A Short Introduction to Consent, Sexual Violence and Harassment for Staff in Higher Education

Active* Consent Staff Awareness Video- Supporting Information

This short guide covers:

  • Staff Awareness Video Learning Outcomes
  • Suggestions for How to Engage Within Your Institution
  • Post-Video Reflection- Discussion Questions for Individuals and Groups

It is intended for anyone engaging with the “Active* Consent Staff Awareness Video on Consent, Sexual Violence or Harassment,” individually or within a group.

Staff Awareness Video Learning Outcomes

This 20-minute Active* Consent awareness-raising video on consent, sexual violence and harassment introduces staff members working in Irish higher education across a variety of areas to:

  • Key findings from Active* Consent’s years of research with students on consent, sexual violence and harassment that aid understanding of the stakes of these issues
  • Basic definitions of consent, sexual violence and harassment
  • Quick tips for supporting a student if they disclose negative sexual experiences to you
  • Where to go to get more information and support

After viewing this video, staff should be able to:

  • Define consent
  • Distinguish between sexual assault, rape and sexual harassment
  • Name and describe different types of sexual harassment
  • Recall baseline statistics related to our students’ sexual activity, attitudes and experiences of sexual violence and harassment
  • Understand the background and role of the Consent Framework and how your institution has engaged
  • Effectively use basic language to support students who disclose sexual violence to them
  • Know where to locate information about national services to support those who disclose sexual violence to them

Suggestions for How to Engage Within Your Institution

This video can be viewed by individuals or used in a structured format within groups of stakeholders (e.g. a research group, an academic discipline, different offices or areas within the university) as initiated by line managers or other staff within that unit at your institution.

If you would like to reflect further after viewing the video and/or facilitate a discussion with your colleagues after group engagement, you can use the discussion questions below to get started.

Post-Video Reflection-Discussion Questions for Individuals or Groups

You can use these questions to reflect as an individual or to facilitate discussion within a group after viewing the video.

  • Were the levels of sexual violence and harassment reported by students during college surprising to you? Why or why not?
  • The video outlined many of the major changes and initiatives that Irish universities are now engaging in this area including the Consent Framework. Were you aware of these measures prior to watching the video? Why do you think that these issues have been able to gain significant traction now? What possibilities and obstacles do you think the college sector faces in sustaining this momentum and implementing change on the ground?
  • Prior to this video, would you have been able to define consent or sexual violence or distinguish between different kinds of sexual harassment? Was there anything new or surprising in the definitions   from this video?
  • Prior to this video, would you have felt that you had a role as a staff member to engage with these issues as part of your job? How do you feel after engaging with this video?
  • What were your concerns as a staff member about the issues covered by the video before and after engaging with this resource?
  • We communicate our disclosure tips by sharing basic “Dos” and “Don’ts.” Did any of the suggestions surprise you? Do you feel like you now have a better grip on the language you might use to respond if someone comes to you with a disclosure?
  • What if anything did you learn about the ways in which an individual might choose to deal with their experience of sexual violence and/or harassment? Do you feel now that you know where you would refer someone if they disclosed to you?
  • What questions do you still have or what would you like to learn more about?

Further information about Consent issues are available on the Student Support webpage, including information on the following:

  • What do you want to do next?
    Information about referral pathways following disclosure of sexual harassment or assault
  • Start Here Campaign
  • College Policies
  • St. Angela’s College Consent Framework Implementation Committee details

Active Consent elearning Module Sexual Violence and Harassment; How To Support Yourself and Your Peers:
If you or your group would like to avail of more in-depth staff training following engagement with the staff video, a 45-minute eLearning Consent module aimed at students is available on the Student Support webpage HERE.  The video is also available on Moodle.

Further training is also available along with a yearly continuing professional development module.  Please contact Declan Courell, Registrar or Una Roberts, Student Services Officer for more information on Active Consent training.

St. Angela's College Guidelines - Students in Distress  
- Responding to a student in crisis – Suicidal intent
- Responding to a disclosure of Sexual Assault or Rape

These guidelines form part of the College Action Plan Towards ending Sexual Violence and Harassment. 

  • The first part of the Guidelines outlines practical advice for supporting students who are in crisis, with advice about how to support students who may have suicidal feelings (advice based on what to do on the St. Angela’s College campus).
  • The second part of the Guidelines offers practical advice and support to staff members in how to respond to a disclosure of sexual assault or rape.