Date of Award

Summer 7-2017

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)



First Advisor

Dr. Rhonda Bishop

Second Advisor

Dr. Sherry DeVore

Third Advisor

Dr. Doug Hayter


The purpose of this research study was to examine student and academic advisors’ perceptions of advisement techniques to determine the connection between academic advising strategies and student retention. If student retention rates are not addressed, higher education institutions are at risk of losing students, which is costly to the institution and the student (Himes, 2014). Most college students are in a state of change and need academic advice to achieve success during a college transition (Tinto, 2012). Academic advisors can assist students in finding the right career for students’ specific strengths. This qualitative study utilized Tinto’s (2012) theories of student departure and retention to provide an understanding of how student retention rates can be based on a lack of positive institutional relationships between students and academic advisors. A higher education institution must establish conditions within its own system to promote positive student experiences and outcomes (Vianden & Barlow, 2015). Four research questions guided this study. Focus groups and interviews were used to collect data from students and academic advisors. Students and academic advisors discussed academic advising experiences, student satisfaction, and information needed to achieve successful advising sessions. Themes emerged relating to developing relationships, personalized advising sessions, and a consistent campus. Tinto (2012) stated students need individualized academic and social support to properly transition into college. Findings of the study indicated progressive academic advisement strategies have a positive impact on student retention.


Copyright 2017