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Statement of Guiding Principles

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CACUSS members, as primary advocates for students on Canadian post-secondary campuses, will recognize, support, and promote the rights and responsibilities of students within their campus communities. Student service professionals act to enhance and strengthen the connection between the intellectual development of students and their personal growth.

The Statement of Guiding Principles has evolved from and reflects the contents of the Canadian Association of College and University Student Services’ (CACUSS) position paper, "The Mission of Student Services." This document articulates the guiding principles and responsibilities of student affairs and services professionals in Canada. These principles are interrelated and are not ordered according to priority.

  • The mission of the educational institution is paramount.
  • Quality of life in a teaching and learning community is crucial to the educational mission.
  • Each individual has worth and dignity, and should be treated with respect.
  • Post-secondary education should be aimed at an individual’s total growth.
  • Learning is contextual and is influenced by a wide range of individual and environmental factors.
  • Student services professionals are educators.
  • The educational goals of post-secondary institutions are best realized through a partnership of student services personnel with students, staff, administrators, and faculty.

CACUSS members strive to educate, support, regulate, respond, and promote activities that protect the rights and responsibilities of students as members of the campus community. As advocates for students on Canadian post-secondary campuses, CACUSS members shall:

  • as educators, use their knowledge and expertise of student development principles to support and foster the importance of the total growth of the individual through programs and services that facilitate students’ psychological, social, ethical, cultural, and spiritual development;
  • as advocates, work to eliminate all forms of discrimination and promote the importance of diversity on our campuses;
  • as researchers, strive to ensure the institution has a thorough understanding of the needs and characteristics of students through research projects that conform to established standards and guidelines;
  • as student affairs and services professionals, strive to ensure all programs and services are developed and implemented in a sensitive, timely, and professional manner to ensure maximum desired outcomes that support standards of student conduct which reflex he best interest of the educational process and the individual student; and
  • as professionals, CACUSS members strive to ensure that the principals of confidentiality of personal, professional, and educational records are strictly observed, both in their own work and through the dissemination of these principles to co-workers, peer helpers, and students.


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