Academic Life + Skill Coaching

What is Academic Life + Skill Coaching?

Coaching motivates others in identifying and achieving personal objectives (like goals, careers, relationships, prioritizing). An academic life coach helps students get to where they want to go, be it in academics, relationships or other areas of their lives.

Combining life+skill coaching supports students in areas like time management, organization, study skills, and self-advocacy to help them achieve their personal goals.

Life+skill coaching is not therapy, counseling or tutoring, but a unique way of raising self-awareness and emotional intelligence that is based in Positive Psychology.

Traditional counseling and therapy tend to get people from a state of misery to a state of stability. Tutoring focuses on learning specific content. Life+skill coaching tends to get people from a state of stability to a state of flourishing while developing the systems and habits they need to become self-sufficient learners. None of these disciplines are better or worse than the other; they are simply different.

Life+skill coaching helps people identify what they really want, and design action steps to achieve it.

A coach doesn’t tell a client what to do, but observes, requests, challenges, and suggests. A coach asks powerful questions that evoke self-awareness and openings for action. An academic coach helps the student identify what works (and doesn’t!) in the learning process so that s/he can eventually learn whatever content they are studying, on their own.

What does a typical coaching session look like?

A session is usually held via video conference or in-person meeting and lasts up to one hour.

After a “check-in,” we assess how the student is doing on following through on their habits, and then the student chooses a topic to work on that day. The student and coach clarify a concrete outcome that the student wants for this topic and then work on skill-building. The student then applies these insights to creating actions to take prior to the next session. The student and coach confirm that these actions are in line with the concrete outcome set at the beginning of the session and agree on communication and accountability between sessions.

How do we get started with coaching?

  1. Contact me for a short (usually 15 minute) consultation.
  2. Schedule an assessment meeting (typically one hour) for student and parent/s, usually in person or virtually for out-of-area students to assess if we are a good fit for each other (student and coach), to discuss areas of concern and to set a clear agenda for what we will be working on together.
  3. Schedule 6-8 sessions where I get to know the student’s strengths and challenges, work on building new skills and habits, and assess our progress with the Habits Graph.

How many sessions are needed?

This depends entirely on the student. Sometimes they are just focused on a specific goal so the 6-8 sessions jump-start their ability to reach that goal. Most of my students, however, work with me for the school year and beyond. Students are able to more fully integrate habits into their lives the longer we work together.

For more information on Academic Life+Skill Coaching contact Cathy or call 509-795-1629.