University Housing and Residence Life


Section 7: Programming and Action Plans

Programming and Community Building are a vital part of the students learning experience outside of the classroom.  It is your job as a Resident Advisor to provide quality programs and experiences in the hall for the students in your area. 

You will be asked each week to visit the Student Staff Portal at and submit hours to your supervisor of how you earned your programming hours for the week.  

Some of the reasons why we program:  

  • To promote interaction

  • To recognize diversity

  • To address social justice issues

  • To send messages

  • To educate

  • To raise awareness

  • To socialize

Section 7.1 Residence Life Programming Model  

Res Life Core Values  

  1. Provide clean, comfortable, and well-maintained facilities.

  2. Provide competitively priced student housing.

  3. Provide innovative resources/technology for learning.

  4. Provide a quality well-trained professional staff.

  5. Provide programs that enhance intellectual, emotional, cultural, and social development.

  6. Provide a learner centered environment.

Based on our core values, the following are the most effective areas to address student development needs and will focus our programming model toward these areas: 

  • Provide innovative resources/technology for learning

  • Provide program that enhance intellectual, emotional, cultural, and social development

  • Provide a learner centered environment

Theory Connected to the Residence Life Programming Model 

Magolda’s Four Dimensions of Learning

  • Cognitive competence - Knowledge of key ideas, facts, dates and places

  • Interpersonal competence - Communication skills and relationships with others

  • Intrapersonal competence - Understanding ones emotions, decisions and actions

  • Practical competence – Learning through experience or practice

Magolda believes that students should be challenged in an environment that provides support structures to achieve complex lifelong learning. Using each of these areas can assist in providing the challenge that our students need for a well-rounded educational experience.

Information from Baxter-Magolda, M.B, King, P. M, (2004). Learning Partnerships : Theory and Models of Practice to Educate for Self-Authorship 

Program Model Learning Outcomes Based on Core Values and Grounding Theory 

  • Students will formulate and express their own thoughts about issues (Value #5)

  • Students will demonstrate an understanding of hall policy (Value #3)

  • Students will use campus resources to successfully navigate through the academic year (Value #3)

  • Students will develop conflict resolution skills by engaging with others effectively (Value #5)

  • Students will develop an understanding and appreciation of difference (Value #5)

  • Students will learn appropriate contacts to affect physical changes in their living environments (Value #6)

  • Students will better understand how their behavior impacts their communities (Value #5&6)

  • Students will demonstrate respect for self and others (Value #6)

Section 7.2 Action Plans

We use action plans to help build a sense of community on the wing.

Community – refers to a group of people sharing a common purpose who are interdependent for the fulfillment of certain needs, who live in close proximity and interact on a regular basis, who share in defining expectations for all members of the group, assume responsibility for meeting those expectations, and who are respectful and considerate of the individuality of other persons in the group.

Community Development – is the process of shaping the environment, of building on the experiences and needs of members both individually and collectively, of creating the attitudes and developing the skills necessary to progress toward the realization of those conditions that make up a community.

Sense of Community – refers to the feeling of cooperation, of commitment to the group welfare, or willingness to communicate openly, and of responsibility to and for others, as well as one’s self.  


  • Creating an environment conducive to study and learning should exist within the hall.

  • Community requires and stimulates the development of personal competencies and skills.

  • Community influences resident’s attitudes and behaviors after graduation (therefore it ultimately affects the larger society).


Section 7.3 Programming Guidelines

Each academic year the Resident/Community Advisors will be asked to sign the Programming Guidelines form.  By signing the form you are agreeing that you have read and understand the programming guidelines and rules. 

Programming Guidelines

Resident Advisors/Community Advisors  

Programming Requirements are outlined in your Resident/Community Advisor Manual.  

Guidelines for any program hosted by Resident Advisors/Community Advisors: 

  • You must reserve the area you wish to have your program in and submit a facility use request form in advance to your supervisor. Double check with your supervisor that the area has been reserved for you.

  • If your location is in an open space with a kitchen be sure to reserve the kitchen as well so other residents not attending the program will not disrupt the program.

  • DO NOT double book RA and CA programs in the same area.

  • DO NOT hold your program when you are working desk or floor. If you want to hold your program during this time trade your hours.

  • DO NOT hold your program at the front desk area because you are working.

  • If you move the furniture for set-up you are responsible for returning the furniture to its original set-up.

  • You are responsible for making sure that the area you use for your program is cleaned up after the program and any overflowing trashcans are emptied in the outside dumpster.

  • You need to have a sign-in sheet for your program. This sheet is for students attending the program to sign.  Once the program is concluded remove your sign-in sheet.  Residents/RA/CA/DC staff should not be signing in just to eat food at the end of a program.

  • Under no circumstance should any staff member be going door to door or asking people passing by to sign-in to their program for more numbers.

  • Under no circumstance should any RA/CA/DC staff sign-in to any other staff members program if they do not plan on attending the entire program.

  • RA/CA/DC staffs are not allowed to sign-in get food and leave the program (this includes drinks and bottled water).

  • When planning for your program guesstimate the number of attendees you might have, try not to over buy supplies or food.

  • At the end of your program if you have food left over that is packaged return it to your AD or AC so it can be used for future programs (this includes drinks and bottled water). DO NOT just hand it out after the program or leave it in the office for the staff to eat.  Any items that are perishable not packaged or CANNOT be kept for another program you may pass out to the program attendees or leave in the lobby area for residents to take at the conclusion of the program. You are responsible for checking back later and disposing of any food left and cleaning up any mess left.

  • Food at programs is to be served at the conclusion of the program and is to be placed in a location where students cannot just walk in and take the food. You may have to ask another staff member present to stand next to the food table and inform residents that the food will be served following the program.

  • Reminder we are purchasing snack foods and are not serving full meals during our programs.

  • Be courteous to other staff members hosting programs and DO NOT disturb them during their program unless it is an emergency.

  • Be courteous to our guest speakers at our programs and DO NOT disturb the program while they are speaking.

  • You are allowed to get programming hours for helping another staff member with their program but you must help and stay for the entire program (knocking on doors to tell residents about the program and then leaving is not considered helping and staying for the program).

  • For RA’s and CA’s a reminder that social programs must have an icebreaker and at least 2 activities.

  • For RA’s a reminder that educational programs must be well planned and have a guest speaker from another department on campus or a community entity. Educational depending on the nature of the program may include other activities beside the guest speaker.  The same applies to CA’s however they will have a minimum of 3 guest speakers per semester for their educational and study sessions.

  • All programs have a budget the RA staff must adhere to the budget. If there is something you feel you need additional funds for please e-mail Gina Smith the details for approval.

  • If your program includes some sort of craft or giveaway then you will not be allotted additional money for door prizes.

  • You cannot spend your entire budget on food you must have some sort of prizes for social programs.

  • At the conclusion of your program make sure you submit all paperwork including your sign-in sheet, prize winners list, half sheet evaluations and a copy of the publicity.

  • If you need to reserve a projector, laptop, screen, bingo set or the popcorn machine for your program you must e-mail Gina Smith in advance to get on the calendar.

I have read and understand these guidelines: 

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