AMES, Iowa - Iowa State University will be one of 28 universities to take part in a national survey on sexual assault climate in April.
Conducted by the Association of American Universities, a collective of 60 U.S. and two Canadian research universities, the survey will be "among largest ever" on sexual assault, according to the group. Participating universities total over 800,000 undergraduate, graduate, and professional students.
“Our primary purpose in conducting this survey is to help our institutions gain a better understanding of this complex problem on their own campuses as well as nationally,” said AAU President Hunter Rawlings. “Our first priority, and theirs, is to ensure that students not only are safe but feel safe. Universities will be using their data to inform their own policies and practices regarding sexual assault. We also hope the survey will help policymakers gain a better understanding of the problem, and that it will make a significant contribution to the growing body of research on sexual assault.”
The schools will receive the same survey, but there will be an additional five campus-specific questions to gauge how familiar students are with their respective university's campus resources, support services and reporting mechanisms.
The survey will be sent out this month, and Iowa State University President Steven Leath says the school has already begun notifying students to participate. AAU says it will publicly report the aggregate results from participating campuses, but each university will receive individualized results, and decide whether or not to make that information public.