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Division of Student Affairs


Contact Division of Student Affairs  

Division of Student Affairs

238 Sykes Student Union
West Chester, PA 19383

Phone: 610-436-3301
Fax: 610-436-2480

Name: Dr. Zebulun Davenport, Ph.D.
Position: Vice President

Student Affairs Assessment

The Division of Student Affairs maintains a robust assessment portfolio focused on enhancing student learning, satisfaction, retention and success through co-curricular programs and services. Our framework includes seven types of assessment and is carried out by the members of our Division and the Student Affairs Assessment Council, with support from the University.

Assessment Framework

The authors of Student Affairs Assessment: A guide for practitioners describe different types of assessment based on the level of assessment complexity (Upcraft and Schuh, 1996). Our division uses these types of assessment as a framework to guide our initiatives and engages in activities to address each of these areas. Our framework is supported and sustained by our assessment infrastructure, which provides the means for carrying these activities. Infrastructure includes, but is not limited to, equipment, software, policies and procedures, assessment plans, assessment scheduling, professional development opportunities and other assessment resources.

High Complexity

Low Complexity
Alignment with Professional Standards Benchmarking/ Comparison Studies Outcomes Assessment (Learning) Campus Climate Student Satisfaction Student Needs Assessment Utilization Data

Alignment with Professional Standards

Several professional organizations have developed standards to guide the practices of their members. For the Division of the Student Affairs, the majority of these standards are created by the Council for the Advancement of Standards in Higher Education (CAS); however, individual departments may follow standards set by their respective professional organizations (e.g., National Association of Colleges and Employers). Some departments within the Division of Student Affairs also have the option of pursuing formal accreditation for their specific area and have chosen to do so (e.g., Department of Counseling and Psychological Services).

Benchmarking/Comparison Studies

This type of assessment involves comparing aspects of the home institution (e.g., organizational structures, staffing, programs, services, spaces, policies) to other universities and colleges. These studies can be particularly helpful in orienting new leaders, informing strategic plans, and determining whether or not to pursue new initiatives. The success of benchmarking studies depends on the extent to which each peer institution is comparable to the home institution's characteristics (e.g., student population, location, organizational structure). Assessment and institutional research staff are often involved in benchmarking studies and can provide support in creating a tailored list of peer institutions.

Outcomes Assessment (Learning)

Often referred to as "assessment" by faculty, this type of project looks at the level of learning that occurs inside and outside of the classroom. National organizations have published frameworks to guide the development of learning outcomes in higher education (e.g., Council for the Advancement of Standards in Higher Education, Association of American Colleges and Universities, National Association of Colleges and Employers). There are typically four levels of learning outcomes: university, divisional, department, and program.

Campus Climate

This type of assessment focuses on the quality of a person's experience but is not limited strictly to satisfaction. The term "campus climate" is often used when studying topics such as diversity and inclusion, behavior/conduct, and space layout and design.

Student Satisfaction

Satisfaction assessments look at the quality of a particular aspect of the college experience. These types of assessments may be focused on overall experiences, technology, facilities, programs, services, processes and more.

Needs Assessments

This type of assessment is used to determine what students need in order to be successful. Topics might include, but are not limited to, health and wellness, academic support, diversity and inclusion, facilities, accommodations, safety, parking, dining, housing, and more.

Utilization Data

Utilization studies involve data regarding participation in programs, events, services, etc. This type of data can be combined with a variety of other data to assist staff in better understanding students who are/are not engaged on campus as well as the level of impact programs and services have on the student experience.

Assessment Council


To improve the quality of co-curricular programs and services, student learning, retention and success through the intentional use of data.

The Assessment Council will:

  • Contribute to the assessment plan for the Division of Student Affairs
  • Design assessment resources and professional development opportunities
  • Create a co-curricular assessment calendar and provide feedback on assessments
  • Recognize and celebrate co-curricular assessment activities that align with best practices
  • Encourage collaboration on assessment projects where appropriate
  • Assist with the coordinatation of divisionwide assessment projects as needed
  • Meet approximately once per month

Adapted from the previous mission and the University of Oregon, Student Affairs Assessment Council Charge.



The Student Affairs Assessment Council is made up of members of the WCU community who are responsible for assessment activities and/or interested in learning more about co-curricular assessment.

Council Members


Amanda Thomas (Chair) Assessment and Planning
Brynn Cronagle Campus Recreation
Chamapuwa Tinago Residence Life and Housing Services
Jared Brown New Student Programs
Jodi Roth-Saks Service-Learning and Volunteer Programs
Justin Brown Residence Life and Housing Services
Maegan Cruz Residence Life and Housing Services
Marion McKinney Residence Life and Housing Services
Sandy Jones Off-Campus and Commuter Services
Sherry Mendez Wellness Promotion
Susan Visoskas Housing and Dining Administration
Terrell Bennett Residence Life and Housing Services


Student Learning Outcomes

The Division of Student Affairs partners with Academic Affairs to promote and enhance student learning that occurs both within and outside of the classroom. To focus their efforts, the Division created a set of seven learning outcomes, which were informed heavily by the pivotal document in the student affairs field, Learning reconsidered: A campus-wide focus on the student experience (NASPA/ACPA, 2004) , which promotes holistic learning and the idea that the entire campus is a learning community.

Learning outcomes are what we expect students to be able to do, know, or achieve as a result of their engagement. Student Affairs strives to engage students in learning opportunities that support one or more of the seven learning outcomes, or a particular set of learning outcomes they have developed for a specific department or program. Below are resources to assist Student Affairs staff in the development and assessment of learning outcomes.

Projects and Reports

Student Affairs uses assessment to provide data that support strategic priorities and initiatives, as well as to improve our programs and services that support student learning, retention, and success.

Resources and Templates

In addition to consulting with a member of the Student Affairs Assessment Council, Student Affairs staff are encouraged to utilize the following resources to assist them with their assessment projects.

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