The residence life “RA” can go by many names… Resident Assistant, Resident Advisor, Community Living Assistant, Community Advisor, Resident Mentor, etc. Finding quality materials and resources related to the “RA” position in residence life and college student housing can be difficult. The following are curated resources to help you improve your practice.

If you have a resource that you think we’re missing, let us know. We aim to keep this as up-to-date as possible.

Sub-Topic Pages About RAs

Blog Posts and Web Articles


Books, Research, and Journal Articles

  • Arvidson, C. (2003). A new role emerging? Re- viewing the literature on RA roles. The Journal of College and University Student Housing, 31(2), 31–36.
  • Benjamin, M. (2007). Role construction of residential learning community peer mentors. The Journal of College and University Student Housing, 34(2), 31–42.
  • Benjamin, M., & Griffin, K. A. (2013). “Pleasantly unexpected”: The nature and impact of resident advisors’ (RAs’) functional relationships with faculty. Journal of Student Affairs Research and Practice, 50(1), 56–71.
  • Bliming, G. (2003). The resident assistant: Applications and strategies for working with college students in the residence halls (6th ed.). Dubuque, IA: Kendall/Hunt.
  • Brecheisen, S. M. B. (2015). Paraprofessional staff in transition: The sophomore RA experience. The Journal of College and University Student Housing41(2), 194–210.
  • Brown, W. F., & Zunker, V. G. (1966). Student counselor utilization at four year institutions of higher learning. Journal of College Student Personnel, 7, 41-66.
  • Carns, A. W., Carns, M. R., & Wright, J. (1993). Students as paraprofessionals in four year colleges and universities: Current practice compared to prior practice. Journal of College Student Development34, 358–363.
  • Cousineau, L., & Chambers, L. (2015). How expectations do not equate with practice: The gendered reality of the female resident assistant. The Journal of College and University Student Housing, 41(2), 28–43.
  • Deluga, R. J., & Masson, S. (2000). Relationship of resident assistant conscientiousness, extraversion, and positive affect with rated performance. Journal of Research in Personality, 34(2), 225–235.
  • Deluga, R. J., & Winters, J. J., Jr. (1990). The impact of role ambiguity and conflict on resident assistants. Journal of College Student Development31(3), 230–236.
  • Deluga, R. J., & Winters, J. J., Jr. (1991). Why the aggravation? Reasons students become resident assistants, interpersonal stress, and job satisfaction. Journal of College Student Development, 31, 230–236.
  • Denzine, G. M., & Anderson, C. M. (1999). I can do it: Resident assistants’ sense of self-efficacy. Journal of College Student Development, 40(3), 247–255.
  • Dickson, G. L. (1981). The resident assistant stress inventory 1975-1979: A national study. Journal of College Student Personnel, 22(4), 362-367.
  • Eichenfield, G. A., Graves, W. H., Slief, K., & Haslund, S. (1988). Resident advisor performance evaluation: A second look. Journal of College and University Student Housing, 18(1), 34-38.
  • Everett, D. D., & Loftus, Z. V. (2011). Resident assistants as rule enforcers versus friends: An exploratory study of role conflict. The Journal of College and University Student Housing, 37(2), 72–89.
  • Foubert, J. D. (2013). Lessons learned: How to avoid the biggest mistakes made by college resident assistants (2nd ed.). New York, NY: Routledge.
  • Fuehrer, A., & McGonagle, K. (1988). Individual and situational factors as predictors of burnout among resident assistants. Journal of College Student Development, 29, 244–249.
  • Greenleaf, E. A. (Ed.), (1967). Understanding students as members of the residence hall staff. Bloomington, IN: National Association of Women Deans and Counselors.
  • Greenleaf, E. A. (1974). The role of student staff members. In D. A. DeCoster, & P. Mable (Eds.), Student development and education in college residence halls (p. 181-194). Washington, DC: American College Personnel Association.
