Appreciative Administration Online Course

Welcome to the Appreciative Administration Course through Florida Atlantic University’s Office of Appreciative Education! We are so glad you are joining us!

Online Course Offerings

Fall 2020 Spring 2021 Summer 2021 Fall 2021
October 5 - November 16
Registration Deadline:
October 1, 2020
February 22 - April 3
Registration Deadline:
February 18, 2021
May 31 - July 12
Registration Deadline:
May 27, 2021
October 4 - November 15
Registration Deadline:
September 30, 2021



The Appreciative Administration course content will cover a range of topics through an Appreciative Education/Advising lens. The goal of the course is to provide community members with the opportunity to learn specific skills, techniques, and practical applications for becoming an effective Appreciative Administrator. The Appreciative Administration course is designed to be a community of learners (instructors included) who are either current administrators in supervisory roles or are administrators who aspire to become supervisors in the future.




The Appreciative Administration course is designed to be a community of learners (instructors included) who are either current administrators in supervisory roles or are administrators who aspire to become supervisors in the future. There are opportunities for you to interact with other community members each week via the course discussion boards. Active participation in our community enhances your own experience and the experiences of the other learners in our community.


Our teaching philosophy is rooted in the process of life-long learning, continuous self-improvement, and the belief that all members of a learning organization are simultaneously contributors and learners. We teach through a process of shared responsibility. We no more expect to do all of the teaching in this course, than we expect our “students” to do all of the learning. We intentionally work to build a community of learners where the responsibility for teaching and learning is shared by instructors and students alike. Building on the work of Bain (2004) we “fundamentally recognize that people will learn best and most deeply when they have a strong sense of control over their own education rather than feeling manipulated by someone else's demands.” We fully believe your learning will match the time and effort you put into the course. In other words, you will get it out of it what you put into it!


Our suggested learning aims to: (a) inspire our community of learners to think critically and engage actively with topics related to Appreciative Administration; (b) to provide a foundation of knowledge about key topics related to Appreciative Administration that will allow for personal growth and professional development; and (c) to foster a supportive community that allows for dialogue and discussion during the six-week course as well as build a collegial network throughout the course and beyond. Our objective is not to get you to think in any particular way, and it is not to “teach” you to think like us. In fact, we often do not always think like each other! Your suggested learning aims for the course are just that, yours. Although there may be overlap in what you hope to achieve through this course and what we aim to provide, we anticipate that you will each have unique goals. In the first week of the course, we will ask you to create your own aims. Our hope is that you continue to develop your goals for the course well after the first week and that you learn many things that you never intended to learn. Importantly, this course is designed for you to explore and immediately apply the designated topic each week to your work.


Responsibility for teaching AND learning in the Appreciative Administration Course is shared among all community members. Please be prepared to participate every week. We expect you to not only have thoughts, opinions, and ideas, but we also expect you to share them! We also expect you to thoughtfully and fully consider the opinions and ideas others present. One of the great joys of teaching this course is the opportunity that we have to see things in new or different ways because the ideas others bring to the course. We likewise will also actively participate in discussions each week.


It is the policy of Florida Atlantic University to make reasonable accommodations for qualified individuals with disabilities. “In Compliance with The Americans with Disabilities Act (A.D.A.), students who require special accommodations due to a disability to properly execute coursework must register with the Office for Student Accessibility Services located in Boca – SU 133 (561-297-3880) and follow all Office procedures. The purpose of this office is to provide reasonable accommodations to students with disabilities.” Students who require assistance should notify the professor immediately by submitting a letter from the Student Accessibilities Office to your instructor requesting your need of specific assistance.


Although there is not required text currently for this course, there will be assigned articles provided to you related to each week’s topic to read. Note: Because Appreciative Administration is based on the tenets of Appreciative Advising, you may find reading The Appreciative Advising Revolution book to provide helpful background to introduce you to the theory-to-practice model.


“A little reflection will show us that every belief, even the simplest and most fundamental, goes beyond experience when regarded as a guide to our actions.” - William Kingdon Clifford

Evaluation for this course will follow our ideal of shared responsibility within our learning community. The work that you submit to us to be graded will be returned to you with feedback and an assigned grade.


There are four (4) types of assignments for this course:

  • Discussion Boards-35 points possible: We will be engaging in weekly dialogues through our course discussion boards. Each week we will have a set of discussion questions posted. You will be responsible for reviewing and responding to at least one (1) question per week through your own original post. Additionally, we also expect you to review and respond to the discussion threads of your peers. Please provide substantive comments to at least two (2) of your peers’ posts per week. In Week 1, you will have the opportunity to earn ten (10) points by responding to two separate discussion thread prompts. For all other weeks in which you participate, you will earn five (5) points. If possible, please try to submit your discussion post by Wednesday each week as this allows for ample time to engage in discussion the discussion threads submitted by your peers.
  • Portfolio project-35 points possible: To ensure we are getting the most out of this online experience, participants will complete one (1) portfolio project worth 35 (thirty-five) points. You will complete a portfolio assignment for each week (30 points). The final portfolio project is the updated portfolio assignments from each week, incorporating concepts you’ve learned throughout the course (5 points). Additional details about these assignments will be available on our class Canvas site. You will submit your portfolio project through Canvas.
  • Final reflection-15 points possible: You will be expected to submit a final one- to two-page thoughtful and substantive paper highlighting some of your key takeaways from the course and how you plan to proceed forward as an appreciative administrator. Please provide specific examples throughout your reflection.
  • Assessment-10 points possible: To assist us in tracking the growth and development of participants as well as enabling us to offer the most effective online course possible, participants will be expected to complete a pre-course assessment during Week 1 worth 5 points as well as a post-course assessment during Week 6 worth 5 points. Please note that completion of both assessments will be needed to receive a Certificate of Completion after the end of the course.

To earn a passing grade for this course, you will need to earn 78 of the 95 available points (although we encourage completion of all assignments). If you have any questions about this, please ask. Again, this course functions similar to a continuing education course, and thus the focus is on your own student learning --- if you participate fully, you likely will not struggle to pass the course. We are currently developing a process to be designated a Certified Appreciative Administrator. This course will fulfill the educational component of the Certified Appreciative Administrator designation and a certificate of completion will be provided upon successful completion of the course. (Note: completion of this course does not designate you as a Certified Appreciative Advisor).


Assigned reading for each of the weekly topics listed below will be available on the course Canvas board that you will be able to access prior to the start of the course.

  • Week 1: Overview of Appreciative Administration
  • Week 2: Appreciative Onboarding
  • Week 3: Appreciative Staff Meetings
  • Week 4: Appreciative Supervision
  • Week 5: Appreciative Strategic Planning
  • Week 6: Appreciative Assessment