s : Number P e r c e n t Under 20 145 6.3% Between 21 and 30 985 43.0% Between 31 and 40 809 35.3% Between 41 and 50 267 11.6% Between 51 and 60 64 2 B 8 fa Between 61 and 70 18 0.8% 71 and o v e r 5 0.2% TOTAL 2293 100.0% T h i s d i s t r i b u t i o n i s s i m i l a r t o t h e f i n d i n g s o f t h e s u r v e y o f a d u l t e d u c a t i o n i n Canada u n d e r t a k e n i n 1983 (One In E v e r y F i v e ) where t h e h i g h e s t p a r t i c i p a t i o n r a t e was among 25-34 y e a r - o l d s . In t h e same s u r v e y , i t was f o u n d t h a t women were more l i k e l y t h a n men t o e n r o l l i n a d u l t e d u c a t i o n . The m a j o r i t y (56%) of p a r t i c i p a n t s were women. A s i m i l a r d i s t r i b u t i o n c a n be f o u n d a t Open L e a r n i n g I n s t i t u t e . The d i s t r i b u t i o n by sex f o r t h e O.L.I. 8601 s e s s i o n was 45.3% male and 54.7% f e m a l e . U n l i k e t h e s u r v e y i n a d u l t e d u c a t i o n i n Canada, t h e d i s t r i b u t i o n o f s t u d e n t s between r u r a l and u r b a n a r e a s i s a l m o s t e q u a l . In t h e 8601 s e s s i o n , 47.6% o f t h e e n r o l l e d s t u d e n t s were f r o m e i t h e r t h e Lower M a i n l a n d o r G r e a t e r V i c t o r i a a r e a s ; 3.3% were f r o m o u t - o f - p r o v i n c e ; 49.1% were f r o m r u r a l a r e a s . (The One i n F i v e s u r v e y f o u n d t h a t p e o p l e who l i v e d i n l a r g e c i t i e s were s l i g h t l y more l i k e l y t o p u r s u e a d u l t e d u c a t i o n t h a n t h o s e i n s m a l l e r c e n t r e s o r i n r u r a l a r e a s . ) The A d v i s i n g S e r v i c e s P r o s p e c t i v e s t u d e n t s a r e e n c o u r a g e d t o c o n t a c t an a d v i s o r b e f o r e e n r o l l i n g i n t h e I n s t i t u t e c o u r s e s . I n i t i a l c o n t a c t may be by t e l e p h o n e , i n - p e r s o n , o r m a i l . The m a j o r i t y o f t h e c o n t a c t s a r e by t e l e p h o n e . E a c h a d v i s i n g c e n t r e has a t o l l - f r e e WATS l i n e w h i c h s t u d e n t s c a n u s e , or s t a t i o n - t o - s t a t i o n c o l l e c t c a l l s a r e a c c e p t e d . A d v i s o r s and s u p p o r t s t a f f a r e a v a i l a b l e t o a s s i s t s t u d e n t s w i t h q u e s t i o n s a b o u t r e g i s t r a t i o n , a d m i s s i o n t o l i m i t e d e n r o l l m e n t c o u r s e s / p r o g r a m s , i n i t i a l t r a n s f e r c r e d i t e v a l u a t i o n , f i n a n c i a l a i d , c l a r i f i c a t i o n o f O.L.I, p o l i c i e s , p r o g r am p l a n n i n g , c o u r s e s e l e c t i o n , and e d u c a t i o n a l g o a l s e t t i n g . The e m p h a s i s i n t h e a d v i s o r r o l e a t t h e Open L e a r n i n g I n s t i t u t e i s on i n f o r m a t i o n - g i v i n g , a c a d e m i c a d v i s i n g , l i a i s o n and p r o m o t i o n , and a d m i n i s t r a t i v e a c t i v i t i e s . A d v i s i n g s t a t i s t i c s have shown t h a t t h e m a j o r i t y of a d v i s o r c o n t a c t s a r e w i t h p r o s p e c t i v e s t u d e n t s . U n t i l 19B4, s t u d e n t s were a s s i g n e d t o an a d v i s o r a t t h e c l o s e s t a d v i s i n g c e n t r e w i t h i n t h e i r g e o g r a p h i c r e g i o n . In 1985, s t u d e n t s who r e g i s t e r e d w i t h O.L.I, were no l o n g e r a s s i g n e d a permanent a d v i s o r . I n s t e a d , s t u d e n t s were t o l d t o c o n t a c t an a d v i s o r a t any one o f t h e f o u r a d v i s i n g c e n t r e s w i t h i n B.C. 42 A l l s t u d e n t s r e q u i r i n g i n f o r m a t i o n r e l a t e d t o r e c o r d s , e x a m i n a t i o n s , f i n a n c i a l a i d o r a d m i s s i o n s a r e r e f e r r e d t o S t u d e n t S e r v i c e s i n Richmond. The f o c u s of t h e P r i n c e S e o r g e , Kelowna and V i c t o r i a r e g i o n a l c e n t r e s i s t o w a r d s one of o u t r e a c h and s t u d e n t a c c e s s t o t h e I n s t i t u t e . A l l p r o g ram p l a n n i n g f o r e n r o l l e d s t u d e n t s who h a v e t r a n s f e r r e d c r e d i t t o O .L.I, p r o g r a m s was c e n t r a l i z e d i n t h e Richmond A d v i s i n g o f f i c e i n 19S5. Richmond a d v i s o r s a l s o r e v i e w t r a n s f e r c r e d i t a l l o c a t i o n s . S t u d e n t s r e q u e s t i n g c a r e e r / l i f e p l a n n i n g c o u n s e l l i n g a r e u s u a l l y r e f e r r e d by a d v i s o r s t o t h B O.L.I, n o n - c r e d i t c o u r s e , " P l a n n i n g Your F u t u r e " . S t u d e n t s r e q u i r i n g p e r s o n a l c o u n s e l l i n g a r e r e f e r r e d t o l o c a l community r e s o u r c e s . T u t o r i n g S t a f f T u t o r s work p r i m a r i l y f r o m t h e i r homes, m a i n t a i n i n g r e g u l a r c o n t a c t w i t h e n r o l l e d s t u d e n t s by t e l e p h o n e and t h r o u g h t h e m a i l . T h e r e i s no p r o v i s i o n f o r i n - p e r s o n c o n t a c t . Most t u t o r s phone s t u d e n t s a t l e a s t t h r e e t i m e s d u r i n g a c o u r s e : an i n i t i a l w e l c o m i n g c a l l , a m i d - c o u r s e c h e c k u p , and a p r e - e x a m i n a t i o n d i s c u s s i o n . S t u d e n t s a r e e n c o u r a g e d t o phone t u t o r s whenever a c a d e m i c p r o b l e m s a r i s e . The l e v e l o f s t u d e n t - i n i t i a t e d phone c a l l s v a r i e s i n e a c h c o u r s e . S t u d e n t s a r e i n s t r u c t e d t o c o n t a c t t h e i r t u t o r f o r a l l c o u r s e - r e l a t e d k i n d s o f q u e s t i o n s and t h e i r a d v i s o r f o r 43 c o n t e n t u n r e l a t e d c o n c e r n s . P Q B y l ^ t i g n s S t u d e n t s F o r p u r p o s e s o-f t h i s s t u d y , a l l new u n i v e r s i t y p r o g r am s t u d e n t s i n t h e 8601 s e s s i o n who were 25 y e a r s o f age o r o l d e r and who had i n d i c a t e d on t h e i r a d m i s s i o n / r e g i s t r a t i o n f o r m t h a t t h e y w i s h e d t o e n r o l l i n O.L.I. c o u r s e s t o w a r d s an O.L.I, d e g r e e ( e i t h e r a B a c h e l o r o f A r t s , a B a c h e l o r o f A r t s i n A d m i n i s t r a t i v e S t u d i e s o r a B a c h e l o r o f A r t s i n G e n e r a l S t u d i e s ) o r who had i n d i c a t e d t h a t t h e y were t a k i n g Q.L.I, u n i v e r s i t y - l e v e l c o u r s e s f o r t r a n s f e r c r e d i t e l s e w h e r e were s u r v e y e d . The t o t a l number o f s t u d e n t s of t h e age 25 and o v e r i n t h e g r o u p " t o t a k e c o u r s e s t o w a r d s an O.L.I, d e g r e e " was 103 (54 male s t u d e n t s and 49 f e m a l e s t u d e n t s ) 5 t h e t o t a l number o f s t u d e n t s o f t h e age 25 and o v e r i n t h e g r o u p " t o t a k e c o u r s e ( s ) f o r t r a n s f e r c r e d i t e l s e w h e r e " was 140 (49 male s t u d e n t s and 91 f e m a l e s t u d e n t s ) . S t u d e n t s were m a i l e d t h e q u e s t i o n n a i r e i n F e b r u a r y . A t e l e p h o n e c a l l f o l l o w - u p was c a r r i e d o u t a month l a t e r , i n March, t o e n q u i r e i f s t u d e n t s had r e t u r n e d t h e i r q u e s t i o n n a i r e s and t o e n c o u r a g e t h o s e s t u d e n t s who h a d n ' t r e t u r n e d t h e i r q u e s t i o n n a i r e t o c o m p l e t e i t and r e t u r n i t a s s o o n a s p o s s i b l e . T u t o r s A c t i v e U n i v e r s i t y p r o g r a m t u t o r s who had t u t o r e d f o r O.L.I. 44 i n t h r e e o r more p r e v i o u s s e s s i o n s e.g. 8509, 8511, 8601 were s u r v e y e d . S i n c e t h e t o t a l number o-f t h i s g r o u p was 36 members, t h e e n t i r e g r o u p was u s e d . No a t t e m p t was made t o c o n t a c t t h o s e t u t o r s who d i d n o t r e t u r n q u e s t i o n n a i r e s . S a m p l i n g S t u d e n t s T h e r e were a p p r o x i m a t e l y 945 s t u d e n t s r e g i s t e r e d i n u n i v e r s i t y - l e v e l c o u r s e s i n t h e 8601 s e s s i o n . A l i s t of s t u d e n t s 25 y e a r s o f age o r o l d e r who had i n d i c a t e d t h a t t h e y i n t e n d e d t o p u r s u e an O.L.I, d e g r e e o r t o t a k e c o u r s e s f o r c r e d i t e l s e w h e r e was g e n e r a t e d by t h e u s e o f t h e computer p r o g r a m , D a t a t r i e v e . S i n c e t h i s p r o g r a m d i d n o t d i f f e r e n t i a t e s t u d e n t s by p r o g r a m a r e a , i t was n e c e s s a r y t o do a s e p a r a t e computer s e a r c h t h r o u g h i n d i v i d u a l s t u d e n t r e c o r d s i n o r d e r t o s e l e c t u n i v e r s i t y p r o g r am s t u d e n t s o u t o f t h e g r o u p , " t a k e c o u r s e ( s ) f o r c r e d i t e l s e w h e r e " . Once t h e s u b g r o u p o f u n i v e r s i t y p r o g r a m s t u d e n t s was g e n e r a t e d o u t o f t h e g r o u p " t a k e c o u r s e ( s ) f o r c r e d i t e l s e w h e r e " , t h B e n t i r e g r o u p o f 140 s t u d e n t s was s e l e c t e d a s one p a r t o f t h e r e s e a r c h s a m p l e . A l l 103 s t u d e n t s i d e n t i f i e d a s " t a k i n g c o u r s e s t o w a r d s and O.L.I, d e g r e e " were s e l e c t e d as t h e o t h e r p o r t i o n of t h e s ample. S t u d e n t s who i n d i c a t e d t h a t t h e y were t a k i n g O.L.I, u n i v e r s i t y c o u r s e s f o r " g e n e r a l i n t e r e s t " were n o t i n c l u d e d i n t h i s s t u d y . The r e s e a r c h s a m p l e was assumed t o be r e p r e s e n t a t i v e o f 45 the Q . L . I , s tudent p o p u l a t i o n of u n i v e r s i t y program s t u d e n t s 25 y e a r s of age or o l d e r i n the pas t and f u t u r e s e s s i o n s of the I n s t i t u t e who i n d i c a t e t h a t they i n t e n d t o pursue an O . L . I , degree or t o take c o u r s e s f o r t r a n s f e r c r e d i t e l sewhere . T u t o r s The t u t o r r e s e a r c h sample was assumed t o be r e p r e s e n t a t i v e of the O . L . I , p o p u l a t i o n of u n i v e r s i t y program t u t o r s t y p i c a l l y h i r e d by the I n s t i t u t e i n the past and i n the f u t u r e , whose c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s do not d i v e r g e from those of the t u t o r s i n t h i s sample . FORMULATION OF THE RESEARCH TOOL Q u e s t i o n n a i r e s f o r both t u t o r s and s t u d e n t s were based on the q u e s t i o n n a i r e o r i g i n a l l y des igned f o r s t u d e n t s at M e t r o p o l i t a n U n i v e r s i t y . However, some m o d i f i c a t i o n s were n e c e s s a r y i n o r d e r t o cover the r e q u i r e m e n t s of a d v i s i n g w i t h i n a d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n s e t t i n g . Some new i tems were i n t r o d u c e d through the rev iew of the l i t e r a t u r e . The i tems i n the q u e s t i o n n a i r e t h a t were r e p l i c a t e d f o r the a r e a " important a s p e c t s of a d v i s i n g " were: (1) P l a c i n g e d u c a t i o n a l d e c i s i o n - m a k i n g i n my hands (2) Be ing aware of my p r o g r e s s on my degree program (3) C l a r i f y i n g i n s t i t u t i o n a l p o l i c i e s and p r o c e d u r e s The i tems t h a t were r e p l i c a t e d under the a r e a "adul t s tudent concerns" were: (!) Fear t h a t I may be too o l d to go back t o s c h o o l 4 6 (2) O p p o s i t i o n from f a m i l y members ( 3 ) Poor r e a d i n g , w r i t i n g or math s k i l l s I t s h o u l d be noted t h a t i n t h i s s t u d y , the i t e m , "poor r e a d i n g , w r i t i n g or math s k i l l s " , was broken down i n t o two i t ems , "poor w r i t i n g or math s k i l l s " ; " lack of e f f i c i e n t r e a d i n g or s tudy h a b i t s " . T h e r e f o r e , the i t e m , "poor r e a d i n g , w r i t i n g or math s k i l i s " has been m o d i f i e d i n t h i s s t u d y . The new i tems i n the q u e s t i o n n a i r e were based on a rev iew of academic a d v i s i n g , a d u l t e d u c a t i o n and c o u n s e l l i n g i n d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n l i t e r a t u r e . Items p e r t a i n i n g t o d e s i r e d s t u d e n t s e r v i c e s were i n c l u d e d at the r e q u e s t of a d m i n i s t r a t o r s a t O . L . I . . Only s t u d e n t s were surveyed r e g a r d i n g d e s i r e d s tudent s e r v i c e s . The t h r e e q u e s t i o n n a i r e c a t e g o r i e s were: impor tant a s p e c t s of the a d v i s i n g p r o c e s s ; a d u l t s tudent c o n c e r n s ; a d v i s i n g c e n t r e s e r v i c e s . Adyis i .ng F a c t o r s T h i r t e e n f a c t o r s were i d e n t i f i e d as i m p o r t a n t a s p e c t s of the a d v i s i n g p r o c e s s and s t u d e n t s and t u t o r s were asked t o respond on a f i v e p o i n t L i k e r t S c a l e as t o the degree of importance of each i t em t o them. A d v i s i n g f a c t o r s l i s t e d i n the q u e s t i o n n a i r e i n random o r d e r were: (1) P l a c i n g e d u c a t i o n a l d e c i s i o n - m a k i n g i n t o the s t u d e n t ' s hands (2) Be ing aware of the s t u d e n t ' s p r o g r e s s on u n i v e r s i t y degree program 47 (3) B e i n g aware o f o t h e r - f a c t o r s i n t h e s t u d e n t ' s l i f e b e s i d e s e n r o l l m e n t i n c o u r s e s a t t h i s i n s t i t u t i o n (4) A s s i s t i n g s t u d e n t w i t h a d m i n i s t r a t i v e p r o b l e m s (5) C l a r i f y i n g i n s t i t u t i o n a l p o l i c i e s and p r o c e d u r e s (6) B e i n g an a d v o c a t e f o r t h e s t u d e n t w i t h i n t h e i n s t i t u t i o n e.g. a s s i s t i n g s t u d e n t w i t h g r o u n d s f o r e x t e n s i o n s (7) R e l a t i n g t o t h e s t u d e n t i n a p e r s o n a l way (8) H e l p i n g s t u d e n t u n d e r s t a n d t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p between h i s / h e r c a r e e r g o a l s , o r work and O.L.I, c o u r s e ( s ) (9) Making l e a r n i n g o p p o r t u n i t i e