Goals and narratives are perhaps the least appreciated, understood, and often confused components of a residential curriculum. In reviewing the cascade of learning objectives in a curriculum, one starts with an educational priority. An educational priority is a broad summary statement of what students will learn as a result of their participation in the curriculum. This educational priority is then delineated further into a set of (typically 3-4) learning goals and related narratives. Learning goals seek to provide more specific statements of what students will learn in a curriculum. They focus the… Read More
My vantage point at Roompact gives me unique insights into the industry. Given the large number of schools we work with and interact with, we’re often able to begin to see trends before others in the field. One thing we have discussed is the increasing use of curricular models by departments of residence life and education. In particular, we have noticed an acceleration within the last two years. This left us wondering: Have we reached a tipping point for residential curriculum? Will curricular approaches be near universally adopted within the coming years?
Intentional conversations, or structured interactions between residents and peer leaders, are increasingly being used as integral components of educational efforts in the residence halls. At the most recent International Convention of ACPA – College Student Educators International in Houston, Texas, I had the pleasure of presenting with Hilary Lichterman on some high impact practices associated with this approach. Ryan Lloyd was also an invaluable resource contributing to the session. The following abstract, outcomes, and slides walk participants through the process of organizing these conversations and training their staff members for a successful implementation…. Read More
Given that the curricular approach is relatively new in student affairs circles, there is a need for tools and resources that can help campuses and departments assess the effectiveness of their efforts. I, along with Ryan Lloyd, recently had the pleasure of presenting on two such resources at the 2018 International Convention of NASPA – Student Affairs Administrators in Higher Education in Philadelphia, PA.
Developing a culture of continuous improvement within your housing and residence life department requires one to put structures in place to gather assessment data and utilize that data to make change. Furthermore, it requires the identification and standards against which a department can compare their progress and determine and prioritize goals. Within the area of housing operations, one will find numerous resources to aid departments in the development of these processes. Student learning and curriculum should also undergo a review process as well, although the resources in this area are still developing.