Journal of Student Affairs

JoSA: Volume VIII, 2012 - Journal of Student Affairs - NYU Steinhardt

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1. An Examination of Types of Financial Aid and First Term GPA at a Public University

    Aaron M. Skira | Wright State University

Research literature examining the relationship between financial aid and postsecondary students’ academic progress suggests that types of financial aid may affect college grade point average (GPA) differently. A descriptive, ex post facto research design was employed to examine the relationship between types of financial aid and the first term GPA of 2,252 full-time, first-time, in-state, degree-seeking undergraduates who attended a public four-year institution in the Midwest the fall of 2009. Analyses of the data found no significant difference in GPAs between those students who received financial aid and those who did not; however, several statistically significant differences were found among GPAs when examining different types of financial aid received. Students who received scholarships or work-study had significantly higher GPAs; whereas, students who received grants or student loans had significantly lower GPAs. This study lends itself to the importance of routine assessment and posits that college administrators should consider types of financial aid when determining funding strategies for institutional financial aid programs and policies. 

2. Why Did I Do That?: An Introduction to Critical Reflection in Student Affairs

    Jennifer Fellabaum | University of Missouri 

As stated by Creamer, Winston, and Miller (2001), “effective student affairs practitioners must be continuously involved in active learning” (p. 32). This article provides an introduction to one aspect of active learning, the importance of critical reflection for student affairs professionals. This article begins with an overview of how reflection as a topic is currently handled within the student affairs literature. Then, journal writing is introduced as one example of a critically reflective tool. This introduction includes an overview of how journaling was used in a recent study to help student affairs professionals engage in more critical reflection on the study’s main topics. This example of journal writing as a tool is significant, as all of the participants reported some benefit from keeping the journal. Finally, the article concludes with a discussion of potential barriers and recommendations for future research. 

3. Parent versus Peer Attachments: An Explicit and Implicit Measurement of Internal Working Models 

    Brigitta Vieyra | New York University

The present research examines how multiple attachment figures influence individuals during the college years by specifically comparing parent and peer attachments in undergraduate students in hopes of finding evidence for a relational internal working model that is associated with specific contextual factors. Participants took an explicit measurement (questionnaire) and implicit measurement (IAT) of attachment after being primed to feel a negative, neutral, and positive emotion. The findings suggest that parents continue to function as internal working models well into emerging adulthood.  Peers are not preferred over parents and vice versa in a person’s undergraduate experience. In addition, the insignificant findings suggest support for attitude dissociation; people may have multiple ways—conscious and unconscious—of expressing levels of attachment security and preferences for attachment figures. The article concludes with implications for student affairs practitioners to consider the positive impact parental involvement can have on traditional, college-aged students.

4. Elucidating a Transition in Upper-Division College Student Perceptions of Leadership

     Dustin L. Gee | New York University

The purpose of this study was to investigate how twelve upper-division (third and fourth year) college students at a private liberal arts institution perceive leadership. Research by Joseph Rost explains that leadership can be categorized into two paradigms: industrial and post-industrial. Rost’s research speculates that post-industrial leadership is the wave of the future. However, despite the broad scope of college student leadership development literature, there is little research examining student perceptions of leadership. This study used focus groups to determine whether or not college students, at one institution, held an industrial or post-industrial view of leadership. Although student responses supported industrial leadership qualities; post-industrial leadership characteristics were present as well. This research suggests that a transition in perceptions of leadership from the industrial to the post-industrial may be present. In addition, it offers practical implications for student affairs administrators and calls for research that urges colleges and universities to teach new approaches to leadership (i.e., servant leadership, social change leadership), as opposed to strictly industrial views.


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