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Intrusive Advising differs from the more traditional prescriptive and developmental models of advising because advisors are not only helpful and encouraging of students, but they proactively make the initial contact with students, rather than waiting in their offices for students to schedule an appointment. Most students know they have an advisor but may be unaware of how and when they are able to contact the advisor or what the advisor can help them accomplish.

Heisserer and Parette (2002) observe that "the only variable that has a direct effect on student persistence is the quality of a relationship with a significant member of the college community. Thus the advisor is often the person best suited to form a significant relationship with the student."

Although intrusive advising has been demonstrated to be effective with students across the board, underrepresented students, in particular, may benefit greatly from the intrusive approach because they may not have the background experience to know how to respond when unexpected situations arise (Backhus, 1989; Earl, 1988). Contacted by the intrusive advisor, the student has the opportunity to discuss emerging problem situations and be referred to the appropriate resources to address the problems (López, et. al., 1988). Thus intrusive advising goes beyond dealing with academic issues that impact student retention, but addresses other social and cultural issues as well.

Programs Available on our Campuses

Academic Fitness - Anoka-Ramsey Community College: This program is designed to enhance the developmental education of underepresented two-year college students through services such as intrusive advising and supplemental instruction.

Early Academic Referral System (EARS) - Saint Paul College: Identifying Potential At-Risk Students and Responding with Intrusive Action. An online database system supports instructors and student services in identifying potential at-risk students and assisting students facing academic difficulty.