Positioning Student Affairs for Sustainable Change

Achieving Organizational Effectiveness Through Multiple Perspectives

July 2010
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  • Publisher
    Stylus Publishing
  • Published
    26th July 2010
  • ISBN 9781579224561
  • Language English
  • Pages 240 pp.
  • Size 6" x 9"
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March 2012
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  • Publisher
    Stylus Publishing
  • Published
    12th March 2012
  • ISBN 9781579225636
  • Language English
  • Pages 240 pp.
  • Size 6" x 9"

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March 2012
More details
  • Publisher
    Stylus Publishing
  • Published
    12th March 2012
  • ISBN 9781579225643
  • Language English
  • Pages 240 pp.
  • Size 6" x 9"

At a time of increasing student diversity, concern about security, demand for greater accountability, and of economic difficulty, what does the future hold for higher education, and how can student affairs organizations adapt to the increasing and changing demands? How can university leaders position existing resources to effectively address these and other emerging challenges with a sense of opportunity rather than dread? How can organizations be redesigned to sustain change while achieving excellence?

As student affairs organizations have grown and become increasingly complex in order to meet new demands, they have often emphasized the expansion of their missions to the detriment of focusing on understanding their roles in relationship to other units, to reviewing their cultures and structures, and to considering how they can improve their effectiveness as organizations. This book provides the tools for organizational analysis and sustainability.

Intended for practitioners, graduate students, interns and student affairs leaders, this book presents the key ideas and concepts from business-oriented organizational behavior and change theories, and demonstrates how they can be useful in, and be applied to, student affairs practice – and, in particular, how readers can use these theories to sustain change and enhance their organization’s ability to adapt to complex emerging challenges. At the same time it holds to values and perspectives that support the human dimension of organizational life.

Recognizing the complexity of today’s organizations and the value of viewing them from multiple perspectives, this book follows the emerging practice of providing three general epistemological perspectives – the Positivist, Social Constructionist, and Postmodernist – for analyzing often paradoxical organizational structures, environments, and behavior.

The book explores the environmental context of student affairs, and how the organization interacts with both the internal and external environments; examines the human dimension of organizations, through a review of individual attributes, human need and motivation, social comparison theory and organizational learning theory; presents the dimensions of structure and design theory and discusses why student affairs organizations need to think differently about how they organize their resources; considers the context and process of organizational change, and the dynamics of decision making, power, conflict and communication; addresses the role of assessment and evaluation; and new forms of leadership.

Each chapter opens with a case study, and closes with a set of reflective questions.

The authors have all served as practitioners within student affairs and now teach and advise graduate students and future leaders in the field.

1) The Student Affairs Organization as Context
2) Seeing Student Affairs Organizations through the Lens of Organizational Theory
3) The Organization – Environment Perspective
4) Individual and Team Dimensions within Student Affairs Organizations
5) Structure and Design of Student Affairs Organizations
6) Organizational Process and Change Theory
7) Ecological Scanning: An Approach to Student Affairs Organizational Assessment
8) Securing Leadership for Organizational Fit- Not the Other Way Around
9) Navigating the Future for Student Affairs Organizations
About the Authors

Linda Kuk

Linda Kuk currently serves as the Program Chair for the Higher Education Leadership Program in the School of Education at Colorado State University and is an Associate Professor of Education. Within her work she continues to prepare leaders for roles in Higher Education Institutions. Prior to her return to the faculty in 2006, she served as the Vice President of Student Affairs at Colorado State University, her alma mater.

During her administrative career in Student Affairs she served as a Vice President for Student Affairs for nearly 23 years at Colorado State University, the Rochester Institute of Technology and SUNY, Cortland. She also served as Dean of Students at Marquette University in Milwaukee Wisconsin, and held various positions within student affairs divisions at Iowa State University and the University of Connecticut. She has served as an organizational consultant for a number of Colleges and Universities within the United States and in China.

She has published three books, Positioning Student Affairs for Sustainable Change, (2010), New Realities: Emerging Specialist Roles and Structures in Student Affairs Organizations, (2012) and The Handbook for Student Affairs in Community Colleges, (2014). She has published over 30 articles in referred journals, as well as numerous book chapters and presentations. Her research interests include: issues related to organizational behavior, change and leadership in student affairs and higher education, student engagement and retention, and student affairs professional development. In her limited spare time she is a painter, dabbling in a variety of media and also likes to bike and golf.

James H. Banning

James H. Banning , Professor Emeritus, Colorado State University, is an environmental psychologist and studies institutional learning environments from the perspective of campus ecology. Jim holds a Ph.D. degree in clinical psychology from the University of Colorado – Boulder, Colorado. He has served in a number of Senior Student Affairs Officers positions.

He began his SSAO career as acting Dean of Students at University of Colorado, Colorado Springs. Later his SSAO experience included the positions of Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs at the University of Missouri, Columbia and Vice President for Student Affairs at Colorado State. In the student affairs field, he is seen as a pioneer in the campus ecology movement. He has co-authored several books: Educating by Design: Creating Campus Environments that Work, Positioning Student Affairs for Sustainable Change(Jossey Bass 2001),Designing for Learning: Creating Campus Environments for Student Success(Jossey Bass 2015)), and recently authored Campus Ecology and University Affairs: History, Applications, and Future - A Scholarly Personal Narrative(TerraCotta Publishing, 2016).

Jim has also been active in the classroom. He taught environmental psychology for the Department of Psychology and campus ecology for the Student Affairs Program in Higher Education, and qualitative research and data analysis for School of Education’s Higher Education Leadership Program. Jim retired in 2013, but continues to teach and write, focusing on the concept of campus ecology.

Visit James's personal website, The Campus Ecologist.

Marilyn J. Amey

Marilyn J. Amey is a Professor and Chair of the Department of Educational Administration who teaches courses in the Higher, Adult, and Lifelong Education programs. Her primary research area is leadership, and the postsecondary governance, administration, organizational change and faculty issues that fall within that larger rubric. She has particular interest in community colleges and the cultivation of new postsecondary leaders. Her current research involves serving as principle investigator of a project looking at K-14 partnerships, which builds on earlier work on interdisciplinary collaboration. She is co-leader of the evaluation team for a five university, NSF-funded consortium, looking at the evolution of interdisciplinary partnerships and academic work. She is co-author of Breaking Out of the Box: Interdisciplinary Collaboration and Faculty Work, with Dennis Brown, guest editor of an issue of the Community College Journal of Research and Practice, entitled: “Leadership as Learning: Rethinking Community College Leadership”, co-author with Linda Kuk and James Banning of Designing Organizations for Sustainable Change, and editor of Collaborations Across Educational Borders. Dr. Amey is immediate past editor of the NASPA Journal About Women in Higher Education, the 2005 Senior Scholar recipient of the Council for the Study of Community Colleges and its past President, the inaugural recipient of the Association for the Study of Higher Education’s Mentor Award and the chair of its Publications Committee. She teaches courses on administration and governance, leadership, community colleges and faculty.

student affairs
organizational behavior
student affairs practice
Social Constructionist
organizational structure
department organization
social comparison theory
organizational learning theory
organizational change
team Dimensions
ecological scanning
organizational assessment