Institutional Collaboration Towards Improved Student Advising - From Ad Hocery to Organized Chaos

Advisors, Enterprise Architects, Registrars, and Technologists Working Together to Improve Undergraduate Advising

LIVE Webinar date: October 23, 2012
Time: 2pm – 3:00pm ET


The University of Wisconsin – Madison formed an IT advising architecture review board to develop holistic approaches for the alignment and delivery of technology resources to campus advisors. Learn how we strategically focused on increasing communication, strengthening collaboration, and improving coordination of efforts among our IT division, Registrar's Office, and advising community. The historical origins, definition of role, identification of gaps, and proposed solutions will be explored.

The Advising Architecture Review Board (AARB) arose during the 2010-2011 academic year out of a growing awareness of the need to better integrate the IT tools used by the University of Wisconsin – Madison undergraduate advisors in their work. A more holistic approach was needed for aligning and delivering the increasing array of technology related resources available to advisors at the institution. The AARB began by exploring and then defining the advisor life cycle on campus (the nature, requirements, and key phases of undergraduate advising). From this an Advisor Core Diagram was created that captures the key advisor activities, the core services needed to perform those activities, and the administrative pipeline (processes and administrative support infrastructure) that supports them. The work of the AARB assists the advising community in identifying strategic gaps in core services and/or administrative support that hinder or prohibit advisors from working effectively or efficiently. The AARB also works to identify areas of overlap in tools or technology services where redundant tools are provided that achieve the same goal or outcome, answer the same question, or accomplish the same task.

The work of the AARB and the Core Diagram allows us to better understand the complexity of the advising technology landscape on campus, as well as to determine if there are ways to deliver these campus-wide resources more effectively and efficiently to the advising community as a whole.

Who Should Attend?

This webinar will be of significant interest to registrars, those employed in student services and advising, and to IT professionals.


Jim Phelps, Enterprise Architect / Information Technology Architect, University of Wisconsin – Madison

Jim Phelps came to UW-Madison in the Spring of 2002. As an enterprise architect, he collaborates closely with leadership, technology teams, and end-users. He works to define strategic goals and then see how technology can best be leveraged to meet those goals. Jim approaches problems from the end-users' / customers' point-of-view, rather than the technology point-of-view.

His focus has been on the student lifecycle and the enrollment process as a whole. This has lead him to learn much more about admissions, data regulations, student retention, and the curricular rhythm of the year than he thought was possible. Jim is also facilitating the Advising Architecture Review Board.

Jim is chair of ITANA - a peer group for Enterprise, Business and Technical Architects in higher education ( In this role, he works to grow the practice of Enterprise Architecture in higher education, build peer groups for architects, and provide outreach to communities regarding the important roles that architects can play on campuses.

Prior to coming to UW-Madison, Jim was at University of Tennessee and Oregon State University where he worked in biocomputing and bioinformatics. Jim is native to Salt Lake City, Utah and a graduate of University of Utah. His background is in Analytical Chemistry. He followed college with a career in medical products before returning to academia.

Scott Owczarek, University Registrar, University of Wisconsin – Madison

Scott has been the University Registrar at UW-Madison since January 2011, serving as the University's leader in developing and delivering services and programs related to student records, enrollment, graduation, and the management of and access to student information. In his role, he also supports the teaching mission of the University by providing faculty and instructional staff curriculum management, classroom scheduling, and grading services. Scott serves as the University's primary data custodian for student academic records; as well as serving as the University's compliance officer for the Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (FEPRA).

Before coming to UW-Madison, Scott was at Michigan State University where he worked since 2007 as the associate registrar for enrollment services and classroom scheduling. From 1998-2004, Scott worked in the Office of the Registrar and the College of Lifelong Learning at Wayne State University in Detroit as the associate registrar for academic records.

Along with Scott's 14 years of experience in a registrar's office at three comprehensive, complex, research institutions, he earned his Bachelor of Science degree in Information Systems Management and a Masters of Business Administration from Wayne State University.

Jeffrey E. Shokler, Associate Director, College of Letters and Science Honors Program

Jeff has been with the L&S Honors Program at the University of Wisconsin – Madison since 1998 and has served as its Associate Director since 2004. Jeff's connection with all things Honors began with his undergraduate program at Southern Methodist University in Dallas, TX where he was an Honors student. His academic background is in archaeology. He taught archaeology and anthropology as an Assistant Professor at Ripon College, lectured at the University of Wisconsin – Madison and the University of Wisconsin Center – Marshfield, and co-taught an international studies course on Yucatan cultural ecology in Yucatan, Mexico in collaboration with faculty from Peace College in North Carolina. He has conducted archaeological fieldwork and research overseas in Portugal, Ireland, and Morocco as well as in the United States in Wisconsin, Texas, North Carolina, and New Mexico.

Jeff's technology skills and interests have led to him become heavily engaged in advising- and student service-related technology and data initiatives at the UW-Madison. He helped develop and deploy the university's Advisor Notes System (ANS), serves on a number of advising and technology-related committees including the new Advising Architecture Review Board (AARB), and actively works to improve communication and collaboration between the advising community, Registrar's Office, and Division of Information Technology in order to enhance the capacity and ability of undergraduate advisors at the university to best serve the needs of their students.


Mark McConahay, Associate Vice Provost and Registrar, Indiana University-Bloomington

Mark came to IU in 1976 as an undergraduate student and never left. He joined the Office of the Registrar in 1982 as an Analyst/Programmer and has been the Associate Registrar of Systems since 1990. In addition to his work in the Office of the Registrar, Mark has presented at several conferences, received two EDUCAUSE Best Practice Awards (then CAUSE) and two CUMREC Best Paper Awards, contributor to books and articles, was a member of CUMREC Board of Directors (Chair 2002-2003), and is currently Director of AACRAO's Technology Conference. Mark received a B.A. in mathematics in 1979 and a M.S. in Environmental Science in 1984.

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Registration Cost:$69.00 for AACRAO Members / $89.00 for Non-Members

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For questions about the webinar please contact AACRAO at or call 202-293-9161.