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Achieving Student Success

Achieving Student Success: Effective Student Services in Canadian Higher Education

Copyright Date: 2010
Pages: 297
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  • Book Info
    Achieving Student Success
    Book Description:

    Hardy Cox and Strange begin with an overview of student services dealing with the matriculation of post-secondary students - through enrolment management, financial assistance, and orientation to the institution and accommodation - and then discuss housing and residence life, student leadership programs, systems of judicial and academic integrity, and student support and adjustment through counselling, health and wellness initiatives, career and employment advice, and a variety of services that can respond to a variety of needs.

    eISBN: 978-0-7735-7572-1
    Subjects: Education

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-iv)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. v-vi)
  3. Foreword
    (pp. vii-x)
    Dr Peggy Patterson

    Achieving Student Success: Effective Student Services in Canadian Higher Education– what lofty goals and what a timely focus for Donna Hardy Cox and Carney Strange in their first collaborative book! The title itself captures the primary value of this book and the commitment of the authors and of the profession on which they are focusing: the success of students. But this volume is much more than the sum of its chapters and the collective wisdom of its authors. In its presentation of both the evolution and the current state of the profession of student services in Canada and the celebration...

  4. Preface
    (pp. xi-2)
    Donna Hardy Cox and C. Carney Strange
  5. PART ONE Historical, Philosophical, and Theoretical Foundations of Student Services
    (pp. 3-4)

    The story of any field is a history of persons, events, and situations that in hindsight seem to connect in a sequence of antecedents and consequences, as if destiny and purpose were its guides. While underway, though, it is more often the case that causes are elusive and outcomes are unpredictable. Any description of history is necessarily a slice of understanding in time, limited by current perspectives and shaped by selective experiences and contacts of the authors.

    Chapter 1 begins this exploration of the role of student services in the success of Canadian post-secondary students with a recall and description...

  6. 1 Foundations of Student Services in Canadian Higher Education
    (pp. 5-17)

    The contributions of student services to Canadian higher education extend deep into the history of an enterprise that is both evolutionary and multifaceted. Beginning with a people intent on preserving a monarchy and its inherent sense of order, the first settlers of North America brought with them desires that were civil as well as practical. On the one hand they depended on the skills of builders and crafters to survive the challenges of a vast wilderness; on the other hand they also sought to develop a society with a vision of decency and civil participation that spoke of their European...

  7. 2 Theoretical Foundations of Student Success
    (pp. 18-30)

    The concept of student success is complex and multi-dimensional. From the perspective of a student it might be the achievement of a specific, shortterm academic goal, such as sitting successfully for an exam, writing a term paper, or completing a challenging course. The view of a parent might include an expected level of independence exhibited by a daughter as she negotiates the many decisions of a university experience. And for those who plan and implement the various services of a post-secondary institution, student success is most often reflected in successful enrolment numbers, program retention rates, and degree completion figures. Whatever...

  8. PART TWO Forms, Functions, and Practices: Structuring Services for Student Success
    (pp. 31-32)

    This section sets the context for the diverse functions that support students in Canadian post-secondary education, identifying common services and practices in a variety of areas that connect to student success. Each chapter introduces an area of student services, describing basic functions, and linking them to the broader history and philosophy of higher education. Each also considers significant issues (both evolutionary and emergent) that shape the organization and practice of this service, while benchmarking practices and protocols that would usually support this area and discussing challenges and opportunities for further development and research in this domain.

    The chapters have been...

  9. 3 MATRICULATION Enrolment Management, Admissions, and Registrar Services
    (pp. 33-54)

    This chapter examines the office of the registrar, its historical roots in Canadian higher education, and the complex set of functions it manages while supporting the academic mission of the institution it serves. From enrolment management through examination and course scheduling, student record keeping and intra-institutional liaison, the registrar’s world today is one of increasingly sophisticated technology in the delivery of services. Registrars now play a significant role on most Canadian campuses as initiators of information technology development. Rising expectations related to enrolment planning and management, institutional marketing, and student engagement and satisfaction have elevated this position to one of...

