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  • IMPACTS: Collaborations to address Sexual Violence on Campus

    IMPACTS: Collaborations to address Sexual Violence on Campus

This international research study deals with the issue of sexual harassment and violence on university campus at UCLan and eleven other universities in Canada and the United States. We will be using three methods: i) Surveys; ii) Focus Groups and iii) interviews (see below for further information to opt-in).

Surveys

All staff and students are invited to complete the surveys. The surveys gather information about university policies, communication strategies, institutional supports, due process (for both survivors and perpetrators), and barriers to reporting. The surveys ask participants about personal experiences with sexual harassment or violence on campus, including incidents that they may have witnessed and disclosures received from survivors of sexual harassment or violence. In addition, the surveys inquire about respondents’ knowledge of sexual violence support and policies at their respective universities , The surveys also aim to gather respondents’ perceptions of their university’s ability to balance free expression, privacy, safety, protection, due process, and sustainable supports for sexual violence survivors.

The data gathered from these surveys will contribute to development of future university policies. Our data will further inform innovative, student-relevant curricula to address sexual violence and consent undertaken by the two other IMPACTS Projects: Activism in Arts, and Popular Culture and News & Social Media. Findings will also be applied to other projects that our partnership will undertake, which will include scholarly research, university- and community-based programming, and artistic and journalistic projects addressing sexual violence.

Focus Groups

Focus groups will present preliminary findings from the student surveys and engage in a dialogue about the campus climate. The first set of focus groups will investigate students’ understanding of university policies, processes and legal remedies related to campus sexual violence. The second set of focus groups will investigate the role of art, activism, and various media in perpetuating and addressing campus sexual violence.

Interviews

Interviews will help to gain a deeper insight on their understanding of the climate at the university, as well as to gather recommendations for improving the university’s response to sexual violence.

This also links to a pilot initiative taking place at UCLan: The Bystander Initiative.

Research grouping

Connect Centre

Project Lead

Dr Khatidja Chantler

Collaborators and Partners

Both surveys are being conducted as part of a research project directed by Dr. Shaheen Shariff entitled: IMPACTS: Collaborations to Address Sexual Violence on Campus:

Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada Partnership Grant Number: 895-2016-1026, to improve university policies and programs on sexual violence generally.

The partners on this project include five McGill Faculties, 12 universities and 13 community partners.

One of the 12 universities is UCLan, and the lead UCLan researcher is Dr. Khatidja Chantler, based in the School of Social Work, Care and Community (email: kchantler@uclan.ac.uk).

This survey has been approved by UCLan's 'Changing the Culture' committee and the results will help develop support and policy at UCLan.

Clients or Funders

Awarded: Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council Partnership Development Grant (SSHRC File Number: 895-2016-1026)

Timeline

April 2016 - March 2023

Impact

  • Contribute to the development of future university policies, as well as innovative, student-relevant curricula addressing sexual violence and consent.
  • Provide understanding of the sexual assault experiences on campus, knowledge of policy, and perceptions of universities shared by various stakeholders (e.g. university administrators, students, staff).
  • Help to produce more effective, survivor-centred policies and strategies related to sexual violence and harassment informed by the communities affected by rape culture in universities.
  • Address a gap in research about campus sexual violence by gathering insight and feedback from multiple stakeholders in universities.
  • Better understand, address and work to change the culture surrounding sexual violence in universities.