s known t o t h e s t u d e n t ( e . g . new c o u r s e s , p r o g r a m s ) (10) R e f e r r i n g s t u d e n t t o o t h e r e d u c a t i o n a l i n s t i t u t i o n s i f O.L.I, d o e s n ' t o f f e r what h e / s h e wants (11) H e l p i n g s t u d e n t w i t h s t u d y p r o b l e m s (12) I n f o r m i n g s t u d e n t a b o u t f i n a n c i a l a i d (13) H e l p i n g s t u d e n t w i t h s p e c i f i c c o u r s e s e l e c t i o n and s c h e d u l i n g . C o n c e r n s The same L i k e r t s c a l e was u s e d by s t u d e n t s and t u t o r s i n r e s p o n d i n g t o t h e q u e s t i o n s l i s t i n g c o n c e r n s a d u l t s m i g h t have a s t h e y r e t u r n t o s c h o o l . T h i r t e e n c o n c e r n s were i d e n t i f i e d t h r o u g h t h e l i t e r a t u r e and an open-ended r e s p o n s e i t e m was added. C o n c e r n s l i s t e d were: (1) F e a r o f b e i n g t o o o l d t o go back t o s c h o o l (2) O p p o s i t i o n f r o m f a m i l y members (3) I s o l a t i o n i . e . no c o n t a c t w i t h o t h e r s t u d e n t s i n c o u r s e ( s ) (4) A n x i e t y a b o u t g r a d e s (5) P o o r w r i t i n g o r math s k i l l s 48 (6) P r o b l e m s f i n a n c i n g c o u r s e s (7) Time p r e s s u r e s (8) D i f f i c u l t i e s b a l a n c i n g m u l t i p l e r e s p o n s i b i l i t i e s and s e t t i n g p r i o r i t i e s (9) L a c k o f e f f i c i e n t r e a d i n g o r s t u d y h a b i t s (10) F e a r o f f a i l u r e (11) F a t i g u e a f t e r work a n d / o r f a m i l y r e s p o n s i b i l i t i e s (12) C o n c e r n s a b o u t t i m e r e q u i r e d t o c o m p l e t e p o s t - s e c o n d a r y c o u r s e s on a p a r t - t i m e b a s i s (13) L a c k o f s e l f - c o n f i d e n c e Qdvi.si.ng C e n t r e S e r v i c e s S t u d e n t s were a l s o a s k e d t o r e s p o n d t o q u e s t i o n s a s k i n g what a d d i t i o n a l a d v i s i n g s e r v i c e s t h e y would u s e i f t h e s e s e r v i c e s were o f f e r e d . P r o p o s e d s e r v i c e s were: d i a l - a ~ t a p e f o r p r e - r e c o r d e d i n f o r m a t i o n a b o u t Open L e a r n i n g I n s t i t u t e c o u r s e o f f e r i n g s e a c h s e s s i o n ; g r o u p a d v i s i n g s e s s i o n s i n a d v i s i n g c e n t r e s b e f o r e s e s s i o n d e a d l i n e s . An open-ended r e s p o n s e i t e m was a l s o i n c l u d e d . D a t a A n a l y s i s The s t a t i s t i c a l p a c k a g e , LERTAP, was u s e d t o o b t a i n an e s t i m a t e of r e l i a b i l i t y f o r t u t o r and s t u d e n t r e s p o n s e s t o t h e i t e m s on t h e q u e s t i o n n a i r e r e l a t i n g t o a s p e c t s o f a d v i s i n g and a d u l t s t u d e n t c o n c e r n s . The S t a t i s t i c a l P a c k a g e f o r t h e S o c i a l S c i e n c e s (SPSS) was u s e d t o a n a l y z e t h e d a t a . S i n c e t h e a s s u m p t i o n was t h a t a L i k e r t s c a l e r e p r e s e n t e d c o n t i n u o u s q u a s i - i n t e r v a l d a t a , SPSS i n s t r u c t i o n s were t o r e p o r t d e m o g r a p h i c i n f o r m a t i o n , c o u n t c a s e s , r e p o r t 49 • f r e q u e n c i e s and c o m p l e t e t h e a p p r o p r i a t e s t a n d a r d s t a t i s t i c s of mean, and s t a n d a r d d e v i a t i o n i n t h e c a t e g o r i e s o f i m p o r t a n t a s p e c t s o f a c a d e m i c a d v i s i n g and s t u d e n t c o n c e r n s . A one-way ANOVA a t t h e .05 l e v e l o f s t a t i s t i c a l s i g n i f i c a n c e was u s e d . A summary o f r e s p o n s e s t o d e s i r e d a d d i t i o n a l a d v i s i n g s e r v i c e s was c o m p i l e d . LilDi.tat.ions o f t h e S t u d y The s o u r c e o f t h e d a t a f o r t h i s s t u d y was f r o m s t u d e n t s and t u t o r s a t t h e Open L e a r n i n g I n s t i t u t e . The r e s u l t s a r e n o t n e c e s s a r i l y t y p i c a l o f a d u l t s t u d e n t s e n r o l l e d i n d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n p r o g r a m s a t o t h e r p o s t - s e c o n d a r y i n s t i t u t i o n s i n Canada w i t h d i f f e r e n t s t a f f i n g and d e l i v e r y s y s t e m s . The q u e s t i o n n a i r e was g i v e n t o new s t u d e n t s i n o n l y one s e s s i o n , t h e J a n u a r y 1986 s e s s i o n . I f s t u d e n t s who had been e n r o l l e d o v e r a p e r i o d o f t i m e were s u r v e y e d , r e s u l t s m i g h t have been d i f f e r e n t . S t u d e n t s who had i n d i c a t e d on t h e i r r e g i s t r a t i o n f o r m t h a t t h e y were t a k i n g c o u r s e s f o r g e n e r a l i n t e r e s t were n o t i n c l u d e d i n t h e sample. I t i s n o t known whether t h i s g r o u p would have had s i m i l a r p e r c e p t i o n s w i t h r e s p e c t t o t h e r e l a t i v e i m p o r t a n c e o f a s p e c t s o f a d v i s i n g t o t h o s e s t u d e n t s who had i n d i c a t e d t h e y w i s h e d t o p u r s u e an e d u c a t i o n a l g o a l . 50 SUMMARY T h i s c h a p t e r h a s r e v i e w e d t h e d e s i g n o f t h e s t u d y , t h e h y p o t h e s e s and q u e s t i o n s , t h e d e s c r i p t i o n of t h e s e t t i n g and t h e p o p u l a t i o n s , d a t a c o l l e c t i o n and d a t a a n a l y s i s . C h a p t e r F o u r w i l l d e s c r i b e t h e f i n d i n g s o f t h i s s t u d y . CHAPTER 4 F i n d i n g s Q y s s t i g n n a i r e R e t u r n s Of t h e 103 q u e s t i o n n a i r e s m a i l e d t o O.L.I, s t u d e n t s , 2 were r e t u r n e d a s u n d e l i v e r a b l e . Of t h e 101 r e m a i n i n g q u e s t i o n n a i r e s , 74 o r 73% were r e t u r n e d . Of t h e 140 q u e s t i o n n a i r e s m a i l e d t o T r a n s f e r s t u d e n t s , 48 o r 34% were r e t u r n e d . In t e l e p h o n e f o l l o w - u p i n t e r v i e w s w i t h T r a n s f e r s t u d e n t s , s t u d e n t s i n d i c a t e d t h a t t h e y d i d n o t f e e l t h e q u e s t i o n n a i r e a p p l i e d t o them a s t h e y had no need o f t h e O.L.I, a d v i s i n g s e r v i c e s . Df t h e 122 q u e s t i o n n a i r e s t h a t c o n s t i t u t e t h e d a t a f o r t h i s s t u d y , 74 a r e f r o m f e m a l e s t u d e n t s and 48 a r e f r o m male s t u d e n t s . The 6 1 % r e t u r n r a t e f r o m f e m a l e s t u d e n t s c l o s e l y p a r a l l e l s t h e number o f f e m a l e s t u d e n t s i n t h e s a m p l e , w h i c h was 58%. Of t h e 36 q u e s t i o n n a i r e s m a i l e d t o t u t o r s , 25 o r 69% were r e t u r n e d . 11 o r 44% were f r o m male t u t o r s and 14 o r 56% were f r o m f e m a l e t u t o r s . O v e r v i e w o f S t a t i s t i c a l P r o c e d u r e s The c o m p u t e r i z e d s t a t i s t i c a l p a c k a g e , LERTAP, was u s e d t o o b t a i n an e s t i m a t e o f r e l i a b i l i t y f o r t h e q u e s t i o n n a i r e . The Hoyt e s t i m a t e o f r e l i a b i l i t y f o r s t u d e n t s ' r e s p o n s e s was 0.89; t h e Hoyt e s t i m a t e of r e l i a b i l i t y f o r t u t o r s ' r e s p o n s e s was 0.76. F u r t h e r i n f o r m a t i o n was o b t a i n e d t h r o u g h t h e u s e of 51 52 t h e c o m p u t e r i z e d s t a t i s t i c a l p a c k a g e , SPSS-X. The SPSS-X was u s e d t o o b t a i n d e s c r i p t i v e s t a t i s t i c s s u c h a s t h e mean and s t a n d a r d d e v i a t i o n f o r t u t o r and s t u d e n t r e s p o n s e s t o t h e i t e m s on t h e q u e s t i o n n a i r e r e l a t i n g t o a s p e c t s of a d v i s i n g and a d u l t s t u d e n t c o n c e r n s . A d d i t i o n a l i n f o r m a t i o n o b t a i n e d t h r o u g h t h e s u b p r o g r a m , C r o s s t a b s , was number o f c a s e s o b t a i n e d i n e a c h c e l l on t h e L i k e r t s c a l e , and p e r c e n t a g e f r e q u e n c y i n e a c h c e l l . The SPSS-X one-way a n a l y s i s o f v a r i a n c e was u s e d t o compare t h e mean s c o r e s o f s t u d e n t s ' and t u t o r s ' r e s p o n s e s t o t h e q u e s t i o n n a i r e i t e m s f o r a s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e a t t h e cx = .05 l e v e l . The SPSS-X s u b p r o g r a m , Breakdown, was u s e d t o c a l c u l a t e t h e means and a n a l y s i s o f v a r i a n c e f o r s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e s a t t h e cx=.05 l e v e l i n t u t o r s ' r e s p o n s e s on t h e b a s i s o f g e n d e r o r l e n g t h of e x p e r i e n c e . The same p r o c e d u r e was u s e d t o a n a l y z e s t u d e n t r e s p o n s e s on t h e b a s i s of g e n d e r , age and a d v i s o r c o n t a c t . F o l l o w i n g t h e f i n d i n g o f a s i g n i f i c a n t o v e r a l l F -v a l u e , p o s t hoc c o m p a r i s o n s were made u s i n g t h e Newman-Keuls t e s t f o r s i g n i f i c a n c e a t t h e O =.05 l e v e l . HYPOTHESES AND QUESTIONS T h e r e were two n u l l h y p o t h e s e s , t h r e e r e s e a r c h q u e s t i o n s and one s u r v e y q u e s t i o n . T h e s e were: d ¥ B 9 t h e s e s (1) T h e r e a r e no s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e s between a d u l t s t u d e n t and t u t o r p e r c e p t i o n s o f i m p o r t a n t a s p e c t s o f a d v i s i n g . 53 ( 2 ) T h e r e a r e no s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e s between a d u l t s t u d e n t and t u t o r p e r c e p t i o n s o f a d u l t s t u d e n t c o n c e r n s . R e l a t e d R e s e a r c h Q u e s t i o n s (1) A r e t h e r e any d i f f e r e n c e s i n r e s p o n s e s between a d u l t Q.L.I, s t u d e n t s and T r a n s f e r s t u d e n t s t o t h e i t e m s on i m p o r t a n t a s p e c t s o f a d v i s i n g and p e r c e p t i o n s of adult s t u d e n t c o n c e r n s ? ( 2 ) A r e there any d i f f e r e n c e s in responses by adult studsnts on t h e b a s i s o f s t u d e n t s ' g e n d e r , age o r a d v i s o r c o n t a c t on i t e m s r e l a t i n g t o p e r c e p t i o n s o f i m p o r t a n t a s p e c t s o f a d v i s i n g ? A r e there any d i f f e r e n c e s in r e s p o n s e s by s t u d e n t s on t h e b a s i s o f s t u d e n t s ' g e n d e r , age o r a d v i s o r c o n t a c t on i t e m s r e l a t i n g t o p e r c e p t i o n s o f a d u l t s t u d e n t c o n c e r n s ? (3) A r e t h e r e any d i f f e r e n c e s i n r e s p o n s e s by t u t o r s on t h e b a s i s o f t u t o r s ' g e n d e r o r number of y e a r s s e r v e d a s a t u t o r t o t h e i t e m s r e l a t i n g t o p e r c e p t i o n s o f i m p o r t a n t a s p e c t s o f a d v i s i n g and p e r c e p t i o n s o f a d u l t s t u d e n t c o n c e r n s ? Q u e s t i o n What a d d i t i o n a l A d v i s i n g C e n t r e s e r v i c e s would be used by s t u d e n t s i f t h e y were o f f e r e d ? A s g e c t s of A d v i s i n g T a b l e 1 l i s t s t h e t u t o r means, s t a n d a r d d e v i a t i o n s and p e r c e n t a g e f r e q u e n c y i n e a c h c e l l b a s e d on t u t o r r e s p o n s e s t o 54 TABLE 1 TUTOR RESPONSES to IMPORTANT ASPECTS OF ACADEMIC ADVISING Not Very Items important 1 2 3 important 4 5 Mean Mean Rank S.D. Dec i s ion-rraking 8% 0% 24% 36% 32% 3.84 8.5 1.13 Progress 4 8 16 48 24 3.80 10 0.97 Other factors 0 20 32 36 12 3.40 13 0.93 Admin i s t rat ive 4 0 4 40 52 4.36 1 0.93 Clar i fy ing po l i c i e s 8 4 4 40 44 4.08 5.5 1.23 Advocacy 0 4 16 48 32 4.08 5.5 0.83 Relate personally 8 12 24 28 28 3.56 12 1.25 Courses/ career goals 0 12 4 44 40 4.12 4 0.94 Learning opportunities 0 8 8 56 28 4.04 7 0.88 Referral to other 0 0 12 56 32 4.20 3 0.62 Study problems 4 12 24 28 32 3.72 11 1.16 Financial a id 4 4 12 64 16 3.84 8.5 0.93 Course selection 4 0 8 44 44 4.24 2 0.91 55 the t h i r t e e n i tems on a s p e c t s o-f a d v i s i n g . T a b l e 2 l i s t s the a d u l t s tudent means, s t a n d a r d d e v i a t i o n s , and percentage f r e q u e n c y i n each c e l l based on s tudent re sponses t o the t h i r t e e n i tems on a s p e c t s of a d v i s i n g . T a b l e 3 shows the r e s u l t s of one-way ANOVA t e s t s f o r s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e s at the CX =.05 l e v e l between the means of t u t o r s and the means of a d u l t s t u d e n t s on a s p e c t s of a d v i s i n g i t e m s . The one-way ANOVA t e s t showed no s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e s between the t u t o r and s t u d e n t re sponses on p e r c e p t i o n s of impor tant a s p e c t s of a d v i s i n g . T u t o r means ranged from a low of 3 .4 t o a h i g h of 4 . 4 . There were seven out of t h i r t e e n i t ems r a t e d as 4 .0 or h i g h e r by t u t o r s . These seven i tems are l i s t e d below i n descend ing rank o r d e r down t o 4 .0 on the s c a l e s 1) A s s i s t i n g s tudent wi th a d m i n i s t r a t i v e problems 2) H e l p i n g s t u d e n t w i th c o u r s e s e l e c t i o n and s c h e d u l i n g 3) R e f e r r a l t o o t h e r e d u c a t i o n a l i n s t i t u t i o n s 4) H e l p i n g s tudent unders tand the r e l a t i o n s h i p between O . L . I , c o u r s e s and c a r e e r g o a l s or work 5) C l a r i f y i n g i n s t i t u t i o n a l p o l i c i e s and p r o c e d u r e s 5) (Tied) Advocate f o r s tudent w i t h i n the i n s t i t u t i o n 6) Informing s t u d e n t of o t h e r l e a r n i n g o p p o r t u n i t i e s (new c o u r s e s , programs) The s t u d e n t means on the i tems r e l a t i n g to a s p e c t s of a d v i s i n g ranged from a low of 3 . 0 t o a h i g h of 4 . 