Faculty Helping Students Be Successful in Doctoral Education
Repository Posting Date2018-04-18T20:09:14Z
Author(s)Morin, Karen H.
Author DetailsKaren H. Morin, PhD, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, Kalamazoo, Michigan, USA
Lead Author Sigma AffliationUpsilon Epsilon
Other Title(s)Doctoral Education Preparation
Level of EvidenceN/A
Background: Increasingly, students are pursing either a research or practice doctorate in nursing. While programs of study may vary, students can encounter obstacles during their program of study that cause consternation for them and faculty teaching them. In fact, faculty often struggle with how to facilitate student success when faced with competing faculty demands. The purpose of this presentation is to review the literature on strategies to enhance student success. This work builds on work conducted in 2005.
Method: Literature [research and theoretical] for the past 10 years was reviewed using CINAHL, Medline, and Education databases. Key words included doctoral student advising, mentoring doctoral students, success in doctoral programs. Dissertations and theses were also accessed, as were seminal works. Reports of research were evaluated using the US. Preventive Services Task Force (1989)
Outcomes: 18 reports of research and 17 non-research publications were retrieved and reviewed. Findings indicate students need help getting started in graduate school in ways that promote success such as comprehensive orientations; establishing connections with people in the department and with the culture of the department; experiencing carefully-constructed advising and mentoring relationships. Having well established advising policies and procedures contributes to student success and should address time involvement, method of communication, response time, documentation of decisions, and role clarification. Programmatic strategies include providing opportunities early immersion in research or practice, Weekly opportunities to interact with faculty, shared congregating areas and programmatic flexibility are equally important. Most research reported employed qualitative or descriptive methods.
Conclusion: The topic of doctoral student success continues to be discussed in the literature. Mentorship received the greatest attention since the previous review of literature in 2005. There are evidence-based strategies available to enhance student success. Faculty are encouraged to employ and continue to evaluate their effectiveness. Conducting multi-site intervention studies is one strategy faculty may wish to consider.