Student Affairs

Student Affairs Moves Online: High Tech Meets High Touch

Duration: One hour
Facilitator: Dr. Aaron Hughey
Price: $50.00

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"Student affairs offices across the country are changing up long-standing approaches and launching new initiatives to better address the needs of today’s students. As online learning grows in prevalence and importance, institutions must do more than simply migrate traditional support services online. They must craft new and varied supports that deeply consider the unique challenges of an online education. Only then can we meet a growing number of students where they are: online."    - Kevin Kruger & Dave Jarrat

Advanced technologies are moving more and more traditional student affairs functions into the virtual world, where students can have access to the services they need anytime and anywhere. Moving to this brave new world, however, presents several challenges for student affairs professionals who have traditionally delivered their services in person. As financial resources have become more scare at many institutions at the same time demands have become more acute, the need for student affairs has become more pervasive. In a very real sense, going virtual offers student affairs professionals a way to do more with less while increasing retention and enhancing completion rates. But this does not necessarily mean that face-to-face services should be completely abandoned. In a very real sense, an online/hybrid approach offers the best of both worlds. When implemented conscientiously and correctly, it can create a synergy that is both high tech and high touch. 

This webinar will cover the essential components of successful online student affairs services and programs, focusing on how those components can be integrated in a way that accentuates the advantages of both face-to-face and virtual delivery approaches. The goal is to develop and maintain student support services using an online platform that has all the features of a face-to-face experience. A primary focus will be on making the transition from face-to-face to an online/hybrid model, which utilizes both approaches to deliver the most successful experience possible for the student. Opportunities for participant involvement through the use of case studies and real-time feedback via chat will also be used to enhance the learning experience. The session will emphasize evidence-based best practices that meet both student as well as institutional needs while preserving and reinforcing the advantages associated with each approach.

Brief Outline:

  • Successful Student Affairs Practice: Critical Components and Considerations
  • Student Engagement: The Process May Change but the Goal Remains the Same
  • High Touch/High Tech: Not an Either/Or Proposition
  • Interactions: Traditional vs. Online vs. Hybrid Approaches
  • Moving to an Online Model: What to Pay Attention To
  • Connecting Across the Formats: What Stays the Same/What Changes
  • Case Studies: Bringing the Hybrid Model to Life

Learning Outcomes:

Participants will:

  1. Review the essential components of successful student affairs practice
  2. Discover strategies for engaging students in meaningful, productive relationships in an online environment
  3. Learn how to adapt student affairs programs and services to an online environment
  4. Improve the ability to truly connect in a virtual environment
  5. Examine critical factors to consider when moving student affairs to an online environment
  6. Critique real-life examples of effective and ineffective ways of interacting with students in an online environment
  7. Consider case studies from the proverbial real world that demonstrate how an online model actually works

Who Should Attend:

Student Affairs Professionals, including those who work in Admissions and Recruitment, Orientation and Advising, Enrollment Management, Student Financial Assistance, Registrar’s Office, Career Services, Judicial Affairs, Student Support Services and all related departments/units.


Dr. Aaron W HugheyDr. Aaron W Hughey is a Professor in the Department of Counseling and Student Affairs at Western Kentucky University, where he oversees the graduate degree program in Student Affairs in Higher Education. Before joining the faculty in 1991, he spent 10 years in progressive administrative positions, including five years as the Associate Director of University Housing at WKU. He was also head of the department of Counseling and Student Affairs for five years before returning to the faculty full-time in 2008. Dr. Hughey has degrees from the University of Tennessee at Martin, the University of Tennessee at Knoxville, Western Kentucky University, and Northern Illinois University. He has authored (or co-authored) over 60 refereed publications on a wide range of issues including leadership and student development, standardized testing, diversity, legal issues (including compliance), technology, and educational administration. He regularly presents at national and international conferences and consults extensively with companies and schools. He also provides training and professional development programs on a variety of topics centered on student success; moving higher education in general and student affairs in particular online is one of his specialties.

Source for the quote:
Diverse Issues in Higher Education (December 2018):

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