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Resident Directors' Understandings of Disability
marked by tensions that exist and must be navigated by campus housing administrators.
Additional research is needed in order to add analytical depth to the experiences
and understandings of campus housing administrators regarding issues of disability.
Additional research involving RDs at public institutions, large institutions, or professionally
focused colleges and universities would aid in understanding whether relationships
exist between institutional types and RD understandings and perspectives.
Simultaneously, such relationships should also be explored through a narrowing of
institutional criteria, which may bring greater nuance to understanding RD notions
of disability.
CONCLUSION
Understanding how student affairs professionals engage with disability is vital to overall
efforts to support students with disabilities in higher education. The present study
sought to contribute to this research by exploring how RDs think about and work with
issues and concepts of disability in their roles as campus housing administrators. The
analysis resulted in the emergence of five themes, and RDs appeared to understand
concepts of disability that were in dynamic tension with each other. The RDs also perceived
tension in what they perceived at times to be the competing interests of the
institutions by whom they were employed and the students in their residential communities
who they aimed to support. Though these findings are limited to the specific RDs
involved in the study, the tensions identified are valuable in supporting additional research
in this area. A greater understanding of how disability is understood among RDs
will allow campus housing departments to better equip the administrators responsible
for providing service and support to students with disabilities in campus housing. 
66 The Journal of College and University Student Housing

Journal of College & University Student Housing Volume 50, No. 2

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