Project Title

Exploring Faculty and Students' Attitudes About Consensual Sexual Relationships and Sexual Harassment on College Campuses

Authors' Affiliations

April M. Gimlin, Department of Educational Leadership and Policy Analysis, College of Education, East Tennessee State University, Johnson City, TN. Courtney A. Crittenden, Department of Social, Cultural, and Justice Studies, College of Arts and Sciences, The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, Chattanooga, TN. April Bennett, Department of Sociology and Criminal Justice, College of Arts and Sciences, Old Dominion University, Norfolk, VA. Tammy S. Garland, Department of Social, Cultural, and Justice Studies, College of Arts and Sciences, The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, Chattanooga, TN.

Location

Ballroom

Start Date

4-12-2019 9:00 AM

End Date

4-12-2019 2:30 PM

Poster Number

93

Faculty Sponsor’s Department

Other - please list

Department of Social, Cultural, and Justice Studies

Name of Project's Faculty Sponsor

Dr. Courtney Crittenden

Type

Poster: Non-Competitive

Classification of First Author

Graduate Student-Doctoral

Project's Category

Criminology

Abstract Text

Over the last several years, there has been an increased awareness regarding consensual sexual relationships (CSRs) between professors and students. Specifically, there has been a growing movement for academic institutions to develop policies addressing, discouraging, and/or prohibiting these relationships due to the potential for sexual harassment cases. Even though the appropriateness of such relationships has been widely debated among the university community, a limited amount of empirical work has examined this issue with the majority focusing on attitudinal studies. The current exploratory study consists of a content analysis of 278 faculty and student responses to the question, “If there is a difference between consensual sexual relationships and sexual harassment, what is it?” Responses indicate that there are several overlapping themes for both faculty and students in how they view these differences, with a large number of responses specifically indicating themes such as “CSR is consensual” while “sexual harassment is one sided.” There are also some unique perspectives given by faculty regarding the complexities and acceptability of CSRs, who are generally more specific and nuanced in their answers. Considering the complexities of this issue, it is the recommendation of the current study that much more research fully exploring the attitudes of faculty and students is needed to develop a well-rounded and comprehensive policy.

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Apr 12th, 9:00 AM Apr 12th, 2:30 PM

Exploring Faculty and Students' Attitudes About Consensual Sexual Relationships and Sexual Harassment on College Campuses

Ballroom

Over the last several years, there has been an increased awareness regarding consensual sexual relationships (CSRs) between professors and students. Specifically, there has been a growing movement for academic institutions to develop policies addressing, discouraging, and/or prohibiting these relationships due to the potential for sexual harassment cases. Even though the appropriateness of such relationships has been widely debated among the university community, a limited amount of empirical work has examined this issue with the majority focusing on attitudinal studies. The current exploratory study consists of a content analysis of 278 faculty and student responses to the question, “If there is a difference between consensual sexual relationships and sexual harassment, what is it?” Responses indicate that there are several overlapping themes for both faculty and students in how they view these differences, with a large number of responses specifically indicating themes such as “CSR is consensual” while “sexual harassment is one sided.” There are also some unique perspectives given by faculty regarding the complexities and acceptability of CSRs, who are generally more specific and nuanced in their answers. Considering the complexities of this issue, it is the recommendation of the current study that much more research fully exploring the attitudes of faculty and students is needed to develop a well-rounded and comprehensive policy.