Academic Affairs

Diversity Climate Assessment Project
UW System Campus Climate Study

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After numerous discussions, research, consultations with campus Provosts and Chancellors, and with the support of the UW System President, the UW System elected to undertake a broad-based campus climate assessment led by the national research team of Rankin & Associates (R&A).  Rankin & Associates specializes in multiple-identity climate assessments in higher education and has led climate assessment surveys at over 80 universities nationwide, in addition to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, and the National Collegiate Athletic Association. 

The survey instrument measures the climate of diversity and inclusiveness at each campus with regard to multiple identity groups (e.g. race/ethnicity, gender, religious affiliation, veteran status, sexual orientation etc.). Each institution has the opportunity to contextualize the template to address the needs and concerns specific to that campus. In addition, each and every campus community member has the opportunity to take the survey and anonymously share their perceptions and experiences.

All of the twenty-six UW System campuses have been invited to participate in the study.
In September 2007, seventeen UW System campuses elected to carry out the campus climate assessment as part of the first-year pilot program:  UW-La Crosse, UW-Milwaukee, UW-Oshkosh, UW-Stevens Point, and the thirteen freshman-sophomore UW-Colleges. Final results were presented to each campus in the Fall of 2009, followed by a presentation to the Board of Regents (see http://www.uwsa.edu/bor/agenda/2008/december.pdf).

The success of the pilot year led to four additional UW System campuses electing to participate in a second round of the campus climate assessment:  UW-Eau Claire, UW-Parkside, UW-River Falls, and UW-Whitewater.  The second-round tier is collecting data in the Fall 2009 with results to be delivered in the Spring 2010.