National Collegiate Honors Council


Date of this Version



Published in Honors in Practice, volume 3. Copyright 2007 National Collegiate Honors Council.


Developmental advising is a common form of advisement used with students in honors programs; it is defined as a “special advising relationship with students that both stimulates and supports their quest for an enriched educational experience” (Ender, 1997, p. 171). In a developmental advising relationship, students continuously interact with the advisor to achieve personal and educational goals. The relationship goes beyond typical advising issues such as registration and class scheduling, tapping into academic competence, personal involvement, and developing life goals (Ender). According to Ender and Wilkie (2000), developmental advising is challenging yet supportive, thereby allowing students to learn from their advising experience. The ideal developmental advising relationship is ongoing, balances between challenge and support, and is goal directed and intentional (Ender & Wilkie, 2000). Honors students tend to favor this type of collaborative advising relationship where they are learning while receiving support from their advisor (Kem & Navan, 2006).