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Reviewed by:
  • Student Academic Services: An Integrated Approach
  • James W. Kelley
Student Academic Services: An Integrated Approach Gary L. Kramer & Associates San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 2003, 446 pages, $42.00 (hardcover)

Student Academic Services is a collection of 20 chapters written by some of the profession's best thinkers and doers, offering an examination of current cutting edge practices and trends in student service. It also offers a challenge to the profession to create even more effective student academic services for the future.

The book is divided into three parts. Part 1, "Taking a Strategic Approach to Student Development," reviews the evolution of student academic services in higher education. Part 2, "Profiles of Student Academic Services," describes the individual units typically associated with student affairs and discusses the process of "unifying staff members, simplifying services, enhancing systems and . . . providing students with better services." And part 3, "New Directions for Practice," demonstrates how collaborative efforts can ensure success in the development and delivery of effective academic support services.

Briefly, the chapters are as follows:

In chapter 1, "Stimulating and Supporting Student Learning," Roger B. Winston Jr. explores the overall concept of academic services within higher education with a commentary on the role of the "student-centric" institution and a thoughtful discussion of the development of integrated approaches to the delivery of student academic services.

Chapter 2, "Student Academic Services," by Darlene Burnett and Diana Oblinger, presents a number of excellent examples of academic service models, including current practices and trends—with a particular emphasis on those represented in web-based models.

In chapter 3, John Schuh focuses on "The Interrelationship of Student Academic Services," and discusses the potential role of student academic services in the development of a comprehensive enrollment management and retention program. Among the topics he considers are student retention efforts, examples of partnerships between academic and student affairs and recommendations for practice.

Jim Black's presentation in chapter 4, "Enrollment Management and Conceptual Underpinnings," provides an excellent overview of enrollment management concepts and how they relate to student academic services. He also describes how the institution can change dramatically when these concepts are integrated with a philosophy of collaboration.

In chapter 5, authors Gary W. Peterson, Janet G. Lenz, and James P. Sampson, Jr. discuss "The Assessment of Readiness for Student Learning in College." The authors propose a model to enhance the opportunities for student success by way of a point-of-entry comprehensive readiness assessment program. With this strategy students would have access to information to diagnose their individual readiness for college and then develop a plan for how their needs would be met within the campus community.

In chapter 6, "New Student Orientation [End Page 357] in the Twenty-First Century," Bonita Jacobs reviews "traditional" new student orientation programs as they have existed. She then proceeds to highlight a variety of newer student orientation delivery options focusing on the integration of programs and services into a collaborative system. In addition, the author has provided an extensive bibliography.

Chapter 7, "Course Planning and Registration," by Louise Lonabocker and J. James Wager, gives insight into issues with which many student affairs professionals have very little contact—course planning and student registration. If one is hoping to muster support for an integrated "academic" support system, then some of the detail in this chapter will be of great value even if it is not necessarily a part of the more traditional business of student affairs.

Chapter 8, "Career Interventions: Facilitating Strategic Academic and Career Planning," by Robert C. Reardon and Jill A. Lumsden, explores

"the varied ways in which career planning services operate on college campuses." Of particular note is the discussion of the student-centered career portfolio system. By making use of the Internet and campus-based information systems students can create a personal information base intended to help them prepare for long term career and life roles.

In chapter 9, "Supporting Student Planning," Virginia Gordon and Gary Kramer focus on the integration of academic, career, and financial planning to support the concept of graduation planning. Persons seeking a solid understanding of the relevance good academic advising has to a student's overall personal and academic success will find...


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pp. 357-360
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