eBook: Building a Culture of Evidence in Student Affairs

Funded and created in part through the West Virginia Higher Education Policy Commission’s “Degree Now,” initiative, a project of the Lumina Foundation for Education.

A culture of evidence is a commitment among student affairs professionals to demonstrate with hard data that the programs they offer, the processes they implement, and the services they provide are effective and contribute significantly to an institution’s ability to achieve its goals and fulfill its mission. Building a Culture of Evidence in Student Affairs: A Guide for Leaders and Practitioners is an interactive tutorial that illustrates how to collect, analyze, and evaluate data; how to build, nurture, and use cultures of evidence; and how to demonstrate the value of student affairs by telling its story—and telling it well.

Developed by experienced student affairs leaders who have successfully implemented cultures of evidence on their campuses, this tutorial offers practical advice and concrete examples of how to plan, create, and maintain effective assessment initiatives. The authors discuss culture of evidence models from a variety of institutions and provide:

  • Tools to assess a student affairs division’s readiness to become involved in assessment initiatives, to identify the infrastructure already in place within the institution, and to support a culture of evidence
  • An overview of assessment approaches and methods to measure the effectiveness of programs and services and provide data that meet a variety of stakeholder needs
  • Recommendations to assist senior student affairs officers to prepare their leadership teams to both lead and manage culture of evidence initiatives
  • Tips for writing effective rubrics and using a variety of techniques to conduct and apply assessments
  • Suggestions for using CAS standards in designing and implementing culture of evidence initiatives
  • Strategies for leveraging the culture of evidence process to help faculty become more involved in nonclassroom support programs and services
  • Examples of how colleges and universities are building cultures of evidence in student affairs
  • PowerPoint presentations that explore culture of evidence topics and include activities to guide implementation

Building a Culture of Evidence in Student Affairs demonstrates clearly that moving from a culture of good intentions to a culture of evidence strengthens student affairs by documenting the significant contributions the profession makes to student access, persistence, and completion. The tutorial addresses the important role that building a culture of evidence plays in encouraging student affairs professionals of all levels to enter and remain in a continuous learning mode that increases their ability to identify and respond quickly to the changing realities on their campuses.

Note: Paperback copies of this book are available for purchase from NASPA.

Free digital copies of the eBook are available in these formats to West Virginia practitioners.

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