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Below is the fifth of thirteen sections of the CAS Standards and
Guidelines for Learning Assistance Programs.  Background information
about the document can be found in a previous message dated 5-18-95.
 
This section, HUMAN RESOURCES, differs from the first two sections in
that the general standards are incorporated into the text instead of
appearing separately at the beginning of the document.  Instead, the
general standards appear in CAPS.
 
We invite you to comment on any or all of the thirteen sections that will
eventually appear on learnasst.  We ask that you e-mail your responses
within the next few weeks.  If you prefer to send hard copy, you may do
that also.
 
Sincerely,
 
 
Martha Maxwell and Georgine Materniak
 
respond to [log in to unmask] or mail to
Georgine Materniak
University of Pittsburgh
Learning Skills Center
311 William Pitt Union
Pittsburgh, PA   15260
 
 
 
BEGIN SECTION FIVE: HUMAN RESOURCES
 
V.      HUMAN RESOURCES FOR LEARNING ASSISTANCE PROGRAMS
 
EACH Learning Assistance PROGRAM MUST BE STAFFED ADEQUATELY BY
INDIVIDUALS QUALIFIED TO ACCOMPLISH ITS MISSION AND GOALS.
The size, scope, and role of the staff are determined by the mission of
the Learning Assistance Program and the student population it serves.
Staff-to-student ratios, therefore, must be based on factors such as:
 
- the types and extent of programs and service offered;
- the range of learning needs of the student population served;
- institutional commitment to special populations of students, such as
culturally and ethnically diverse students,  international and
English-as-a Second language students, student athletes, returning
students, and students with physical and learning disabilities;
- institutional priorities and requirement for specific academic
disciplines; and
- the number of contact and instructional hours necessary to properly
assist students.
 
Learning Assistance PROGRAMS AND SERVICES MUST ESTABLISH PROCEDURES FOR
STAFF SELECTION, TRAINING, AND EVALUATION; SET EXPECTATIONS FOR
SUPERVISION, AND PROVIDE APPROPRIATE PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT
OPPORTUNITIES.  If joint appointments are employed to supplement staff,
the individuals must be committed to the mission, philosophy, goals, and
priorities of the Learning Assistance Program as well as possess the
necessary expertise for assigned responsibilities.
 
Adequate time and financial support should be allocated for professional
development activities.  Staff are encouraged to conduct research and to
publish professional papers to contribute to the knowledge and practice
of the profession.  Staff are also encouraged to attend, present
conference programs, and to participate in committees at professional
conferences and workshops.
 
PROFESSIONAL STAFF MEMBERS MUST HOLD AN EARNED GRADUATE DEGREE IN A FIELD
RELEVANT TO THE Learning Assistance POSITION DESCRIPTION OR MUST POSSESS
AN APPROPRIATE COMBINATION OF EDUCATION AND EXPERIENCE.
 
The director should have an earned graduate degree in a relevant
discipline and professional experience in Learning Assistance Program
design, instruction, and administration.
 
Professional staff should have earned degrees from relevant disciplines
such as reading, English, mathematics, student personnel/development,
guidance and counseling, psychology, or education.  Learning assistance
professionals must possess knowledge and expertise in learning theory and
in teaching and assessing the particular strategies and content for which
they are responsible.  In addition, they must be aware of the unique
characteristics and needs of the various populations they assist.
 
The functions and roles of Learning Assistance Program professional staff
are multi-disciplinary and combine expertise and knowledge from various
fields.   Expertise to instruct a variety of learning strategies and to
employ a variety of pedagogical styles enriches opportunities for
collaboration and adjunct programming within the Learning Assistance
Program and with faculty across the curriculum.
 
Courses of study and internship experiences applicable to this
multi-disciplinary profession include but are not limited to:
 
        - content-specific coursework that includes theories, strategies,
          and assessment of reading,writing, and mathematics
        - applying learning strategies across the curriculum
        - learning disabilities and special education
        - design and implementation of workshops in areas such as time
          management, stress management, and anxiety reduction
        - English as a second language
        - adult development and adult learning
        - history and philosophy of learning assistance
        - cognitive psychology including cognitive processes, memory,
          critical thinking and problem solving
        - testing, measurement, and evaluation
        - research methodology
        - organization, administration, and management in higher education
        - instructional technology and computer-assisted instruction
        - instructional design, development, methodologies
        - curriculum design and development
        - counseling, guidance, and advising
        - group leadership, dynamics, and processes
        - human relations training
        - state and federal regulations applicable to programs, services,
          and clients of Learning Assistance Programs.
 
Learning Assistance Program professional staff should be competent and
experienced in:
 
        - written and oral communication skills;
        - working with college and adult learners, faculty, and administrators;
        - working in a culturally and academically diverse setting
        - collaborating with academic and student affairs units;
        - college teaching;
        - designing and implementing instructional strategies including
          collaborative learning, cooperative learning, and reciprocal teaching;
        - training, supervising, and mentoring paraprofessionals and
          preprofessionals; and
        - identifying and establishing lines of communication for student
          referral to other institutional units.
 
