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Violence Against Women on the Internet

Campus Sexual Assault Policies
(opens: 4.16.02)
(opens: 4.23.02)
Sex Trafficking
(opens: 4.30.02)
The Internet as a Site of Resistance
(opens: 5.7.02)
(opens: 5.14.02)
NOTE: Modules will launch by 5 p.m. U.S. Eastern time on the date listed.


Campus Sexual Assault Policies

This module was composed by: Brina Milikowsky (lead Teaching Fellow), Stacey Dershewitz and Jennifer Nash


In this module, we will look at the power of the Internet to mobilize people around an enormously important and often divisive issue: sexual assault on college campuses. Through an examination of the prevalence of rape on all campuses and an analysis of the widely varied preventative and disciplinary responses of different universities, we will discuss how the Internet can be deployed as an educational tool for universities and as a political tool for anti-violence activists.

Campus sexual assault can be understood as a microcosm of the problem of rape in our society. According to the US Department of Justice, young women age 16 to 24 are most at risk for rape. According to a study on sexual assault and adolescence by the American Academy of Pediatrics:

"Large surveys of college students in both the United States and New Zealand have documented that over 50% of women in college had experienced unwanted sexual activity in the past, and up to 25% of all college women and 6% of college men reported having been the victims of assaults that met the legal definition of rape. Virtually none of these episodes had been reported to the authorities. Several studies show that there is confusion among youth about what constitutes sexual consent… Of the 25% of college women surveyed who reported having had unwanted sexual intercourse, 84% knew their assailant, 57% of the episodes occurred on dates, and 41% of the women stated they were virgins at the time of the assault. Between 25% and 47% of date rape occurred on the first date, with an increased risk of rape if the male had initiated the date, driven the car, and paid for the date."

-- American Academy of Pediatrics "Sexual Assault and the Adolescent," 94 Pediatrics 5, 761-765 (1994).

For optional reading, you may read the full article on the web at

Follow these links to read the rest of the module:

1. Introduction continued

2. Campus Sexual Assault: the scope of the problem, the legal remedies available

3. Case Studies

4. College Administration Problems

5. Consent, Coercion, and Consumption

6. Campus Resources and Internet Activism

7. Disciplinary Procedure and Model Policies

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