The role of the graduate faculty advisor
Robinson, Deborah J.
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This dissertation examined the role of graduate faculty members' advisement and its contribution to doctoral students' education. At most doctoral granting institutions of higher education, advisement represents a communicative method that graduate faculty members employ to assist students to gain the skills, knowledge, and characteristics for positions. By examining this educational activity, I clarify the advisement process which graduate faculty members undertake when doctoral students are pursuing an education at this level. An exploratory study was conducted with graduate faculties from the Graduate School of Education (Counseling, School and Educational Psychology, Educational Leadership and Policy, and Learning and Instructional Departments) at the University at Buffalo regarding their role in this transformation. For this study an instrument (Graduate Faculty Advisor Survey) was developed that explored the following: (1) How well did your doctoral training prepare you to work with your doctoral advisees in the following 23 advisement areas? (2) What priority level do you place on each of the following 23 advisement areas when you work with your doctoral advisees? (3) Which is the greater influence on you advising doctoral student advisees in each of the following 23 advisement areas? 4-My Own Doctoral Training, 3--Doctoral Advising Experience, 2-Both Training and Experience Equally, or 1-some "Other training or experience"? (4) How much time do graduate faculty advisors spend with doctoral students who are pursuing their degree? This study discovered that the graduate faculty advisors' graduate advisement relationship comprised of advisement activities that primarily focused on research initiatives. Recommendations were made for graduate faculty members, deans, and administrators. Some recommendations for doctoral students pursuing their education are also included.