Get Connected: A Scoping Review of Advising Online Graduate Students

Holly S. Meyer, Kristi A. Preisman, Anita Samuel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


The rate of online graduate education programs grows annually. Yet, dropout rates and student satisfaction rates continue to lag behind in-person programs. Advising practices may offer unique opportunities to reverse or alter these challenges. While the body of literature about undergraduate advising and online advising is robust, literature on current online graduate-level advising is sparse. Therefore, a scoping review of the literature was undertaken to answer the research question: What does the literature tell us about advising in online graduate programs? The search revealed ten relevant studies, and after conducting a thematic network analysis, two global themes and five organizing themes were presented. There are two global themes, “Create Connections” and “Know Your Program.” The “Create Connections” global theme is supported by three organizing themes: (a) Communication and Feedback, (b) Building Relationships and Community, and (c) Investment in student’s personal and academic growth. The “Know Your Program” global theme is supported by organizing themes (d) Program Requirements and Policies and (e) Technical skills. Based on the data, three recommendations are presented to aid online graduate advisors, including building trusting relationships with advisees, building a community of students, and knowing program policies, requirements, and technology platforms.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)274-292
Number of pages19
JournalOnline Learning Journal
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 2022
Externally publishedYes


  • Distance learning
  • advising
  • e-mentoring
  • graduate education
  • online education
  • online mentoring
  • research supervision
  • student perceptions
  • virtual mentoring


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