CAS Releases Revised Standards for Masters Level Student Affairs Professional Preparation Programs

Revised standards to provide direction for Master's Level Student Affairs Professional Preparation Programs in higher education have been released by the Council for the Advancement of Standards in Higher Education (CAS). CAS, composed of 39 collaborating professional associations representing over 100,000 professionals in higher education, has developed standards and guidelines for Master's Level Student Affairs Professional Preparation Programs. The materials are rooted in scholarship and work conducted within the field of serving student affairs master's students.

"The CAS Standards for Professional Preparation Programs provide a solid foundation for graduate programs that educate students to be effective student affairs professionals," explained Gavin Henning, Associate Professor and Director of the Master's of Higher Education Administration and Doctorate of Education Programs at New England College. "These standards outline programmatic structures and requirements as well as creating a framework for the curriculum." Henning, a CAS board member representing ACPA: College Student Educators International, chaired the revision committee. ACPA is a founding CAS member organization.
According to Susan Komives, professor emerita at the University of Maryland, "The CAS Standards for master's preparation have advanced quality in the student affairs field for nearly 30 years. Regular revisions have ensured a timely standard to guide professional preparation." In addition to her experience as a faculty member, Komives served as CAS President from 2008-2011.
CAS was established in 1979 to develop standards that promote college student learning and promote self-assessment for institutional effectiveness. There are now 43 CAS standards in diverse areas of the college student experiences.
The revised Master's Level Student Affairs Professional Preparation Programs Standards and Guidelines are available at The eighth edition of the CAS Professional Standards for Higher Education was released in August 2012. The updated publication can be ordered at The book of standards is the defining source of professional standards for many of the services provided to students in higher education. Along with the book, CAS also released an updated CD of all 43 functional area self-assessment guides (SAGs).