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ERIC Number: EJ1149396
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2017
Pages: 14
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0161-827X
Participatory Action Research as a Social-Justice Framework for Assessment in Student Affairs
Zerquera, Desiree D.; Berumen, Juan G.; Pender, Jason T.
Journal of College and University Student Housing, v43 n3 p14-27 2017
While sufficient methodological training and effective implementation of assessment approaches are essential for successful evaluation in student affairs, those with an interest and passion for social justice may be conflicted. Many of the assessment approaches employed today are misaligned with social justice agendas, lack theoretical grounding and incorporation of research, and fail to adequately inform decisions about how best to serve students, particularly those marginalized within higher education. Considering the limitations of assessment and evaluation, participatory action research (PAR) becomes an appropriate alternative for conducting ethical research with a social justice lens. PAR, as a research approach, provides a mutually-benefitting orientation of the work, as it is focused on action for community development and social justice; is a cyclical process of research, reflection, and action; and is collaborative across researchers and participants. This article argues for the use of PAR as a framework for assessment efforts as a means of strengthening and grounding assessment within a social justice agenda. To do so, we first offer an overview of PAR as a methodological framework and argue for PAR as a promising direction for assessment practice. We then provide a case study drawn from the University of San Francisco where PAR was used as a framework to assess students' learning experiences within residential life. We conclude with reflections and recommendations for others in implementing PAR as a framework for assessment in housing and student affairs. [Discussion questions developed by Stacey Garrett.]
Association of College and University Housing Officers - International. 941 Chatham Lane Suite 318, Columbus, OH 43221. Tel: 614-292-0099; Fax: 614-292-3205; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative; Tests/Questionnaires
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: California (San Francisco)
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A