  10. 4 Student Financial Assistance and Scholarship Services
    (pp. 55-65)

    Funding post-secondary education has become an increasingly formidable challenge for many Canadian students and their families. Between 1996 and 2004, for example, tuition at Canadian institutions rose at more than three times the rate of inflation (Statistics Canada) and it continues to increase as costs mount and revenues lag. Consequently, through financial aid, colleges and universities have come to play an ever more critical role in ensuring that students are properly funded, not only initially in order to attend their chosen post-secondary institution but subsequently in order to complete their studies without interruption. In total, Canadian institutions spend upwards of...

  11. 5 Orientation and First-Year Services
    (pp. 66-76)

    The initial weeks of the first semester are critical for students. Finding one’s way on campus, making new friends, and learning where to access various services and how they might be helpful all take on a sense of urgency as students’ commitment to this stage in their lives and the new setting they find themselves in grows. Orientation services that support students entering post-secondary education play a significant role in institutional enrolment management and outcome strategies.

    This chapter offers an overview of the current functions and practices of orientation services at Canadian colleges and universities. Included is a discussion of...

  12. 6 Housing and Residence Life
    (pp. 77-88)

    Most colleges and universities in Canada have some form of residence housing available for students coming to study on their campuses. Housing on campus provides students with an introduction to, and a path to find, their place within the campus community. It is also, obviously, a convenient option for students outside the immediate vicinity of the campus who require accommodation during their studies. There are over 75 universities and 140 colleges in Canada, and at the universities alone, over 100,000 students live on campus each academic year.

    Institutions have always needed to provide housing for students travelling some distance from...

  13. 7 Student Leadership, Involvement, and Service Learning
    (pp. 89-99)

    Canadian institutions are fortunate to have many passionate, involved, and effective student leaders who take an active role in institutional governance, service delivery, and advocacy. Many are also involved in community service work and social change. This legacy has evolved in Canadian higher education in ways that are very different from other systems (e.g., United States), although the genesis for its current state is rooted in the 1960s era of student activism. It was during this movement that student leaders in Canada pressed for greater representation in university governance (Knopf 1960; McGrath 1970; Morison 1970) and were able to obtain...

  14. 8 Student Judicial Affairs and Academic Integrity
    (pp. 100-112)

    Student discipline is a system of crime and punishment — at least according to conventional student wisdom: a violation of a rule is inevitably followed by a penalty. Given this assumption, students might have difficulty believing that the system is designed to protect their interests, or that our processes are part of student services. This perception, however, is worth examining more closely both in terms of the students who are sanctioned under the disciplinary processes and the rest who are protected by the policies and procedures.

    Whether students misbehave on campus or engage in conduct designed to gain unearned academic advantage,...

  15. 9 Counselling Services
    (pp. 113-123)

    Counselling services in Canadian higher education have existed for more than fifty years and perform a critical and supporting institutional role in helping students maximize their opportunities for academic and personal success. Counselling services on a university and college campus cover a wide spectrum of programs and interventions, all aimed at addressing student needs. This chapter focuses on: (a) the essential role that counselling plays in the personal, social, emotional, and career development needs of students; (b) models of service delivery and organization; (c) professionalization of the counselling field; and (d) various issues and challenges that shape such services on...

  16. 10 Health and Wellness Services
    (pp. 124-140)

    Almost all post-secondary educational institutions in Canada offer their students health and wellness services, although scope and programming varies widely because of differences in provincial health system organization, size of the institution, and proximity to other health resources. In addition, because of universal health care in Canada, many institutions rely on the accessibility of medical resources in the surrounding community for basic medical services to their students. At the very least, most schools offer wellness programming and immunization for students in the health sciences, while some offer primary medical care. This chapter gives an overview of the basic functions and...

  17. 11 Career and Employment Services
    (pp. 141-152)

    The development of career and employment services in Canadian higher education evolved over the decades in the spirit of helping students succeed. The genesis of specific departments addressing such needs dates to the post-Second World War era, when campuses responded to a national need to assist returning veterans make a successful transition to civilian life. In many instances, this included opportunities for further education and in others, a transition to employment. Thus, the focus on student success in the delivery of these services has been a persistent theme for at least the past six decades.