4 . There were s i x out of t h i r t e e n i t ems r a t e d 4 .0 or h i g h e r by s t u d e n t s . These i tems are l i s t e d below i n descending rank o r d e r t o the 4 .0 l e v e l : 56 TABLE 2 STUDENT RESPONSES to IMPORTANT ASPECTS OF ACADEMIC ADVISING Items Not important 1 2 3 Very important 4 5 Mean Mean Rank S.D. Decision-making 5.8% 1.7% 20.7% 33.1% 38.8% 3.98 7.5 1.10 Progress 8.3 3.3 10.7 33.1 44.6 4.02 e 1.20 Other factors 20.5 22.1 17.2 19.7 20.5 2.98 13 1.44 Admin i s t ra t ive 2.5 5.7 14.8 40.2 36.9 4.03 5 0.99 C lar i fy ing pol ic ies 1.6 4.9 12.3 41.0 40.2 4.13 4 0.93 Advocacy 1.7 4.1 19.8 43.8 30.6 3.98 7.5 0.91 Relate personally 12.3 11.5 23.0 22.1 31.1 3.48 11.5 1.36 Courses/career goals 6.6 9.8 13.1 25.4 45.1 3.93 9 1.25 Learning opportunities 2.5 1.6 9.0 28.7 58.2 4.39 1 0.90 Referral to other 2.5 3.3 13.1 20.5 60.7 4.34 2 0.99 Study problems 10.7 9.9 22.3 28.1 28.9 3.55 10 1.30 Financial aid 13.1 9.0 17.2 37.7 23.0 3.48 11.5 1.30 Course selection 4.1 4.9 12.3 27.9 50.8 4.16 3 1.09 57 TABLE 3 ONE-WAY ANOVA COMPARISONS FOR SIGNIFICANT DIFFERENCES BETWEEN ADULT STUDENTS AND TUTORS ON IMPORTANT ASPECTS OF ACADEMIC ADVISING Mean Items Students Tutors F Prob. Dec i s ion -rrakin g 3.98 3.84 .313 .577 Progress 4.02 3.80 .758 .385 Other factors 2.98 3.40 1.99 .161 Adrninistrat ive 4.03 4.36 2.34 .128 Clar i fy ing po l ic ies 4.13 4.08 .057 .811 Advocacy 3.98 4.08 .286 .594 Relate personally 3.48 3.56 .067 .796 Courses/career goals 3.93 4.12 .530 .468 Learning opportunities 4.39 4.04 3.10 .081 Referral to other 4.34 4.20 .431 .513 Study problems 3.55 3.72 .387 .535 Financial aid 3.48 3.84 1.71 .193 Course selection 4.16 4.24 .107 .745 58 1) Make o t h e r l e a r n i n g o p p o r t u n i t i e s known t o s tudent 2) R e f e r r i n g s t u d e n t to o t h e r e d u c a t i o n a l i n s t i t u t i o n s ' c o u r s e s and programs i f OLI d i d n ' t o f f e r what the s tudent wanted 3) H e l p i n g s tudent w i th c o u r s e s e l e c t i o n and s c h e d u l i n g 4) C l a r i f y i n g i n s t i t u t i o n a l p o l i c i e s and p r o c e d u r e s 5) A s s i s t i n g s tudent wi th a d m i n i s t r a t i v e problems 6) Be ing an advocate w i t h i n the i n s t i t u t i o n A c o r r e l a t i o n a l a n a l y s i s of t u t o r and s tudent r a n k i n g s of impor tant a s p e c t s of academic a d v i s i n g u s i n g the Spearman rho produced a c o r r e l a t i o n c o e f f i c i e n t of 0.69 which was s i g n i f i c a n t a t the .02 l e v e l . O v e r a l l , both s tudent and t u t o r groups r a t e d the t h i r t e e n a d v i s i n g i t ems as i m p o r t a n t . As t h e r e were no s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e s found between the t u t o r and s tudent means on the t h i r t e e n i t e m s , the n u l l h y p o t h e s i s , "there are no s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e s between a d u l t s tudent and t u t o r p e r c e p t i o n s of the impor tant a s p e c t s of academic a d v i s i n g " was a c c e p t e d . A d u l t Student Concerns T a b l e 4 shows the means, s t a n d a r d d e v i a t i o n s and percentage f r e q u e n c y i n each c e l l f o r the t u t o r responses t o the t h i r t e e n i tems on p e r c e p t i o n s of a d u l t s tudent c o n c e r n s . T u t o r means ranged from a low of 2 .3 t o a h i g h of 3.9. T u t o r s r a t e d n i n e out of t h i r t e e n i t ems at 3 . 0 or above. In TABLE 4 TUTOR PERCEPTIONS OF ADULT STUDENT CONCERNS Items Not important Very Important Mean Mean Rank S.D. n 1 2 3 t 4 5 Too old 25 12 .0% 32 .0% 16 .0% 28 .0% 12 .0% 2. 96 10 1. ,27 Opposition 25 32 .0 28 .0 24 .0 12 .0 4 .0 2. 28 13 1. ,17 Isolation 25 4 .0 8 .0 32 .0 36 .0 20 .0 3. 60 4 1. .04 Grade anxiety 25 0 .0 12 .0 32 .0 48 .0 8 .0 3. 52 5 0. .82 Writing/math 24 0 .0 8 .3 20 .8 41 .7 29 .2 3. 92 1 0. ,93 Financing courses 23 8 .7 47 .8 43 .5 0 .0 0 .0 2. 35 12 0. ,65 Time pressures 24 4 .2 12 .5 20 .8 25 .0 37 .5 3. 79 3 1. .22 Multiple resp. 24 0 .0 12 .5 25 .0 25 .0 37 .5 3. 88 2 1. .08 Reading/study 24 4 .2 16 .7 41 .7 33 .3 4. 2 3. 17 7 0. .92 Fear of fa i lure 24 4 .2 25 .0 41 .7 20 .8 8. 3 3. 04 9 1. .00 Fatigue 24 0 .0 16 .7 29 .2 41 .7 12. 5 3. 50 6 0. .93 Length of time 24 12 .5 33 .3 25 .0 25 .0 4. 2 2. 75 11 1. .11 Self-confidence 24 8 .3 20 .8 33 .3 25 .0 12. 5 3. 13 8 1. .15 60 d e s c e n d i n g r a n k o r d e r by mean, t h e f i v e i t e m s r a t e d a t 3.5 o r above were: 1) P o o r w r i t i n g o r math s k i l l s 2) D i f f i c u l t i e s b a l a n c i n g m u l t i p l e r e s p o n s i b i l i t i e s and p r i o r i t i e s 3) Time p r e s s u r e s 4) I s o l a t i o n i . e . no c o n t a c t w i t h o t h e r s t u d e n t s i n c o u r s e ( s ) 5) A n x i e t y a b o u t g r a d e s T a b l e 5 l i s t s t h e same a n a l y s i s f o r s t u d e n t r e s p o n s e s t o t h e t h i r t e e n i t e m s on p e r c e p t i o n s o f a d u l t s t u d e n t c o n c e r n s . S t u d e n t means r a n g e d f r o m a low o f 1.7 t o a h i g h of 4.1. S t u d e n t means were h i g h e r t h a n 3.0 on f i v e i t e m s : 1 ) Time p r e s s u r e s 2) F a t i g u e a f t e r work a n d / o r f a m i l y r e s p o n s i b i l i t i e s 3) D i f f i c u l t i e s b a l a n c i n g m u l t i p l e r e s p o n s i b i l i t i e s and s e t t i n g p r i o r i t i e s 4) C o n c e r n s a b o u t l e n g t h o f t i m e r e q u i r e d t o c o m p l e t e c o u r s e s on a p a r t - t i m e b a s i s 5) ( T i e d ) A n x i e t y a b o u t g r a d e s A c o r r e l a t i o n a l a n a l y s i s o f t u t o r and s t u d e n t r a n k i n g s o f a d u l t s t u d e n t c o n c e r n s u s i n g t h e Spearman r h o p r o d u c e d a c o r r e l a t i o n c o e f f i c i e n t o f 0.5B wh i c h was s i g n i f i c a n t a t t h e .05 l e v e l . 61 TABLE 5 STUDENT RESPONSES to ADULT STUDENT CONCERNS Items Not important 1 2 3 Very important 4 5 Mean Mean Rank S.D. Too old 66.9% 12.4% 7.4% 9.9% 3.3% 1.70 12 1.17 Opposition 66.9 12.4 10.7 7.4 2.5 1.66 13 1.09 Isolation 29.8 9.9 28.1 20.7 11.6 2.74 - 7 1.38 Grade anxiety 8.3 9.9 28.9 31.4 21.5 3.48 4.5 1.18 Writing/math 29.8 19.8 19.0 19.0 12.4 2.64 :8 1.40 Financing courses 37.2 14.0 19.0 17.4 12.4 2.54 10 1.45 Time pressures 4.1 7.4 16.5 23.1 48.8 4.05 1 1.15 Multiple resp. 7.4 13.2 26.4 28.9 24.0 3.49 3 1.21 Reading/study 29.8 20.7 20.7 19.0 9.9 2.59 9 1.35 Fear of fa i lure 18.2 24.8 21.5 17.4 18.2 2.93 6- 1.37 Fatigue 9.1 13.2 14.0 31.4 32.2 3.64 2 1.30 Length of time 13,3 10.0 _ 19.2 30.8 26.7 3.48 4.5 1.34 Self-conf idence 33.1 25.6 21.5 13.2 6.6 2.35 11 1.25 62 T a b l e 6 l i s t s t h e r e s u l t s of t h e one-way ANOVA t e s t s f o r s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e s a t t h e Cx = .05 l e v e l between t u t o r and s t u d e n t means. S i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e s were f o u n d f o r t h e f o l l o w i n g s e v e n i t e m s : 1) F e a r t h a t I may be t o o o l d t o go back t o s c h o o l ( s i g n i f i c a n c e a t t h e .00001 l e v e l ) . 2) O p p o s i t i o n f r o m f a m i l y members 3) I s o l a t i o n i . e . no c o n t a c t w i t h o t h e r s t u d e n t s i n c o u r s e ( s ) 4) P o o r w r i t i n g o r math s k i l l s 5) L a c k o f e f f i c i e n t r e a d i n g o r s t u d y h a b i t s 6) C o n c e r n s a b o u t l e n g t h o f t i m e r e q u i r e d t o c o m p l e t e c o u r s e s on a p a r t - t i m e b a s i s 7) L a c k of s e l f - c o n f i d e n c e I t s h o u l d be n o t e d t h a t on t h e above i t e m s 3 - 6 , t h a t a l t h o u g h t h e r e were s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e s between t u t o r and s t u d e n t means, t h a t t h e s e i t e m s were o f r e a l c o n c e r n t o b o t h s t u d e n t s and t u t o r s . Means f o r t u t o r s and s t u d e n t s were a b o v e 2.5 on t h e s e i t e m s . The d i f f e r e n c e s f o u n d were i n t h e d e g r e e of c o n c e r n . F i g u r e 2 g r a p h s t h e r e s u l t s o f t h e c o m p a r i s o n s f o r s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e s between a d u l t s t u d e n t and t u t o r s on a d u l t s t u d e n t c o n c e r n s . On t h e s e v e n i t e m s s h o w i n g s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e s , t u t o r s c o n s i s t e n t l y r a t e d a d u l t s t u d e n t c o n c e r n s h i g h e r on t h e s c a l e t h a n d i d s t u d e n t s w i t h t h e e x c e p t i o n o f one i t e m . On t h e i t e m , " c o n c e r n s a b o u t 63 TABLE 6 ONE-WAY ANOVA COMPARISONS FOR SIGNIFICANT DIFFERENCES BETWEEN ADULT STUDENTS AND TUTORS ON ADULT STUDENT CONCERNS Mean Items Students Tutors F Prob. Too old 1.70 2.96 23.33 .00001 Opposition 1.66 2.28 6.49 .012 Isolation 2.74 3.60 8.58 .004 Grade anxiety 3.48 3.52 .027 .870 Writing/math 2.64 3.92 18.13 .00001 Financing courses 2.54 2.35 .376 .540 Time pressures 4.05 3.79 .984 .323 Multiple resp. 3.49 3.88 2.14 .146 Reading/study 2.59 3.17 4.04 .046 Fear of fa i lure 2.93 3.04 .155 .695 Fatigue 3.64 3.50 .268 .606 Length of time 3.48 2.75 6.16 .014 Self-confidence 2.35 3.13 7.95 .006 Adult Concerns 6 4 Tutors Students 15--1.0 •-05 •• 0.0 1 i 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 2 3 A 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 Items Figure 2 65 l e n g t h of t ime r e q u i r e d to complete c o u r s e s on a p a r t - t i m e b a s i s " , the s t u d e n t s ' mean was s i g n i f i c a n t l y h i g h e r than the t u t o r s ' mean. T h e r e f o r e , the n u l l h y p o t h e s i s , "there a r e no s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e s between s tudent and t u t o r p e r c e p t i o n s of a d u l t s t u d e n t concerns" was r e j e c t e d f o r seven i tems and accepted f o r s i x i t e m s . R e l a t e d Research Q u e s t i o n s A) S tudent s The r e l a t e d r e s e a r c h q u e s t i o n s f o r s t u d e n t s were: (1) Are t h e r e any s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e s i n re sponses between O . L . I . s t u d e n t s and T r a n s f e r s t u d e n t s t o the i tems on impor tant a s p e c t s of a d v i s i n g and p e r c e p t i o n s of a d u l t s tudent c o n c e r n s ? (2) Are t h e r e any d i f f e r e n c e s i n responses by s t u d e n t s on the b a s i s of s t u d e n t s ' gender , age or on the b a s i s of a d v i s o r c o n t a c t on i tems r e l a t i n g t o p e r c e p t i o n s of impor tant a s p e c t s of a d v i s i n g ? <3) Are t h e r e any d i f f e r e n c e s i n re sponses by s t u d e n t s on the b a s i s of s t u d e n t s ' gender , age, or a d v i s o r c o n t a c t on i tems r e l a t i n g t o p e r c e p t i o n s of a d u l t s tudent c o n c e r n s ? T a b l e 7 and T a b l e 8 l i s t the r e s u l t s of one-way ANOVA comparisons f o r s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e s between the means of s t u d e n t s i n t e n d i n g t o pursue an O . L . I , degree ( O . L . I , s t u d e n t s , n=74) and the means of s t u d e n t s t a k i n g a c o u r s e wi th Open L e a r n i n g I n s t i t u t e f o r the purpose of t r a n s f e r r i n g 66 TABLE 7 ONE-WAY ANOVA COMPARISONS FOR SIGNIFICANT DIFFERENCES BETWEEN O . L . I . STUDENTS AND TRANSFER STUDENTS ON IMPORTANT ASPECTS OF ADVISING Mean Items O . L . I . Students Transfer Students F Prob Decis ion-rnaking 3.93 4.04 .291 .591 Progress 4.08 3.94 .417 .520 Other Factors 2.74 3.33 5.05 .026 Adiriin i s trat ive 4.00 4.08 .206 .651 Clar i fy ing pol ic ies 4.04 4.27 1.81 .181 Advocacy 3.86 4.15 2.86 .094 Relate personally 3.32 3.73 2.61 .109 Courses/career goals 3.81 4.10 1.60 .208 Learning opportunities 4.32 4.48 .853 .358 Referral to other 4.30 4.40 .285 .594 Study problems 3.35 3.85 4.38 .038 Financial a id 3.27 3.81 5.24 .024 Course selection 4.08 4.29 1.10 .297 67 TABLE 8 ONE-WAY ANOVA COMPARISONS FOR SIGNIFICANT DIFFERENCES BETWEEN O . L . I . STUDENTS AND TRANSFER STUDENTS ON ADULT STUDENT CONCERNS Mean Items O . L . I . Students Transfer Students F Prob Too old 1.64 1.81 .633 .428 Opposition 1.55 1.83 1.85 .177 Isolation 2.62 2.94 1.50 .224 Grade anxiety 3.47 3.49 .005 .941 Writing/math 2.55 2.79 .794 .375 Financing courses 2.39 2.77 1.93 .167 Time pressures 4.19 3.83 2.83 .095 Multiple resp. 3.62 3.28 2.38 .125 Reading/study 2.53 2.68 .370 .544 Fear of fa i lure 2.86 3.02 .370 .544 Fatigue 3.59 3.72 .279 .598 Length of time 3.63 3.23 2.53 .115 Self-conf idence 2.32 2.38 .063 .803 68 i t t o a degree program e l sewhere ( T r a n s f e r s t u d e n t s n~47) i n response to the i tems on i m p o r t a n t a s p e c t s of a d v i s i n g and a d u l t s tudent c o n c e r n s . The one-way ANOVA t e s t s showed s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e s between the means of O . L . I , s t u d e n t s and T r a n s f e r s t u d e n t s on t h r e e a d v i s i n g i t e m s . These i tems weres be ing aware of o ther f a c t o r s i n my l i f e ; i n f o r m i n g me about f i n a n c i a l a i d ; h e l p i n g me wi th s tudy prob lems . T r a n s f e r s tudent means were h i g h e r than O . L . I , s t u d e n t s ' means on these i t ems . No s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e s were found between Q . L . I , s tudent and T r a n s f e r s tudent re sponses t o p e r c e p t i o n s of a d u l t s tudent c o n c e r n s . T a b l e 9 l i s t s the r e s u l t s of s tudent re sponses by gender to impor tant a s p e c t s of a d v i s i n g . There were s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e s between the means of male s t u d e n t s and the means of female s t u d e n t s on s i x i t e m s . Female s t u d e n t s ' means were h i g h e r than male s t u d e n t s ' means on the f o l l o w i n g i t ems: 1) C l a r i f y i n g i n s t i t u t i o n a l p o l i c i e s and p r o c e d u r e s 2) Be ing my advocate w i t h i n the i n s t i t u t i o n e . g . a s s i s t i n g me with grounds f o r e x t e n s i o n s 3) H e l p i n g me unders tand the r e l a t i o n s h i p between my c o u r s e s and c a r e e r g o a l s , or work 4) Making l e a r n i n g o p p o r t u n i t i e s known to me ( e . g . new c o u r s e s , programs) 5) R e f e r r i n g me t o o t h e r e d u c a t i o n a l i n s t i t u t i o n s ' c o u r s e s and programs i f O . L . I , d o e s n ' t o f f e r what I want 6) H e l p i n g me with s p e c i f i c c o u r s e s e l e c t i o n and s c h e d u l i n g 69 TABLE 9 COMPARISONS OF STUDENT RESPONSES, BY GENDER , TO IMPORTANT ASPECTS OF ACADEMIC ADVISING Male Female Items Mean S.D. Mean S.D. F Prob Decision-making 3.87 (1.30) 4.04 (0.94) .681 .411 Progress 4.02 (1.33) 4.03 (1.12) .001 .980 Other factors 2.77 (1.37) 3.11 (1.48) 1.61 .208 Admin is trat ive 3.88 (1.06) 4.14 (0.93) 2.04 .156 Clarifying policies 3.85 (1.03) 4.31 (0.81) 7.45 .007 Advocacy 3.69 (0.99) 4.16 (0.80) 8.49 .004 Relate personally 3.40 (1.28) 3.54 (1.42) .327 .569 Courses/career goals 3.50 (1.34) 4.20 (1.12) 9.80 .002 Learning opportunities . 