Frequently Asked Questions
Question: What is the LGBTQ-Friendly Campus Pride Index all about?
Answer: In development since 2001, the LGBTQ-Friendly Campus Pride Index is in response to the increasing demand for tools and resources to support campuses in assessing LGBTQ-friendly policies, programs and practices. The only one of its kind, the index is a valuable national assessment tool for campuses looking for ways to improve their LGBTQ campus life.
Question: What are the goals of the LGBTQ-Friendly Campus Pride Index?
Answer: The primary goals of the LGBTQ-Friendly Campus Pride Index is to set forth a national standard for improving the quality of life for LGBTQ and ally people on college/university campuses and to assist campuses in becoming more LGBTQ-friendly.
Question: How does a college/university participate in the LGBTQ-Friendly Campus Pride Index?
Answer: Any college/university may participate in the LGBTQ-Friendly Campus Pride Index. To begin, a campus official representing the college/university should create an account to take the online assessment. This individual should be responsible for LGBTQ issues and, or able to represent the campus in a professional capacity. Once the account is approved, the campus official completes the index tool consisting of 50+ self-assessment questions, which correspond to eight different LGBTQ-friendly factors. The individual may save responses and return to complete the index as many times as necessary. Once completed, the campus official receives a confidential report of the index tool responses along with results and recommendations. Each campus receives a basic campus profile with limited results for the public to view with the option of adding information like contact details and photos; however, a campus may also opt out of sharing information online.
Question: What are the deadlines for a campus to be involved in the LGBTQ-Friendly Campus Pride Index?
Answer: A college/university may take part in the LGBTQ-Friendly Campus Pride Index at any time of the year simply by having the appropriate campus official create an account. Once the account is approved, the campus official has a suggested 15 days to complete the index tool or, if need be, as long as necessary. The campus official may save responses and return to complete the index as many times as necessary. A college/university taking the index tool the previous year will be invited in May to update responses and potentially answer new additions to the index tool.
Question: How valuable, reliable and current is the LGBTQ-Friendly Campus Pride Index?
Answer: There has never been a national standard for measuring LGBTQ-friendly programs, policies and practices at colleges and universities. As such, this is a vital tool for campuses to ultimately shape the educational experience to be more inclusive, welcoming and respectful of LGBTQ and ally people. It also provides an opportunity for outreach to prospective LGBTQ and ally youth and to be nationally visible as a campus that is committed to LGBTQ and ally people. In addition, the index must be completed by an approved campus official to ensure the utmost accuracy. Campuses are invited to update responses and complete new additions annually.
Question: What does the five star scoring system mean as part of the LGBTQ-Friendly Campus Pride Index?
Answer: Each college/university that is listed online receives an overall LGBTQ-friendly five star score as well as breakdowns based on sexual orientation, gender identity/expression and the eight LGBTQ-friendly factors. The five star score is a continuum of progress for inclusive LGBTQ and ally policies, programs, and practices. Three stars represent the mid-range score possible. It is important to note that lower star scores may still be viewed as progressive based on the campus or region of the country.
Question: How did you develop the assessment tool utilized for the LGBTQ-Friendly Campus Pride Index?
Answer: The LGBTQ-Friendly Campus Pride Index has a strong theoretical research foundation in campus pride issues. The index tool has been tested extensively since 2001 and was developed by Campus Pride with a team of national LGBTQ researchers which included Brett Genny Beemyn, Ph.D, Susan R. Rankin, Ph.D. and Shane L. Windmeyer, M.S, Ed. The index tool includes 50+ self-assessment questions, which correspond to eight different LGBTQ-friendly factors. Questions receive a weight in order to emphasize and add value to specific LGBTQ components, which were determined to contribute to a more inclusive, welcoming, and respectful LGBTQ and ally campus. All eight LGBTQ-friendly factors receive the same weight in the overall score. The eight LGBTQ-friendly factors are, as follows: 1. LGBTQ Policy Inclusion, 2. LGBTQ Support & Institutional Commitment, 3. LGBTQ Academic Life, 4. LGBTQ Student Life, 5. LGBTQ Housing, 6. LGBTQ Campus Safety, 7. LGBTQ Counseling & Health and 8. LGBTQ Recruitment and Retention Efforts.
Question: How can I encourage my college/university to be a part of the LGBTQ-Friendly Campus Pride Index?
Answer: The success of the LGBTQ-Friendly Campus Pride Index will be in getting as many campuses as possible to take the self-assessment tool to become safer, more LGBTQ-friendly. If your college/university already understands the value of LGBTQ and ally people within your campus community, it should be easier to seek participation by the appropriate campus official(s). A good place to start would be by sharing the web site information and talking to the LGBTQ-specific office/resource center staff, multicultural center staff, a general student affairs administrator and, or a LGBTQ an ally student organization. Remember to share from your personal perspective how valuable you believe it is for your campus to be involved and visible. You can also remind the campus that there are no obligations and it`s free.
