In this qualitative study, 74 self-reported incidents from student affairs professionals at different levels of experience were analyzed to support the claim that the 10 ACPA/NASPA competency areas increase in complexity as expertise develops. Participants at all experience levels were observed using (a) personal and ethical foundations, (b) advising and helping, (c) leadership, and (d) law, policy, and governance more frequently and consistently than other competencies. Although all competencies intersected, observations of the remaining 6 competencies were differentiated by participants' experience levels and incident contexts.


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