    Typical Canadian campus career centres...

  18. 12 Services for Diverse Students
    (pp. 153-164)

    From the first meeting of the University of Toronto Homophile Association in 1969 to the unique opportunity today for indigenous Black Nova Scotia students to meet with Dalhousie University’s Black Student Advisor, the ways that post-secondary institutions promote and provide support services for diverse and often under-represented student populations indicate Canada’s social commitment to the value of higher learning for its citizens, regardless of age, race, ability, size, gender, ethnic background, religious experience, sexual orientation, or gender identity. Much has transpired since those early stirrings of student voices caused post-secondary educators to reconsider the manner in which those under-represented, and...

  19. 13 Organizing, Leading, and Managing Student Services
    (pp. 165-192)

    Student services represents a significant investment of resources and personnel in any college or university. Beginning with enrolment and orientation to the institution, proceeding through accommodation services, guidance from various counselling and advisement offices, and engagement in campus leadership experiences, and concluding with arrangement of internship opportunities, job placements, and alumni connections, student services facilitates students’ entry, matriculation and, ultimately, success in the sometimes challenging world of post-secondary education. How are these services organized and funded? How are they best managed and led for student success? This chapter engages these questions through a conceptual frame and understanding based on experience...

  20. 14 Student Services in College
    (pp. 195-207)

    At the heart of most colleges in Canada is a vision of increasing access to higher education through opportunities for social and economic advancement, most often for those disadvantaged by location or previously limited education. While this is but one aspect of the college mission, the access imperative has always sought increased success for students who otherwise would face fewer career and life options. Indeed, many personnel, especially those in student services, are drawn to work in colleges precisely to effect that goal (Mathews and Freeland 2006). In that context, student access and student success have usually been synonymous.


  21. 15 Student Services in University
    (pp. 208-220)

    The history of universities in Canada dates back to the establishment of the first institutions in Nova Scotia, Upper Canada, Lower Canada, and New Brunswick in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries (Jones 1997), chartered for the purposes of providing opportunities for young men to pursue advanced studies in the liberal arts and to prepare them for roles within the professional ranks of society (See chapter 1). As specialization increased the number and diversity of potential careers, the role of universities expanded and the development of advanced degrees grew into expert fields of study. The need for graduate schools within the...

  22. 16 Student Services at a Distance
    (pp. 221-234)

    With the expressed goal of “empowering the individual student to study independently and to control the time, place, and pace of study” (Miller 1996, 42), distance education has long been among the delivery options of most institutions of higher learning in Canada. Although known earlier ascorrespondence, independent, home, or openstudy, this form of learning has evolved further to capitalize on advances in technology in offering increasingly sophisticated modes that are both accessible to and supportive of learners’ needs (Bartolic-Zlomislic and Bates 2000; Cochrane 2000; Daugherty and Funke 1998). Currently, many post-secondary institutions offer courses adapted to a variety...

  23. PART FOUR Achieving Student Success: Conclusion
    (pp. 235-236)

    Although the termstudent servicesis used frequently in this analysis to refer to a collection of offices, programs, and practices found on all postsecondary campuses in Canada, any implication that this field functions from a clear consensus of professional identities is probably an overstatement at this point in its history. Perhaps more accurate is the impression that, while each of the services outlined and discussed in the previous chapters identifies with its respective domain (e.g., counselling or enrolment management), the degree of common affinity of such services for any foundational core of professional understandings is only just now beginning...

  24. 17 Principles and Strategies of Good Practice in Student Services
    (pp. 237-246)

    The emergence in recent decades of a moreprofessionalmodel of student services in Canadian higher education has been a significant development in the success of Canada’s college and university students. In terms of the quality of overall experience, it has been those in student services who have welcomed, oriented, housed, engaged, and supported students in the process of their development as they have pursued the best of what higher learning has to offer. From enrolment management and admissions to career employment and lifelong learning, student services has contributed in complementary and holistic ways, such that graduates are not only...

  25. References
    (pp. 247-284)
  26. Contributors
    (pp. 285-288)
  27. Index
    (pp. 289-297)