The UK Advising and Tutoring association (UKAT) is a charitable trust and learned society representing scholars and practitioners of personal tutoring and academic advising in the UK higher education sector. Our mission is to advance effective personal tutoring and academic advising practice within higher education so that every student can experience inclusiveness, wellbeing, and personal growth, leading them to flourish and succeed. We seek to advance the field through our conferences, symposia, workshops, support for original research, peer-reviewed academic publications, accreditation of practice, professional courses, and resources.
UKAT membership is open to higher education institutions, individual tutors and advisors, and students. Our diverse membership consists of academics, administrators, students, researchers, professional advisers, counsellors, and others who are committed to enhancing their students’ educational development through high-quality, research-informed advising and tutoring. Members are drawn from all regions of the UK and beyond and belong to institutions from across the spectrum of higher and further education; they bring to the association a wide range of experience and different perspectives.
We work closely with our member institutions and individual members to enhance advising practice through standards and frameworks, professional development events, online learning, conferences and webinars, consultancy services, publications, and resources. Recognising that effective personal tutoring and academic advising is at the core of student success, UKAT aspires to lead the development and dissemination of innovative theory, research, and practice of student advising and tutoring in the UK and beyond. We encourage practitioners to engage with the scholarship of personal tutoring and to adopt a scholarly-informed approach to their practice.
Our flagship Professional Recognition Scheme aims to raise the profile of personal tutoring and the impact that it has in supporting student success, and in improving student engagement and improved outcomes for all students. This developmental scheme is open to anyone providing personal tutoring or academic advising to higher education students. It enables individuals to demonstrate competency in personal tutoring practice at three distinct levels – Recognised Practitioner in Advising, Recognised Senior Advisor and Recognised Leader in Advising - referenced against the UKAT Professional Framework for Academic Advising and Personal Tutoring. Supporting their staff to gain recognition through the scheme enables higher education institutions to prove how they intentionally provide holistic support to learners and how they work to improve student success and outcomes for all students. Participation in the scheme offers a proactive way to develop staff, enabling institutions to address key goals and drivers articulated in institutional strategy, Access and Participation Plans and HE policy. To date, 29 higher education institutions have participated in the scheme. Some use it as an adjunct to AdvanceHE’s Fellowship scheme, and a way to ensure that awarded Fellowships remain in good standing.
UKAT's member institutions together constitute an Advisory Board which informs the strategy and activities of UKAT to ensure that it remains relevant to the needs of students and higher education providers. Students are the heart, and ultimate benefactors, of everything that UKAT does which is why we encourage student representation amongst our membership, and partnership working with students through our Advisory Board and UKAT events. Many of our events, including our free monthly webinar series, are open to anyone with an interest in enhancing academic advising and personal tutoring practice. Members receive access to exclusive information and resources, and discounted rates for conference and event registration, professional development courses, and professional recognition applications.
UKAT was founded in 2015, responding to a perceived need for a forum for discussion, debate and the exchange of ideas on current issues in personal tutoring and academic advising in the UK. UKAT is the first allied group of NACADA (the Global Community for Academic Advising) to be established outside North America. We value our relationship with NACADA and work closely with NACADA colleagues to advocate for and enhance academic advising globally.