College Student Personnel program

Degree Requirements 

The curriculum for the College Student Personnel program are rooted in the ACPA/NASPA Professional Competencies, Council for the Advancement of Standards (CAS) Graduate Preparation Program guidelines, and feedback from the annual surveys conducted with our recent alumni and their student affairs employer.

College Student Personnel: Student Affairs

The Student Affairs track consists of 48 semester hours of credit including a specialization core of 36 hours, two hours of practicum, and six hours of internship. Four hours of electives from the behavioral sciences, counseling, and other related areas are selected in consultation with your advisor. Graduate School requirements regarding transfer of credit and extension work will apply.

Core courses are offered in a sequential fashion, and have a high-residency approach – typically 16 in-person meetings per semester for three and four credit hour courses.

Core Courses

  • CSP 552 Introduction to College Student Personnel Work
  • CSP 581 Group Dynamics—Process and Analysis
  • CSP 553 Organization and Administration of College Student Personnel Services
  • CSP 554 Higher Education in the United States
  • CSP 559 Student Development Theory and Application I
  • CSP 560 Student Characteristics and College Impact
  • CSP 561 Practicum in Student Affairs
  • CSP 555 Counseling Theories and Practices for College Student Personnel
  • CSP 565 Student Development Theory and Application II
  • CSP 597 Internship
  • CSP 550 Legal Issues for Professionals in College Personnel
  • CSP 598 Internship II
  • CSP 600 Professional Development Seminar
  • EIS 500 Methods of Research

 

College Student Personnel: Higher Education Leadership 

The Higher Education Leadership track consists of 42 semester hours of credit including a specialization core of 36 hours, six hours of application through hands-on student affairs work, a thesis or a mixture of one of these experiences with electives from the behavioral sciences, counseling, and other related areas are selected in consultation with your advisor. Graduate School requirements regarding transfer of credit and extension work will apply.

Core courses are offered in a sequential fashion (six credit hours per semester and nine credit hours for the summer session), and have a low-residency approach – typically five in-person weekend course meetings per semester (four weekend meetings per summer session) with the remaining coursework facilitated through WesternOnLine.

Core Courses

  • CSP 533 Special Problems in College Student Personnel Work
  • CSP 550 Legal Issues for Professionals in College Personnel
  • CSP 553 Organization and Administration of College Student Personnel Services
  • CSP 554 Higher Education in the United States
  • CSP 559 Student Development Theory and Application I
  • CSP 560 Student Characteristics and College Impact
  • CSP 600 Professional Development Seminar: Advising and Helping Skills
  • EDL 500 Leadership Development
  • EIS 500 Methods of Research
  • EIS 504 Qualitative Research
  • EIS 523 Measurement and Evaluation
  • EIS 607 Implications for Diversity for Educational Leaders
  • CSP 597 Internship I or EIS 601 Thesis (determined in consultation with academic advisor)

Program Course Descriptions

CSP 533 Special Problems in College Student Personnel. (1–3, repeatable to 6) Designed to provide a group of students an opportunity for further professional growth and to apply problem-solving approaches in dealing with a specific educational problem. Prerequisite:CSP Major

CSP 550 Legal Issues for Professionals in College Student Personnel. (3) A study of the complex problems of law and ethics as they influence the field of college student personnel and the student affairs professional’s role.Prerequisite: CSP major.

CSP 552 Introduction to College Student Personnel Work. (3) An introduction to student affairs in higher education focusing on the foundations of the profession, its theoretical base, models of practice, and necessary competencies. An overview of specific areas of student affairs practice is provided. Prerequisite: CSP major or
permission of the instructor.

CSP 553 Organization and Administration of College Student Personnel Services. (3) An analysis of organizational structure and administrative responsibility of college student personnel workers. Attention will be given to administrative procedures, budgeting, planning, records relationships to students, and relationships to other institutional administrative personnel and academic units. Prerequisite: CSP major or permission of the instructor.

CSP 554 Higher Education in the United States. (3) An overview of higher education in America. The course reflects the historical development of higher education and provides students the opportunity to explore the broader functions, issues, and participants that comprise post secondary education in the United States. Prerequisite: CSP major

CSP 555 Counseling Theories and Practices for College Student Personnel. (4) An examination of the major theories of counseling, the development of basic counseling skills central to, and for use in, college student personnel settings. Prerequisite: CSP major.

