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Honor society to host student affairs book signing Monday

Five South Dakota State University faculty and practitioners with expertise in student affairs will be available to sign copies of their recently released book, “Learning Everywhere on Campus: Teaching Strategies for Student Affairs Professionals,” Monday at 4 p.m. in the SDSU Alumni Center Griffith Alumni Atrium.

The reception is sponsored by Chi Sigma Alpha, the student affairs honor society. Some copies of the book will be available for purchase. The book is also available online at Amazon.com and from the publisher, Routledge. It is intended for use in professional preparation programs as well as staff development initiatives in student affairs.

Student affairs professionals are often asked to develop and teach classes as part of their jobs, yet graduate programs in this discipline do not include coursework on teaching strategies, according to Ruth Harper, professor emerita of counseling and human development and former coordinator of student affairs and college counseling at South Dakota State. She and Jane Fried, professor emerita and former coordinator of the student development in higher education master’s degree program at Central Connecticut State University, edited the book and also authored or co-authored several chapters.

In talking with some student affairs interns and graduates, Harper discovered that “almost all of them were involved in some activity that technically is teaching and they were just thrown into it. They are bright and capable so they figure it out, but how much more confident and prepared would they be with a background in teaching and learning?”

Four other faculty and staff members contributed chapters to the book. Assistant professor Greg Heiberger, who teaches in and coordinates the undergraduate biology and microbiology program, wrote a chapter about using social media, such as Twitter, to increase student-teacher interactions and about utilizing the scientific teaching methodology to plan, execute and evaluate learning experiences. Chelsea Sorenson, a professional academic advisor in the animal science department, wrote about her thesis topic, growth mindset.

Assistant professor Katelyn Romsa, who coordinates student affairs and college counseling, offered a chapter on using the supervisory relationship as a learning tool. Residence hall area coordinator Maggie Miller looked at using popular culture to enhance student learning.

Harper, who co-authored all of these chapters, said, “It is a joy to partner with young professionals to draw on our varied experiences and perspectives in order to contribute to our field. I am proud that SDSU is well represented in this book.”