Approach, commitment and principles

  • Advising will vary across disciplines and Faculties
  • Not 'one size fits all', rather 'freedom within a framework'
  • Therefore, not the same, but equitable across areas
  • A two pronged approach between Uni/OCAED and your subject team/line manager/Faculty

"You should expect to have discussions with your Academic Adviser at least twice a year. Your Academic Adviser will normally invite you to a one-to-one or group meeting near the start of each Semester"

Academic Guidance statement (above is the minimum commitment)

The eight Principles of Academic Advising at Oxford Brookes

These have been informed by the NUS’s Academic Support Benchmarking Tool (NUS, 2015a) and Charter on Personal Tutors (NUS, 2015b), the UK Advising and Tutoring association’s Professional Framework for Advising and Tutoring (UKAT, 2019) and a subsequent consultation exercise with staff and students.

The principles constitute a generic framework for effective advising to be interpreted by departments in terms of what works best for you and your students. The diversity of subject discipline and student cohort across the institution means that Academic Advising will legitimately vary according to teaching context. It is acknowledged that ‘one size does not fit all’ and an ethos of ‘freedom within a framework’ should exist. They are for supporting all students on taught programmes. 

The Oxford Brookes Academic Advising system provides:

1.  A key element of integrated academic and pastoral support

Academic Advisers and advising sessions are positioned as one element of a support network. It is clear to students how those staff work together to provide holistic support.

Sessions should be consistent with or contribute to the delivery of the Education and Enterprise Pillar of Oxford Brookes University Strategy 2035

Information about advising and adjunct services (purpose, roles and expectations) for students and staff need to be clear, accessible and up to date. This will enable effective signposting (for example, for further pastoral care) where relevant.

2.  Personalised support

Wherever possible, every student has a named adviser for the duration of their programme of study. Should it be necessary, there is a clear process for students to change adviser.
3.  A structured advising programme by discipline or subject
Subject areas should offer advising programmes that are timetabled and collectively planned. Flexibility will be shown for specific student groups.
4.  Regular structured interactions that are based on clear agreed expectationsSessions need to be purposeful and planned. AA sessions are spaces to recalibrate expectations of support with a view to developing student autonomy.
5.  Student reflection, development and recognition of achievement

Sessions are spaces to support shared and personal reflections and stocktaking. Staff are trained to listen and to appreciate the unique background and profile of each student.

6.  Academic and career goal setting Sessions address academic and long-term career goals as well as support students who feel unsure about their future. This can be in partnership with the Careers Service as appropriate.
7.  Support for effective learning

Advising is teaching and sessions provide a space devoted to learning to learn within your discipline. The background and starting point of each student will be taken into account.

8.  Proactive monitoring of student progression Institutional data on student attendance and performance (as proxies for engagement) can inform advisors’ discussions with students. This discussion can be student led and low tech options can be explored.