1st Edition

The Curricular Approach to Student Affairs A Revolutionary Shift for Learning Beyond the Classroom

    180 Pages
    by Routledge

    180 Pages
    by Routledge

    The curricular approach aligns the mission, goals, outcomes, and practices of a student affairs division, unit, or other unit that works to educate students beyond the classroom with those of the institution, and organizes intentional and developmentally sequenced strategies to facilitate student learning. In this book, the authors explain how to implement a curricular approach for educating students beyond the classroom. The book is based on more than a decade of implementing curricular approaches on multiple campuses, contributing to the scholarship on the curricular approach, and helping many campuses design, implement, and assess their student learning efforts. The curricular approach is rooted in scholarship and the connections between what we know about learning, assessment, pedagogy, and student success. For many who have been socialized in a more traditional programming approach, it may feel revolutionary. Yet, it is also obvious because it is straightforward and simple.

    Foreword—Stephen John Quaye Preface 1. Why a Curricular Approach in Student Affairs? 2. What Is a Curricular Approach in Student Affairs? 3. How to Identify Learning Aims 4. How to Design, Implement, and Assess a Curricular Approach 5. Facilitating Student Learning Beyond the Classroom 6. Leadership for a Curricular Approach Appendix A. Ten Essential Elements for a Curricular Approach Appendix B. Traditional Approaches Versus Curricular Approach to Learning Beyond the Classroom Appendix C. Development and Refinement of Educational Aims Leading to the Development of Educational Plans Appendix D. Sample List of Artifacts Appendix E. Examples of Learning Aims Appendix F:Checklist for Assembling an Education Plan Appendix G. Sample Developmental Sequencing Chart Appendix H. Example of Mapping Learning Initiatives Across Departments Appendix I. Facilitation Guide Template Appendix J. Metacognition Appendix K. Some Potential Pedagogical Strategies Appendix L. The Divisional Barometer for the Curricular Approach in Student Affairs Appendix M. Recommended ResourcesReferences About the Authors Index


    Kathleen G. Kerr serves as the associate vice president for Student Life at the University of Delaware (UD). Kerr provides leadership to enhance the operations, programs, and services for Residence Life and Housing (RLH), the Office of Orientation and Transition Programs, the university student centers, fraternity and sorority leadership and learning, student wellness and health promotion, the Center for Counseling and Student Development, and Student Health Services. She is also an assistant professor in UD’s Department of Human Development and Family Sciences. Keith Edwards helps individuals, organizations, and communities to realize their fullest potential as a speaker, consultant, and coach. He has spoken and consulted at more than 200 colleges and universities, presented more than 200 programs at national conferences, and written more than 20 articles or book chapters on sexual violence prevention, men’s identity, curricular approaches, and social justice education. He is cohost of Student Affairs Live on the Higher Ed Live network. Edwards coedited the book Addressing Sexual Violence in Higher Education. Jim Tweedy is the director of Residence Life and Housing at the University of Delaware and focuses his professional energies on exploring the connections between residence life staff inputs into the student experience and the resulting student learning and development gains. He is the coauthor of “Beyond Seat Time” and “Satisfaction and Shifting to Curricular Approaches to Learning Beyond the Classroom,” published in About Campus. Tweedy also codeveloped the first ACPA Residential Curriculum Institute and continues to serve on the institute faculty regularly. Hilary L. Lichterman serves as the associate director of Residence Life at the University of South Carolina. She is co-author of The Curricular Approach to Residential Education: Lessons for Student Affairs Practice (2019). Lichterman has presented at numerous local, regional, and nat

    “The message at the heart of this pathbreaking book is clear: We cannot truly understand and respond to students as whole people without supporting their learning holistically across the entirety of the college experience. Learning outside the classroom should be as curricular as is the academic experience—not ‘cocurricular,’ but fully curricular, integrated, and aligned with an institution’s academic mission and values. An accidental, situational, or happenstance approach to learning in student affairs (still easy to find) is a wasted opportunity; it fails to deliver on the promise of higher education. Starting with the principle that we must not bifurcate students’ experience (academic versus out-of-classroom), these authors guide us capably and carefully toward a curricular approach that preserves the potential of both students and higher education.”

