Consent and Respect Report 2017-2018

Dean of Student Wellbeing's Office

Consent and Respect is an online education course that was sent to 420 students in the incoming class prior to their arrival on campus. 190 students (45%) completed the course; 91 (47%) indicated that they planned to compete as student‐athletes at AU. Incoming first year students for the 2017‐2018 academic year show a moderate level of understanding of consent and respect in relation to sexual relationship, but there were still a small population of students who exhibited a low level of understanding of the issue of consent.

Selected items of interest:

  • 76.8% of respondents agreed that drinking less at parties is a good strategy for eliminating sexual assault on campuses, and 74.2% indicated that a good strategy is to avoid isolated areas and to stay in populated areas.
  • 25.3% believe that even though they may have had a few drinks that they were still in control enough to give consent.
  • 18.4% believe that if their partner didn’t resist, then consent was given.
  • 31.6% stated that in the past, they have refused to participate in sexual activities they didn’t agree with.
  • More students than not show a willingness to intervene for a friend.
  • 91.1% reported that they are not involved in an abusive relationship.

Top strategies students have used to keep themselves or others safe:

  1. Refused to participate in activities they did not want to
  2. Used body language to show disapproval
  3. Asked someone at risk if they needed help
  4. Asked someone else to step in and help
  5. Told someone in a position of authority

Top five bystander interventions that students are willing to use in the future:

  1. Call a cab for someone
  2. Refuse to participate in activities
  3. Call authorities
  4. Create a distraction
  5. Ask someone at risk if they need help

Discussion or action items:

  1. The term “a few drinks” was not defined in the course. It would be interesting to find out what
    our students consider a “few drinks,” and how they learned that.
  2. What are students learning about consent before they get to campus? Research into this topic will help us determine where the misinformation is coming from and provide cues on how to combat it.