The relationship between interpersonal skills is positively correlated with effective academic advising. Professional academic advisors feel significant pressure to meet a wide array of student needs, increase retention rates, help students in their efforts of academic achievement and career exploration, and support institutions to excel in scholarship. These demands make the skills needed for effective academic advising more professionally demanding than ever before. An advisor's skill level in interpersonal relations is critical to advising success. In this article, I share the foundation for interpersonal relations proficiency, communicate the challenges in interpersonal skill areas, and provide strategies with examples designed for advisors to enhance their proficiency in their relationships with advisees.
Dr. Judy Hughey, a National Certified Counselor, is an associate professor at Kansas State University in the Department of Special Education, Counseling, and Student Affairs. Dr. Hughey's teaching responsibilities include teaching graduate courses in counselor education and supervision, academic advising, and undergraduate educational psychology. Dr. Hughey has also served as a project director or associate director on multiple grants and has served as Assistant Managing Editor for the Journal of Vocational Special Needs and Assistant to the Editor for the Professional School Counseling Journal. Prior to coming to K-State, Dr. Hughey held professional positions as a school counselor, psychological examiner, adult education teacher, speech communications teacher, and professional development coordinator and instructor at the University of Missouri—Columbia. Her research and academic interests include school counseling programs, learning environments, and career education and development, She has been published in academic journals such as the Journal of Career Development, Community College Journal, ERIC Publications, the School Counselor, the ASCA Counselor, and Academic Advising Today.