College Student Perceptions of Campus Safety Initiatives

Joseph A. Schafer, Charern Lee, George W. Burruss, Matthew J. Giblin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

13 Scopus citations


In the aftermath of tragic campus-based incidents causing injury and death, it has become common to see discussions concerning the safety measures institutions should be taking to prevent or mitigate the harm of such events. The recommended approaches reflect a degree of face validity but largely lack empirical grounding or clear evidence of support from the largest population they seek to protect—college students. Using survey data from six Illinois colleges, this study examines the level of student support for campus safety practices. Applying a framework derived from literature on fear of crime and other salient concepts, multivariate modeling is used to explain variation in the observed level of student support. The explanatory models offer limited insight into the factors shaping why students do or do not support campus safety practices. The findings demonstrate the importance of considering the views of students when institutions make decisions about campus safety policies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)319-340
Number of pages22
JournalCriminal Justice Policy Review
Issue number4
StatePublished - May 1 2018
Externally publishedYes


  • criminal justice policy
  • public opinion
  • research
  • research and policy

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