Instructors validating

Thus, students who set out at a disadvantage can be further hindered by an environment that is perceived as uncaring (Linares and Muñoz, 2011).

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Ignoring the person’s concern by focusing on something else, like we did when we merely addressed a rule about being quiet, can make a person feel like they just don’t matter.

Some students arrive at college already feeling confident and ready to go, while others have internal doubts and may wonder if they are even "college material." This mindset arises from previous experiences of invalidation or lack of role models in higher education (Callahan et al., 2015).

A deficit of validation can occur in anyone, but it can be particularly poignant for non-traditional, low-income, minority, and first-generation students, for whom the expectations of college may not be inherent in their backgrounds.

A few simple guidelines can help faculty take initial steps to reach out to students.

Effective validation efforts have the following traits: Because most two-year college students live and work off campus, the primary college employees they interact with are faculty (Barnett, 2011).

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