Traditionally, there has been a division of labor in higher education between academics and student affairs. This chapter is designed to focus on the plausibility of using theory to facilitate communication across the many departments and divisions of higher education. It is important to remember that the student affairs profession “grew from the campus up, not from theory down”. Early institutions of higher education followed the Oxbridge model with historically based residential living systems in which educators resided in residence halls with the students. This concept of faculty–student integration remains a valuable component in student success today, and is discussed in greater detail in this chapter. One useful “language” for student affairs practitioners is found in Erikson’s stages of psychosocial development. Erik Erikson pioneered a theoretical framework and proposes an eight-staged life-span model through which developing individuals permeate starting at birth and eventually ending with death.
Your search for all content returned 219 results
Holland theorized six distinct worker personalities (Realistic, Investigative, Artistic, Social, Enterprising, and Conventional). This is often referred to as RIASEC. The theory includes six work environments that correspond to the same personality types (Realistic, Investigative, Artistic, Social, Enterprising, and Conventional). Although people possess aspects of each type, the general thesis of the theory is that salient types (work personalities) will emerge in each individual. Holland’s work represents a significant contribution to career development and counseling. Understanding Holland’s focus on interests as expressions of personality aids career counselors and student development specialists in helping students gain critical self-understanding. Exploring the match between personalities and work environments is a fundamental aspect of applying this theory to student development. Helping students to explore and learn about different careers that may be of interest to them is congruent with the goals of higher education institutions and student development theories.
The general racial/ethnic identity theories offer some insight into possible ways to approach diversity education within all aspects of student affairs. Student affairs professionals and faculty could facilitate educational programs, seminars, and workshops that challenge students to confront issues of prejudice and racism as well as to cultivate racial or ethnic pride. These programs should address the external conditions in which students explore their identity and how to make meaning of shifting thoughts as they progress in their racial or ethnic identity development. By looking at diversity through the lens of racial or ethnic orientation, professionals can meet students where they are and help them not only understand other cultures, but also how they fit into their own race/ethnicity. Practitioners might also use these models as a way to gain insight as to where students might be in their racial/ethnic identity development.
At its core, Kolb’s construct of experiential learning is more than simply a theory. Experiential learning theory (ELT) holds that learning is “the process whereby knowledge is created through the transformation of experience”. Although ELT is often used in formal classroom settings, there are many out-of-classroom environments in student affairs that use and benefit from it as well. One way in which colleges and universities use experiential learning is through service-learning courses and projects. Several scholars have reported that using service learning in conjunction with ELT provides students with meaningful ways to engage not only with the community, but also to come to know more about diversity and social justice. Because out-of-classroom learning is such a key component in higher education and in the holistic development of students, using Kolb’s experiential learning model can aid students in meaning making as it facilitates personal growth.
The Myers–Briggs type indicator (MBTI) was designed to help people understand themselves and others by helping them appreciate the diverse strengths of different personality types. It has been widely used in counseling as well as business to work on team building and relationships. There is, therefore, room for using this assessment within the field of student affairs to help build teams and groups both for professionals in the field and for students. This chapter discusses the basic information about the MBTI and implications for student affairs. The instrument is considered as a personality assessment for normal individuals designed to assess personality type. The MBTI offers strength-based guidance in every realm of living concerning individual growth to interpersonal relationships, in academic matters to spiritual terrains. From the office of the president to the chaplain, the MBTI is a useful and effective tool on a college campus.
The study of human development, broad in scope and diverse in nature, has been the focus of research by psychologists, sociologists, educators, human ecologists, and many others since the early to mid-20th century. This chapter provides an overview of identity development in young adults. Initial theories across multiple domains of development (e.g., cognitive, psychological) have focused primarily on child and adolescent changes based on the assumption that most development slowed considerably or crystallized and stopped completely after late adolescence. As a result, developmental issues in young adulthood (approximately ages 18–24 years) received greater scrutiny, and theoretical frameworks for understanding these aspects emerged. The chapter examines some of the issues and theories that impact identity development during this period in life. Psychosocial developmental theories offer frameworks for conceptualizing the issues individuals encounter at various points across the life span and have provided structure for more recent research as well.
This chapter focuses on the racial identity development of Black or African American college students and of students who identity as biracial or multiracial. Although racial identity development theories do not support biological distinction between racial groups in the United States, they recognize how different conditions of domination or oppression of various groups have influenced their construction of self. In this chapter Black is used to refer to the racial identity of U.S.-born persons of African descent who may categorize themselves as Black, Black American, African American, or Afro Caribbean. The term biracial is used to describe persons with two parents of differing monoracial or multiracial descents. It is worth noting that some individuals may claim Black racial identity although neither of their parents identify as Black, such as the case of civil rights activist Rachel Dolezal. This chapter goes in depth into such alternative experiences of Black identity development.
As diverse student populations gain visibility in colleges and universities across the United States, higher education counselors and student affairs professionals aim to effectively serve and meet the needs of these students. Individuals with disabilities (IWDs) represent one of these previously segregated diverse voices and perspectives that have recently experienced positive developments from inclusive college experiences. College students with disabilities represent an important segment of the growing student population. In 1997, Gill proposed a Disability Identity Integration Model (DIIM) for people with disabilities at the individual and group levels. The DIIM model aims to understand the integration process for people with disabilities into society in a process that involves identity development as part of the disabled minority group. The DIIM offers four types of integration: (a) coming to feel we belong, (b) coming home, (c) coming together, and (d) coming out. This integration process promotes personal empowerment and disability rights.
Student developmental models that can be used to understand various students in groups and their development include identity models, such as Chickering and Reisser’s model, as well as Levinson’s model; psychosocial models, such as Erikson’s model; intellectual and ethical developmental models, such as Perry’s model; moral developmental models, such as Kohlberg’s model; cognitive models, such as Piaget’s and Vygotsky’s models; and experiential models, such as Kolb’s model. For a broad and universal understanding, these and other student developmental theories are integrated into the group theory. This chapter provides a discussion of group theory in relation to various salient student development theories. It addresses a brief introduction about the need for inclusion and multicultural awareness for students and student groups. The chapter discusses aspects for understanding successful student group development regarding group types, group leader guidelines, group processes, and learning reflection of student groups through a multicultural lens.
Students may enter higher education with a strong set of ideals, firm models of career options, and certain confidence in their ultimate direction; however, it is not uncommon for students to begin college unprepared for life after graduation, let alone housing assignments and first semester coursework. This chapter focuses on the difficulties surrounding the major choice, the factors that influence decision making, career theories in student affairs, and campus and community resources available to assist students in gathering important data about their major and career choices. Selecting a college major and making career decisions are not easy, and require self-knowledge, self-examination, and research on what is available in the world of work. Essential to student success is the ability of student affairs professionals to accurately recognize when students are struggling and make an appropriate referral for career counseling, academic support services, or personal counseling.