4.13 (1.16) 4.55 (0.64) 6.88 .010 Referral to other 4.06 (1.17) 4.51 (0.82) 6.27 .014 Study problems 3.44 (1.38) 3.62 (1.24) .549 .460 Financial aid 3.21 (1.35) 3.66 (1.24) 3.63 .059 Course selection 3.92 (1.23) 4.32 (0.95) 4.21 .042 70 Table 10 l i s t s comparisons o-f student responses by age to important aspects of advising. Dn nine out of thirteen items, student means for those students aged 40 and above tend to be lower than student means in the age-range below 40. One-way ANOVA comparison of student means in response to items on perceptions of important aspects of advising by the variable, advisor contact, showed a s i g n i f i c a n t difference between means on two itemss helping me with study problems and informing me about f i n a n c i a l aid. A post-hoc analysis of the means for the item, helping me with study problems revealed that there was a s i g n i f i c a n t difference at the .05 level between the means of students over f o r t y years of age and the means of those students under the age of for t y . The means of students under the age of fo r t y were s i g n i f i c a n t l y higher than the means of students over the age of fo r t y on the item, helping me with study problems. The same analysis of the means for the item, informing me about f i n a n c i a l a i d , revealed that there was a s i g n i f i c a n t difference at the .05 level between the means of students in the age range, twenty-five to t h i r t y - f i v e years of age and the means of students in the age-range of fo r t y to f o r t y -nine years of age. The means of the students aged twenty-f i v e to t h i r t y - f i v e were s i g n i f i c a n t l y higher on the item, informing me about f i n a n c i a l a i d , than those i n the age group fo r t y to forty-nine years of age. TABLE 10 COMPARISON OF STUDENT RESPONSES, BY AGE, TO IMPORTANT ASPECTS OF ADVISING 25 - 29 years 30 - 34 years 35 - 39 years 40 - 44 years 45 - 49 years ( n = 44 ) ( n = 30 ) ( n = 31 ) ( n = 12 ) ( n = 5 ) Items Mean S.D. Mean S.D. Mean S.D. Mean S.D. Mean S.D. F Prob. Dec i s ion-making 3.95 (1.10) 3.93 (1.11) 4.07 (0.98) 4.25 (1.22) 3.20 (1.30) .885 .475 Progress 4.20 (0.95) 4.23 (1.30) 3.90 (1.24) 3.50 (1.45) 3.20 (1.30) 1 .76 .141 Other factors 2.98 (1.45) 2.77 (1.33) 2.97 (1.45) 3.08 (1.56) 4.00 (1.73) .802 .526 Administrat ive 4.25 (1.08) 3.77 (0.94) 4.03 (0.98) 3.92 (0.79) 4.00 (0.71) 1 .13 .348 Clar i fy ing pol ic ies 4.27 (0.95) 3.97 (1.03) 4.16 (0.82) 4.00 (0.95) 4.00 (0.71) .578 .679 Advocacy 3.95 (0.89) 3.97 (0.89) 4.00 (0.98) 4.08 (0.79) 3.80 (1.30) .098 .983 Relate personally 3.57 (1.34) 3.57 (1.28) 3.55 (1.50) 2.75 (1.14) 3.60 (1.67) .966 .429 Courses/career goals 3.84 (1.06) 3.97 (1.38) 4.06 (1.36) 3.58 (1.38) 4.40 (1.34) .547 .701 Learning opportunities 4.41 (0.84) 4.50 (0.97) 4.29 (1.01) 4.33 (0.78) 4.20 (0.84) .270 .897 Referral to other 4.41 (0.92) 4.33 (1.21) 4.26 (0.97) 4.42 (0.67) 4.00 (1.22) .264 .901 Study problems 3.57 (1.44) 3.67 (1.12) 3.83 (1.05) 2.50 (1.31) 3.40 (1.52) 2 .52 .045 Financial aid 3.75 (1.22) 3.53 (1.20) 3.55 (1.29) 2.67 (1.50) 2.40 (1.34) 2 .69 .035 Course selection 4.39 (0.92) 4.07 (1.14) 4.19 (1.05) 3.50 (1.38) 4.20 (1.30) 1 .69 .158 - J 72 T a b l e 11 l i s t s c o m p a r i s o n s o-f s t u d e n t p e r c e p t i o n s of i m p o r t a n t a s p e c t s o f a c a d e m i c a d v i s i n g by a d v i s o r c o n t a c t . No s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e s between means were f o u n d . One-way ANOVA c o m p a r i s o n s of s t u d e n t r e s p o n s e s by g e n d e r t o i t e m s on p e r c e p t i o n s of a d u l t s t u d e n t c o n c e r n s showed s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e s a t t h e cx = . 05 l e v e l on s e v e n i t e m s . ( T a b l e 1 2 ) . F e m a l e s t u d e n t s means were h i g h e r t h a n male s t u d e n t s means on t h e f o l l o w i n g i t e m s ; 1) O p p o s i t i o n f r o m f a m i l y members 2) I s o l a t i o n i . e . no c o n t a c t w i t h o t h e r s t u d e n t s i n c o u r s e ( s ) 3) A n x i e t y a b o u t g r a d e s 4) P o o r w r i t i n g o r math s k i l l s 5) P r o b l e m s f i n a n c i n g c o u r s e s 6) F e a r o f f a i l u r e 7) L a c k o f s e l f - c o n f i d e n c e F i g u r e 3 shows t h e r e s u l t s o f t h e c o m p a r i s o n of a d u l t s t u d e n t s ' c o n c e r n s , by g e n d e r , p l o t t e d a s a l i n e g r a p h . T a b l e 13 l i s t s c o m p a r i s o n o f a d u l t s t u d e n t means by age i n r e s p o n s e t o p e r c e p t i o n s o f a d u l t s t u d e n t c o n c e r n s . On e i g h t o u t o f t h i r t e e n i t e m s , s t u d e n t means i n t h e a g e - r a n g e 40-44 were h i g h e r t h a n s t u d e n t means f o r t h e same i t e m s where t h e a g e - r a n g e was l e s s t h a n 40. T a b l e 14 l i s t s c o m p a r i s o n s of a d u l t s t u d e n t s ' c o n c e r n s , by a d v i s o r c o n t a c t . A s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e between means was f o u n d on two i t e m s ; f e a r t h a t I may be t o o o l d t o go back t o s c h o o l and l a c k o f 73 TABLE 11 COMPARISONS OF STUDENTS' PERCEPTIONS OF IMPORTANT ASPECTS OF ACADEMIC ADVISING BY ADVISOR CONTACT Items Contact Mean S.D. No Contact Mean S.D. F Prob. Dec i s ion-making 3.97 (1.03) 3.98 (1.20) .000 .984 Progress 4.05 (1.12) 3.98 (1.34) .109 .742 Other factors 2.92 (1.43) 3.07 (1.47) .285 .595 Aa^ rtin i s trat ive 3.99 (0.99) 4.11 (0.98) .447 .505 Clar i fy ing po l ic ies 4.14 (0.90) 4.11 (0.98) .033 .856 Advocacy 3.92 (0.82) 4.07 (0.82) .723 .397 Relate personally 3.47 (1.40) 3.51 (1.31) .029 .865 Courses/career goals 3.88 (1.27) 4.00 (1.24) .245 .621 Learning opportunities 4.34 (0.90) 4.47 (0.92) .576 .449 Referral to other 4.31 (0.96) 4.38 (1.05) .125 .724 Study problems 3.52 (1.33) 3.59 (1.24) .084 .772 Financial aid 3.35 (1.32) 3.71 (1.25) 2.21 .140 Course selection 4.19 (1.09) 4.11 (1.09) .168 .683 74 TABLE 12 A COMPARISON OF ADULT STUDENTS' CONCERNS, BY GENDER Male Female Items Mean S.D. Mean S.D. F Prob. Too old 1.50 (0.97) 1.84 (1.27) 2.43 .122 Opposition 1.42 (0.85) 1.82 (1.21) 4.09 .045 Isolation 2.40 (1.27) 2.97 (1.41) 5.22 .024 Grade anxiety 3.06 (1.17) 3.75 (1.10) 10.80 .001 Writing/math 2.23 (1.28) 2.92 (1.42) 7.36 .008 Financing courses 2.02 (1.33) 2.88 (1-43) 10.93 .001 Time pressures 3.96 (1.33) 4.11 (1.02) .496 .483 Multiple resp. 3.35 (1.22) 3.58 (1.19). .976 .325 Reading/study 2.38 (1.40) 2.73 (1.30) 1.97 .163 Fear of fa i lure 2.46 (1.27) 3.23 (1.36) 9.89 .002 Fatigue 3.42 (1.43) 3.79 (1.20) 2.47 .119 Length of time 3.66 (1.36) 3.36 (1.33) 1.47 .228 Self-confidence 2.02 (1.12) ' 2.56 (1.29) 5.63 .019 Adult Concerns Figure 3 TABLE 13 COMPARISON OF STUDENT RESPONSES, BY AGE, TO ADULT STUDENTS' CONCERNS 25 29 years 30 i - 34 years 35 39 years 40 I - 44 years 45 i — 49 years ( n = 43 ) ( n = 30 ) ( n = 31 ) ( n = 12 ) ( n = 5 ) Items Mean S. D. Mean S. D. Mean S.D. Mean S. D. Mean S .D. F Prob. Too old 1. 40 (0. 85) 1. 87 (1. 25) 1. 68 (1.14) 2. 50 (1. 78) 1. 60 (0 .55) 2.42 .053 Opposition 1. 47 (1. 01) 1. 67 (1. 12) 1. 77 (1.18) 1. 83 (1. 03) 2. 20 (1 .30) .803 .525 Isolation 2. 56 (1. 24) 2. 60 (1. 40) 2. 90 (1.56) 3. 08 (1. 31) 3. 40 (1 .52) .837 .504 Grade anxiety 3. 47 (1. 08) 3. 37 (1. 33) 3. 74 (1.18) 3. 25 (1. 14) 3. 20 (1 .30) .633 .640 Writing/math 2. 72 (1. 45) 2. 47 (1. 38) 2. 74 (1.39) 2. 92 (1- 51) 1. 80 (0 .84) .751 .559 Financing courses 2. 58 (1. 45) 2. 53 (1. 46) 2. 55 (1.41) 2. 83 (1. 75) 1. 40 (0 .55) .902 .465 Time pressures 3. 95 (1. 21) 4. 07 (1. 14) 4. 06 (1.03) 4. 25 (1. 14) 4. 20 (1 .79) .184 .946 Multiple resp. 3. 42 (1. 14) 3. 50 (1. 41) 3. 65 (1.02) 3. 33 (1. 37) 3. 40 (1 .52) .219 .928 Reading/study 2. 60 (1. 43) 2. 60 (1. 40) 2. 77 (1.33) 2. 17 (1. 03) 2. 20 (1 .30) .535 .710 Fear of fa i lure 2. 93 (1. 16) 2. 90 (1. 63) 3. 16 (1.27) 2. 50 (1. 73) 2. 60 (1 .34) .581 .677 Fatigue 3. 58 (1. 24) 3. 40 (1. 50) 3. 87 (1.20) 3. 75 (1. 36) 4. 00 (1 .22) .628 .643 Length of time 3. 33 (1. 51) 3. 52 (1. 21) 3. 55 (1.31) 3. 75 (1. 14) 3. 40 (1 .52) .287 .886 Self-conf idence 2. 21 (1. 10) 2. 57 (1. 43) 2. 42 (1.26) 2. 33 (1. 44) 1. 80 (0 .84) .620 .649 77 TABLE 14 COMPARISONS OF ADULT STUDENTS' CONCERNS, BY ADVISOR CONTACT Items Contact Mean S.D. No Contact Mean S.D. F Prob. Too old 1.51 (1.01) 2.05 (1.35) 6.24 .014 Opposition 1.70 (1.11) 1.59 (1.06) .284 .595 Isolation 2.74 (1.38) 2.75 (1.40) .001 .970 Grade anxiety 3.47 (1.17) 3.50 (1.21) .021 .885 Writing/math 2.65 (1.35) 2.64 (1.51) .002 .961 Financing courses 2.45 (1.43) 2.68 (1.49) .687 .409 Time pressures 3.99 (1.20) 4.16 (1.08) .621 .432 Multiple resp. 3.44 (1.18) 3.57 (1.26) .307 .580 Reading/study 2.45 (1.33) 2.82 (1.37) 2.04 .155 Fear of fa i lure 2.84 (1.31) 3.07 (1.48) .744 .390 Fatigue 3.62 (1.33) 3.68 (1.27) .056 .814 Length of time 3.48 (1.34) 3.47 (1.35) .004 .952 Self-confidence 2.17 (1.19) 2.66 (1.31) 4.43 .037 78 s e l f - c o n f i d e n c e . The means of s t u d e n t s who had c o n t a c t w i t h an a d v i s o r were l o w e r on t h e s e i t e m s t h a n t h e means o f s t u d e n t s who had no c o n t a c t . B) T u t o r s The r e l a t e d r e s e a r c h q u e s t i o n was, " A r e t h e r e any d i f f e r e n c e s i n r e s p o n s e s by t u t o r s on t h e b a s i s o f t u t o r s ' g e n d e r o r number o f y e a r s s e r v e d a s a t u t o r t o t h e i t e m s r e l a t i n g t o p e r c e p t i o n s of i m p o r t a n t a s p e c t s o f a d v i s i n g and t o p e r c e p t i o n s o f a d u l t s t u d e n t c o n c e r n s ? " One-way a n a l y s i s o f v a r i a n c e t e s t s of t u t o r means by g e n d e r ( T a b l e 15) and by y e a r s of e x p e r i e n c e ( T a b l e 16) f a i l e d t o show any s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e s a t t h e C* =.05 l e v e l w i t h r e g a r d t o t h e i t e m s on p e r c e p t i o n s o f i m p o r t a n t a s p e c t s of a d v i s i n g . A one-way ANOVA c o m p a r i s o n o f t u t o r means by g e n d e r on p e r c e p t i o n s of a d u l t s t u d e n t c o n c e r n s y i e l d e d a s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e on one i t e m , i s o l a t i o n . The f e m a l e t u t o r mean was s i g n i f i c a n t l y h i g h e r t h a n t h e male t u t o r mean on t h i s i t e m . ( T a b l e 17). T a b l e 18 l i s t s t h e r e s u l t s of t h e breakdown of t u t o r means by y e a r s o f e x p e r i e n c e i n r e s p o n s e t o i t e m s on p e r c e p t i o n s o f a d u l t s t u d e n t c o n c e r n s . On t e n i t e m s o u t o f t h i r t e e n , means f o r t u t o r s w i t h s i x + y e a r s of e x p e r i e n c e were l o w e r t h a n means f o r t u t o r s w i t h one t o two y e a r s o f e x p e r i e n c e . A one-way anova c o m p a r i s o n o f t u t o r p e r c e p t i o n s , by y e a r s o f e x p e r i e n c e , o f a d u l t s t u d e n t c o n c e r n s y i e l d e d a s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e on t h e i t e m , i s o l a t i o n . A p o s t hoc a n a l y s i s o f 79 TABLE 15 COMPARISONS OF TUTOR PERCEPTIONS, BY GENDER, OF IMPORTANT ASPECTS OF ACADEMIC ADVISING Male Female Items Mean S.D. Mean S.D. F Prob. Decis ion-making 3.91 (1.22) 3.79 (1.12) .069 .795 Progress 3.55 (1.13) 4.00 (0.96) 1.18 .288 Other factors 3.45 (0.69) 3.36 (1.15) .061 .807 Administrative 4.45 (0.52) 4.29 (1.14) .206 .654 Clar i fy ing pol ic ies 3.82 (1.25) 4.29 (1.14) .953 .339 Advocacy 3.91 (0.70) 4.21 (0.89) .864 .362 Relate personally 3.45 (0.93) 3.64 (1.50) .132 .719 Courses/career goals 4.09 (0.54) 4.14 (1.23) .017 .898 Learning opportunities 3.91 (0.94) 4.14 (0.77) .466 .502 Referral to other 4.18 (0.75) 4.21 (0.58) . .015 .904 Study problems 3.64 (1.29) 3.79 (1.12) .096 .759 Financial aid 3.82 (0.60) 3.86 (1.10) .011 .917 Course selection 4.27 (0.65) 4.21 (1.12) . .024 .879 TABLE 16 COMPARISON OF TUTOR PERCEPTIONS, BY YEARS OF EXPERIENCE, OF IMPORTANT ASPECTS OF ACADEMIC ADVISING Years of Experience 0 - 2 years 3 - 5 years 6 + years ( n = 3 ) ( n : = 12 ) ( n = 10 ) Items Mean S.D. Mean S.D. Mean S.D. F Prob tecision-making 4.00 (1.00) 4.17 (0.83) 3.40 (1.43) 1.29 .295 Progress 4.67 (0.58) 4.00 (0.85) 3.30 (1.16) 2.77 .084 Other factors 4.00 (1.00) 3.58 (1.08) 3.00 (0.67) 1.79 .190 Administrative 4.00 (1.00) 4.33 (1.15) 4.50 (0.53) .341 .715 Clar i fy ing pol ic ies 4.33 (1.15) 4.17 (1.11) 3.90 (1.37) .201 .820 Advocacy 4.33 (0.58) 3.92 (0.90) 4.20 (0.79) .476 .628 Relate personally 3.67 (2.31) 3.17 (1.19) 4.00 (0.94) 1.23 .313 Courses/career goals 4.67 (0.58) 3.75 (1.22) 4.40 (0.52) 1.89 .174 Learning opportunities 4.00 (0.00) 4.08 (0.79) 4.00 (1.05) .028 .972 Referral to other 3.67 (0.58) 4.42 (0.51) 4.10 (0.74) 1.97 .164 Study problems 3.67 • (1.15) 4.08 (1.08) 3.30 (1.25) 1.24 .308 Financial aid 3.67 (1.53) 3.92 (1.00) 3.80 (0.63) .101 .904 Course selection 4.67 (0.58) 3.92 (1.08) 4.50 (0.71) 1.51 .244 81 TABLE 17 A COMPARISON OF TUTOR PERCEPTIONS, BY GENDER, OF ADULT STUDENT CONCERNS Male Female Items Mean S.D. Mean S.D. F Prob. Too old 2.73 (1.19) 3.14 (1.35) .646 .430 Opposition 2.64 (1.36) 2.00 (0.96) 1.88 .184 Isolation 3.00 (1.10) 4.07 (0.73) 8.59 .008 Grade anxiety 3.27 (0.65) 3.71 (0.91) 1.84 .189 Writing/math 4.20 (0.92) 3.71 (0.91) 1.64 .214 Financing courses 2.36' (0.81) 2.33 (0.49) .012 .914 Time pressures 3.55 (1.21) 4.00 (1.22) .828 .373 Multiple resp. 3.82 (1.08) 3.92 (1.12) .054 .818 Reading/study 3.55 (0.52) 2.85 (1.07) 3.90 .061 Fear of fa i lure 2.82 (0.98) 3.23 (1.01) 1.02 .324 Fatigue 3.55 "(1.04) 3.46 (0.88) .046 .832 Length of time 2.91 (1.30) 2.62 (0.96) .404 .532 Self-conf idence 3.00 (1.34) 3.23 (1.01) .230 .636 TABLE 18 