Data Project: AAU Campus Survey on Sexual Assault and Misconduct

In September, the Association of American Universities published a widely-publicized survey on sexual assault and misconduct on college campuses. Here is the survey overview:

“The primary goal of the Campus Climate Survey on Sexual Assault and Sexual Misconduct was to provide participating institutions of higher education with information to inform policies to prevent and respond to sexual assault and misconduct. The survey was designed to assess the incidence, prevalence and characteristics of incidents of sexual assault and misconduct. It also assessed the overall climate of the campus with respect to perceptions of risk, knowledge of resources available to victims and perceived reactions to an incident of sexual assault or misconduct.”

For my data project, I’m interested in scraping data tables from the report (only available in .pdf), and then playing with analysis and visualization of them. This is both a chance for me to learn more about the data collected through this survey — data I’m interested in anyway — and an opportunity to play with software and programs that I’ve wanted to try out. R is an example, as well as some visualization programs that I haven’t used before. I might try scraping through Python. And I think it could be interesting to try to apply MALLET to the report in its entirety.

I’m curious if visualizing the data in different ways presents findings that are at all inconsistent with the official findings of the report. Or if new renderings of this data give rise to different research questions for campus surveys in the future. I’m also open to other ideas for exploring the data if you have them!