Why me and what is this about?
We are asking all students at UMBC to answer a climate survey on sexual assault and sexual violence. The results will be used to guide policies to encourage a healthy, safe, and nondiscriminatory environment on campus. Our goal is to make UMBC as safe as possible by developing programs and services that prevent sexual assault and misconduct, as well as respond to these events when do they do occur. This survey is an important tool for us to assess current programs and to shape future policies.
Who is administering the survey?
The survey is sponsored by UMBC in collaboration with the Maryland Higher Education Commission.
What will UMBC do with the results?
The results will be used to better understand the climate at UMBC, the extent of sexual assault and misconduct among students, and the understanding of programs and services currently being offered. This information will be used to make recommendations for changes to the policies and procedures related to preventing and handling sexual assault and misconduct at UMBC.
Why are you asking about these sensitive topics?
Our goal is to foster a safe and supportive environment where students can flourish, both academically and personally. To understand the climate at UMBC, we need to ask direct questions about topics that some may find sensitive. It is only by directly collecting this information from you that we will be able to support preventing negative experiences and effectively respond when they do happen.
What will I be asked to do?
You are invited to participate in a web survey. This survey includes sections that ask about your knowledge, beliefs and perceptions about sexual assault and sexual violence in social situations and at UMBC, and your knowledge of resources available at UMBC and locally. This survey also asks about your personal experience with sexual misconduct, such as harassment, sexual assault, and sexual violence.
Isn’t this survey only for women/heteronormative people?
No, this survey is for everyone, regardless of gender identity, sexual orientation or experiences. The survey will be used to shape policies that affect everyone on campus, so it is very important that you provide your experiences and viewpoint.
I’ve never experienced sexual assault or sexual misconduct, so why should I take part?
If only victims of sexual assault and sexual misconduct participate in the survey, we will have a very lopsided view of our campus. To get a complete picture of UMBC, we need to hear from as many students as possible. Please encourage your friends to participate!
How long will the survey take?
This survey should take most people approximately 15 minutes to complete. It may take up to 20 minutes for some individuals.
Am I required to participate?
You do NOT have to participate in this survey, and if you do participate, you may skip any question you are not comfortable answering and may exit the survey at any time. Most people will find the questions interesting.
Will my answers be confidential?
When you complete the survey, the link with your email, and IP address will be broken so that no one will be able to connect these with your survey answers. The results will be presented in summary form so no individual can be identified. The limited circumstances for reporting are if we learn about child abuse or about a threat of harm to yourself or others, we are obligated to report it to the authorities if it is received in a format the prompts further action. However, we are not requesting information that would easily result in this outcome.
What should I do if I become upset answering these questions?
On each page of the online survey, there is a link to on- and off-campus resources that you can contact if you become upset. In addition to local resources, there is information for several national services that provide information and counselors 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. We have included a variety of resources so you can choose to contact the one(s) you think would be most helpful to you.
I still have questions.
If you have any questions about this study, please call the Office of Equity and Civil Rights at 410-455-1717. Please leave a message with your name, mention the study (the Campus Climate Survey on Sexual Assault and Sexual Violence), and a phone number and someone will return your call as soon as possible.