COMPARISON OF TUTOR PERCEPTIONS, BY YEARS OF EXPERIENCE, OF ADULT STUDENT CONCERNS Years of Experience Items (n) 0 - 2 years Mean S.D. 3 (n) - 5 years Mean S.D. (n) 6 + years Mean S.D. F Prob. Too old (3) 4.00 (0.00) (12) 3.17 (1.40) (10) 2.40 (1.08) 2.36 .117 Opposition (3) 3.00 (0.00) (12) 2.33 (1.23) (10) 2.00 (1.25) .851 .440 Isolation (3) 4.00 (1.00) (12) 4.17 (0.72) (10) 2.80 (0.92) 7.73 .003 Grade anxiety (3) 4.33 (0.58) (12) 3.33 (0.89) (10) 3.50 (0.71) 1.91 .171 Writing/math (3) 4.33 (0.58) (12) 3.75 (1.06) ( 9) 4.00 (0.87) .509 .608 Financing courses (2) 2.50 (0.71) (11) 2.36 (0.50) (10) 2.30 (0.82) .079 .925 Time pressures (3) 4.33 (0.58) (11) 3.64 (1.43) (10) 3.80 (1.14) .367 .697 Multiple resp. (3) 4.33 (1.15) (11) 3.55 (1.04) (10) 4.10 (1.10) 1.01 .382 Reading/study^ (3) 2.33 (1.15) ( ID 3.27 (0.90) (10) 3.30 (0.82) 1.48 .251 Fear of fa i lure (3) 3.33 (1.53) (11) 2.64 (0.67) (10) 3.40 (1.08) 1.79 .191 Fatigue (3) 3.67 (1.53) (11) 3.36 (0.67) (10) 3.60 (1.08) .208 .814 Length of time (3) 3.33 (1.15) (11) 2.27 (0.90) (10) 3.10 (1.20) 2.10 .147 Self-confidence (3) 3.33 (0.58) (11) 2.64 (0.92) (10) 3.60 (1.35) 2.05 .153 oo 83 t h e means f o r t h e i t e m , i s o l a t i o n , r e v e a l e d that t h e r e was a s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e a t t h e .05 l e v e l between t h e means of t u t o r s w i t h up t o two y e a r s o f e x p e r i e n c e and t u t o r s w i t h t h r e e t o f i v e y e a r s o f e x p e r i e n c e v e r s u s t h e mean o f t u t o r s w i t h s i x + y e a r s o f e x p e r i e n c e . The mean of t u t o r s w i t h s i x + y e a r s o f e x p e r i e n c e was s i g n i f i c a n t l y l o w e r t h a n o t h e r t u t o r s ' means on t h i s i t e m . Q u e s t i o n What a d d i t i o n a l A d v i s i n g C e n t r e s e r v i c e s would be u s e d by s t u d e n t s i f t h e y were o f f e r e d ? F o r t y - f i v e s t u d e n t s (37%) i n d i c a t e d t h a t t h e y would u s e a t e l e p h o n e a u d i o t a p e s e r v i c e ( d i a l - a - t a p e ) i n o r d e r t o a c c e s s i n f o r m a t i o n a b o u t Open L e a r n i n g I n s t i t u t e c o u r s e o f f e r i n g s e a c h s e s s i o n . T h i r t y - t w o s t u d e n t s (26%) i n d i c a t e d t h a t t h e y would a t t e n d g r o u p a d v i s i n g s e s s i o n s i n a d v i s i n g c e n t r e s . In r e s p o n s e t o t h e open-ended i t e m " o t h e r " , s t u d e n t s were i n t e r e s t e d i n t h e f o l l o w i n g s e r v i c e s s 1) C o n t a c t w i t h o t h e r s t u d e n t s t a k i n g t h e same c o u r s e (n=3) 2) O n e - t o - o n e s u p p o r t s e r v i c e / p e r s o n a l c o n t a c t w i t h t h e a d v i s o r on a r e g u l a r b a s i s (n=3) 3) A p t i t u d e and i n t e r e s t t e s t i n g (n=2) 4) A s s i s t a n c e i n exam p r e p a r a t i o n (n=2) S t u d e n t s a l s o p r o f f e r e d comments r e l a t e d t o c o u r s e d e s i g n and t u t o r s . T h e s e weres 1) V i d e o t a p e s t o h e l p w i t h c o n c e p t u n d e r s t a n d i n g (n=2) 2) A u d i o t a p e s w i t h l e c t u r e s on key c o n c e p t s a l o n g w i t h p r i n t 84 materials 3 ) Provide temporary or emergency (as in l a s t minute) alt e r n a t i v e t u t o r i a l access. (n=l) 4) More extensive t u t o r i a l time, i n p a r t i c u l a r , tutor access on weekends. (n=2) Other Findings A. Asgiects of Advising Students and tutors were asked to respond to an open-ended item at the end of the thirteen advising items. Student responses and comments were as f o l l o w s ; - Transfer c r e d i t concerns (6) - "Establishing proper prerequisite q u a l i f i c a t i o n s " . - "To ask questions to the student to f i n d out why the student i s asking certain questions concerning his/her course decisions. To not simply only answer questions but to volunteer information and advice. I have not experienced t h i s on the phone and I f i n d the phone intimidating anyway so I tend to freeze up when using i t . " - Career counselling ( 3 ) "Information re; career choice assistance and aptitude testing i s important for those of us who wish to re-enter the work force in a new f i e l d but are uncertain of the available a l t e r n a t i v e s . " - Support i . e . "I think i t ' s important for advisors to keep in close contact with students. Being far away from the college a f f e c t s one in more than just a physical sense. It's easy to become discouraged when problems a r i s e . " and "Showing 85 concern of o t h e r f a c t o r s i n my l i f e b e s i d e s my e n r o l l m e n t i n c o u r s e s i f they r e l a t e t o d i f f i c u l t y I may be hav ing wi th my coursework and I so communicate t h i s or appear to be s e e k i n g c o n c e r n . " - C o u r s e s e l e c t i o n . " A s s i s t i n f i n d i n g c o u r s e s t h a t r e l a t e t o my e d u c a t i o n a l g o a l s i n c o n t e n t as w e l l as c r e d i t " , and "when c o u r s e i s f i n i s h e d , a d v i s i n g on another to t a k e " . - " I n f o r m a t i o n on how bes t to use a v a i l a b l e r e s o u r c e s i . e . t e l ephone a d v i s o r s and t u t o r s " . A l a c k of knowledge of the a v a i l a b l e s e r v i c e s p r o v i d e d by a d v i s o r s was noted i n a l e t t e r from a s tudent which was e n c l o s e d wi th the q u e s t i o n n a i r e . (See Appendix C f o r s tudent l e t t e r ) . T u t o r r e s p o n s e s t o the open-ended i tem on a d v i s i n g e x p e c t a t i o n s were: - p r o v i d i n g r e a l i s t i c feedback about c o u r s e d i f f i c u l t y i n r e l a t i o n to s t u d e n t s ' pas t academic achievement and c a p a b i l i t i e s (n=4) - " r e f e r r i n g s tudent t o s u b j e c t s p e c i a l i s t r e g a r d i n g a b i l i t y t o s t a r t or c o n t i n u e c o u r s e . " - " t o n o t i f y the s tudent i f any p o t e n t i a l problems appear t o be looming on the h o r i z o n " - " h e l p i n g t o m o t i v a t e a s tudent who i s t e m p o r a r i l y b l o c k e d , d i s c o u r a g e d , or f r u s t r a t e d by e i t h e r academic or p e r s o n a l concerns" -communicat ing i s s u e s t o t u t o r s 86 B. Adul_t S t u d e n t C o n c e r n s S t u d e n t s and t u t o r s were a s k e d t o r e s p o n d t o an o p e n -ended i t e m a t t h e end o f t h e t h i r t e e n i t e m s d e a l i n g w i t h a d u l t s t u d e n t c o n c e r n s . Two s t u d e n t s m e n t i o n e d d i f f i c u l t i e s r e l a t i n g c o u r s e work t o c a r e e r g o a l s . One s t u d e n t wondered i f O . L . I . had a w o r k / s t u d y p r o g r a m i n t h e f i e l d o f i n t e r e s t . F i v e s t u d e n t s m e n t i o n e d t i m e p r e s s u r e s (one s p e c i f i c a l l y r e l a t e d t o s h i f t w o r k ) . A n o t h e r s t u d e n t commented, "Added s t r e s s f a c t o r i n my l i f e l e a d i n g t o s t r e s s r e l a t e d i l l n e s s e s " . T h r e e s t u d e n t s c o n c e r n s were how e d u c a t i o n would f i t i n t o f a m i l y g o a l s and r e s p o n s i b i l i t i e s . One s t u d e n t m e n t i o n e d a n x i e t y a b o u t exams. A n o t h e r s t u d e n t w r o t e " I t i s of c o n c e r n t h a t more f i n a n c i a l h e l p i s n o t a v a i l a b l e f o r a d u l t s w i t h f a m i l i e s who w i s h t o c o m p l e t e an e x t e n d e d p r o g ram of s t u d y . A t my age, d o i n g a B.A. c o u r s e a t 1 o r 2 c o u r s e s p e r s e m e s t e r t a k e s many y e a r s . I t c o u l d p r o v e t o be a l m o s t i n s u r m o u n t a b l e . " T h i s c o n c e r n was r e i t e r a t e d by a n o t h e r s t u d e n t - "Upon r e g i s t e r i n g a t O . L . I . , I had o r i g i n a l l y d e c i d e d t o work t o w a r d my B a c h e l o r G e n e r a l . However, s i n c e I have begun two c o u r s e s , t h e r e q u i r e m e n t s have become a l m o s t i m p o s s i b l e t o meet. I am f i n d i n g t h e two c o u r s e s I have c u r r e n t l y begun w i l l t a k e me a f u l l s i x months to complete. S h o u l d I w i s h t o c o n t i n u e f o r my B a c h e l o r ' s d e g r e e , t h e r e q u i r e m e n t o f 40 c o u r s e s i n d i c a t e s a t e n y e a r s t u d y c o u r s e , a t an a p p r o x i m a t e c o s t o f $5,000. A l t h o u g h I r e a l i z e t h a t one y e a r o f s t u d y a t t h e c o a s t would more t h a n meet t h i s 87 c o s t , i t i s a l s o beyond my means to c o n t i n u e wi th my o r i g i n a l g o a l . " Some c o n c e r n s r e l a t e d s p e c i f i c a l l y to the f i e l d of d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n were the d i f f e r e n c e i n l e a r n i n g s t y l e r e q u i r e d f o r d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n from a u r a l t o v i s u a l ; c o u r s e d e s i g n - "some p a r t s of c o u r s e may not go i n t o enough d e t a i l t o g i v e a good u n d e r s t a n d i n g of the s u b j e c t " ; concern about not be ing a b l e to compare p r o g r e s s w i th o t h e r s t u d e n t s . T u t o r s ' r e s p o n s e s to the open-ended i tems on a d u l t s tudent c o n c e r n s were as f a l l o w s : - " s t u d e n t s sometimes expres s an a n x i e t y about do ing " a l l of t h i s ' f o r n o t h i n g . " " W i l l t h i s c o u r s e (program) r e a l l y be of v a l u e f o r a f u t u r e j o b / p r o m o t i o n ? " (n=2) - " c o n c e r n about performance i n the c o u r s e a f t e r b e i n g out of s c h o o l f o r 5 , 10, 15, 20 or more years" - " u n f a m i l i a r m a t e r i a l due t o l a p s e of t ime s i n c e l a s t course" -"commitment and i n t e r e s t " -"not hav ing a q u i e t , u n d i s t u r b e d p l a c e to work" -"unsure of who to t a l k to about problems t h a t are not course content r e l a t e d " -"many (most) of my s t u d e n t s a r e t a k i n g O . L . I , c o u r s e to complement work c u r r e n t l y underway at o ther i n s t i t u t i o n s . For such s t u d e n t s , t r a n s f e r r a b i 1 i t y of c r e d i t s and /or s u p p l y of c o u r s e s o f f e r e d a r e i m p o r t a n t . Time p r e s s u r e s and p r i o r i t i e s a r e problems f o r e v e r y o n e . " - " A l l of above ( a d u l t s tudent concern i tems) a r e very 88 i m p o r t a n t t o some, l e s s t o o t h e r s " . SUMMARY In t h i s c h a p t e r t h e two n u l l h y p o t h e s e s c o m p a r i n g s t u d e n t and t u t o r r e s p o n s e s t o p e r c e p t i o n s o-f i m p o r t a n t a s p e c t s o-f a d v i s i n g and a d u l t s t u d e n t c o n c e r n s were a n a l y z e d . A d d i t i o n a l i n f o r m a t i o n , d e s c r i b i n g s t u d e n t r e s p o n s e s t o t h e s t u d y on t h e b a s i s o f g e n d e r , age and a d v i s o r c o n t a c t and t u t o r r e s p o n s e s on t h e b a s i s o f g e n d e r and number o f y e a r s o f e x p e r i e n c e a s a t u t o r was r e p o r t e d . R e s p o n s e s by t u t o r s and s t u d e n t s t o open-ended q u e s t i o n s on i m p o r t a n t a s p e c t s o f a d v i s i n g and a d u l t s t u d e n t c o n c e r n s were l i s t e d . S t u d e n t p r e f e r e n c e s f o r a d d i t i o n a l a d v i s i n g s e r v i c e s were s u r v e y e d . A d i s c u s s i o n o f t h e s t u d y r e s u l t s , c o n c l u s i o n s and i m p l i c a t i o n s w i l l be p r e s e n t e d i n C h a p t e r 5. CHAPTER 5 Summary, C o n c l u s i o n s and I m p l i c a t i o n s T h i s c h a p t e r r e v i e w s t h e r e s e a r c h p r o b l e m , m e t h o d o l o g y , and f i n d i n g s . C o n c l u s i o n s , i n t e r p r e t a t i o n s and i m p l i c a t i o n s o f t h e s e r e s u l t s a r e p r e s e n t e d . SUMMARY DF RESEARCH PROBLEM AND METHOD T h e r e h a s been v e r y l i t t l e C a n a d i a n r e s e a r c h i n t h e a r e a of d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n a d v i s i n g and c o u n s e l l i n g s e r v i c e s f o r a d u l t s t u d e n t s . L i t t l e r e s e a r c h h a s been r e p o r t e d c o n c e r n i n g t h e p a r t - t i m e a d u l t s t u d e n t ' s a t t i t u d e s t o w a r d s i m p o r t a n t a s p e c t s of a c a d e m i c a d v i s i n g o r f a c u l t y and s t u d e n t ' s p e r c e p t i o n s o f a d u l t s t u d e n t c o n c e r n s . T h i s i n f o r m a t i o n i s i m p o r t a n t b o t h f o r s t a f f and a d m i n i s t r a t o r s i n t h e d e s i g n and d e l i v e r y o f s t u d e n t s u p p o r t s e r v i c e s t o a d u l t s t u d e n t s i n d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n . T h i s s t u d y was d e s i g n e d i n o r d e r t o compare a d u l t s t u d e n t and t u t o r p e r c e p t i o n s o f t h e i m p o r t a n t a s p e c t s o f a c a d e m i c a d v i s i n g i n a d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n i n s t i t u t i o n , whose m i s s i o n i s t o p r o v i d e e d u c a t i o n a l o p p o r t u n i t i e s f o r l a r g e numbers o f s t u d e n t s who a r e u n a b l e t o a t t e n d t r a d i t i o n a l i n s t i t u t i o n s b e c a u s e o f work o r d o m e s t i c commitments, g e o g r a p h i c i s o l a t i o n o r p h y s i c a l d i s a b i l i t y . T h i s s t u d y a l s o c ompares s t u d e n t and t u t o r p e r c e p t i o n s o f a d u l t s t u d e n t c o n c e r n s . T h i s s t u d y i s b a s e d on a p r e v i o u s s t u d y u n d e r t a k e n by Ryan (1980) i n t h e U n i t e d S t a t e s on " A d u l t S t u d e n t and 89 90 F a c u l t y E x p e c t a t i o n s o-f Ac a d e m i c A d v i s i n g i n a N o n t r a d i t i o n a l Uni v e r s i t y " . F o r t h e p u r p o s e o f t h i s s t u d y , a l l new s t u d e n t s i n t h e 8601 s e s s i o n who were 25 y e a r s o f age o r o l d e r and were e i t h e r t a k i n g u n i v e r s i t y - l e v e l c o u r s e s t o w a r d s an O.L.I. d e g r e e o r t a k i n g u n i v e r s i t y - l e v e l c o u r s e s f o r t r a n s f e r c r e d i t e l s e w h e r e and t u t o r s who had t u t o r e d f o r O.L.I. i n t h r e e o r more p r e v i o u s s e s s i o n s were s e n t a q u e s t i o n n a i r e . The q u e s t i o n n a i r e c o v e r e d t h r e e a r e a s : i m p o r t a n t a s p e c t s o f t h e a c a d e m i c a d v i s i n g p r o c e s s ; a d u l t s t u d e n t c o n c e r n s a s t h e y r e t u r n t o s c h o o l , and a d v i s i n g c e n t r e s e r v i c e s . Q u e s t i o n n a i r e i t e m s were b a s e d on a r e v i e w o f t h e a c a d e m i c a d v i s i n g , s t u d e n t s u p p o r t s e r v i c e s i n d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n and a d u l t s t u d e n t l i t e r a t u r e . Q u e s t i o n n a i r e s were m a i l e d t o s t u d e n t s w i t h p o s t a g e - p a i d r e t u r n e n v e l o p e s i n F e b r u a r y . A t e l e p h o n e f o l l o w - u p was c o n d u c t e d i n March. The d a t a r e s u l t i n g f r o m t h e q u e s t i o n n a i r e s was a n a l y z e d u s i n g t h e S t a t i s t i c a l P a c k a g e f o r t h e S o c i a l S c i e n c e s (SPSS-X). The one-way a n a l y s i s o f v a r i a n c e s t a t i s t i c a l t e c h n i q u e was u s e d t o compare t h e mean s c o r e s o f s t u d e n t s ' and t u t o r s ' r e s p o n s e s t o t h e q u e s t i o n n a i r e i t e m s f o r a s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e a t t h e ox = .05 l e v e l . P o s t - h o c c o m p a r i s o n s were made u s i n g t h e Newman-K e u l s t e s t f o r s t a t i s t i c a l s i g n i f i c a n c e a t t h e cac ». 