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The Graduate Certificate in College Student Personnel Administration consists of eight courses (24 credits). Students who decide to continue their studies may apply these credit hours toward the M.S. and Ph.D. programs in Conflict Analysis & Resolution if accepted into the program. You can find the required courses and their descriptions below.

CSPA 5001 - The 21st Century College Student (3 credits)

An examination is made of students in higher education to prepare professionals for the various groups they will serve. Focus is given to the ever-changing student clientele, its subgroups and cultures. Along with student development theories, student characteristics, attitudes, values and broad issues regarding their participation in the educational experience will be explored.

CSPA 5002 - Current Issues in College Student Personnel Administration (3 credits)

Staying abreast of current issues and trends in higher education is critical to becoming a competent student affairs educator. This course is designed to expose students to a variety of current issues and trends in higher education that have a dramatic impact on the student affairs profession and on our work as student affairs educators. Strategies to address major issues will be discussed. 

CSPA 5003 - The College Student and the Law (3 credits)

Increasingly the courts play a pivotal role in the lives of student affairs practitioners. From student judicial cases to Supreme Court decisions on activity fees, a broad-based understanding of the law related to higher education is essential. This course will examine the impact of the legal system on both public and private colleges and universities as well as explore model student codes of conduct. 

CSPA 5004 - Administration in College Student Personnel (3 credits)

This course will examine attributes, skills and institutional conditions within student personnel work that impact effective administration. Some of the major areas to be explored include personnel practices, supervision, budget, finance, program development, short/long range planning, and internal and external governing bodies. An interactive course design will allow for "hands-on" practical applications and the development of well-grounded practitioners. 

CSPA 5006 - College Student and Adult Development (3 credits)

This course will focus on developing an understanding of students' intellectual, cognitive, social, moral, and identity development during the college years. Issues related to adult student development in the college setting will also be explored. Student development theories, research and current practices related to student development will be presented. 

CSPA 5040 - Communication Dynamics in Dispute Resolution: The Human Factor (3 credits)

This course presents communication theories relevant to conflict resolution as well as theories about understanding, analyzing, and managing conflict. The course focuses on the human and emotional aspects of conflict, and includes the influence of gender and culture. This course is pragmatic as well as theoretical, and presents communication and conflict resolution models in a practice-based approach. 

CSPA 5100 - Mediation Theory and Practice (3 credits)

This course examines theories, methods, and techniques of mediation. Students will have the opportunity to demonstrate their knowledge of mediation skills. Prerequisite: CSPA 5040. 

CSPA 6130 - Practicum I: Supervised Field Experience (3 credits)

This supervised practicum experience offers students the opportunity to explore a breadth of student affairs functions thereby gaining exposure, knowledge and experience in the variety of services and programs that make up a college/university division of student affairs. Students may select to generally explore all of the functional departments within the division, or select specific functions they wish to learn more about: residential life, housing, career services, student union, student activities, leadership development, recreation and wellness, volunteer services, special events, judicial programs, and the office of the dean of students. By experiencing the "big picture" of the functions, programs and services of the division of student affairs, students will have the opportunity to be exposed to the numerous professional positions and opportunities available to them upon graduation.

Below is a sample of a degree plan for a full-time student who begins their studies in Fall term. Degree plans will be modified based on a student's enrollment date and pace of study.

Table 1: Degree Plan: 24 credits hours
Year 1
Fall (September) CSPA 5001
The 21st Century College Student
CSPA 5040
The Human Factor
CSPA 5004
Administration in College Student Affairs
Winter (January) CSPA 5100
Mediation Theory and Practice
CSPA 5002
Current Issues and Trends in CSPA
CSPA 5006
College Student & Adult Development
Summer (April) CSPA 5003
The College Student and the Law
CARM 6130
Practicum I: Supervised Field Experience
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