Other abilities and expertise that are valuable in the execution of the
duties of professional staff include: counseling and advising techniques
to respond appropriately and holistically to the needs student report;
experience in training, supervising, and mentoring paraprofessionals and
preprofessionals;  and consultation and negotiation skills for
interacting and collaborating with colleagues throughout the campus
community.
 
DEGREE OR CREDENTIAL SEEKING INTERNS OR OTHERS IN TRAINING MUST BE
QUALIFIED BY ENROLLMENT IN AN APPROPRIATE FIELD OF STUDY AND RELEVANT
EXPERIENCE.  THESE INDIVIDUALS MUST BE TRAINED AND SUPERVISED ADEQUATELY
BY PROFESSIONAL STAFF MEMBERS.
 
The Learning Assistance Program must be informed of the policies and
procedures to be followed for internships and practica as required by the
student's academic department.  The roles and responsibilities of the
Learning Assistance Center and those of the academic department are
clearly defined and understood by participating staff, faculty, and the
student.
 
Learning Assistance Program STUDENT EMPLOYEES AND VOLUNTEERS MUST BE
CAREFULLY SELECTED, TRAINED, SUPERVISED, AND EVALUATED.  WHEN THEIR
KNOWLEDGE AND SKILLS ARE NOT ADEQUATE FOR PARTICULAR SITUATIONS, THEY
MUST REFER STUDENTS AND OTHERS IN NEED OF ASSISTANCE TO QUALIFIED
PROFESSIONAL STAFF.
 
Learning Assistance Program paraprofessional staff can be undergraduate
or graduate students.  Adequate training and supervision are essential
and required.  Paraprofessional staff or graduate students may perform
professional duties if properly trained and supervised by professional staff.
 
Professional organizations are valuable resources for information for
creating and implementing successful paraprofessional programs within
Learning Assistance Programs.  The National Association of Developmental
Education (NADE) Self-Evaluation Guides can serve as a framework for
developing all components of a tutorial program.  The tutor training
criteria recommended in the Tutor Certification Program Guidelines of the
College Reading and Learning Association (CRLA) is a comprehensive list
of training topics and agendas that need to be addressed.
 
EACH ORGANIZATIONAL UNIT MUST HAVE SECRETARIAL AND TECHNICAL STAFF
ADEQUATE TO ACCOMPLISH ITS MISSION.  SUCH STAFF MUST BE TECHNOLOGICALLY
PROFICIENT TO PERFORM ACTIVITIES INCLUDING RECEPTION DUTIES, OFFICE
EQUIPMENT OPERATION, RECORDS MAINTENANCE, AND MAIL HANDLING.
 
The secretarial and technical staff of Learning Assistance Programs must
be knowledgeable of and sensitive to the concerns, needs, and
characteristics of the program's clients. Secretarial and technical staff
are updated on changes in programs, services, policies and procedures in
order to expedite smooth and efficient assistance to clients. Staff
development workshops in assertiveness, effective communication, conflict
resolution, and in handling confidential information is beneficial.
 
APPROPRIATE SALARY LEVELS AND FRINGE BENEFITS FOR ALL STAFF MEMBERS MUST
BE COMMENSURATE WITH THOSE FOR COMPARABLE POSITIONS WITHIN THE
INSTITUTION, IN SIMILAR INSTITUTIONS, AND IN THE RELEVANT GEOGRAPHIC AREA.
 
TO REFLECT THE DIVERSITY OF THE STUDENT POPULATION, TO ENSURE THE
EXISTENCE OF READILY IDENTIFIABLE ROLE MODELS FOR STUDENTS AND TO ENRICH
THE CAMPUS COMMUNITY, the Learning Assistance Program MUST INTENTIONALLY
EMPLOY A DIVERSE STAFF.
 
AFFIRMATIVE ACTION MUST OCCUR IN HIRING AND PROMOTION PRACTICES AS
REQUIRED TO ENSURE DIVERSE STAFFING PROFILES.
 
 
END HUMAN RESOURCES SECTION.
 
 
 
 
CAS LEARNING ASSISTANCE PROGRAM STANDARDS AND GUIDELINES
HUMAN RESOURCES SECTION
 
RATING OF REVISION DRAFT
 
Using a scale from 1 (do not agree) to 5 (agree), please rank the Human
Resources Section.
 
 
1. This section addresses the essential elements of the topic.
 
2. This section is comprehensive in addressing the topic.
 
3. Choice and usage of terminology is appropriate.
 
4. Language is easy to comprehend.
 
5. This section could be useful for the intended purposes of:
 
        - Measuring of program and services effectiveness.
 
        - Designs for program and service development and assessment.
 
        - Criteria for institutional self-studies and preparation for accreditation.
 
        - Opportunities for staff development.
 
        - Directions for student learning and development.
 
        - Frameworks for accountability.
 
 
6. This section of the document reflects the major concepts, beliefs, and
    practices of HUMAN RESOURCES for a learning assistance program.
 
7. Have you ever used the original version of the CAS Standards and
Guidelines for Learning Assistance Programs?
Yes  or  no?
If "yes", please let us know for what purpose you used it and if it was
useful for that purpose.
 
 
 
Please add your specific  comments, suggestions, ideas.
 
Thank you for your participation.
 
        E-MAIL RESPONSE TO:     [log in to unmask]