The Indicators of Effective Advising (IEA) were released by ESE in 2014. The IEA were developed by a team of adult education advisors and informed by research on effective academic advising. They outline a vision for advising that includes all program staff in the work of creating a culture of college and career readiness that supports students education and career goals.

The SABES Program Support PD Center at World Education, formerly the SABES PD Center for Education and Career Planning, introduces the IEA in our two-day Art of Advising orientation for new advisors. During the two-week period between the first and second session, we ask new advisors to meet with their directors to discuss their program’s approach to advising and its alignment with the approach reflected in the IEA. Typically, we hear from advisors that the IEA assignment provided a first-of-its kind opportunity to familiarize directors with the IEA. This is something we hope to remedy though this article and our PD offerings throughout the year.

The IEA are organized into five broad categories defined by a single overarching indicator, followed by more detailed examples of practice that reflect the indicator.

  1. Culture and climate of college and career readiness

    The program director sets a positive tone for education and career planning as part of overall program planning

  2. Goal setting and planning

    Advisor and teachers meet with students initially and over time to help students identify and achieve authentic, student-generated goals.

  3. Addressing obstacles and barriers to meeting goals

    Advisors and staff educate themselves about factors that impede students’ progress and use that knowledge to help students meet their goals.

  4. Community engagement

    Advisor builds relationships with community services that are academically, culturally, and linguistically relevant and accessible to students, and makes referrals when appropriate.

  5. Legal compliance

    Program Director and Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) Coordinator keep staff updated on relevant legal mandates.

We have many PD events planned this year designed to help programs implement practices that align with the IEA:  Advisor Sharing and Learning Groups; Art of Advising (for new advisors); ADA Training and Resources; Mental Health First Aid; and more. Sign-up for a SABES account to receive notifications when these events are scheduled.  

But don’t wait for us: you can start to design your advisor program for maximum impact now using the IEA as a guide. We suggest that program teams use it early in the year to take account of where your advising program is strong, where it can be improved, and what sort of information, resources, and PD you need to take steps for improvement.

PD Center: 


SABES Program Support PD Center - Advising