• Article

Sexual assault policies and consent definitions A nationally representative investigation of US colleges and universities

Campus sexual assault (SA) policies and sexual consent definitions have not been widely studied. The study team conducted a nationally representative review of college and university websites (n = 995), assessing the prevalence of publicly accessible online policies and definitions and examining associations with school characteristics. A content analysis was performed on a subsample (n = 100) of consent definitions. Most schools (93.0%) had an SA policy and consent definition (87.6%) available online. Schools were more likely to have a policy or consent definition if they were large (>= 5,000 students), public, or had a female enrollment of >= 33%. Detail and comprehensiveness of definitions varied. Findings highlight opportunities for schools-especially small schools, private schools, and those with more male students-to increase access to SA policies and consent definitions.


Graham, L. M., Treves-kagan, S., Magee, E. P., Delong, S. M., Ashley, O. S., Macy, R. J., ... Bowling, J. M. (2017). Sexual assault policies and consent definitions: A nationally representative investigation of US colleges and universities. Journal of School Violence, 16(3), 243-258. https://doi.org/10.1080/15388220.2017.1318572