In Spring 2010, the Colorado State University President’s Commission on Women and Gender Equity (CWGE) conducted an informal straw poll (i.e. an unofficial, non-scientific survey of opinion) of campus community members, regarding the climate for academic achievement and work on the Fort Collins Campus. Drawing on the structure of a survey conducted in 1996, the survey attempted to discover if circumstances had improved and what significant concerns should be addressed by the Commission in the coming year(s).
For many of the survey items, a strong effort was made to request information in a manner similar to the 1996 survey. By doing this, a comparison between the two time periods regarding the campus climate and the perceptions of staff members may be established. As is to be expected, some of the constructs, the theories of identity and the language used in 1996 are outdated. Effort was taken, however, to update the language around issues of gender performance, sexual orientation and identity construction.
In both surveys, students and employees were invited to respond to the survey on a voluntary basis. In 2010, emails and notices in various electronic newsletters publicized the opportunity to participate in the online survey. The questions for the 1996 survey were posted with a Likert scale response mechanism indicating the level of satisfaction/dissatisfaction; this was converted to enable us to compare the results of the 2010 survey with the original survey. For a graphical breakdown of participants see Figures 1 and 2.
As this survey was voluntary, and some of those who responded did not complete the full process, we offer these results, incomplete though they might be, and will attempt to learn what we can from them and use them to help us make recommendations and guide our future work.