Policy Implementation and Dissemination on Campus: Student Perceptions of Sexual Misconduct Policy and Title IX Compliance Open Access

Woofter, Rebecca (2016)

Permanent URL: https://etd.library.emory.edu/concern/etds/0c483k255?locale=en


This study considers the creation of sexual misconduct policy by American colleges and universities as required by Title IX of the Educational Amendments Act of 1972. As interpretation of Title IX has changed over time, so has general understanding of its requirements to institutions of higher education, leading to confusion and inconsistent policy implementation. While data demonstrate that incidence levels of sexual assault on campus have remained consistent for decades, the number of reports filed by students has increased significantly, indicating a need for established policies and processes to respond to such crimes. Using six colleges and universities, three public and three private, this project evaluates the level of compliance with federal guidance based on Title IX as published in Not Alone, the first report of the White House Task Force to Protect Students from Sexual Assault. To determine how compliance affects student perception of the policy, data from a Campus Climate Survey conducted at 26 institutions within the Association of American Universities gauging student confidence in and knowledge of the policy and reporting process was gathered for the six case studies. Also considered was the availability of the policy online and any recent activity from the Office for Civil Rights in investigating the institutions. No clear relationship exists between level of compliance and student perceptions as measured in this study. Further research should use other sources to operationalize compliance and develop more factors across a greater number of institutions to thoroughly investigate the variance in student perceptions on campus.

Table of Contents

I. Introduction to Problem and Project. 1

II. History of Title IX. 2

III. Challenges in Implementing Title IX. 6

IV. Factors Affecting Policy Implementation. 10

V. Research Questions. 13

VI. Case Studies. 14

VII. Data and Measurement

a. Policy Content. 15

b. Perceptions of Policy Content. 17

c. Online Access to Policies. 18

VIII. Findings

a. Compliance. 20

b. Campus Climate Surveys. 22

c. Summary Analysis. 24

d. Website Research. 26

IX. Discussion. 27

a. Limitations and Future Research. 29

X. Appendices. 33

XI. Bibliography. 52

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