Title Page

Evaluating Sexualized Violence Training and Resources

Evaluating Sexualized Violence Training and Resources

A Toolkit for B.C. Post-Secondary Institution

SVM Training and Resources Working Group


Victoria, B.C.

Evaluating Sexualized Violence Training and Resources

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The purpose of this toolkit is to assist B.C. post-secondary institutions (PSIs) with evaluating and selecting resources to support their ongoing planning and delivery of training on sexualized violence (SV).Since May 2017, all 25 of B.C.’s public post-secondary institutions have been required to have policies on sexualized violence. For more information about the Sexual Violence and Misconduct Policy Act and related initiatives, visit Safe Campuses BC.

In the process of developing a comprehensive approach to SV, PSIs can be confronted with an overwhelming number of resources, research, options, and well-intentioned advice. This toolkit includes activities to guide PSIs selecting and/or adapting resources for SV education and training. It includes:

  1. an overview of key principles that SV experts working in B.C. post-secondary institutions have identified as critical for delivering appropriate and effective SV training;
  2. worksheets for reviewing and evaluating existing SV training and related resources;
  3. a planning wheel that can be used to consider how to implement the key principles and adapt existing resources to local communities.

This resource is intended to be of use to staff, students, and faculty working in a range of contexts, including:

QuoteThroughout this toolkit, you will find reflections on key concepts from staff, students, and faculty who are actively involved in initiatives to address sexualized violence at post-secondary institutions across B.C.

Getting Started


Most PSIs currently have a range of SV training, activities, and initiatives. It can be helpful to begin by reflecting on what already exists at your institution in order to identify strengths, needs, gaps, and available resources for implementing SV training.

Brainstorming can be an effective way of generating ideas within a group setting. Beginning with a question such as “What kind of SV training and resources do we need?” can help to highlight existing policies and practices, diverse perspectives, and opportunities to build on what has already been done successfully.

Below is an example of topics and issues that might emerge from brainstorming.

A bubble chart. A full image description will follow in the text.

Image description: An example of a filled-out bubble chart with the question “What do we need?” written in the middle. The chart includes the following ideas:

End of image description.

Brainstorming Activity: What Do We Need?


An empty bubble chart with the question "What do we need?" written in the middle.

During this activity, you may find it helpful to think about not only what the needs of your PSI are, but also how those needs are being identified. For example:

  • Is there information available from evaluations or a needs assessment? Are there surveys or other research about the experiences of students, staff, and faculty?
  • Have you received feedback from different campus groups on current SV training or resources?
  • Have certain issues been identified as priorities by specific campus groups? Have issues at a legal or policy level been identified that will need to guide, direct, or inform your work?
  • What opportunities have there been for members of the campus community to express their needs? How have you listened and acted in response?

Discussion Questions: Getting Started


The following discussion questions can be used as additional prompts for brainstorming. Alternatively, they can also be used as a starting point to begin planning related to SV training and resources.

  1. What do you know about your institution’s SV policy? Are there deliverables outlined in the policy around education and training? What are priorities for your institution at this time? Is there a timeline?
  2. In general, what kind of SV training, resources, and support services are already in place at your PSI? What can you build on? You may want to think about training, resources, and support services in terms of Awareness, Prevention, and Response:

    Awareness may include training on what SV is, how it impacts people, and what SV looks like on campus. It also includes increasing knowledge of SV policies, supports, and services on campus.

    Prevention may include training that is working towards eliminating SV through building a culture of consent and accountability.

    Response may include supporting people who have been impacted by SV, such as survivors, people who have caused harm, and bystanders.

  3. In general, what are some of the successes, barriers, and issues you have experienced when delivering SV training and developing resources? What are some of the solutions? Who else may you need to consult before continuing with your planning and future work?
QuoteDecolonization is an ongoing practice and should be rooted in a relational process of change. It means building relationships with Indigenous communities on and off campus and taking time and care to do this before even considering how this work can be done.
QuoteAn example of how you may enable access is asking learners ahead of time if they have any access issues. It’s also important to think about whether your staff have the resources to effectively address issues raised.