Question: How long does it take to complete the 50+ self-assessment questions included on the LGBTQ-Friendly Campus Pride Index?
Answer: The average time to complete the index tool is 30-45 minutes; however, a campus has a suggested 15 days to complete the index tool or, if need be, as long as necessary. The campus official may also save responses and return to complete the index at another time at their convenience. The key to an effective length of time is what will yield the most accurate answers for the campus.
Question: If there are additional reports generated from the LGBTQ-Friendly Campus Pride Index, how will the college/university be identified?
Question: Does the college/university have a choice whether or not to have information on the LGBTQ-Friendly Campus Pride Index for the public to view online?
Answer: Yes. Your participation acknowledges your active interest in LGBTQ issues and your commitment to LGBTQ & ally people. We encourage all campuses to be visible as part of the online index. However, a college/university may take the index tool to receive the free confidential report and then “opt out” of sharing their information online.
Question: Does it cost anything to use or be part of the LGBTQ-Friendly Campus Pride Index?
Answer: The LGBTQ-Friendly Campus Pride Index is free to the public as a resource. Any individual (student, family member, etc) may access the Index without any charges. There is a Campus Pride annual membership fee that began in 2020 for each college/university to take the assessment tool. This fee covers increased costs, improvements and future sustainability. Every college/university receives a basic online profile. If interested, a college/university may choose to add information to become a Premier Campus with special benefits and features.
Question: Who would be the best person to take the LGBTQ-Friendly Campus Pride Index from a college/university?
Answer: Anyone can inquire for more information about the LGBTQ-Friendly Campus Pride Index. However, the individual to take the index tool should be responsible for LGBTQ issues and, or able to represent the campus in a professional capacity.
Question: How soon will the LGBTQ-Friendly Campus Pride Index confidential report be ready after the completion of the assessment tool?
Answer: The LGBTQ-Friendly Campus Pride Index administrator(s) will review and prepare the confidential report for your campus. This process could take between 15-30 days. An email will be sent to the campus official who completed the index tool when the report is ready.
Question: How do I know if a college/university has taken part in the LGBTQ-Friendly Campus Pride Index?
Answer: Quite simply, you would do a search online. Remember, though, that a college/university may choose to “opt out” of having a free basic profile online to share with the public. Therefore, if a campus does "opt out," it will not be evident by searching the LGBTQ-Friendly Campus Pride Index that your campus took part in the assessment. You would need to ask the appropriate campus official(s) on your campus. All campuses will be encouraged to post the free basic profile.
Question: What about student perspectives and attitudes? How is this reflected in the LGBTQ-Friendly Campus Pride Index?
Answer: The LGBTQ-Friendly Campus Pride Index is not a replacement or substitute for Campus Pride research which examines more holistically campus attitudes/perceptions of LGBTQ and ally campus life. Instead, the index provides a solid foundation to further examine LGBTQ issues and, most importantly, to improve LGBTQ-friendly policies, programs and practices. If you feel that information on the index is inaccurate, please email email@example.com.
Question: Does the LGBTQ-Friendly Campus Pride Index take into account different size campuses and types of institutions?
Answer: Yes, it does. The methodology of the assessment tool was specifically weighted to take into account the campus size and type of institution. The weights provide a consistent and fair measurement regardless of such factors. Nevertheless, the scope of the LGBTQ-Friendly Campus Pride Index deals solely with the experience of four-year colleges and universities within the United States.
Question: How does the LGBTQ-Friendly Campus Pride Index get reviewed and updated for the future?
Answer: The LGBTQ-Friendly Campus Pride Index has an advisory board, which oversees the future of the index as well as participates in an annual review of the instrument for necessary changes or improvements. The advisory board includes participation by the Campus Pride team of national researchers who developed the index as well as representation from the National Consortium of Directors of LGBTQ Resources in Higher Education. If you have ideas or feedback, please share by email firstname.lastname@example.org. Help us continue to improve the index to be the best tool possible for your campus.
Question: How does a college/university update responses as LGBTQ-friendly policies, programs and practices change?
Answer: Once a year in May, the college/university will be invited to update responses and potentially answer new additions to the index tool.
Question: What do we mean by LGBTQ-friendly?
Answer: The term LGBTQ-friendly denotes an environment that is more inclusive, welcoming, and respectful for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer and questioning people.
Question: Why just use the acronym LGBTQ?
Answer: This answer is the most difficult since we understand that language is powerful and often times exclusionary. We recognize the fact that there are members of our community who identify outside of these terms (i.e. same-gender loving, two-spirit people, etc.). For the purpose of this assessment tool, we chose the acronym LGBTQ for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer and questioning people. When applicable, we also use the term ally to denote a person who is supportive of the LGBTQ community, but may identify as straight and/or cisgender.