Evaluation Program (CUSA)

As campus leaders strive to improve their organizations, the College Union and Student Activities Evaluation Program (CUSA) provides an external review and specific recommendations from experienced professionals.

Through document analysis and interactions with stakeholders during campus visits, consultant teams provide practical and objective feedback to help host institutions identify strategies for overcoming current challenges, prioritizing staff and financial resources, and communicating the value of campus community. 

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What to Expect

From submitting the initial host intake form to the delivery of the final report, bringing CUSA to your campus takes approximately three months. A typical project involves three consultants spending two and a half days on campus.

With competitive pricing for ACUI member institutions, project costs vary based on the scope of the review, length of the campus visit, and number of consultants requested. In collaboration with the host, ACUI will identify and contract consultants, facilitate travel and lodging arrangements, organize planning discussions, and oversee the production of the written report.


Examples of Past Projects

CUSA is intentionally customizable for institutions to build a visit based on their unique needs. Past projects include:

  • Evaluating how current facilities, services, and procedures are meeting student needs and are aligned with trends in the college union field.
  • Completing a comprehensive departmental external review using functional area standards as part of an institution’s assessment schedule.
  • Assessing staffing resources, organizational structure, departmental alignment, and position descriptions to best achieve the unit’s mission.
  • Recommending programmatic needs to support increased demands related to student organizations, leadership training, and risk management for campus events.
  • Identifying how a department can improve communication and collaboration to prepare for the opening of a new student union facility.
  • Providing objective insights on how to manage financial resources to achieve the strategic goals of the organization.  
Standards & Guidelines (CAS)

CAS creates credible standards, guidelines, and self-assessment guides that help campus leaders design and evaluate programs and services.

With increased scrutiny over campus resources and department budgets, CAS tools help you benchmark current facilities and staffing, identify opportunities to improve student learning and operational success, and communicate the value of the union and activities to senior administrators.

Conducting a Review

Through this six-part Bulletin series, discover how you can conduct a successful program review using CAS standards!

  1. Plan the Process 
  2. Assemble and Educate the Team
  3. Collect and Review Evidence 
  4. Judging Performance and Interpreting Ratings  
  5. Creating an Action Plan
  6. Finalizing a Report and Wrapping Up the Program Review

Resources
  • CAS Professional Standards for Higher Education (10th Edition) was released in 2019 to provide standards for more than 40 functional areas, including timely revisions to the CAS general standards, which guide effective practices in student affairs.
  • CAS Self-Assessment Guides are downloadable assessment resources, reformatted in 2015 to help measure progress toward meeting the standards.
  • ACUI members have access to download three relevant standards at no cost. Login to view these standards.
    • Auxiliary Services Functional Areas Standard
    • Campus Activities Programs Standard 
    • College Union Standard

 

CAS 9th Edition
ACUI Benchmarking

Due to the financial impact from the pandemic, ACUI is no longer offering the benchmarking service. Those who previously entered data will still be able to access it using the link below.

If you have questions, please contact acui@acui.org.