Checking the Climate

The UCSB Campus Climate Survey will examine attitudes and behaviors among students, faculty and staff

As part of a strategic planning process to enhance an inclusive environment for learning, living and working at UC Santa Barbara, the university will conduct a Campus Climate Survey Monday, May 10, through Monday, May 31.

All UCSB students, faculty members, postdoctoral scholars and staff will receive via email personalized invitations to take the survey — and all are encouraged to do so.

“Thank you in advance for participating,” Chancellor Henry T. Yang said in a note to campus. “This important survey will provide our university with a timely and comprehensive snapshot of our campus climate and campus climate issues.”

Last run in 2013, the survey is hosted by the campus Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI). Results will inform the forthcoming DEI strategic action plan.

“The purpose of the study is to survey the UC Santa Barbara campus in order to learn more about the attitudes and behaviors of people in our community,” said Belinda Robnett, Vice Chancellor for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion. “We want to know the extent to which members of our community feel personally safe, listened to, valued and treated fairly. A truly healthy campus climate is one in which all members of our community are respected, included and feel a sense of belonging. We hope that the survey will benefit the community generally, by producing information that will inform efforts to improve the campus climate.”

According to Robnett, the survey was created through the input of the many faculty and staff members, graduate students and undergraduate students who participated on one of four committees: the Faculty Campus Climate Survey Committee, the Staff Campus Climate Survey Committee, the Graduate Student/Postdoctoral Scholar Campus Climate Survey Committee, and the Undergraduate Student Campus Climate Survey Committee. The groups assisted with both the selection and formulation of the questions.

Once completed, survey data will be analyzed first by staff from the Institutional Research, Planning & Assessment Office and then by the DEI Office Data Analyst. Robnett will hold a campus town hall meeting to present the overall findings and she will give tailored presentations to each college, outlining their individual results. The complete aggregated results, she noted, will eventually be available through the DEI website, via a data dashboard.

“As Chancellor Yang recently announced, UCSB has launched a campuswide diversity, equity, inclusion, belonging and justice (DEIBJ), initiative, ‘Thriving Through Reform, Together,’” Robnett said. “The Campus Climate Survey is a major step towards a DEIBJ assessment of the campus climate, and moves us closer to implementing actions to fulfill our vision. The UCSB vision is to build a truly diverse and inclusive campus that fosters an environment where each member is empowered to bring their unique differences, points of view and contributions to the university, and where they will experience acceptance, respect, inclusion and the support needed to achieve their full academic, personal and professional potential. 

“Yet however noble our vision, mission and professed commitments,” she added, “the status quo remains unless we forge a UCSB DEIBJ Strategic Action Plan that alters our daily practices; creates sustained institutionalized transformation; identifies immediate and long-term expected outcomes; fosters accountability through planning and assessment; and establishes milestones and timelines. These milestones and timelines will be steered and influenced by the results of the UCSB Campus Climate Survey. We must hold ourselves accountable.” 

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