Gloria Crisp

College Student Mentoring Scale (CSMS)
The College Student Mentoring Scale is a 25-item survey designed to measure students’ perceptions of mentoring support they receive during college. The survey specifically measures four types of interrelated constructs: (1) psychological and emotional support, (2) degree and career support, (3) academic subject knowledge support, and (4) the existence of a role model.


1. Psychological and Emotional Support
Encompasses a sense of listening, providing moral and emotional support, identifying problems, and providing encouragement as well as the establishment of a supportive relationship in which there is mutual understanding and link between the student and the mentor. Items designed to measure psychological and emotional support:
When in college, I have had someone in my life who…

  • Recognizes my academic accomplishments
  • I can talk with openly about social issues related to being in college
  • Encourages me to use him or her as a sounding board to explore what I want
  • Gives me emotional support
  • I can talk with openly about personal issues related to being in college
  • Makes me feel that I belong in college
  • Expresses confidence in my ability to succeed academically
  • Encourages me to talk about problems I am having in my social life


2. Degree and Career Support
Includes an assessment of the student’s strength, weaknesses, abilities, and includes assistance with setting academic/career goals and decision-making. Items designed to measure degree and career support:
When in college, I have had someone in my life who…

  • Encourages me to consider educational opportunities beyond my current plans
  • Helps me realistically examine my degree or certificate options
  • Questions my assumptions by guiding me through a realistic appraisal of my skills
  • Helps me carefully examine my degree or certificate options
  • Discusses the implications of my degree choice
  • Helps me to consider the sacrifices associated with my chosen degree


3. Academic Subject Knowledge Support
Centered on the acquisition of necessary skills and knowledge; on educating, evaluating, and challenging the student academically; on employing tutoring skills and focusing on subject learning in contrast to mentoring that focuses on life learning; and on establishing a teaching-learning process. Items designed to measure academic subject knowledge support:
When in college, I have had someone in my life who…

  • Provides ongoing support about the work I do in my classes
  • Helps me perform to the best of my abilities in my classes
  • Helps me work toward achieving my academic aspirations
  • Provides practical suggestions for improving my academic performance
  • Encourages me to discuss problems I am having with my coursework


4. Existence of a Role Model
Concentrated on the presence of a role model in the student’s life as well as the opportunity for the student to learn from the mentor’s current and past actions, as well as achievements and failures. Items designed to measure the presence of a role model:

When in college, I have had someone in my life who…

  • Shares personal examples of difficulties he or she has had to overcome to accomplish academic goals
  • Serves as a model for how to be successful in college
  • Sets a good example about how to relate to other people
  • I want to copy their behaviors as they relate to college-going
  • I look up to regarding college-related issues
  • I admire


How can institutions, mentoring programs, and researchers use the CSMS?

The CSMS can be used in a variety of ways.  
  • Institutions can use the scale to assess the need for a mentoring program on their campus.
  • The sub-scales can be used to identify the forms of support that students need from the institution.
  • Survey data can be disaggregated by student sub-group (e.g., racial/ethnic group, first generation) to design interventions that offer targeted forms of support. 
  • Existing mentoring programs can use the scale to measure the effectiveness of programming efforts.
  • Program staff can merge survey data with student records in order to assess the relationship between mentoring programs and academic outcomes (e.g., persistence, graduation). 
  • The CSMS can be a useful tool for researchers to use in conducting quantitative studies related to mentoring, faculty support, and student success.    


Select list of colleges and universities that are currently or have used the CSMS:
University of New Castle, The University of Maryland, Pennsylvania State University, Oakland City University, University of Lahore, Vanderbilt University, The University of Ulm, Saint Joseph's University, Humboldt State University, Johns River State College, North Carolina State University, Florida Gulf Coast University, Shenandoah University, The University of Laval in Québec, Georgian Court University

​Select mentor trainings and presentations by Dr. Crisp
Faculty Mentor Training
Peer Mentor Training
The How To's of Mentoring
​Being a Mentee


​​To request permission to use the CSMS, for inquires on speaking, or general questions,  please complete the form below.