Extensive framework applicable and available to all student affairs and services divisions.

All NASPA Advisory Services expert reviews and online assessments utilize a thorough framework consisting of nine foundational elements of review. These elements were identified by higher education and student affairs executives for their suitability to reviewing a diversity of student affairs and services divisions. The elements are organized into our review framework called PRACTICES, which focuses on student affairs and services’ policies, resources, alignment and partnerships with academic affairs, compliance, technology, inclusion, community, evidence-based practices, and student success efforts.

PRACTICES is strengthened through the incorporation of 32 National Campus Safety Initiative (32 NCSI)—a landmark program created by the VTV Family Outreach Foundation and managed by NASPA that empowers college and university campus communities to make more informed decisions about campus safety.

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P Policy

Student affairs divisions should seek to have relevant, current, and appropriate policies, protocols, and processes that foster a safe, diverse, and welcoming community for all students. Student affairs policies and procedures should aspire to be mission sensitive and accessible, and designed to inform, support, and protect students as well as guide practitioners.

R Resources

Student affairs leaders should seek to possess a thorough understanding of their institution’s budget and resource allocations. Divisions of student affairs should pursue current and appropriate methods of funding programs, services, and operations while also identifying potential new sources of funding internally and externally (e.g., government and state funding and grants, foundations, non-profits and public-private partnerships.)

A Academics

Divisions of student affairs should aspire to align and partner with academic affairs and strengthen a culture of continued student enrollment, academic progress, and student success. Working collaboratively with academic affairs, student affairs divisions should seek to support institutional practices that foster academic progress as well as limit those practices that inhibit learning, early attrition, and degree completion.

C Compliance

Student affairs divisions should seek to dedicate appropriate attention, and adhere, to compliance requirements with laws, regulations, and policies that relate to their respective responsibilities and that pose legal obligations, limitations, risks, and liabilities for students and the institution as a whole.

T Technology

Student affairs divisions should aspire to have adequate and current technology to support the achievement of their mission and goals as well as to facilitate student learning and development, and digital literacy.

I Inclusion

Student affairs divisions should strive to cultivate, strengthen, and sustain an inclusive and equitable community for all campus members, especially students. Student affairs should seek ways to ensure access, voice, acknowledgment, opportunity, and participation at all levels of students’ experiences.

C Community

Student affairs divisions should work to promote efforts to convey to all enrolled students that they are important and valued. The institution should pursue systems and adequate opportunities for students to have a sense of safety, belonging, and campus pride. Student affairs leadership should seek to have external involvement (e.g., city, town, county, local area) supporting the institution and its students.

E Evidence

Student affairs divisions should strive to regularly assess programs and services, and use the respective data as the basis for decision-making in regard to the effectiveness, impact, and quality of work. Student affairs divisions should seek to demonstrate that they are using evidence-based information and knowledge to design and implement initiatives that result in improved student learning, as well as to allocate and repurpose resources.

S Students

Student affairs divisions should strive to be responsive to contemporary students and current trends in higher education, understand current student affairs trends and services, engage in student success initiatives, and focus on the completion efforts of the institution.

Distinguishing Features of Review Framework


Focus 2



NASPA Advisory Services

Divisions of student affairs and services

Nine foundational elements of review applicable to any division of student affairs or services

Self-assessment; external, senior-level and expert reviewers

Council for the Advancement of Standards in Higher Education

Functional areas, programs, and services

45 standards and self-assessment guides; six student learning and development domains

Self-assessment; self-study model

Professional Competencies

Individual professionals, educators, and practitioners

Ten professional competency areas


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