Kaplan Survey: As Colleges Step Up Efforts to Combat Sexual Assault and Violent Crime on Campus, More Than 60% of Schools Say Campus Safety Should Be Part of the U.S. News & World Report Rankings

Press Contacts: Russell Schaffer, russell.schaffer@kaplan.com, 212.453.7538
Twitter: @KapTestNews@KaplanSATACT

New York, NY (September 9, 2014) — As colleges take steps to prevent sexual assault and violent crime on campus, a new Kaplan Test Prep survey of admissions officers at over 400 colleges and universities across the United States* finds that 61% believe that campus safety should be factored into the annual U.S. News & World Report rankings, which were just released today. College admissions officers join some members of Congress who have also called for campus safety to be added as a criterion in the rankings.** In a statement on their website, U.S. News has acknowledged how important an issue it is to prospective students, but maintains that comparing levels of safety among so many campuses isn’t possible, and even if it was possible, shouldn’t be factored into its academic-centered rankings.

Among other key results from Kaplan’s survey:

  • Colleges Say They Have Taken Action: 80% of colleges report they have stepped up efforts to combat sexual assault on campus over the past two years; 78% say they have stepped up efforts to combat violent crimes on campus like shootings and other kinds of violence.
  • But They Don’t Think Enough is Being Done Nationwide: Just 21% of admissions officers say that colleges nationwide are doing “enough” to combat sexual assault on campus.
  • Some Students and Parents Are Asking More Questions:  29% of admissions officers report an increase in questions by applicants and their parents about the issues of sexual assault and campus safety, compared to two years ago.

“The good news is that not only are colleges increasingly taking preventive measures to combat on-campus violence, but there are also resources available for students and parents to access statistics around campus crime, safety and security issues, such as the U.S. Department of Education’s Campus Safety and Security Data Analysis Cutting Tool. While for most college applicants, how safe a campus is may not be as top of mind as a school’s overall ranking, academic reputation or tuition, it’s perhaps an issue to which they should pay more attention,” said Christine Brown, executive director of K-12 and college prep prep programs, Kaplan Test Prep. “We encourage college applicants and their parents, when researching colleges, to look into campus safety measures and ask current students how safe they feel.”

The U.S. Department of Education’s Campus Safety and Security Data Analysis Cutting Tool can be found at http://www.ope.ed.gov/security.

For more information about Kaplan’s survey, contact Russell Schaffer at russell.schaffer@kaplan.com or 212.453.7538.

*Admissions officers from 403 of the nation’s top national, regional and liberal arts colleges and universities, as determined by U.S. News & World Report, were polled by telephone between July and August 2014. Kaplan has been conducting its annual survey since 2004.

**The San Francisco Chronicle, “Rank colleges by campus safety? 12 members of Congress say yes,” April 10, 2014.  http://blog.sfgate.com/education/2014/04/10/rank-colleges-by-campus-safety-12-members-of-congress-say-yes/

About Kaplan Test Prep

Kaplan Test Prep (www.kaptest.com) is a premier provider of educational and career services for individuals, schools and businesses. Established in 1938, Kaplan is the world leader in the test prep industry. With a comprehensive menu of online offerings as well as a complete array of print books and digital products, Kaplan offers preparation for more than 90 standardized tests, including entrance exams for secondary school, college and graduate school, as well as professional licensing exams for attorneys, physicians and nurses. Kaplan also provides private tutoring and graduate admissions consulting services. Additionally, Kaplan operates new economy skills training (NEST) bootcamps designed to provide immersive training in skills that are in high demand in today’s job market and prepare participants for hire.

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