Journal of College & University Student Housing Vol. 47 No. 3 - 74

teams. Once the desired qualities of RAs are
identified, the next step would be to examine each portion of the process to ensure it
is measuring the qualities the institution is
looking for in RAs, including their role on
teams. Our recommendation is to include a
method to evaluate personality factors as part
of the team placement because RLPs identified personality factors as important. To do
this, some institutions used existing personality assessments. Some institutions had a
course or seminar that was required before
a candidate could apply to the RA position;
others have a course after RAs are hired.
	
Our recommendation on whether to
conduct a group interview process is complicated. Several RLPs who assessed their
group processes found that group interview
scores did not help predict who was hired,
which is consistent with existing literature
(Berg & Stoner, 2016). That said, measuring
RAs' ability to work together is difficult without seeing them do so. Based on feedback
from RLPs, an intentional group process
interview may be able to assess RA candidates' work styles, personality traits, and
teamwork skills. Depending on the context,
group process may be a good tool to measure
these RA qualities after the hirable pool of
candidates has been determined. This way,
RLPs who are placing RA teams have access
to the information they desire for selecting
RA teams without impacting hiring criteria.
Given differing perspectives on the value of
group interviews, there might be an opportunity to hire RAs solely through individual
interviews with a follow up group interaction

experience with those hired to help inform
placement. Such a process would still require an increased resource investment, but
may be worth considering in a residence life
department that highly values teamwork.
	
Another recommendation is that leadership teams or RLP supervisors build team
trust over the course of the academic year so
that it is more likely that RA recommendations from colleagues will be considered. Our
interview questions in this current study did
not elicit specific recommendations for building trust, but this could be a good opportunity
for future research.
	
Additionally, we recommend training
RLPs to consistently evaluate candidates as
part of the preparation for the RA hiring
process. If all RLPs evaluate from the same
understanding, it is more likely that RLPs
will trust the evaluations of RA candidates
they did not interview. One way to do this is
through the implementation of strong evaluation rubrics. Rubrics were common among
many of the RLPs we interviewed, and almost
all of them cited that they thought having a
rubric was helpful. However, it is important
to develop and implement rubrics properly.
In order for a rubric to increase rating consistency across the large number of evaluators, adequate training on its use must occur.
Training should include discussing specific
examples of answers RAs could give for each
question in each possible rating. That way,
staff are clear as to what is an answer that
would be rated as " unacceptable " versus an
answer that would be rated as " exceeds expectations. " It would also be worthwhile to

RLPs reported three primary ways team dynamics were
measured: interview questions, group process, and previous
experience with RA candidates.

Volume 47, No. 3 * 2021

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Journal of College & University Student Housing Vol. 47 No. 3

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