Courses, Certificates, Degrees

Pros: Formal education offers high value.

Cons: These options take a considerable investment of time and money.

Look into:

  • Advising-related courses, certificates, and degrees at your own institution
  • Kansas State University’s Certificate in Academic Advising (see NACADA website)


Pros: Because publishing requires a lot of time and effort, it is highly valued and considered a significant contribution.

Cons: Publishing takes a lot of time, and the larger the project, the more time it takes – share the joy by collaborating!

To get started, consider:

  • Writing a book review (see the NACADA website)
  • Writing online articles (for example, for Kuanaʻike: Hawaiʻi Academic Advising Today)
  • Writing articles for the journals of national organizations, such as NACADA or in your specialization
  • Creating and maintaining a website
  • Developing advising materials for your office
  • Summarizing a conference or conference presentations for colleagues (on your campus or in your area)
  • Compiling a bibliography of resources
  • Conducting and then summarizing a survey
  • Summarizing, assessing, and evaluating a project or departmental initiative
  • Researching and then summarizing an area of interest
  • Maintaining a social media site on advising (a blog, Facebook, Twitter, etc.)
  • Developing podcasts for your office
  • Writing a book
  • Starting an “advisors club” dedicated to professional development
  • …and more – get creative!


Pros: Attending conferences is good, but presenting at conferences is even better. Conferences offer everything membership does, plus:

  • opportunities to present; and
  • even more opportunities for service.

Cons: While local conferences are inexpensive and require little investment, regional and national conferences
typically require a significant investment of both time and money.

Try some of these:

  • Advising conferences offered locally
  • Join a Professional Organization related to the field of advising or higher education
  • Regional and national conferences by NACADA and by organizations in your specialization (Health Professions, Student Services, First-Year Experience, etc.)
  • A national association in your area of specialization