Evaluating Existing SV Training and Resources


Many PSIs are adapting existing SV training and resources to their own contexts. The activities in this section are intended to support PSIs in identifying key elements of effective SV training and resources. The activities can be used to evaluate a specific type of training or resource under consideration or to inform a comprehensive approach to the implementation of an institution’s overall SV program.

Principles for SV Training and Resources

Eight Key Principles

These eight principles are described in the glossary at the end of this resource. If any of these principles are new to you, review the glossary before proceeding further.

  1. Accessibility
  2. Culturally Located
  3. Decolonial Approach
  4. Evidence-Informed
  5. Gender-Inclusive
  6. Intersectionality
  7. Survivor-Centred
  8. Trauma-Informed

Currently, PSIs are using a range of principles, philosophies, and approaches to guide their selection and use of resources to support their work in preventing and responding to SV on campus.

In December 2019, a working group of experts in the field of SV met to discuss the development of SV training and resources at PSIs in B.C. The group included staff, students, and faculty actively involved in SV activities at their respective PSIs. Following the meeting, the working group met through an online community of practice to identify key principles and essential considerations (see Eight Key Principles) that they believe are central to addressing issues of SV and providing effective training. The principles capture both the “how” and the “what” of effective training resources, i.e., “What are we doing and how are we doing it?”

Key Principles and Indicators


There are many ways each of these eight principles could be operationalized. There is no “right answer” to the question of how to provide effective training and develop resources based on these principles. Instead, each PSI must adapt existing resources or create their own to meet their context and unique needs.

This section provides examples of what each principle might look like in practice. (This is not meant to be a comprehensive list — just a starting place).

QuoteThese eight principles can be difficult concepts for new professionals. These real world examples have helped to set up our team’s discussion.

1. Accessibility

Examples of indicators:

2. Culturally Located

Examples of indicators:

3. Decolonial Approach

Examples of indicators:

4. Evidence-Informed

Examples of indicators:

5. Gender-Inclusive

Examples of indicators:

6. Intersectionality

Examples of indicators:

7. Survivor-Centred

Examples of indicators:

8. Trauma-Informed

Examples of indicators:

QuoteA trauma-informed approach includes considering safety within a learning environment. This also means acknowledging that safety looks different within a learning space based on someone’s identity and lived experience.

Worksheet #1: Key Principles Assessment


What aspects of each principle are important to consider for SV training and resources at your institution? This worksheet is designed to help you consider what the eight key principles might look like in your particular context. For each principle, answer the following three questions:

  1. What are you currently doing to operationalize this principle? What indicators (see examples in Key Principles and Indicators) are important to consider for the work you are doing related to SV?
  2. What is going well?
  3. What else could you be doing? What might be your next steps?
Key Principles Assessment
Culturally Located
Decolonial Approach

Discussion Questions: Key Principles


The following discussion questions can be used in tandem with Worksheet #1 or on their own to further discussion of the key principles for effective SV training and resources:

  1. What principles and approaches are currently informing the development and delivery of SV training and resources at your institution? What strengths do they highlight? Are there other principles specific to your context that you might consider, e.g., harm reduction as a way of making links between gender-based violence and substance use?
  2. Which principles already align with the principles, values, and stated goals of your PSI? E.g., does your institution have policies on access or diversity, equity, and inclusion? Indigenization or reconciliation? Gender-based analysis?
  3. Are there gaps in knowledge in relation to these principles? Are there opportunities to support new and ongoing learning about these different approaches, either specific to SV or to other activities and issues?
  4. Are there opportunities to identify key indicators in each area specific to your institution? Can these be incorporated into ongoing evaluations or revisited later to see if progress has been made?
QuoteOur Responding to Disclosures workshop for student leaders was initially developed and facilitated by an external group to the university. While the program was developed with a strong skeletal structure (meaning it was evidence-informed), it did not meet the cultural needs of our unique university community and was not presented in a gender-inclusive way. With these lessons learned, we gained capacity in our institution to develop and facilitate sexual violence prevention education internally with great success.
QuoteA learning experience I have had regarding the principle of “culturally located” is the recognition that consent looks different in different cultures. When it comes to education on consent, boundaries, and healthy relationships, educators and anti-violence workers on campuses can reduce barriers by connecting with their different populations and learning more about these topics within a cultural group. I would also suggest that tailored educational programming for specific cultures might be appropriate and that this could be developed and co-facilitated by people from that culture, either from within the PSI or with a community-based agency.