CSP 559 Student Development Theory and Application I. (4) A critical analysis and review of student development as the theoretical basis for the student affairs profession. Consideration is given to formulating a personal philosophy of student development, current research, and methodology, and writings.  Prerequisite: CSP major or permission of the instructor.

CSP 560 Student Characteristics and College Impact. (3) Characteristics of college students, focusing on the needs of the diverse student populations on today’s college campuses, will be examined. The impact of college on students, including factors related to retention and attrition and the differential impacts of college on various student populations, will also be explored.  Prerequisite: CSP major or permission of the instructor.

CSP 561 Practicum in Student Affairs. (2) The course consists of two components; work experience in a student affairs setting under the supervision of a student affairs professional and seminar conducted by a member of the CSP faculty in which students focus on the link between academic and environmental aspects of training and related issues for beginning professionals. Prerequisite: CSP major.

CSP 562 Advanced Practicum in Student Affairs. (1–2, repeatable) Additional experience in a student affairs setting. Students undertake a special project in an area of particular interest. Prerequisite: CSP major.

CSP 565 Student Development Theory and Application II. (4) This course will continue the examination of student development theories and their application to student affairs practice, focusing on newer approaches to student development, implications of theory for diverse student populations, and assessment strategies.  Prerequisite: CSP 559

CSP 581 Group Dynamics—Process and Analysis. (3) The study of group processes: communication, decision making, cooperation and competition, cohesion, social facilitation and inhibition, leadership, and group roles. Students participate in a small group experience as part of the course.  Prerequisite: CSP major or permission of the instructor.

CSP 597 Internship. (3) Intensive professional experience, under supervision, at an internship site. The purpose of this internship is to gain practical experience in applying the knowledge gained in didactic courses to a field of specialization. Prerequisite: CSP major.

CSP 598 Internship II. (3) Continuation of CSP 597. Intensive professional experience, under supervision, at an internship site. The purpose of this internship is to gain practical experience in applying knowledge gained in didactic courses to a field of specialization. Specific topical focus varies. Prerequisite: CSP 597.

CSP 599 Independent Study. (1–4, repeatable to 4) An investigation of problems related to the student’s major area. Ordinarily a substantial written and/or oral report will be required. Students will arrange the topic, procedures, and methods of reporting with the instructor. Graded S/U.  Prerequisite: CSP major or permission of the instructor.

CSP 600 Professional Development Seminar. (3) An integrative seminar taken in the student’s final semester. Using a case study approach, the seminar is designed to assist students in applying concepts studied in previous courses to current problems and issues in student affairs. Prerequisite: CSP major.

EDL 500 Leadership Development. (3) Leadership styles and theories; organizational cultures, structures, and contexts; change processes; decision-making; communication skills; motivation; and effective team-building.

EIS 500 Methods of Research. (3) An introduction to the nature and techniques of contemporary social scientific research (including educational and human service). Emphasis placed on developing research literacy through critically reading, examining, and evaluating the characteristics of both quantitative and qualitative research. Additional emphasis on the critical issue of the nature of the relationship between research and its application to practice. Prerequisite: Some exposure to the basic nature of statistical reasoning recommended before enrolling in the course.

EIS 504 Qualitative Educational Research. (3) An introduction to the forms of research falling under the umbrella of "qualitative educational research."  Includes discussion of how qualitative research is fundamentally grounded in theories of knowledge and translated into research practice aimed at illuminating educational problems and issues. Prerequisites: EIS 500 or permission of the instructor.

EIS 523 Advanced Measurement and Evaluation. (3) Study of theories and applications of measurement in education including testing and evaluation. Attention to measures of central tendency, data collection, and analysis.

EIS 597 Internship. (3, repeatable) Intensive professional experience, under supervision, at an internship site. The purpose of this internship is to gain practical experience in applying the knowledge gained in didactic courses to a field of specialization. Prerequisite: CSP major.

EIS 601 Thesis. (1-4, repeatable) Capstone project that integrates the knowledge and skills gained through the program by investigating a problem or extending the current state of knowledge, employing formal quantitative or qualitative methodology. Enrollment contingent upon approval of graduate coordinator and completion of proposal.

EIS 607  Implications of Diversity for Educational Leaders.  (3) Rapidly changing demographic patterns hold implications for school policy.  Effective educational leaders understand diverse cultures and communication styles, and practice collaboration and dialogue.  This course will provide resources necessary for administrators to establish themselves as facilitators who offer an inclusive educational vision for the community.  Prerequisites: EDAD 600, EDAD 640, and admission to candidacy in the Education Specialist program, or permission of instructor.