Guided Pathways Advising Through Coaching - Austin Community College

GWW Database - Guided Pathways program
Austin Community College District
Academic Level
Issue Area
Key Personnel
Program Focus
First Year Support,
Institutional Change


Guided Pathways provides students with personalized, proactive advising to help them select an academic path, persist, and graduate. The goals of the program are to create a model where advisors coach students to develop agency in creating their academic path, foster student–advisor relationships through timely nudging at critical points, and helping students navigate resources to support their success. The tangible goals for the program are to increase persistence rates, and ultimately increase graduation rates of all students, especially Hispanic students.

Program Description

ACC redesigned their advising training, program development, and student engagement to empower staff and students to make holistically informed decisions. They redesigned transfer and career pathways to minimize barriers and prepare students for degrees and gainful employment. ACC also reimagined a student-centered community through the college's Diversity Framework to create equitable outcomes for all students.

In 2019, the advising team formed a close alliance with the Ascender program contributing to ACC's strategic goals of advancing inclusion, equity, social justice, persistence, and completion. About 10,000 first-time at ACC (FTACC) students with less than 12 credit hours are case managed, where advisors interact with their caseload a minimum of 5 times a term, providing tutoring information, student engagement, and continued registration.


  • Increased persistence: From 2017 to 2019, the number of Latino students persisting from fall to spring increased by 9%. From fall 2017 to fall 2019, the number of Latino students persisting increased by two and half percent.
  • Increased graduation: The program has helped all students in that ACC’s FTIC full time student increase the graduation rate from7% to 19% in that same 2017 to 2019 period.
  • Increased GPAs and course success rates: From 2017 to 2019 Latino students with a GPA over 2.0 increased by 8%. For fall 2019, the students participating in Ascender had success rates in Engl 1301 of 81% versus 78% for non-Ascender students and 81% for EDUC 1300 versus 71% for non-Ascender students.

Latinos in Higher Education - 2024 Compilation of Fast Facts - web pop-up banner with "Learn More" button.