Key Elements of Training and Resources


The Planning wheel. The image is described in the following text.
Looking at each of the six elements of Audience; Content; Format & Design; Delivery & Implementation; Evaluation & Monitoring; and Other Considerations can help you to further explore and reflect on what each principle looks like in practice.

This planning wheel provides an overview of how the eight principles should inform all aspects of SV training.

There are three rings in the wheel:

  1. The innermost ring refers to the eight key principles that should be considered in the development of training and resources. (You may also need to consider additional principles relevant to your context.)
  2. The middle ring includes a list of six elements of SV training and resources: Audience; Content; Format & Design; Delivery & Implementation; Evaluation & Monitoring; and Other Considerations.
  3. The outer ring describes the three areas of SV: Awareness, Prevention, and Response, which are detailed in Discussion Questions: Getting Started.

As a general rule, PSIs will want to ensure there is training occurring in each of the three areas. It can be helpful to think about how activities in each of these areas are connected and how they all must be informed by the key principles.

Discussion Questions: Principles to Practice


The following questions are intended to help you brainstorm and reflect on the six elements of SV training and resources while also considering how the eight key principles can be operationalized. (If you are working in a large group, it might be helpful to break into small groups to discuss each of the six areas, and then share your discussion as a larger group afterwards.)


  1. Is the target audience students, staff, faculty, or all groups?
  2. Should the training be for a general audience or tailored to specific campus groups, e.g., residence advisors, campus security, international students, accessibility resource centres?
  3. Is there alignment of key messages in training for each audience?
  4. Should the training be conducted on campus only or in collaboration with community partners?


  1. Has a clear goal for training been articulated, i.e., basic conceptual aim plus desired long-term outcome(s)?
  2. What are the key messages?
  3. Do written and online resources acknowledge the Traditional Territory they were created on?
  4. Has the knowledge, background, and experiences of learners been considered in the development of the training or resource?
  5. Are the specific interests and needs of diverse groups included?
  6. Would content warnings be beneficial?

Format & Design

  1. Is the training one-time only or ongoing?
  2. Is it mandatory or voluntary?
  3. Is it in-person or online or both?
  4. Is it stand-alone or embedded (i.e., part of academic courses or continuing professional development)?
  5. Do resources use language inclusive of a continuum of gender identities?
  6. Is there compensation for individuals and groups who contribute their time and expertise, e.g., survivors, Indigenous organizations, LGBTQ+ people?

Delivery & Implementation

  1. Are learning spaces physically accessible? Are online learning options available?
  2. Is information about requesting accommodations included in promotional materials?
  3. Have instructors been trained in trauma-informed practice?
  4. Is there acknowledgement of the Traditional Territory where training is taking place?
  5. Are “spacemaking” activities included?
  6. Are resources available in multiple languages and formats?
  7. Are plain language resources available?
  8. Do facilitators use gender-inclusive language?
  9. Are supports available for facilitators before, during, and after training?

Evaluation & Monitoring

  1. Has evaluation been included in the initial planning stages?
  2. Are developmental evaluation or process evaluation approaches being considered for new training initiatives to provide a feedback loop? Are there opportunities to make changes to future training?
  3. Have you identified short- and long-term outcomes (e.g., knowledge, attitudes, behaviours)?
  4. Are there opportunities for learners to provide feedback?
  5. Is evaluation integrated into existing cyclical campus surveys and data collection?
  6.  Is evaluation connected to community, provincial, and territorial level initiatives (e.g., provincial or national climate survey)?

Other Considerations

  1. Are your initiatives being developed in response to recent events?
  2. Have you considered guidance from legal or law enforcement sources?
  3. Does the training reflect needs identified by the community or various campus groups?
  4. Should the initiative be on campus only or in collaboration with community partners?
  5. What kind of accountability processes do you have?
QuoteA trauma-informed approach needs to take into consideration that it’s not only survivors in the room in a workshop, but that there are also people who have caused harm. Creating an accessible space for both can be challenging, but acknowledging this at the start of a session through a community agreement can be a good approach.

