Clemson Suspends Survey on Students' Sex LivesBy Staff Reporter, UniversityHerald Reporter
The Clemson University has banned a compulsory online Title IX training program as it focused too much on the students' sex lives.
Students at the South Carolina school complained that they had to answer questions regarding their sexual frequency and their percentage of partners in the last three months. The program's survey also asked about their drinking behaviour, Greek life and athletics. Plus, students used their University IDs to log into the program which negates anonymity.
Students e-mailed administrators and professors by saying that their personal backgrounds might be recorded on a third-party website.
The training program, aimed at curtailing risks associated with alcohol, drugs and sexual violence, was created by CampusClarity. The organisation said that this is the first time that they are facing criticisms about the personal history questions since the program was launched three years ago. This year, three schools out of the 190 using the program have expressed concerns, Huffington Post reports.
In its defence, CampusClarity said that although students' names and IDs are required to enter into the program, only their responses are taken into consideration by school administrators to determine campus behaviour and high-risk groups.
The organisation said that starting next year, it plans to make answering personal background questions non-mandatory.
However, Clemson officials said that the program has been suspended pending further analysis.
"This online course, used by other universities across the country, was selected to be given to undergraduate students this summer and fall as part of a comprehensive effort to prevent sexual discrimination, harassment and assault in response to growing concerns about these incidents on campuses across the nation and to meet federal requirements," said Shannon Finning, dean of students and associate vice president for Student Affairs., in a statement.
"We learned of concerns about some anonymous questions in the module for undergraduate students. We have suspended the training until the content is further reviewed and revised to ensure that it meets our goal of making Clemson a safer campus for all students, faculty and staff, while also respecting individual privacy."
Recently, the Obama administration, members of Congress and experts on sexual violence have asked colleges to conduct climate surveys to record the ways campus rape cases are treated.