Campus: San Diego State University -- October 6, 1999

Fair Treatment a Given at SDSU for 96% of Students

In the first survey of its kind on campus, San Diego State University asked 701 students, freshman through graduate level, how they felt about the campus climate and their treatment at SDSU. Overall, 96 percent said they felt comfortable on campus in terms of their personal characteristics or beliefs, such as ethnic background, physical appearance, religion, sexual orientation, etc., and 93 percent said they were very satisfied or satisfied with their experience at SDSU.

There was an equally high percentage of satisfaction among the 40 percent of surveyed students who identified themselves as belonging to an ethnic or other minority group: 94 percent said they felt comfortable on campus and were very satisfied or satisfied with their SDSU experience.

According to Dr. Susan Moss, director of the Office of Diversity and Equity, the study was undertaken to look into matters of equity and fair treatment. "We wanted to find out if our students feel they are treated fairly," said Dr. Moss, "especially students who identify themselves as from minority groups. Do they feel at ease in the campus environment?

"What was most impressive to me," continued Moss, "was that the percentage of students who felt at ease on campus was almost the same for minorities as for the overall sample. We still have work to do, but as an institution, we should be pleased with the response."

The survey also asked students if they would choose to enroll again at SDSU, if they were making the decision now. Eighty-five percent of the overall sample and 84 percent of students identifying themselves as minorities said they would enroll at SDSU. Even among the seven percent of respondents who said they had a negative experience on campus, 82 percent said they were satisfied with SDSU and 65 percent would choose SDSU again.

The survey was conducted between April 20 and May 22, 1999, by SDSU's Social Science Research Laboratory on behalf of the Office of Diversity and Equity. Data were compiled from telephone interviews of randomly selected students; the sampling error was 3.7 percent.

San Diego State University is the oldest and largest higher-education institution in the San Diego region. Since it was founded as a teacher-training program in 1897, it has grown to offer bachelor's degrees in 76 areas, master's degrees in 58 areas and doctoral degrees in 11 areas. The more than 30,000 students participate in an academic curriculum distinguished by direct contact with professors and an increasing international emphasis that prepares them for a global future.


Editors/reporters: A full copy of the "Survey of SDSU Students Regarding Campus Climate Issues" is available from the Office of Diversity and Equity. Telephone (619) 594-6464 or email:

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