The Journal of College and University Student Housing - Volume 45, No. 3 - 35

A Framework for Increasing Housing and Residence Life Staff Capacity and Confidence

HRL educator roles should
include the creation of learning
outcomes, lesson plans, and
assessment measures to gauge their
effectiveness, roles which likely
require additional training.

to the educational challenges HRL programs
face outside of the direct control of HRL staff.
For example, in more traditional classroom
curricula, learning experiences are executed
within specific periods, such as class sessions,
projects, group work, and assessments (Dillon,
2009). However, HRL units must utilize more
creative and targeted approaches to curriculum
delivery because programs in residence halls
are voluntary (Fassett & Kimmel, 2017).
For example, Fassett and Kimmel (2017)
imagine a traditional floor meeting planned
with learning in mind: Professional staff educators identify the desired learning based on
the time of year and educational priority of
the HRL unit and plan specific activities that
are likely to aid in that learning. They provide
student-staff specific lesson plans to be followed, ensuring each student in attendance
receives the desired content. At several points
during the semester, HRL educators design assessment measures to determine if the desired
learning has been accomplished. And because
floor meetings often do not include an entire
community, additional avenues are developed where similar learning can be obtained,
perhaps through community displays or individual meetings.

This article provides a framework and
lessons learned from the University of Delaware's approach to investing in the professional
development of HRL staff to actualize a residential curriculum. By clarifying the learning goals
an HRL unit has for students, by systematically
providing HRL staff purposeful development
opportunities that support student learning,
and by assessing the results to make continuous improvements, HRL units can move closer
to achieving their curricular goals.

THE UNIVERSITY OF
DELAWARE'S APPROACH TO CM
PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT
The University of Delaware (UD) sought to
develop a multi-pronged approach to developing sustained professional staff competence
and skill in designing and implementing
educational strategies within a CM. UD is a
mid-sized institution, and the Residence Life
and Housing (RLH) department serves 7,000
undergraduates. RLH is a department of the
Division of Student Life and employs 40 professional and approximately 200 paraprofessional staff. First-year students are required to
live on campus and make up the majority of the
residential population. The majority of upperdivision students on campus are sophomores,
with some juniors and seniors intermixed.
UD is a split residential system, meaning
first-year and upper-division students live in
separate residential complexes. As a result,
UD maintains two curriculum models (called
program plans), one for first-year students and
one for upper-division students. The program
plans are based on a defined Educational Priority and a set of four overarching learning

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The Journal of College and University Student Housing - Volume 45, No. 3

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of The Journal of College and University Student Housing - Volume 45, No. 3

Contents
The Journal of College and University Student Housing - Volume 45, No. 3 - Intro
The Journal of College and University Student Housing - Volume 45, No. 3 - Cover1
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