05 l e v e l . The c o m p u t e r i z e d s t a t i s t i c a l p a c k a g e , LERTAP, was u s e d t o o b t a i n an e s t i m a t e o f r e l i a b i l i t y f o r t h e q u e s t i o n n a i r e . 91 RESULTS AND CONCLUSIONS I m p o r t a n t A s g e c t s o f Academic A d v i s i n g The i n i t a l r e s e a r c h h y p o t h e s i s , " t h e r e a r e no d i f f e r e n c e s between s t u d e n t and t u t o r p e r c e p t i o n s o f t h e i m p o r t a n t a s p e c t s o f a c a d e m i c a d v i s i n g " was a c c e p t e d a s no s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e s a t t h e c*-.05 l e v e l were f o u n d . B o t h new s t u d e n t s and t u t o r s a t t h e Open L e a r n i n g I n s t i t u t e r a t e d t h e a s p e c t s o f a d v i s i n g i t e m s a s i m p o r t a n t . T u t o r and s t u d e n t means r a n g e d f r o m 3.0 t o 4.4. Female s t u d e n t s ' means were s i g n i f i c a n t l y h i g h e r t h a n male s t u d e n t s ' means on s i x i t e m s : c l a r i f y i n g i n s t i t u t i o n a l p o l i c i e s and p r o c e d u r e s ; b e i n g my a d v o c a t e w i t h i n t h e i n s t i t u t i o n ; h e l p i n g me u n d e r s t a n d t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p between my c o u r s e s and c a r e e r g o a l s , o r work; making l e a r n i n g o p p o r t u n i t i e s known t o me; r e f e r r i n g me t o o t h e r e d u c a t i o n a l i n s t i t u t i o n s ' c o u r s e s and p r o g r a m s i f O.L.I, d o e s n ' t o f f e r what I want; and h e l p i n g me w i t h s p e c i f i c c o u r s e s e l e c t i o n and s c h e d u l i n g . S t u d e n t s o v e r t h e age o f f o r t y r a t e d h e l p i n g me w i t h s t u d y p r o b l e m s and f i n a n c i a l a i d a s l e s s i m p o r t a n t a s p e c t s o f a d v i s i n g t h a n s t u d e n t s u n d e r t h e age of f o r t y . T h e r e was no d i f f e r e n c e i n s t u d e n t p e r c e p t i o n s o f i m p o r t a n t a s p e c t s o f a d v i s i n g by a d v i s o r c o n t a c t . T r a n s f e r s t u d e n t s ' means were h i g h e r t h a n O.L.I, s t u d e n t s ' means on t h r e e i t e m s : i n f o r m i n g me a b o u t f i n a n c i a l a i d ; h e l p i n g me w i t h s t u d y p r o b l e m s ; and b e i n g aware o f o t h e r f a c t o r s i n my l i f e . T h e r e was no d i f f e r e n c e f o u n d i n t h e breakdown of t u t o r means by g e n d e r o r y e a r s of 92 e x p e r i e n c e i n r a t i n g s o f i m p o r t a n t a s p e c t s o f a d v i s i n g . Adul_t S t u d e n t C o n c e r n s The r e s e a r c h h y p o t h e s i s , " t h e r e a r e no s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e s between s t u d e n t and t u t o r p e r c e p t i o n s o f a d u l t s t u d e n t c o n c e r n s " was r e j e c t e d f o r s e v e n i t e m s and a c c e p t e d f o r s i x i t e m s . T u t o r means r a n g e d f r o m 2.3 t o 3.9; s t u d e n t means r a n g e d f r o m 1.7 t o 4.1. T u t o r means were h i g h e r t h a n s t u d e n t means on s i x i t e m s : f e a r t h a t I may be t o o o l d t o go back t o s c h o o l ; o p p o s i t i o n f r o m f a m i l y members; i s o l a t i o n i . e . no c o n t a c t w i t h o t h e r s t u d e n t s i n c o u r s e ( s ) ; p o o r w r i t i n g o r math s k i l l s ; l a c k o f e f f i c i e n t r e a d i n g o r s t u d y h a b i t s ; l a c k o f s e l f - c o n f i d e n c e . S t u d e n t means were h i g h e r t h a n t u t o r means on t h e i t e m " c o n c e r n s a b o u t l e n g t h o f t i m e r e q u i r e d t o c o m p l e t e c o u r s e s on a p a r t - t i m e b a s i s " . T h e r e was no s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e between O.L.I. s t u d e n t and T r a n s f e r s t u d e n t means on a d u l t c o n c e r n s . F e m ale s t u d e n t means were s i g n i f i c a n t l y h i g h e r t h a n male s t u d e n t means on s e v e n a d u l t c o n c e r n i t e m s . T h e s e i t e m s weres o p p o s i t i o n f r o m f a m i l y members; i s o l a t i o n i . e . no c o n t a c t w i t h o t h e r s t u d e n t s i n c o u r s e ( s ) ; a n x i e t y a b o u t g r a d e s ; p o o r w r i t i n g o r math s k i l l s ; p r o b l e m s f i n a n c i n g c o u r s e s ; f e a r o f f a i l u r e ; and l a c k o f s e l f - c o n f i d e n c e . T h e r e were no s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e s i n s t u d e n t r e s p o n s e s t o a d u l t c o n c e r n s by age. The means o f s t u d e n t s who had c o n t a c t w i t h an a d v i s o r were l o w e r t h a n s t u d e n t s who had no c o n t a c t w i t h 93 an a d v i s o r on two i t e m s : f e a r I may be t o o o l d t o go back t o s c h o o l and l a c k of s e l f - c o n f i d e n c e . A breakdown o f t u t o r r e s p o n s e s t o a d u l t c o n c e r n s by g e n d e r and y e a r s o f e x p e r i e n c e showed a s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e on t h e i t e m , i s o l a t i o n . F e m a l e t u t o r s r a t e d t h i s c o n c e r n h i g h e r t h a n male t u t o r s . T u t o r s w i t h s i x y e a r s o r more e x p e r i e n c e r a t e d t h i s c o n c e r n l o w e r t h a n t u t o r s w i t h l e s s t h a n s i x y e a r s e x p e r i e n c e . A d v i s i n g C e n t r e S e r v i c e s More i n t e r e s t was shown i n u s i n g a t e l e p h o n e a u d i o t a p e ( d i a l - a - t a p e ) s e r v i c e t h a n g r o u p a d v i s i n g s e s s i o n s i n a d v i s i n g c e n t r e s . O t h e r r e q u e s t s f o r s e r v i c e s were c o n t a c t w i t h o t h e r s t u d e n t s t a k i n g t h e same c o u r s e ; p e r s o n a l c o n t a c t w i t h t h e a d v i s o r on a r e g u l a r b a s i s ; a p t i t u d e and i n t e r e s t t e s t i n g ; and a s s i s t a n c e i n exam p r e p a r a t i o n . INTERPRETATION OF THE RESULTS I m p o r t a n t A s p e c t s o f A cademic A d v i s i n g In t h i s s t u d y , s t u d e n t and t u t o r means r a n g e d f r o m 3 . 0 t o 4 . 4 on i m p o r t a n t a s p e c t s o f a c a d e m i c a d v i s i n g . T h e s e r e s u l t s a r e s i m i l a r t o t h e Ryan (1980) s t u d y where s t u d e n t and t u t o r means r a n g e d f r o m 3 . 0 t o 4 . 7 . I t i s i n t e r e s t i n g t o n o t e t h a t s i m i l a r a d v i s i n g f a c t o r s seem t o be e q u a l l y i m p o r t a n t t o f a c u l t y who a r e n o t a d v i s o r s and f a c u l t y who a r e a d v i s o r s . In t h e Ryan (1980) s t u d y , f a c u l t y who a r e a d v i s o r s r a t e d two a s p e c t s o f a c a d e m i c a d v i s i n g h i g h e r t h a n O . L . I . t u t o r s . T h e s e i t e m s were a d v o c a c y and c l a r i f y i n g u n i v e r s i t y p o l i c i e s and p r o c e d u r e s . 9 4 In t h e Ryan (1980) s t u d y , f e m a l e f a c u l t y r a t e d some a s p e c t s o f a d v i s i n g h i g h e r t h a n d i d male f a c u l t y a d v i s o r s . T h e s e i t e m s were: a w a r e n e s s o f s t u d e n t p r o g r e s s on t h e d e g r e e p l a n ; p e r s o n a l and c a r i n g r e l a t i o n s h i p ? and making o t h e r l e a r n i n g o p p o r t u n i t i e s known. In t h i s s t u d y , t h e r e were no s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e s between f e m a l e and male t u t o r r e s p o n s e s t o i m p o r t a n t a s p e c t s of a c a d e m i c a d v i s i n g . In t h e Ryan (1980) s t u d y , new f a c u l t y r a n k e d most a s p e c t s o f a d v i s i n g h i g h e r t h a n d i d t h e i r more e x p e r i e n c e d c o l l e a g u e s . On t h e m a j o r i t y o f a c a d e m i c a d v i s i n g i t e m s i n t h i s s t u d y , t u t o r s w i t h l e s s t h a n f i v e y e a r s e x p e r i e n c e r a t e d a d v i s i n g f a c t o r s h i g h e r t h a n t u t o r s w i t h more t h a n s i x y e a r s o f e x p e r i e n c e . S i n c e f a c u l t y i n t h e Ryan (1980) s t u d y a r e f u l l -t i m e and f a c u l t y i n t h e O.L.I, s t u d y a r e p a r t - t i m e , t h e l e n g t h o f e x p e r i e n c e f a c t o r n e e d s t o be i n t e r p r e t e d w i t h t h i s i n f o r m a t i o n i n mind. I t would a p p e a r t h a t t h e t r e n d i s s i m i l a r i n b o t h s t u d i e s . A d u l t S t u d e n t C o n c e r n s In t h e Ryan (1980) s t u d y , t h e f o u r h i g h e s t i t e m s (above t h e 4.00 l e v e l ) weres t r y i n g t o f i t s c h o o l i n t o t h e a d u l t ' s s c h e d u l e ; l e a r n i n g how t o s t u d y ; f e a r o f f a i l u r e ; and p o o r r e a d i n g , w r i t i n g o r math s k i l l s . In t h i s s t u d y , t h e t u t o r means f o r t h e f o u r h i g h e s t a d u l t s t u d e n t c o n c e r n s i t e m s r a n g e d f r o m 3.5 t o 3.9. The i t e m s were: p o o r w r i t i n g o r math s k i l l s ; d i f f i c u l t i e s b a l a n c i n g m u l t i p l e r e s p o n s i b i 1 i t i e s 95 and p r i o r i t i e s ; t i m e p r e s s u r e s ; and i s o l a t i o n . The i t e m , t i m e p r e s s u r e s d i d n o t a p p e a r i n t h e Ryan (19B0) s t u d y . The r e s u l t s o-f t h i s s t u d y s u p p o r t t h e - f i n d i n g s o-f t h e M u r g a t r o y d s t u d y where t h e h i g h e s t r a n k e d c o n c e r n s o-f s t u d e n t s i n d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n a t t h e Open U n i v e r s i t y were l a c k o f t i m e ; d i f f i c u l t i e s i n c o n c e n t r a t i o n ; f a m i l y commitments; o r g a n i z a t i o n o f t i m e and p l a n n i n g . In b o t h t h e Ryan (1980) s t u d y and t h i s s t u d y , f a c u l t y r a t e d t h e f o l l o w i n g i t e m s s i g n i f i c a n t l y h i g h e r t h a n s t u d e n t s b a s e d on t h e mean r e s p o n s e : f e a r o f b e i n g t o o o l d t o go back t o s c h o o l ; o p p o s i t i o n f r o m f a m i l y members; p o o r r e a d i n g , w r i t i n g , math s k i l l s . In t h e Ryan (1980) s t u d y , f a c u l t y members a l s o r a t e d f e a r o f f a i l u r e s i g n i f i c a n t l y h i g h e r t h a n d i d s t u d e n t s . In t h i s s t u d y , t u t o r s r a t e d i s o l a t i o n a s an a d u l t s t u d e n t c o n c e r n h i g h e r t h a n d i d s t u d e n t s . S i n c e i s o l a t i o n i s p e r c e i v e d t o be a s i g n i f i c a n t c o n c e r n w i t h i n t h e d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n l i t e r a t u r e , t h i s r a t i n g by t u t o r s r e f l e c t s t h i s v i e w p o i n t . In b o t h t h e Ryan (1980) s t u d y and t h i s s t u d y t h e r e were no s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e s i n s t u d e n t r e s p o n s e s t o s i m i l a r i t e m s on a d u l t s t u d e n t c o n c e r n s by age. In t h e e x a m i n a t i o n o f f a c u l t y and t u t o r r e s p o n s e s by g e n d e r , i n t h e Ryan (1980) s t u d y more f e m a l e f a c u l t y members l i s t e d o p p o s i t i o n f r o m f a m i l y members; i s o l a t i o n and f e a r o f f a i l u r e h i g h e r t h a n d i d male f a c u l t y members. In t h i s s t u d y , o n l y t h e i t e m , i s o l a t i o n was r a t e d h i g h e r by f e m a l e t u t o r s 96 t h a n male t u t o r s a t t h e Open L e a r n i n g I n s t i t u t e . IMPLICATIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS W h i l e some o-f t h e p r a c t i c a l i m p l i c a t i o n s o-f t h e r e s u l t s o f t h i s s t u d y p e r t a i n t o t h e Open L e a r n i n g I n s t i t u t e , i t i s hoped t h a t some of t h i s s t u d y ' s f i n d i n g s and i m p l i c a t i o n s w i l l be u s e f u l t o o t h e r a d v i s i n g s t a f f and f a c u l t y w o r k i n g w i t h a d u l t s t u d e n t s i n t r a d i t i o n a l and n o n - t r a d i t i o n a l d e l i v e r y s y s t e m s . The f o l l o w i n g i m p l i c a t i o n s a r e s u g g e s t e d ! (1) One o f t h e most i n t e r e s t i n g r e s u l t s was t h e r e t u r n r a t e o f q u e s t i o n n a i r e s f r o m T r a n s f e r s t u d e n t s . O n l y 347. o f T r a n s f e r s t u d e n t s r e t u r n e d q u e s t i o n n a i r e s . In b o t h w r i t t e n comments and t h r o u g h t e l e p h o n e c o n t a c t f o l l o w - u p , i t was e s t a b l i s h e d t h a t T r a n s f e r s t u d e n t s do n o t f e e l t h e need f o r a d v i s i n g s e r v i c e s f r o m t h e Open L e a