Teaching to Change Campus Climate

“Teaching to Change Campus Climate”

by Amanda Schaller

I am grateful to complete my fifth semester as a research assistant for Drs. Katherine Johnson and Alyssa Lederer and their ongoing TC3 (Teaching to Change Campus Climate) Project. The TC3 Project examines the effectiveness of curricular interventions—specifically Tulane’s GESS 1900 (Sex, Power, Culture) and SOCI 2100 (Sociology of Sexualities)— in addressing sexual aggression on college campuses.

This fall is the fifth year of data collection for the TC3 Project, which we administered at the beginning and end of the semester in the two intervention courses and a control course, SOCI2500 (Organizational Behavior). Before administering the survey in classes, we examined our existing survey measure (based on literature reviews done over the summer and prior semesters) to ensure it remains effective in addressing our research questions and strengthening our understanding of the methodology we use in collecting. Additionally, each team member previews the survey instrument before administration to ensure there are no structural or content errors.

We are currently working on developing a public-facing source, such as a website, for our project. I have examined websites focusing on projects with similar sexual violence prevention and education initiative, such as Columbia’s SHIFT (Sexual Health Initiative to Foster Transformation), for ideas about the layout and content of the TC3 Project. I am using ArcGIS Story Maps software to begin designing our website, which I will work on over the spring semester. I am also preparing to present our current research and broader project at the Conceiving Equity event in January 2023.

As a senior, I am also working on my honors thesis related to a subset of our data, specifically looking at gender differences in rape and consent myths and potentially looking at whether heteronormative attitudes and beliefs are related to rape and consent myth acceptance. I am examining responses on the HABS (Heteronormative Attitudes and Beliefs Scale), IRMA (Illinois Rape Myth and Acceptance) Scale, and Consent Myths Scale between time one and two and across gender for intervention students only. I am hoping that my findings from this research will contribute to the overall TC3 Project.

I am looking forward to another great semester with this internship!