UK to Survey Students

Contact: Kathy Johnson

 

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Approximately 9,000 students enrolled in more than 300 classes that meet at 11 a.m. Tuesday, March 2, and at 6 p.m. Wednesday, March 3, will be asked to fill out the survey during the first 15 minutes of the 75-minute class. Completing the survey is voluntary on behalf of the students.

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LEXINGTON, Ky. (Feb. 18, 2004) -- In an effort to learn how students perceive their social and academic experience at the University of Kentucky, the school will administer a campus climate survey March 2 and 3 to several thousand undergraduate students.

“As stated in our new Strategic Plan, the university strives to nurture diversity of thought, culture, gender and ethnicity, and our first step toward that goal is to determine where we currently stand in the eyes of those who are at the core of UK’s mission – our students,” said UK President Lee T. Todd Jr.

The President’s Commission on Women is coordinating the effort with the collaboration of other areas of campus including the Office of Institutional Research which helped develop the survey and will make the results available to the administration and faculty.

“Our hope is that the information from this survey will be used by faculty and administrators to improve how we relate to students and assist us in designing ways to help students better relate to each other,” said Dorothy Brockopp, chair of the President’s Commission on Women.
Approximately 9,000 students enrolled in more than 300 classes that meet at 11 a.m. Tuesday, March 2, and at 6 p.m. Wednesday, March 3, will be asked to fill out the survey during the first 15 minutes of the 75-minute class. Completing the survey is voluntary on behalf of the students.

Graduate and first professional students are being asked to fill out the survey online prior to spring break.

The 85-question survey includes demographic questions and questions in four other categories: opinions about the campus environment; personal feelings; estimated frequency of selected behaviors on campus; and the climate in the classroom. Questions cover a wide range of topics including ethnic diversity, sexual orientation, discriminatory behavior, sexual harassment, safety, and social comfort or discomfort in residence halls and classrooms. All responses are anonymous.

“The climate survey assesses several dimensions of campus life that contribute to students’ satisfaction with their college experience. The results will be used to identify areas where we need to improve students’ sense of community. Promoting a greater sense of belonging on campus should lead to higher retention rates and increase the likelihood that students will earn their degrees at UK, said Roger Sugarman, director of institutional research.

“The campus climate survey is a worthwhile undertaking, and efforts of this nature will help the University of Kentucky become as welcoming to all students as it is intellectually stimulating,” Todd said.

The UK President’s Commission on Diversity has expressed interest in eventually gathering campus climate opinions of employees as well. “We are hopeful that future surveys and focus groups will be conducted to capture the voices of staff and faculty, too,” said Deneese Jones, chair of the commission on diversity.


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