What SRR Learned from Student Feedback in Fall 2020

In November of 2020, the Student Rights & Responsibilities (SRR) surveyed enrolled students regarding their general knowledge about the following:

  • The SRR office, generally.
  • The Codes of Academic Integrity and Student Conduct.
  • Experience with or other knowledge of the Code’s processes for addressing violations.

The purpose of the survey was to identify strategies for effective outreach and education and receive feedback on these topics.

We asked, "What's the purpose of SRR?"

Keyword responses included words that align with our mission like:

Purpose of SRR Word Cloud
  • Rights
  • Students
  • Protect
  • Safe
  • Accountable
  • Community
  • Learn.

Responses lacked references to restorative justice, which is our office’s guiding philosophy. Thus, education about restorative justice was identified as an area for improvement.

We asked, “What do students know about the Codes and other key policies?”

We asked students if GW had any knowledge of the following:

  • Code of Academic Integrity
  • Code of Student Conduct
  • Policy for notifying parents/guardians
  • Medical amnesty policy

We learned that:

  • Overwhelmingly, students were aware of the Codes of Academic Integrity and the Code of Student Conduct.
  • A minority of students were aware of the following policies:
  • The university generally notifies parents/guardians if an under-21 student is found in violation of the university alcohol and other drug policies.
  • The university generally offers amnesty from student conduct outcomes for students’ first-time seeking medical attention following alcohol or drug use, even if that alcohol or drug use violated university policy. Amnesty does require the student to engage in educational responses.

This indicates that more outreach is necessary regarding parental notification and medial amnesty for alcohol or other drug use.

We asked, “How does students’ knowledge vary by academic year?”

First-year students had greater knowledge of specific policies, including regarding parent/guardian notification and Alcohol and Other Drug Medical Amnesty.

Other undergraduate students had greater knowledge of the Code of Student Conduct and the Code of Academic Integrity.

We anticipate this may have been due to increase orientation from SRR during Fall of 2020, and we hope to continue that moving forward.

We asked, “How does students’ knowledge change if they attend an SRR educational session?”

Unsurprisingly, students who reported having attended an SRR educational session indicate a greater awareness of the Codes and policies than those who did not.

This finding supported our continued partnerships and efforts to increase educational outreach.

We asked, “How do students perceive the student conduct process and how does that change depending upon year at GW?”

First-year students viewed the student conduct process more favorably, based on their average responses.

We asked, “Do students receive equal information from GW about the Code of Academic Integrity and the Code of Student Conduct?”

Many more students had learned about the Code of Academic Integrity than the Code of Student Conduct. 

We asked, "From what sources do students receive information about the Codes?”

The data indicate that many students learn about the Code of Academic Integrity in their courses.

This indicates SRR will need to do more outreach regarding the Code of Student Conduct, and we have begun that through orientation modules and faculty partnerships.

The results also reinforced that orientation was an important source of information for students about the Codes.

So, what do we do next?

Starting this academic year and continuing into next, we plan to:

  • Work with student leaders and campus partners to increase our outreach through presentations to the community.
  • Partner with faculty to promote knowledge of the Code of Student Conduct and related policies, especially where they connect to students’ academic success.
  • Explore ways to provide students with information throughout their time at GW in addition to orientation.
  • Create sanctions that would encourage peer-to-peer education because students who experienced the student conduct process seemed to have more knowledge of student conduct than those who did not.
  • Offer more restorative justice resources and options in the student conduct process.
  • Administer the survey periodically. This will also help us evaluate how the pandemic academic year affected results.