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Our Focus is on Leadership & Mentors

We partner with school leaders and onsite mentors to cultivate a shared understanding of the fundamental elements of mentoring online students. We offer information and opportunity to support onsite mentors in strengthening their practice and improving student outcomes in online courses. Through continuous planning and evaluation of the most up-to-date developments in mentor practice, we support our partners by:

  • Sharing knowledge of mentor best practices
  • Creating and supporting professional learning and community building opportunities
  • Providing information, tools and training to strengthen onsite mentoring
  • Promoting a strengths-based, learner-centered approach
  • Elevating student engagement and success in online learning

Our Attention is on Students 

Online learning is an opportunity to serve students in unique, often individualized ways. But it requires students take a new approach to learning and develop new skills that many learners may find challenging without constructive interactions and support from adults. Students need the help of caring onsite mentors to succeed in a flexible, self-directed online learning environment. Mentors provide that personal connection for students, build trusting relationships and help them to become successful online learners. Mentors are one more adult who knows the student and provides perspective and support. 

We are dedicated to elevating student engagement and success in online courses. That’s why we promote a strengths-based, learner-centered approach to mentoring. We offer research-based professional learning and community building opportunities to help schools and practitioners improve online student success.


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Michigan Virtual University® is a private, not-for-profit Michigan corporation established in 1998 to deliver online education and training opportunities to the citizens of Michigan. MVU® is governed by a board of directors representing the business and education communities.

Online Learning Orientation Tool

OLOT is a freely available self-paced learning tool designed to help students understand what online learning entails and introduce the skills and knowledge that are key to success.

Mentor Survey

Michigan Mentor Survey Project

We need you! We are conducting a survey to gather information about how onsite mentors’ responsibilities factor into their evaluations. We also want to understand how onsite mentors perceive their own accountability for student performance in online courses. The results of the survey will be published by Michigan Virtual Learning Research Institute and made available for free on our website.

The survey is anonymous. Your contact information is only requested if you indicate that you are willing to participate in a short follow-up interview.

The time commitment is minimal. The survey will take approximately 5-7 minutes to complete.

Just click the button below to be taken directly to the survey:


If you have any questions about the survey, please contact Dr. Kathryn Kennedy by email at or phone at 517.664.5478.