A philosophy of advising referred to as the learning-centered paradigm is described and compared to the dominant developmental paradigm. Through the learning-centered paradigm, one can explain, better than through the developmental theory, how advising is, or can be, similar to teaching. Under the learning-centered approach, the excellent advisor plays a role with respect to a student's entire curriculum that is analogous to the role that the excellent teacher plays with respect to the content of a single course. He or she also helps the student to understand, and in a certain sense, to create the logic of the student's curriculum. Thus, the advisor's instruction in the logic of the curriculum elevates the advisor's work to a central role in enhancing a student's education.

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Author notes

Marc Lowenstein serves as Dean of Professional Studies at The Richard Stockton College of New Jersey. He holds a BA from Colgate University and a PhD from the University of Rochester, both in philosophy. He has spoken on the topic of this paper at several NACADA conferences, and previously published “Ethics in Academic Advising” (with Thomas Grites) in the Spring 1993 issue of the NACADA Journal. He can be reached at marc.lowenstein@stockton.edu.