April 17, 2007
Making Sure We're Part of the Equation
A review of the recent joint conference of the American College Personnel Association (ACPA) and the National Association of Student Personnel Administrators (NASPA) includes some interesting news about how our student affairs colleagues are working at the national level to make certain that they remain "part of the equation" when campus leaders are calculating how best to support student success.
Like librarians, student affairs professionals have looked carefully over the past 20 years at their educational role (something that I noted briefly in an earlier post), and NASPA has joined with an education consulting firm to create a national clearinghouse for information on research and best practices aimed at promoting student success. As one of the participating consultants told the Chronicle of Higher Education: "When we talk about accountability, we can't just limit ourselves to what happens in classrooms."
The lesson for libraries is that we, too, must be proactive if we are to remain relevant to campus discussions about promoting student success and responding to national calls for increased educational accountability. We are one of the few academic units designed to seamlessly bridge the curricular and the co-curricular experience. When we talk about the learning that can be facilitated in a library, or by librarians, we are talking about what happens in classrooms, in libraries, in computer labs, in residence halls, and anywhere else that the ability to access, manage, evaluate, synthesize, and present information is important (which is pretty much everywhere).
Members of our profession have done substantial work over the past decade on the educational impact of the teaching and learning that goes on in libraries (or as part of campus-wide commitments to information literacy). How do we make certain that we also remain "part of the equation" when relevant discussions come up on our campuses? What can each one of us do in our work with campus faculty and administrators? What can the leadership of our national organizations learn from the leadership of those of our colleagues in student affairs about helping to make the case?
Posted by swalter at April 17, 2007 9:32 AM
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