The Journal of College and University Student Housing - Volume 46, No. 1 - 93

Socially Responsible Leadership in RAs

. . . purposefully engaging in
sociocultural conversations
represents one of the biggest
contributors to developing all seven
SCM values.

discuss and expand upon the factors that may
have contributed to their level of socially responsible leadership. One additional component to a future qualitative study would be to
include observational data, such as information received from supervisors, to triangulate
results.

IMPLICATIONS FOR PRACTICE
The Input-Environment-Outcome (I-E-O) model guided this investigation. The practical applications of this investigation, related to the
"E" in the model, include looking at RA training programs, incorporating aspects of the
OSL role into the RA position, and using sociocultural conversations as a tool for development. While there is room for improvement, it
is worth remembering that RAs did score high
in all seven C's as referenced in Table 4.
To best serve the many roles of an RA as outlined by Blimling (1999), administrators can
focus on further educating RAs in the seven
SCM values. To further that goal, Komives,
Wagner, and associates' (2009) Leadership for
a Better World is a helpful resource for engaging students in learning and reflection on the
seven values of the SCM. Kouzes and Posner
(2007) emphasized the importance of lead-

ership being modeled by others. Faculty can
use Sanford's Challenge and Support theory
(Pascarella & Terenzini, 2005) by providing
an experiential learning opportunity that helps
create dissonance and self-awareness. Due to
the strong influence that peers have on each
other (Astin, 1993), peer-led training can be
employed in RA training by RAs who actively
demonstrate socially responsible leadership.
Given the high SCM scores for OSLs, housing
administrators should borrow practices from
peer leader trainings. In addition, OSLs could
be used to lead training sessions for their RA
peers to further their development of socially
responsible leadership.
Finally, purposefully engaging in sociocultural conversations represents one of the biggest
contributors to developing all seven SCM values
(Dugan & Komives, 2010). Incorporating these
conversations into RA trainings and discussions of job expectations would be beneficial.
Not only would RAs grow in SCM values, but
the residents with whom they engage could also
see gains in socially responsible leadership due
to interacting with their RAs.
In conclusion, the findings of this study
were surprising. Overall, OSLs demonstrated
growth in socially responsible leadership at
levels similar to or greater than those of RAs,
despite the fact that the typical RA position
aligns with many of the SCM values. Thus,
more research is needed to gain a better understanding of why RAs performed in the way
they did. Continuing research in this area will
inform higher education administrators in
developing stronger student leaders who are
better prepared to engage in an increasingly
global society.

V O L U M E 4 6 , NO. 1 * 2 0 1 9

93



The Journal of College and University Student Housing - Volume 46, No. 1

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of The Journal of College and University Student Housing - Volume 46, No. 1

Contents
The Journal of College and University Student Housing - Volume 46, No. 1 - Intro
The Journal of College and University Student Housing - Volume 46, No. 1 - Cover1
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