Western Sydney University leads study on inclusion and safety

Women on campus

Western Sydney University is conducting a study on diversity and safety to improve the student and staff experience across its campuses.  

The study will consist of an anonymous survey (opens in a new window) and a series of focus groups to investigate student and staff experiences surrounding safety and inclusion on campus, including those who identify as sexuality and gender diverse.

The research will provide university management with a snapshot of life on campus, and will be used to address key concerns and enhance the university's range of positive programs and initiatives.

Vice-President (People and Advancement) Angelo Kourtis says the research will allow the University to set new strategies for building resilient, diverse and inclusive learning and teaching environments.

"All students and staff are entitled to study and work in a friendly and welcoming environment, and this landmark study will help us secure tolerance and safety for every section of our university community, including those who are gender and sexuality diverse," says Mr Kourtis.

"An inclusive campus environment can be critical to student and staff success at university. Conversely, exclusion contributes to poor performance and can lead to mental health and welfare concerns."

"By funding and supporting this research, Western Sydney University is aiming to provide a learning and teaching environment that encourages diversity and welcomes students and staff for who they are."

The Diversity & Safety on Campus study will be conducted on all WSU campuses over three months beginning in mid-March when an online survey (opens in a new window) will be released.

The online survey will take about 20 minutes to complete, and all responses will remain anonymous. Full-time university staff are encouraged to complete the survey in work time, and there will be a $25 draw monthly - one for staff and one for students.

During this time, a series of focus groups will also be held with staff and students, as will interviews with key University stakeholders.  

More information about Diversity & Safety on Campus, along with a link to the survey, is available online (opens in a new window).

The ethics approval for the project is H11264.


15 February 2017

Mark Smith, Senior Media Officer