Blog

A New Perspective on Old Habits:

Considering Data Collection Through An Inventive Lens

We are entering a new year, a new decade even.  Sometimes the urge to chuck everything and start over in terms of assessment can be strong.  That urge can even be valid at times when completely changing program structure or content.  More often however, this urge comes when looking over familiar programming and trying to think of ways to innovate, or to stay current.

More and more the conversation around assessment has shifted to alternative methods of data collection.  How can we find ways to collect data unobtrusively? How can we integrate data collection into programs and initiatives rather than being separate and post-event? How can we perhaps even make it fun! [Yes, unbelievably, assessment is sometimes perceived as not fun…]. 

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REFLECTING ON A DECADE: A Timeline of Impactful Events from 2010 to the Present, Contributed to by Campus Life Directors

2010-2020: From below and from above Duke has changed over the past decade. The Chapel is still here, but new spaces have emerged, and we have grown too!  Duke changed our work. Duke made us more creative, more engaged, greener and savvier, but it’s also challenged us and at times provoked us to speak out about injustice.

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Je te donne (I Give You) 

Jean-Jacques Goldman, Michael Jones

We choose this song "Je te donne/I Give You" (1985) by Jean-Jacques Goldman and Michael Jones because it speaks about supporting each other with love. December is a season rich in multiple and diverse celebrations, and even no celebrations depending on your identity, culture, and perspective. The message in this song reminds us that our embraced differences are actually gifts we can give to each other.

Link to the Song

Campus Life Spotify

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Campus Life Staff
Marca Cassity walking through a field with their guitar

Our music for November comes from singer & songwriter Marca Cassity.  Their journey as a two-spirit, gender queer artist has led them through experiences as an emergency room nurse, a rescuer at the Oklahoma City bombing, and a trauma therapist, battles with PTSD, and travel around the world to study with spiritual teachers and musicians.  Learn more about Marca 

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Eulena Jonsson, Associate Director of Assessment for Campus Life

Who's Who? Assessment offices across Duke

Updated 11/30/2020

Assessment offices at Duke tend to be difficult to unearth and connect with unless you are already aware of them and their functions. I see them as hidden treasure, being not biased at all… but their value is to us is muted when they remain unknown. I’m going to share briefly what I know of the assessment shops at Duke, including the Institutional Research office as well, and initial information about opportunities each set of colleagues provides.

There is not one consistent assessment structure across universities in the US, and they tend to evolve sometimes organically to meet needs. The main Duke offices that have assessment and institutional function, if we are considering undergraduate Duke students, are visualized below:

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Joyce Gordon, Director, Jewish Life at Duke

Shabbat Squad

students sitting in a circle with sheet music, one student with a guitar, with the jewish life at duke logo on the wall behind them

Shabbat arrives every Friday night at sundown.

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Lisa Giragosian, Director, International House

2020...a year of assessment

Last year I was leafing through the International Educator, my professional association’s monthly magazine. My eye gravitated toward an article titled, “Supporting International Students on U.S. Campuses.” Upon reading the article I thought it did not provide much new information. Most of what was shared was known to me. But upon second read, I realized that there was a lot to be gained from the piece. And I was too quick to rush to judgment.

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Elmer Orellana

Assessment Thoughts

Elmer Orellana headshot with quote from blog post

Assessment is a three-syllable word that can evoke strong visceral reactions in Student Affairs. Some people dread the assessment process while others have a found an appreciation for it. Like many of my peers, I used to be the person who dreaded assessment because I felt the process was daunting and time consuming.

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