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Challenging sexual violence on campus : an evidence-based approach

McCarry, Melanie and Donaldson, Anni (2017) Challenging sexual violence on campus : an evidence-based approach. In: British Sociological Association Annual Conference, 2017-04-04 - 2017-04-06, Manchester.

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Abstract

The role of HEIs in changing attitudes to gender-based violence (GBV) is crucial to the Scottish Government's strategic vision outlined in its national strategy Equally Safe . Women comprise over half of all Scottish students and make up 45% of the academic workforce. A third of all sexual offences in Scotland involve female victims aged 18, over a third of sexual offenders are aged 17-25 and 4% of women in Scotland have experienced serious sexual assault since age 16. Despite the significance of these figures there is a growing evidence base which points to women's well-being in the educational sector being traditionally 'marginalised' in research and policy . This research is developing a national HEI toolkit, Equally Safe in Higher Education (ESHE) at the University of Strathclyde. This will generate baseline data on GBV across a whole HEI campus by piloting a mixed mode research methodology. This will be the first Scottish dataset on GBV across a whole campus cohort; including student-student and staff-student abuse. This baseline data is crucial for informing the development of effective responses, preventative measures and the provision of support. The survey methodology will address five research questions related to GBV: prevalence, attitudes, disclosure rates, service uptake and perceptions of campus safety. This paper will outline the context, aims and objectives of ESHE, methodology and preliminary findings from the pilot survey.