The Research Center on Violence at West Virginia University will conduct a survey this spring to assess the types of crimes that are committed against students on campus, as well as student’s perceptions of University services.

Data gathered from the survey will assist University administrators in developing of effective policies that will boost campus safety.

“Right now we really don’t know the true extent and distribution of crimes such as sexual assault and physical violence, because we only have data that was officially reported to University Police or Morgantown Police,” said Walter DeKeseredy, Anna Deane Carlson Endowed Chair of Social Sciences and director of the research center.

The survey will be administered online to a random representative sample of all graduate and undergraduate students. Students who complete the short survey will be entered into a lottery for prizes.

Students will be asked about their experiences as victims of a different types of physical violence and how they view the effectiveness of University services, such as University Police and WELLWVU, that are aimed at preventing and controlling those crimes. All questions will be answered anonymously.

DeKeseredy is developing the survey with Amanda Hall-Sanchez, visiting associate professor of sociology, and Douglas Myers, assistant professor of occupational and environmental health sciences.

The Eberly College of Arts and Sciences Office of the Dean and the WVU Provost’s office have provided the Center a grant to cover development and distribution costs.

Reports from this survey will be posted on the Research Center’s website for public review, at

“I think this survey will let us know what types of programs need developed, DeKeseredy said. “Do we need better campus security? Do we need more bystander intervention training? These are things we really don’t know right now.

“Based on our findings, we will be able to recommend policy changes to WVU.”

The Research Center on Violence at WVU earns grants to work on government and nonprofit projects, host colloquia with leading speakers on violence, reach out and interact with West Virginia and national communities, and plays a key role in attracting doctoral students from across the world.



CONTACT: Devon Copeland, Director of Marketing and Communication, Eberly College of Arts and Sciences, West Virginia University, 304-293-6867,

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