USU administration aims to measure sexual assault experiences and attitudes

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All Utah State University students should have received a survey via email asking them several questions about their attitudes toward and experiences with sexual violence.

Amanda DeRito, USU’s social media and marketing coordinator, said the results from the survey will “serve as a benchmark” to measure how attitudes have changed over time.

The creators of the survey, who are part of USU President Noelle Cockett’s sexual assault task force, will continue to measure students’ attitudes and experiences toward sexual violence. However, they will not know what those measures are until after the results are collected.

“I think this is something that we’re going to need to continue to work on,” said Michael Torrens, the director of analysis assessment and accreditation at USU.

Ryan Bentall, the former Utah State University Student Association executive vice president and a member of the sexual assault task force, said the survey will also be used to measure whether or not certain age groups or genders are more likely to be victims of sexual assault.

“We say that we know all of these things and that we know it’s a problem, but we don’t know to what degree,” Bentall said. “Our main purpose was to try and see what’s actually happening on our campus.”

The survey, which will be open for students to take until April 30, has seen a 29 percent respondence rate from students as of 4:15 p.m. on Friday.

Torrens said he hopes to see a 30 percent response rate from students.

In addition to the survey, USU has launched campus-wide sexual assault education and prevention efforts, such as social media campaigns, bystander intervention trainings and posters reminding people what qualifies as consent for sexual activity.

— alisonberg28@gmail.com

@Alison__berg

Graphic by Savannah Braegger