r n i n g I n s t i t u t e . T r a n s f e r s t u d e n t s d i d n o t f e e l a s e n s e of i d e n t i f i c a t i o n w i t h t h e Open L e a r n i n g I n s t i t u t e , a s most s t u d e n t s were e n r o l l i n g i n o n l y one c o u r s e f o r t r a n s f e r c r e d i t e l s e w h e r e . T h i s g r o u p may n o t r e q u i r e t h e same d e g r e e of a d v i s i n g a s s i s t a n c e a s s t u d e n t s who a r e c o n t i n u i n g s t u d e n t s w i t h Open L e a r n i n g I n s t i t u t e . T h i s r e s u l t h a s i m p l i c a t i o n s f o r d i f f e r e n t i a t e d s t a f f i n g w i t h i n t h e Open L e a r n i n g I n s t i t u t e A d v i s i n g s e r v i c e . (2) T h e r e were s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e s between f e m a l e 97 and male s tudent re sponses t o impor tant a s p e c t s of academic a d v i s i n g and a d u l t s tudent c o n c e r n s . T u t o r s and a d v i s o r s need t o be aware of the h i g h e r degree of concern of a d u l t female s t u d e n t s on such i t ems as l a c k of s e l f - c o n f i d e n c e and f e a r of f a i l u r e . Such i s s u e s c o u l d be t o p i c s f o r d i s c u s s i o n a t t u t o r / a d v i s o r p r o f e s s i o n a l development workshops. (3) A d v i s o r s need t o be a b l e t o a s s i s t a d u l t s t u d e n t s i n s e l e c t i n g s t r a t e g i e s t o dea l w i th the c o n c e r n s ranked h i g h e s t by s t u d e n t s ! t ime p r e s s u r e s ; f a t i g u e ; d i f f i c u l t i e s b a l a n c i n g m u l t i p l e r e s p o n s i b i l i t i e s and s e t t i n g p r i o r i t i e s ; and grade a n x i e t y . O r i e n t a t i o n handbooks and a c t i v i t i e s need to r a i s e a d u l t s t u d e n t s ' awareness of these s t r e s s e s as a common concern of the a d u l t s t u d e n t , so t h a t p l a n s to cope wi th these concerns may be d e v i s e d b e f o r e the s t u d e n t beg ins coursework. (4) The t r e n d f o r s t u d e n t s who had c o n t a c t wi th an a d v i s o r was to r a t e c o n c e r n s such as f e a r t h a t I may be too o l d to go back t o s choo l and l a c k of s e l f - c o n f i d e n c e 1ower than s t u d e n t s who had no c o n t a c t . T h i s f i n d i n g sugges t s t h a t i t i s i m p o r t a n t f o r a d u l t s t u d e n t s (and, i n p a r t i c u l a r , a d u l t female s t u d e n t s , s i n c e t h i s group i n d i c a t e d t h a t l a c k of s e l f - c o n f i d e n c e was a r e a l concern) 98 t o h a v e c o n t a c t w i t h an a d v i s o r i n o r d e r t o a l l a y a n x i e t y a b o u t t h e s e c o n c e r n s . ( 5 ) S t u d e n t s r a t e d h i g h l y t h e a s p e c t o f a d v i s i n g i t e m , " h e l p i n g me u n d e r s t a n d t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p between my c o u r s e s and c a r e e r g o a l s , o r work". In t h e o p e n -ended r e s p o n s e s , s t u d e n t s r e q u e s t e d c a r e e r c o u n s e l l i n g and a p t i t u d e t e s t i n g . The l i t e r a t u r e s t a t e s t h a t o l d e r s t u d e n t s ' main r e a s o n -for r e t u r n i n g t o e d u c a t i o n i s -for v o c a t i o n a l p u r p o s e s . The o n l y v e h i c l e a v a i l a b l e a t p r e s e n t t h r o u g h t h e •pen L e a r n i n g I n s t i t u t e f o r c a r e e r c o u n s e l l i n g i s t h e s e m e s t e r c o u r s e , P l a n n i n g Your F u t u r e . S i n c e a d u l t s t u d e n t s a r e a l s o p r e s s e d f o r t i m e , many s t u d e n t s do n o t want t o s i g n up f o r a n o n - c r e d i t c o u r s e w h i c h w i l l t a k e t i m e away f r o m t h e i r c r e d i t s t u d i e s . To s u p p l e m e n t t h e o p t i o n o f e n r o l l i n g i n a c o u r s e , i t i s s u g g e s t e d t h a t t h e I n s t i t u t e c o u l d c o n s i d e r a d d i n g a p r o f e s s i o n a l c o u n s e l l i n g p o s i t i o n t o t h e s t a f f . T h i s s t a f f p o s i t i o n c o u l d d e a l w i t h c o u n s e l l i n g i s s u e s s u c h a s a s s i s t i n g s t u d e n t s w i t h v a l u e s c l a r i f i c a t i o n , c a r e e r c o u n s e l l i n g , g o a l - s e t t i n g and d e c i s i o n - m a k i n g . An a l t e r n a t i v e p o s s i b i l i t y c o u l d be t o e s t a b l i s h a f o r m a l i s e d r e f e r r a l a r r a n g e m e n t w i t h l o c a l community r e s o u r c e s t h a t o f f e r c a r e e r c o u n s e l l i n g . (6) A l t h o u g h f e a r of b e i n g t o o o l d t o come back t o 99 s c h o o l was c i t e d a s a c o n c e r n o-f s t u d e n t s i n t h e l i t e r a t u r e , s t u d e n t s i n t h i s s t u d y r a t e d t h i s c o n c e r n a s n o t i m p o r t a n t . T h i s r e s u l t may be due t o t h e -fact t h i s g r o u p o-f s t u d e n t s c o n s i s t e d of e n r o l l e d s t u d e n t s . I f p r o s p e c t i v e a d u l t s t u d e n t s had been s u r v e y e d , i t i s p o s s i b l e t h a t t h e - f i n d i n g s would have been d i f f e r e n t . F u r t h e r r e s e a r c h i s needed. (7) The i t e m , i s o l a t i o n , i . e . no c o n t a c t w i t h o t h e r s t u d e n t s i n my c o u r s e ( s ) seems t o be a c o n c e r n more of O.L.I. t u t o r s t h a n new O.L.I, s t u d e n t s , and a c o n c e r n o f f e m a l e s t u d e n t s r a t h e r t h a n male s t u d e n t s . I t may be t h a t f e m a l e s t u d e n t s who a r e f u l l - t i m e homemakers e x p e r i e n c e i s o l a t i o n more t h a n male s t u d e n t s who a r e employed f u l l - t i m e o u t s i d e t h e home. P r e v i o u s s t u d i e s c i t e d (Mangano and C o r r a d o <1981 )5 Task F o r c e on M a t u r e S t u d e n t s (1983);) s u g g e s t t h a t t h e r e may be d i f f e r e n c e s between a d u l t s t u d e n t s and y o u n g e r s t u d e n t s , p a r t -t i m e s t u d e n t s and f u l l - t i m e s t u d e n t s ' p e r c e p t i o n s of t h e need f o r p e e r g r o u p c o n t a c t . More mature women s t u d e n t s t h a n mature men s t u d e n t s a p p e a r t o be c o n c e r n e d a b o u t f e e l i n g s o f i s o l a t i o n b o t h on campus and i n d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n . (8) One o f t h e major c o n c e r n s o f a d u l t s t u d e n t s a s r e v i e w e d i n t h e l i t e r a t u r e was t i m e b a r r i e r s . 100 S t u d e n t s i n d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n a l s o r a t e d t i m e p r e s s u r e s a s a v e r y i m p o r t a n t c o n c e r n . An i m p o r t a n t p a r t of a d v i s i n g a d u l t s t u d e n t s n e e d s t o be t o a s s i s t them t o s e t r e a l i s t i c s c h e d u l e s t h a t w i l l a l l o w enough t i m e f o r c o u r s e s t u d y . A c c u r a t e i n f o r m a t i o n on t h e t i m e r e q u i r e m e n t s f o r i n d i v i d u a l c o u r s e c o m p l e t i o n i s n e eded. T h i s i n f o r m a t i o n i s p a r t i c u l a r l y e s s e n t i a l w i t h i n a d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n s y s t e m t h a t i n v o l v e s d e a d l i n e s f o r c o u r s e c o m p l e t i o n . <9> A d u l t s t u d e n t s a r e c o n c e r n e d a b o u t t h e l e n g t h of t i m e r e q u i r e d t o c o m p l e t e c o u r s e s on a p a r t - t i m e b a s i s . A d m i n i s t r a t i v e p o l i c i e s c o u l d a d d r e s s t h i s i s s u e by p r o v i d i n g f o r c o u r s e c h a l l e n g e p r o c e d u r e s , 1 i b e r a l t r a n s f e r c r e d i t p o l i c i e s , c r e d i t f o r l i f e e x p e r i e n c e and t h e p r o v i s i o n o f a c c u r a t e i n f o r m a t i o n a b o u t c o u r s e d e v e l o p m e n t , a v a i 1 a b i 1 i t y and s c h e d u l i n g . (10) One c o n c e r n r a t e d v e r y h i g h l y by t u t o r s , b u t n o t by s t u d e n t s was p o o r w r i t i n g / m a t h s k i l l s . A d u l t s r e t u r n i n g t o l e a r n i n g a f t e r an a b s e n c e may l a c k a w a r e n e s s o f t h e i r s k i l l s i n t h e s e a r e a s , o r may h a v e u n r e a l i s t i c e x p e c t a t i o n s . I t i s s u g g e s t e d t h a t d i a g n o s t i c t e s t i n g f o r s t u d e n t s i n t h e s e a r e a s would be h e l p f u l i n p r o v i d i n g a c c u r a t e i n f o r m a t i o n t o s t u d e n t s on t h e i r c u r r e n t l e v e l o f s k i l l s . S i n c e 101 s t u d e n t s may t e n d t o u n d e r— e s t i m a t e o r o v e r - e s t i m a t e t h e i r s k i l l s , d i a g n o s t i c t e s t i n g would be h e l p f u l t o b o t h g r o u p s . (11) The i t e m , l a c k o f s e l f - c o n f i d e n c e was r a t e d h i g h e r a s a c o n c e r n by f e m a l e s t u d e n t s t h a n male s t u d e n t s . T h i s d i f f e r e n c e c o u l d be due t o f e m a l e s b e i n g more w i l l i n g t o s e l f - r e p o r t a l a c k o f s e l f - c o n f i d e n c e t h a n m a l e s . In f u t u r e r e s e a r c h , i t i s s u g g e s t e d t h a t l a c k o f s e l f - c o n f i d e n c e be compared t o p r e v i o u s l e v e l o f e d u c a t i o n a t t a i n e d , l e n g t h o f t i m e away f r o m a f o r m a l l e a r n i n g e n v i r o n m e n t and g e n d e r . (12) T h i s s t u d y h a s d e a l t w i t h t h e a t t i t u d e s and c o n c e r n s o f Q.L.I, s t u d e n t s and T r a n s f e r s t u d e n t s e n r o l l e d i n u n i v e r s i t y - l e v e l c o u r s e s a t t h e Open L e a r n i n g I n s t i t u t e . S i n c e t h e r e i s a l a r g e g r o u p o f s t u d e n t s e n r o l l e d w i t h O.L.I. a s t a k i n g c o u r s e s f o r " g e n e r a l i n t e r e s t " (23.5% o f a l l c o u r s e e n r o l l m e n t s i n S 6 0 1 ) , i t i s s u g g e s t e d t h a t t h e n e x t a r e a o f r e s e a r c h c o u l d be t o examine t h e a t t i t u d e s and c o n c e r n s o f t h e s e s t u d e n t s w i t h r e s p e c t t o a c a d e m i c a d v i s i n g and a d u l t s t u d e n t c o n c e r n s i n o r d e r t o d e t e r m i n e i f t h e r e a r e any d i f f e r e n c e s . CONCLUSION As a d u l t l e a r n e r s c o n t i n u e t o p a r t i c i p a t e t o a g r e a t e r d e g r e e i n b o t h t r a d i t i o n a l and n o n - t r a d i t i o n a l f o r m s o f 102 e d u c a t i o n , i t i s i m p o r t a n t t o d i f f e r e n t i a t e and meet t h e n e e d s o f t h e s e s t u d e n t s i n t h e i r r e t u r n t o e d u c a t i o n i n o r d e r t o f a c i l i t a t e t h e i r s u c c e s s a s l e a r n e r s . The a d u l t who a s p i r e s t o l e a r n o f t e n e x h i b i t s p a t t e r n s s u c h a s a t t e n d i n g p a r t - t i m e , b e i n g c a r e e r — m o t i v a t e d and t a k i n g c o u r s e s w h i l e e i t h e r w o r k i n g f u l l - t i m e a t home o r a t work. A d m i n i s t r a t i v e p o l i c i e s and p r a c t i c e s a t p o s t - s e c o n d a r y e d u c a t i o n a l i n s t i t u t i o n s need t o be examined t o d e t e r m i n e whether s e r v i c e s accommodate t h i s c h a n g i n g s t u d e n t p a p u l a t i o n . I t i s hoped t h a t t h i s s t u d y w i l l a s s i s t p o l i c y m a k e r s a s t h e y f u r t h e r s h a p e t h e i r p r o g r a m s and s e r v i c e s t o s u i t t h e n e e d s of t h e a d u l t s t u d e n t i n d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n . BIBLIOGRAPHY A n i s e f , P. ( 1 9 8 5 ) . A c c e s s i b i l i t y t o p o s t s e c o n d a r y e d u c a t i o n  i n Canada. Ot t a w a : Department o f t h e S e c r e t a r y o f S t a t e . A s l a n i a n , C. B., & B r i c k e l 1 , H. N. ( 1 9 8 0 ) . A m e r i c a n s i n  t r a n s i t i o n : L i f e c h a n g e s and r e a s o n s f o r a d u l t l e a r n i n g . 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(ERIC Document R e p r o d u c t i o n S e r v i c e No. ED 203 216) S c h l o s s b e r g , N. K. (19 8 1 ) . A model f o r a n a l y z i n g human a d a p t a t i o n t o t r a n s i t i o n . The C o u n s e l i n g P s y c h o l o g i s t , 9 ( 2 ) , 2-18. S e w a r t , D. ( 1 9 7 8 ) . C o n t i n u i t y o f c o n c e r n f o r s t u d e n t s i n a s y s t e m o f l e a r n i n g a t a d i s t a n c e . ( Z i f f P a p i e r e 2 2 ) . Hagen: F e r u n i v e r s i t a t , I n s t i t u t f u r F e r n s t u d i e n f o r s c h u n g . Sheehy, G. ( 1 9 7 6 ) . P a s s a g e s : p r e d i c t a b l e c r i s i s o f a d u l t  l i f e . New Y o r k : D u t t o n . Sheehy, G. ( 1 9 8 1 ) . P a t h f i n d e r s . New Y o r k : Morrow. S i mono, R. B. (19 7 8 ) . D i f f e r e n t i a l i m p o r t a n c e f a c u l t y and s t u d e n t s p l a c e on c o u n s e l i n g and p s y c h o l o g i c a l s e r v i c e s . P r o f e s s i o n a l P s y c h o l o g y . 9, 161-164. S m i t h , W.A.S. & Snowden, B. (19 8 3 ) . A r e v i e w o f d i s t a n c e e d u c a t i o n i n O n t a r i o u n i v e r s i t i e s . T o r o n t o : C o u n c i l o f O n t a r i o U n i v e r s i t i e s . Sweet, R. ( 1 9 8 1 ) . S t u d e n t a t t r i t i o n a t 0 L I . (OLI R e s e a r c h N o t e No. 1 ) . Richmond, B.C.: Open L e a r n i n g I n s t i t u t e . 107 Task F o r c e on M a t u r e S t u d e n t s . ( 1 9 8 3 ) . R e p o r t t o t h e  S e n a t e . Edmontons U n i v e r s i t y o f A l b e r t a T a y l o r , R. M., & M e l d o n , M. J . ( 1 9 8 2 ) . U n i v e r s i t y  S t u d e n t P r o f i l e S t u d y . The B r i t i s h C o l u m b i a P o s t -S e c o n d a r y E d u c a t i o n E n r o l l m e n t F o r e c a s t i n g Committee. R e p o r t #42. T h o r n t o n , R. & M i t c h e l l , I. ( 1 9 7 8 ) . C o u n s e l l i n g t h e  d i s t a n c e l e a r n e r ; A s u r v e y o f t r e n d s and l i t e r a t u r e . A d e l a i d e , A u s t r a l i a ; A d e l a i d e C o l l e g e o f t h e A r t s and E d u c a t i o n . (ERIC Document R e p r o d u c t i o n S e r v i c e No. ED 177 296) . Walsh, E. M. ( 1 9 7 9 ) . R e v i t a l i z i n g a c a d e m i c a d v i s e m e n t . P e r s o n n e l and G u i d a n c e J o u r n a l , 57, 446-449. W i n s t o n , R. B., J r . , M i l l e r , T. K., E n d e r , S. C. & G r i t e s , T. J . & A s s o c . ( 1 9 8 4 ) . D e v e l o p m e n t a l a c a d e m i c a d v i s i n g , (pp. 8 9 - 1 1 8 ) . San F r a n c i s c o : J o s s e y - B a s s . Woodley, A. ( 1 9 8 5 ) . O c c u p a t i o n a l and e d u c a t i o n a l " c a r e e r s " o f d i s t a n c e s t u d e n t s . ICDE T h i r t e e n t h W o r l d C o n g r e s s P r o c e e d i n g s . P a p e r 1021. Worth, V. ( 1 9 8 2 ) . E m p i r e S t a t e C o l l e g e / S t a t e U n i v e r s i t y o f  New York C e n t e r f o r D i s t a n c e L e a r n i n g s A c a s e s t u d y . (DERG P a p e r s No. 7) M i l t o n K e y n e s , UKs Open U n i v e r s i t y , D i s t a n c e E d u c a t i o n R e s e a r c h Group. 