  • Hardy, S. E., & Dodd, D. K. (1998). Burnout among university resident assistants as a function of gender and floor assignment. Journal of College Student Development, 39(5), 499–501.
  • Harper, S. R., Davis, R. J., Jones, D. E., McGowan, B. L., Ingram, T. N., & Platt, C. S. (2011). Race and racism in the experiences of black male resident assistants at predominantly white univer- sities. Journal of College Student Development, 52(2), 180–200.
  • Healea, C. D. (2006). Character education with resi- dent assistants: A model for developing charac- ter on college campuses. Journal of Education, 186(1), 65–77.
  • Hetherington, C., Oliver, M., & Phelps, C. (1989). Resident assistant burnout factors of job and gender. Journal of College Student Development, 30(3), 266-269.
  • Johnson, V. D., & Kang, Y. S. (2006). Assessing differences in resident assistant confidence in addressing issues of cultural diversity in predominantly white universities. The Journal of College and University Student Housing, 34(1), 31–42.
  • Letarte, C. M. (2013). Keepers of the night: The dangerously important role of resident assistants on college and university campuses. Kentucky Journal of Higher Education Policy and Practice, 2(2), 1–24.
  • Longwell-Grice, R., & Kerr, K. (2013). Counselor, teacher, role model, cop: Understanding RA satisfaction through the use of metaphor. The Journal of College and University Student Housing39(2), 90–103.
  • Lynch, R. J. (2017). The development and validation of the secondary trauma in resident assistants scaleThe Journal of College & University Student Housing, 44(1), 10-29.
  • Lynch, R. J. (2019.) Work environment factors impacting the report of secondary trauma in U.S. resident assistants. The Journal of College & University Student Housing, 46(1), 62-78.
  • Manata, B., DeAngelis, B. N., Palk, J. E., & Miller, V. D. (2017). Measuring critical aspects of the resident assistant role. Journal of College Student Development, 58(4), 618-623. doi:10.1353/csd.2017.0046
  • McCarthy, K. (2020). Resident assistant secondary trauma and burnout associated with student nonsuicidal self-injury. Journal of American College Health, 68(7), 673-677. doi: 10.1080/07448481.2019.1590374
  • Nowack, K. M., Gibbons, J. M., & Hanson, A. L. (1985). Factors affecting burnout and job performance of resident assistants. Journal of College Student Personnel, 26, 137–142.
  • Paladino, D. A., Murray, T. L., Jr., Newgent, R. A., & Gohn, L. A. (2005). Resident assistant burnout: Factors impacting depersonalization, emotional exhaustion, and personal accomplishment. The Journal of College and University Student Housing, 33(2), 18–27.
  • Shelton, J. L., & Mathis, H. V. (1976). Assertiveness as a predictor of resident assistant effectiveness. Journal of College Student Personnel, 3, 368-370.
  • Swanbrow Becker, M. A., & Drum, D. J. (2015). The influence of suicide prevention gatekeeper training on resident assistants’ mental health. Journal of Student Affairs Research and Practice, 52(1), 76-88. doi: 10.1080/19496591.2015.996055
  • Upcraft, M. L., & Pilato, G. T. (1982). Residence hall assistants in college. San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass
  • Winston, R. B., Jr., & Fitch, R. T. (1993). Paraprofes- sional staffing. In R. B. Winston, Jr., S. Anchors, & Associates, Student housing and residential life: A handbook for professionals committed to student development goals (pp. 315–343). San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass.
  • Wu, M. B., & Stemler, S. (2009). Resident advisor general intelligence, emotional intelligence, personality dimensions, and internal belief characteristics as predictors of rated performance. Journal of Student Affairs Research and Practice, 45(4), 980–1011.
  • Wyrick, T. J., & Mitchell, K. M. (1971). Relationship between resident assistants’ empathy and warmth and their effectiveness. Journal of College Student Personnel, 21(1), 36-40.