    Richard P. Keeling, Principal

    Keeling & Associates, LLC; and Editor, Learning Reconsidered

    “Too many professional books are written by people with great ideas and who care deeply but who have not lived the work. This book exemplifies the best of the late Lee Knefelkamp’s practice-theory-practice model (PTP). These experienced authors have done this hard work, reflected on their experiences to identify principles, created theories and useful models, and pushed that wisdom back into practice on every page. Institutions have a moral imperative to make all students’ experiences educationally purposeful. This book takes that quest to new levels of excellence. Even something obvious becomes revolutionary when implemented in practice built on the integrity of years of wise experience.”

    Susan R. Komives, Professor Emerita

    University of Maryland; and Past President, Council for the Advancement of Standards in Higher Education

    “This book will serve as a valuable resource for anyone seeking to provide rigorous, empirical, and theory-based student experiences beyond the classroom. With students from increasingly diverse backgrounds—culturally, socially, technologically, academically—attending college in the 21st century, higher education needs to be prepared to facilitate learning in every aspect of its work, and this book provides a strong foundation for student affairs practitioners.”

    Karen Kurotsuchi Inkelas, Associate Professor

    Curry School of Education; Research Director, Crafting Success for Underrepresented Scientists and Engineers; and Research Director of Undergraduate Initiatives, Contemplative Sciences Center, University of Virginia

    “The Curricular Approach to Student Affairs: A Revolutionary Shift for Learning Beyond the Classroom is a ground-breaking text in which the authors deftly describe a comprehensive, student-centered approach for learning outside of the classroom. They detail the rationale behind this approach, use poignant examples to explain how this approach can be implemented, and provide direction to senior student affairs administrators regarding leadership and organizational change. Following the guidance offered in this book will transform how a division of student affairs operates and actualize student learning and development.”

    Gavin Henning, Professor of Higher Education and Program Director

    Master of Higher Education and Doctorate of Education Programs, New England College; and Past-President, Council for the Advancement of Standards in Higher Education

    “Drawing on the expertise of faculty and residence life educators, the curriculum-based approach to student learning constructs a comprehensive goal-directed learning experience for students. This well-researched book provides a detailed guide to developing and implementing this educational approach to advance student learning in residence halls. Residence life educators committed to engaging students in intentional goal-directed learning experiences must read this book.”

    Gregory S. Blimling, Professor (retired)

    College Student Affairs Program, Rutgers University Graduate School of Education

    “This book offers an exciting synthesis of over a decade’s committed work to improve students’ cocurricular learning in a variety of beyond-the-classroom environments. The systemic and intentional approach is a leading paradigm shift. The passion and dedication of the team delivering this book and the wisdom offered are guaranteed to improve the student affairs work on any campus.”

    Adrianna Kezar

    Dean’s Professor of Higher Education Leadership, Director of the Pullias Center, and Director of the Delphi Project on the Changing Faculty and Student Success

    “The curricular approach to student learning and engagement beyond the classroom is a fundamental need for all campus communities. I am excited that my professional colleagues now have a definitive resource to develop sequenced, mission-driven, and scholarship-based initiatives that will ultimately enhance the college student experience.”

    Vernon A. Wall, Director

    Business Development, LeaderShape, Inc.; and President, ACPA–College Student Educators International, 2020–2021

    "When divisions of student affairs are increasingly required to provide a rationale for their work, particularly as institutions navigate the financial repercussions of the pandemic, this book provides outstanding guidance. Not only does the book explain how, what, and why the curricular approach supports student affairs, the text includes appendices that serve as guides to practice for putting this approach into action. Chapters 1 and 2 provide a rationale/argument for the approach and the basic tenets/elements of the approach. Chapters 3 and 4 provide a roadmap/guide to designing curricular learning aims as well as how to implement and assess the curricular approach. What readers leave this text with is a rationale, strategies to identify unit goals, and a blueprint for building this work in their divisions at their unique institutions.

    This text is a great resource for reflection at the very least. It provides prompts for professionals to consider their institutional contexts and histories related to out-of-class learning. This work not only inspires reflection but also serves as a call to action with an offer to walk alongside those who are interested in transforming their campuses. There will no doubt be resistance from those who have dedicated time, work, and even careers to the traditional model of learning beyond the classroom, as well as from campus partners who feel that curriculum is something for classrooms only. However, this book can also inspire those who are open to critiquing, rethinking, and engaging with new ways of fostering holistic learning in higher education."

    Teachers College Record