108 APPENDICES A. Academic A d v i s i n g Student Survey B. Academic A d v i s i n g Survey (Tutor) C. Student L e t t e r ADVISING STUDENT SURVEY Richmond Advising Centre Open Learning I n s t i t u t e 110 This questionnaire has been designed to assess your expectations with respect to academic advising. I. GENERAL INFORMATION Directions: Please check the appropriate responses to questions 1 through 3. 1. Gender a) Male b) Female 2. Age at l a s t birthday (years) a) 25-29 b) 30-34 c) 35-39 d) 40-44 e) 45-49 f) 50-54 g) 55-59 h) 60-64 i ) 65+ 3. Have you had any contact with an O.L.I. advisor by telephone, mail or i n - a) YES person? b) NO I I . ADVISING SERVICES The following phrases are used to describe important aspects of advising. Based on your expectations of your needs for advising, how important are each of these factors to you? DIRECTIONS: Focussing on the role of the advisor, please indicate how important you believe each of the following state-ments 1 through 13 are by placing an "X" in the bracket that best represents the degree of importance to you. Place an "X" in the bracket under 1 i f you think i t i s not important, an "X" under 5 i f i t i s very important. If you can't decide whether the issue is important or not, place an "X" under 3. N Q t V e r y Important Important 1 2 3 4 5 1. Placing educational decision- ( ) ( ) ( ) ( %) ( ) making in my hands. 1 2 3 4 5 2. Being aware of my progress on my ( ) ( ) ( ) ( ) ( ) degree program. Being aware of other factors in my l i f e besides my enrollment i n courses at t h i s i n s t i t u t i o n . A s s i s t i n g me with administrative problems. C l a r i f y i n g i n s t i t u t i o n a l p o l i c i e s and procedures. Being my advocate within the i n s t i t u t i o n e.g. a s s i s t i n g me with grounds for extensions. Relating, to me .in a personal way. Helping me understand the r e l a t i o n s h i p between my courses and career goals, or work. Making learning opportunities known to me. (e.g. new courses, programs). Referring me to other educational i n s t i t u t i o n s ' courses and programs i f O.L.I, doesn't of f e r what I want Helping me with study problems. Informing me about f i n a n c i a l a i d . Helping me with s p e c i f i c course sel e c t i o n and scheduling. Not mportant 1 2 Very mportant 4 5 L i s t other advising expectations that'you consider important: I I I . RETURN TO SCHOOL 112 Adults have sometimes expressed concerns about coming back to school How important i s each of these concerns to you? DIRECTIONS: Please respond to items 1 through 13 by placing an "X" in the bracket that best represents the degree of concern to you. No 1. Fear that I may be too old to 2. Opposition from family members 3. I s o l a t i o n i . e . no contact with other students in my course(s) 4. Anxiety about grades 5. Poor w r i t i n g or math s k i l l s 6. Problems financing courses 7. Time pressures 8. D i f f i c u l t i e s balancing multiple r e s p o n s i b i l i t i e s and setting p r i o r i t i e s 9. Lack of e f f i c i e n t reading or study habits 10. Fear of f a i l u r e 11. Fatigue a f t e r work and/or family r e s p o n s i b i l i t i e s 12: Concerns about length of time required to complete courses on a part-time basis. 13. Lack of self-confidence at a l l A great dea 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 - 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 ACADEMIC ADVISING SURVEY Richmond Ad v i s i n g Centre Open Learning I n s t i t u t e 115 This survey has been designed to assess tutor expectations of advising. I. ADVISING SERVICES The items in this section are designed to describe iirportant aspects of advising. Please read the DIRECTIONS that follow and based on your expectations of what should take place in advising, respond to items 1 - 1 3 . DIRECTIONS: Focussing on the role of an advisor, please indicate how important you believe each of the following state-ments is by placing an "X" in the bracket that best represents the degree of importance to you. For example, place an "X" in the bracket under 1 i f you think i t is not important, an "X" under 5 i f i t is very important. If you can't decide whether the issue is important or not, place an "X" under 3. Aspects of Ad v i s i n g 1. P l a c i n g educational d e c i s i o n -making i n t o the student's hands 2. Being aware of the student's progress on degree program 3. Being aware of other f a c t o r s i n the student's l i f e besides enrollment i n courses at t h i s i n s t i t u t i o n 4. A s s i s t i n g student w i t h a d m i n i s t r a t i v e problems 5. C l a r i f y i n g i n s t i t u t i o n a l p o l i c i e s and procedures 6. Being an advocate f o r the student w i t h i n the i n s t i t u t i o n e.g. a s s i s t i n g student with grounds f o r extensions 7. R e l a t i n g to the student i n a personal way 8. Helping student understand the r e l a t i o n s h i p between his / h e r career g o a l s , or work and O.L.I, courses Not mportant 1 2 3 3 3 3 3 3 Very [mportant 4 5 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 Not Very Important Important 1 2 3 4 5 9. Making l e a r n i n g o p p o r t u n i t i e s ( ) ( ) ( ) ( ) ( ) known to the student (e.g. new courses, programs). 1 2 3 4 5 10. R e f e r r i n g student to other ( ) ( ) ( ) ( ) ( ) educational i n s t i t u t i o n s i f O.L.I. doesn't o f f e r what s/he wants 1 2 3 4 5 11. Helping student w i t h study ( ) ( ) ( ) ( ) ( ) problems 1 2 3 4 5 12. Informing student about ( ) ( ) ( ) ( . ) ( ) f i n a n c i a l a i d 1 2 3 4 5 13. Helping student with s p e c i f i c ( ) ( ) ( ) ( ) ( ) course s e l e c t i o n and scheduling 14. L i s t any other aspects of a d v i s i n g that you consider important: II. RETURN TO SCHOOL The following adult student concerns about returning to school have been identified in the literature. Based on your experience as a tutor, how important do you think these concerns are to your students? DIRECTIONS: Please respond to items 1 through 13 by placing an "X" in the bracket that best represents the degree of concern. Concerns Not at a l l A great deal 1 2 3 4 5 1. Fear of being too o l d to go ( ) ( ) ( ) ( ) ( ) back to school 1 2 3 4 5 2. Opposition from f a m i l y members ( ) ( ) ( ) ( ) ( ) 1 2 3 4 5 3. I s o l a t i o n i . e . no contact with ( ) ( ) ( ) ( ) ( ) other students i n cau.cs.e.(s..) Not at al 1 2 4. Anxiety about grades 5. Poor w r i t i n g or math s k i l l s 6. Problems f i n a n c i n g courses 7. Time pressures 8. D i f f i c u l t i e s balancing m u l t i p l e r e s p o n s i b i l i t i e s and s e t t i n g p r i o r i t i e s 9. Lack of e f f i c i e n t reading or study habits 10. Fear of f a i l u r e 11. Fatigue a f t e r work and/or f a m i l y r e s p o n s i b i l i t i e s 12. Concerns about length of time required to complete courses on a part-time basis 13. Lack of s e l f - c o n f i d e n c e 14. L i s t other important a d u l t student concerns not p r e v i o u s l y mentioned A great dea 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 1 2 3 4 1 2 3 4 1 2 3 4 1 2 3 4 1 2 3 4 1 2 3 4 1 2 3 4 1 2 3 4 III. GENERAL INFORMATION DIRECTIONS; Please check the appropriate responses to the following questions s How many years of t u t o r i n g experience have you had at the Open Learning I n s t i t u t e ? a) 0-2 b) 3-5 c) 6+ Gender. a) Male b) Female THANK YOU f o r p a r t i c i p a t i n g i n t h i s survey. Please r e t u r n your completed survey i n the enclosed postage prepaid envelope before March 10, 1986. A P P E N D I X C Feb 25/86 Dear Mrs- M c l n n e s - R a n k i n , I f e l t c o m p e l l e d t o i n c l u d e a l e t t e r t o accompany y o u r S t u d e n t S u r v e y t o e x p r e s s j u s t how h e l p f u l t h i s q u e s t i o n n a i r e y o y l d have been t o me, had I r e c e i v e d i t two weeks e a r l i e r . Two weeks ago I made t h e d e c i s i o n t o r e t u r n c o u r s e m a t e r i a l s i n XXXX 2 — and w i t h d r a w f r o m t h e c o u r s e b e c a u s e o f p e r s o n a l and h e a l t h r e a s o n s . I was a l s o unaware t h a t an A d v i s o r , s u c h a s y o u r s u r v e y s u g g e s t s , was a v a i l a b l e t o h e l p me i n making s u c h a d e c i s i o n ! I am 44 y e a r s o f age and have been o u t o f s c h o o l a l o n g t i m e and s u f f e r p h y s i c a l l y f r o m a p a i n f u l a r t h r i t i c d i s e a s e c a l l e d s c h l e r o d e r m a . Though t h e p r o g n o s i s f o r t h i s i l l n e s s i s a n y t h i n g b u t e n c o u r a g i n g , p e r i o d s o f r e m i s s i o n have f o u n d me l o o k i n g f o r w a r d t o a f u t u r e t h a t m ight a l s o i n c l u d e a c a r e e r c h a n g e . I am on a s m a l l d i s a b i l i t y p e n s i o n s u b s i d i z e d by G.A.I.N. N e a r l y a y e a r ago I w a s i n r e c e i p t o f a p a m p h l e t o u t l i n i n g a c o u r s e i n C h i l d C a r e , ( d e g r e e program,) t h r o u g h t h e U n i v e r s i t y of V i c t o r i a . I a p p l i e d and s e n t a l o n g t h e n e c e s s a r y p h o t o s t a t i c c o p i e s o f my h i g h s c h o o l g r a d e s and u n i v e r s i t y c r e d i t s . I a s k e d f o r a d v i c e a s t o what p r e l i m i n a r y c o u r s e s I c o u l d b e s t t a k e t h r o u g h t h e Open L e a r n i n g I n s t i t u t e t h a t would p r e p a r e t h e way, s o t o sp e a k . S e v e r a l months p a s s e d and I d i d n o t r e c e i v e a r e p l y . I d i d r e c e i v e a t e l e p h o n e c a l l however, f r o m someone f r o m t h e 119 120 u n i v e r s i t y s a y i n g they had had overwhelming re sponse t o the l i t e r a t u r e , which had o n l y been i s s u e d as a "-feeler" and t h a t when the c o u r s e s , or program, had been r e o r g a n i z e d , I would r e c e i v e more i n f o r m a t i o n i n the m a i l . To d a t e , I have r e c e i v e d n o t h i n g i n t h i s r e g a r d . In the meantime I began to get i m p a t i e n t and a p p l i e d t o take one or two c o u r s e s through Q . L . I (sponsored by Human R e s o u r c e s ) . Somehow or o t h e r t h e . c a r t came b e f o r e the horse and c o u r s e m a t e r i a l f o r a 4th year course a r r i v e d b e f o r e the 2nd year c o u r s e t h a t I had a l s o expressed i n t e r e s t i n t a k i n g . The 4th year c o u r s e m a t e r i a l was v e r y e v i d e n t a l l y much too advanced f o r my u n d e r s t a n d i n g and 1 r e t u r n e d the m a t e r i a l s and asked t o be t r a n s f e r r e d t o the 2nd year c o u r s e i n s t e a d . T h i s r e q u e s t was compl i ed w i t h , but I r e c e i v e d these replacement m a t e r i a l s too l a t e to b e g i n s e s s i o n s J a n . 1s t . I would have been n e a r l y a month l a t e w i t h my f i r s t ass ignment! The p a i n I e x p e r i e n c e wi th the d i s e a s e i s i n t e n s i f i e d wi th s t r e s s . The s t r e s s of h a v i n g to t r y t o s t a r t l a t e wi th t h i s c o u r s e , combined with added i n s e c u r i t i e s , (age, l e n g t h of t ime out of any type of s t u d y , poor r e a d i n g and s tudy h a b i t s , concern t h a t at exam t ime I might be i l l or even i n h o s p i t a l , e t c ) made my d e c i s i o n to q u i t b e f o r e I even got s t a r t e d ! I d i d t e l ephone though and asked i f I might o f f i c i a l l y s t a r t the c o u r s e i n March/86 and use the a d d i t i o n a l t ime t o go over the m a t e r i a l s s l o w l y . I was a d v i s e d t h a t i f I needed an e x t e n s i o n I s h o u l d ask f o r one a t the end of the t e r m , ( i f I needed one f o r 121 h e a l t h r e a s o n s ) and a l s o t h a t I would have t o pay a " t r a n s f e r f e e " . The f e e I c o u l d n o t a f f o r d a t t h e t i m e and a f t e r l o o k i n g o v e r t h e c o u r s e manual, w h i c h f u r t h e r t e r r i f i e d me, I d e c i d e d t o s e n d e v e r y t h i n g back t o you and w i t h d r a w f r o m O . L . I . The q u e s t i o n n a i r e was t h e f i r s t and o n l y c o r r e s p o n d e n c e I have r e c e i v e d f r o m t h e Open L e a r n i n g I n s t i t u t e s i n c e r e t u r n i n g t h e c o u r s e m a t e r i a l s i n XXXX 2 — and a l e t t e r of w i t h d r a w a l f r o m t h e c o u r s e . Had I known a b o u t t h e s e r v i c e s an a d v i s o r c o u l d h a v e p r o v i d e d me, p e r h a p s I c o u l d h a v e a v o i d e d much s t r e s s and c o u l d h a v e s t a r t e d w i t h a more a p p r o p r i a t e c o u r s e t a i l o r e d t o my n e e d s and e x p e c t a t i o n s f o r t h e f u t u r e ! I m i g h t even h ave been b e s t a d v i s e d t o t a k e t h e XXXX 2 — c o u r s e f o r " i n t e r e s t p u r p o s e s " o n l y , e l i m i n a t i n g t h e s t r e s s o f g e t t i n g a s s i g n m e n t s i n l a t e , w o r r y a b o u t exams, e t c . Hope t h i s r a t h e r l e n g t h y d i s s e r t a t i o n i s a t l e a s t r e a d a b l e , i f n o t h e l p f u l f o r o t h e r s i n s i m i l a r c i r c u m s t a n c e s . Many t h a n k s f o r t a k i n g t i m e t o r e a d i t , a s s i m p l y a n s w e r i n g y o u r q u e s t i o n n a i r e was n o t enough. S i n c e r e l y , 

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