Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - 48

ASSESSMENT HOLDS IT TOGETHER

then the choice of methodology,
followed by the selection of the
study subjects, the modes of data
collection, the strategy for data
analysis, and the process through
which conclusions are reached.
Those unfamiliar with or lacking
confidence in their social science
assessment skills might enlist
the assistance of constituents
on their campuses who can be
of help. Such key people might
include staff working in research
and/or assessment offices, staff
in institutional research offices,
faculty and graduate students
in education and social science
disciplines, and colleagues in
other LLCs around the university,
region, and national professional
organizations. 
host for a campus visitor. Students reported that these experiences inspired
their passion for their area of study,
gave them concrete understanding
of what it might be like to work in a
particular field, and helped to sharpen
their leadership skills. One student
who led an alternative spring break
for an arts-focused LLC shared his
observation that students come home
from the trip with a new orientation
toward community and thus are more
apt to make changes in their own
communities.
LLCs may also provide several programs and services that can enhance
a residence hall's academic and social
climates, such as in-hall faculty academic advising, peer tutoring, cultural
programming, and social events. However, it may be equally important for
the two halves of the LLC, academic
affairs and residence life and housing
(RLH) professional staff, to be transparent and in regular communication
about their roles and responsibilities.
For example, if resident assistants

48

TALKING STICK

notice an increase in stress regarding
an upcoming midterm for a class that
many of the LLC participants are taking, academic affairs could step up the
peer tutoring or reserve a lounge for a
study session. Or vice versa, if faculty
notice an LLC student in their classes
seeming more withdrawn than usual,
or if they meet with the student during
advising office hours and learn they
are having roommate difficulties, they
can notify the hall director or RA for a
possible intervention.
Sometimes, a supportive climate in
the LLC's residence hall can be facilitated by physical spaces funded by the
academic affairs/RLH collaboration. At
Pace University in New York City, each
first-year interest group (FIG), despite
being housed in the same residence
hall, has its own lounge space that the
LLC faculty partners, RLH staff, and
participating students can decorate
together, according to the FIG theme.
For example, the group focusing
on sports and recreation features a
television seating area much like a
bowling niche, as well as a foosball
table. Meanwhile, the group focused
on the body and mind uses its lounge
as a yoga studio, complete with mats
and other equipment. The personalized lounge spaces, mostly situated in
central locations with a lot of natural
light, also feature large logos designed
by the students; the logos provide the
group with an established identity that
its participants can be proud of, and
the lounges assure them that this is a
space that supports their needs.
It is also valuable to intentionally
integrate faculty advising to help create
socially supportive residence hall climates. Although faculty tend to think
of their roles in an LLC as limited to
more academic matters, their awareness of program and campus activities
and events can benefit the life of the
residence hall. For example, visiting
scholars or colloquium guests hosted
by the faculty member's home department could be invited to visit the LLC,
especially if the guest's expertise is

related to its theme. Say the Department of Political Science is holding a
collo-quium on election strategy and
has invited the campaign manager of
one of the presidential candidates to
speak. If there is room in the speaker's
schedule, perhaps they could conduct
a fireside chat in the LLC during the
evening or have lunch with students
in the dining room. Even better, if the
LLC has a guest apartment, the department could save on accommodations
and use the spare lodging in exchange
for an extended visit.
However, it need not be an extravagant event for a faculty member to
have an impact. It could simply be a
faculty member talking during office
hours with students who are looking
to make more friends and the faculty
member recommending that they join
the LLC peer group participating in
the cocurricular activity that might be
of interest to the students - whether
an intramural team, a Friday night
dinner and movie group, or a small
set of students trying to launch a new
entrepreneurial endeavor. For this to
happen, however, the faculty member
must be aware of the various activities
and interests of the LLC students.
As mentioned previously, the
academic climate of the LLC residence
hall can be enhanced by mere awareness of the rhythms of the students'
classes over the course of the semester. Programming led by residence
life and housing, such as study skills
workshops, test-taking tips, and stressrelief programming, can coincide with
the timing of major assignments and
examinations the students are undertaking. Cocurricular activities can also
build on campus academic events,
such as the Common Read (a book
the university selects for all students
to read) or Martin Luther King Day
lectures, by holding smaller book clubs
or sign-ups for lecture tickets.
For LLCs focusing on a specific
academic discipline, such as engineering, it may be common for stu-



Talking Stick - March/April 2018

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Talking Stick - March/April 2018

Talking Stick - March/April 2018
Contents
Vision
Calendar
Your ACUHO-I
Transitions
Res Life
Facilities
Special Focus
Winning Halls
The Living-Learning Community Pyramid
Conversations
First Takes
New Members
Snapshot
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - Intro
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - BB1
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - BB2
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - Talking Stick - March/April 2018
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - Cover2
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - 1
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - 2
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - Contents
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - 4
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - 5
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - 6
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - 7
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - Vision
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - 9
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - 10
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - 11
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - 12
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - 13
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - 14
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - 15
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - 16
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - 17
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - Calendar
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - 19
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - Your ACUHO-I
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - 21
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - Transitions
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - 23
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - Res Life
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - 25
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - 26
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - 27
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - Facilities
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - 29
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - 30
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - 31
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - Special Focus
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - 33
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - 34
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - 35
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - Winning Halls
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - 37
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - 38
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - 39
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - 40
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - 41
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - 42
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - 43
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - The Living-Learning Community Pyramid
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - 45
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - 46
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - 47
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - 48
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - 49
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - 50
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - 51
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - Conversations
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - 53
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - 54
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - 55
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - First Takes
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - 57
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - 58
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - New Members
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - Snapshot
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - Cover3
Talking Stick - March/April 2018 - Cover4
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