NASPA Releases Research Report on Support Services for Respondents in Sexual Misconduct Cases

Health, Safety, and Well-being Assessment, Evaluation, and Research Sexual and Relationship Violence Prevention, Education, and Response
January 22, 2020 NASPA


WASHINGTON, D.C. — Student affairs administrators are consistently providing a range of support services for students who are respondents in sexual misconduct cases on campus, according to a new report. NASPA-Student Affairs Administrators in Higher Education, in collaboration with the University of Kentucky, issued the report which provides a landscape analysis of the availability of respondent support services at institutions of higher education, primarily located in the United States. 

The report, based on a national survey of more than 200 higher education institutions, outlines the broad array of services that administrators are providing to respondents who are involved in active sexual misconduct or Title IX investigations at their institutions. This list includes services such as counseling, access to interim measures and academic accommodations, and accompaniment to conduct hearings. In contrast to the concerns of respondents’ rights groups, a full 87% of survey participants stated that their institutions do not offer any services to responding party that are not also available to the reporting party. Survey participants also overwhelmingly agreed that the services they provide to responding and 

reporting parties are similar, with 48% indicating that their services are identical and another 43% indicating that their services are not identical, but fair or equitable. 

The report also includes valuable recommendations for institutions about training for personnel charged with supporting respondents, as well as suggestions for strengthening existing services and expanding the range of students served. 

“Student affairs professionals are working hard to support this population of students by offering a range of services that are equitable to those provided to reporting parties. This report is an important reminder in advance of the publication of the final Title IX regulations from the Department of Education. The report also serves as a guide for how to strengthen and expand those efforts. Student affairs administrators have been, and continue to be, committed to providing equitable support services to all parties involved in these difficult cases,” says Jill Dunlap, director for research and practice at NASPA. “This report highlights the voices of higher education professionals who are working with these students on a daily basis and ensuring that their institutions’ processes are fair and equitable.” 

NASPA's Research and Policy Institute generates scholarship and conducts policy analysis to articulate student affairs contributions to student success, learning, and development; interprets information to advance practice and policy conversations; and connects the many research and policy activities of NASPA members to increase reach and impact. 

Download Expanding the Frame: Institutional Responses to Students Accused of Sexual Misconduct 

NASPA is the leading association for the advancement, health, and sustainability of the student affairs profession. Our work provides high-quality professional development, advocacy, and research for 15,000 members in all 50 states, 25 countries, and 8 U.S. territories.