Title IX: Climate Survey Results
On April 3, 2023, our campus began an online administration of the Sexual Violence Prevalence (SVP) Campus Climate Survey. This survey was administered to students and employees and is required to address, at minimum, student and employee knowledge about:
- The Title IX Coordinator’s role;
- Campus policies and procedures addressing sexual assault;
- How and where to report sexual violence as a victim/survivor or witness;
- The availability of resources on and off campus, such as counseling, health, academic assistance;
- The prevalence of victimization and perpetration of sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence, and stalking on and off campus during a set time period (for example, the last two years);
- Bystander attitudes and behavior;
- Whether victims/survivors reported to the College/University and/or police, and reasons why they did or did not report.
- The general awareness of the difference, if any, between the institution’s policies and the penal law; and
- The general awareness of the definition of affirmative consent.
In reviewing the results, we highlight that the survey indicated that the students and employees who responded are fairly well aware of the relevant campus support services available to them.
These results are reviewed by our Campus Safety Committee and used in creating goals to increase awareness and safety around sexual violence on campus.
If you have any questions about the survey or the results included in this report, please contact public information officer, Peter Voorhees, at 607.844.8222 ext. 4351 or PWV@tompkinscortland.edu.
The SVP survey is administered every other year by all SUNY campuses, who work closely with SUNY System Administration to coordinate the survey administration itself. An effort is made to keep the questions from one administration to the next as consistent as possible to allow for reliable and meaningful longitudinal data. System-wide IRB review takes place for each survey administration.
Our campus administered the student survey and the employee survey between April 3 and April 28, 2023. Excluded survey populations were individuals under 18 years of age, all incarcerated individuals regardless of age, and all students concurrently enrolled in high school regardless of age. All eligible students and all employees were sent the survey. The survey was sent to all members with an invitation/encouragement to complete to improve the safety on campus and there were posters and social media throughout the timeframe; there were no incentives to participate. The survey is anonymous.
129 students and 95 employees completed the survey, for response rates of 9% and 24%, respectively. Of the employees, 45% were faculty and 55% were staff/administration. During this administration, institutions within SUNY did not offer any participation incentive. Student participation has been significantly higher in the past with incentives; during the 2021 administration we had a 27% response rate for students. Our student rates to compare with other SUNY community colleges, however, with only one reaching 12%, two others minimally above us, and the rest below. Below are results related to thematic areas.
The Title IX Coordinator’s Role
73% of the student respondents knew how to contact a Title IX coordinator on campus; in 2021 this was only 45%. 86% recognized that sexual assault can be reported to the coordinators; only 68% knew this in 2021. Additionally, 93% were aware they could report to Campus Police; only 77% knew this in 2021. When asked if Title IX coordinator’s role included the following: receiving reports, coordinating campus reports, ensuring education is provided to the community and providing reporting individuals with services and accommodations during a process; 72% or more correctly identified each as part of the coordinator’s role. In the 2021 survey, all of these were known at a 50% or lower rate.
As for the employees, 96% of the respondents knew how to contact a Title IX coordinator on campus. 95% recognized that sexual assault can be reported to the coordinators. Additionally, 96% were aware they could report to Campus Police. When asked if Title IX coordinator’s role included the following: receiving reports, coordinating campus reports, ensuring education is provided to the community and providing reporting individuals with services and accommodations during a process; 84% or more identified each as part of the coordinator’s role.
Campus Policies and Procedures Addressing Sexual Assault
91% of participating students were aware of campus policies addressing sexual assault; however, only 75% recalled receiving these in writing. 92% indicated that they understood the definition of affirmative consent, which is an important part of the policy. Additionally, 74% were aware of the SUNY amnesty policy. We refer to it as a ‘good Samaritan’ policy on campus which may have led to some confusion on this one. Each of these areas were reported at approximately 20% lower rates in 2021.
On the employee side, 98% of participating employees were aware of campus policies addressing sexual assault and 93% recalled receiving these in writing. 93% indicated that they understood the definition of affirmative consent. Only 60% were aware of the SUNY amnesty policy. This policy is provided to students much more comprehensively.
How and where to report sexual violence as a victim/survivor or witness
Students were most aware of the Health Center (80%,) Counseling Center (83%,) Title IX (86%) and Campus Police (93%) as places to report sexual violence. Other reporting areas such as Advocacy services (off campus), Student Affairs and Human Resources were in the 60-70% range. Employees were most aware of Campus Police (96%) Title IX (95%) and Counseling (92%.) Human Resources, Advocacy Services and Health Services were all rated in the 80-90% range. Of the 9% of employees who had heard a disclosure of an incident from a student, 86% had reported this to Title IX, Campus Police or other Student Affairs Offices.
The prevalence of victimization and perpetration of sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence, and stalking on and off campus during the last two years
Of the students who completed the survey, 23% reported experiencing sexual comments, slurs or demeaning jokes, 16% reported unwanted digital harassment, 6% reported experiencing attempted fondling, kissing or rubbing against private areas, and 9% reports experiencing stalking behaviors. These are the only behaviors reported in this survey. All of these percentages are slightly higher (2-5%) than in 2021. While this might be seen as higher incidence, the fact that students are reporting higher levels of awareness indicates it could be higher rates of identification of harassment.
On the employee side, 9% indicate that a student has disclosed an incident of interpersonal violence. No employees indicated experiencing unwanted sexual comments, slurs, demeaning jokes or incidents of digital harassment.
Discussion and Next Steps
Overall, the low student response rate does not give the best data to go on. We see much higher rates of knowing the title ix coordinator and the various policies, procedures and resources. This could be due to only receiving responses from students who are concerned about the topic and seek out the information themselves. However, the percentages are substantially higher and go with higher rates of identification of harassing behaviors. Combined these could show that students truly are more informed and able to identify behaviors. With a higher rate from employees, it is encouraging that their understanding and awareness has increased. Overall we have worked to have more tabling and direct education as well as passive messaging. These combined seem to have had an impact.
Additionally, in every area, our employees’ knowledge was greater than the median of all SUNY institutions and the SUNY community college groups. Differences between faculty and staff were small. We have done a solid job of educating our employees so they are able to direct students to assistance if needed.
When the survey was completed in 2021, we had high response rates from students and were able to use the data to create goals for the Campus Security committee. Those included increasing awareness of the coordinators, the policies and resources among students and employees. These all show marked improvement. We will continue to review the data for additional goals for this committee.
Our biggest challenge will be to get more data from students in the future and now. We will request to use incentives again to try to encourage more feedback. In the meantime, we will continue to provide as much education and look for methods to get additional feedback.
- Title IX: Overview
- Title IX: Definitions
- Title IX: How to Report
- Title IX: Grievance Policy: 2020 Regulations
- Title IX: Procedures
- Title IX: Confidentiality
- Title IX: Climate Survey Results
- Title IX: Resources
- Title IX: Awareness and Training
- Title IX: Sexual Violence Response Policy