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Survey: 15% Of SDSU Students Report Unwanted Sexual Contact Or Violence

About 15 percent of San Diego State University students reported experiencing some form of unwanted sexual contact or violence — mostly “unwanted fondling, kissing or rubbing” — according to the college.

SDSU on Thursday released the results of a survey it conducted last year about sexual violence on campus. The school sent anonymous questionnaires to more than 30,000 students last spring and received 33 percent of them back.

The 15 percent figure is lower than “other national figures often cited that show one in five women report having been sexually assaulted at least once during their college experience,” SDSU said.


The college also reported that the sexual assault rate among students living in university housing was 23 percent. That rate drops to 7.7 percent among those who didn’t stay in university housing.

Here are some of the report’s other findings:

• 61 percent said they strongly disagree “when a woman is raped, it is often because the way she said ‘no’ was unclear”

• 56 percent said “sexual acts are considered non-consensual if a person is incapacitated from alcohol or drugs"

• 65 percent said they’re “very ready to intervene in some capacity when witnessing sexual assault”


The survey results come two years after a state audit admonished SDSU for lack of faculty and staff training on responding to reports of sexual assault. A few months after that audit, the university put into place new policies such as having a rape crisis advocate on staff.

“The initial survey responses told us we are doing a good job, but there is still work that remains to better educate students and help reduce the risk of sexual violence in the campus community,” Jessica Rentto, SDSU’s associate vice president of administration, said in a statement.

This story has been updated to reflect a correction of a statistic from SDSU.