Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education in Educational Leadership


Educational Leadership and Curriculum

First Reader/Committee Chair

Martinez, Edna


Students enroll in universities to earn degrees as a way to improve social and economic competitiveness. However, many large, comprehensive universities are having difficulty in supporting students to ensure timely graduation and are seeing a large number of students stop out before a degree is earned. Academic advising is seen as an effective strategy to help improve retention and completion rates in universities. However, large comprehensive universities often lack the resources to ensure students receive the support needed to ensure completion. We know four-year graduation rates are rare, and there are numerous factors contributing to this issue. Thus, universities and colleges are relying on iPASS reform, which combines advising technologies and advising redesign to create a seamless and holistic advising experience for students. The purpose of this research study was to understand ongoing iPASS reform efforts at a public, comprehensive four-year institution. Data were obtained from open-ended, semi-structured interviews, document analysis, and participant observations. Qualitative data were transcribed, coded, categorized, and organized into five thematic findings: a) Commitment to Student Learning and Student Success through Academic Advising, b) Restructuring Academic Advising and Related Cultural Shifts, c) Advising Approaches to Promote Student Success of the Whole Student, d) Adopting and Implementing New Advising Technologies, and e) Leadership Matters at All Levels. Mountainside University’s leaders and practitioners may see these findings immediately helpful in their efforts to fully implement iPASS reform. In addition, findings help identify barriers to implementation and facilitate efficient practices of implementation and provide insights into how academic advisors are affected. These insights are critical because the working conditions of academic advisors directly translate into students’ learning conditions. Recommendations for policy, practice, and future research are discussed.