Worksheet #2: Reviewing and Evaluating Existing SV Training and Resources


You can use this worksheet to help assess existing resources and to determine whether they can be adapted by your PSI.

You may want to consider some of the following questions:

In the following table, you can see how an educator in a sexual violence response program at a PSI in Metro Vancouver used this worksheet.

QuoteAt our PSI, we wanted to update an existing resource on how to support a survivor of sexual assault in response to changes to our SV policy. It also was an opportunity to jointly produce the resource with our investigations office and to ensure alignment of key messages. I used this worksheet to review a short four-page guide for faculty and staff. Going through this activity with the worksheet allowed me to see where else we should be making improvements. Coming away from this, I felt like I had a sense of what to do to adapt the resource.
Example: Evaluation of an Existing Guide
Principles Evidence informed, gender inclusive, intersectionality, trauma informed, trauma centred
Audience Faculty and staff
Content Responding to disclosures: Definition of SV, support services offered, contact info, trauma-informed messaging, 3-step process, consent-based practices, intersectionality named with some guidance given
Format Resource (combined with in-person training or as standalone)
Delivery Text-reliant, plain language (mostly)
Evaluation No feedback/evaluation mechanism. In-person training could be adapted but resource in current state cannot easily be adapted (graphic PDF).
Other The approach used was highly successful with similar programming at our PSI.
Strengths Easy mechanism to provide basic info to many/broad scope audience. Clearly provides key info. Uses format and mechanism that is familiar and a past success.
Limitations Feels sexual assault focused (not capturing whole scope). Doesn’t include reporting information. Not culturally located. No territory acknowledgement. Only one format.
Overall Needs improvement. Format appropriate for context, so content enhancement around cultural locatedness and decolonial approaches as well as development of formats that meet accessibility standards are needed.
Evaluation Worksheet

Next Steps


The information gathered in the previous activities should help you to identify which SV training or resources to adapt to your context.

You can use the following planning wheel to help determine what steps are needed next to adapt and develop this training or resource.

Inner ring: What principles are included in the SV training or resource you have identified? You can consider the eight principles described in this toolkit as well as other principles identified through your evaluation process. Which are relevant to your needs and context?

Middle ring: What needs to happen to adapt this training or resource to your context? What are the next steps? For each of the six elements, there is space to describe what is already in place, barriers to implementation, and suggestions for moving forward.

Outer ring: Does this training fall into the area of Awareness, Prevention or Response? Are there steps you need to take to ensure that this initiative “fits” with other SV activities and initiatives at your PSI?

QuoteSpeaking as someone who has been involved in developing and implementing materials on SV for two institutions, I’ve often felt overwhelmed at where to start. The planning wheel summarizes three huge concepts: proactive and reactive approaches, key principles, and learning design.
QuoteA decolonial approach to planning also means understanding that being ‘evidence informed’ includes evidence which may be based on relationship-building, storytelling, Elder knowledge, and knowledge related to the specific territory and community.

The planning wheel. Described in the text preceeding the image.

Glossary: Key Principles


1. Accessibility

Accessibility typically refers to all the ways in which organizations work to accommodate the needs of people from a variety of backgrounds, abilities and learning styles.

Ideally, accessibility means having a place, environment, or event that is set up from the start to be accessible to all individuals. This may require considering strategies to address actual and potential barriers. Strategies can include ensuring spaces are physically accessible by those who use a wheelchair or other mobility aids; washrooms that are both physically accessible and designated as gender neutral; accommodations and programming initiatives for students with disabilities and ongoing medical conditions; offering learning materials in multiple formats and languages; using plain language; ensuring representation of diverse access needs in training materials; support for childcare; and providing honoraria and secondment options.


2. Culturally Located

Culture is the complex phenomenon that includes the ever-evolving worldviews, knowledge, values, traditions, beliefs, capabilities, and social and political relationships of a group of people that give meaning to and influence their life and
actions. SV training resources need to work to recognize and incorporate diverse cultural identities and to value the knowledge and experience participants bring into the learning environment. To achieve being culturally located, nothing should be presented as culturally neutral; Western/European approaches, values, and worldviews should be identified and named as such, as well as those from other cultures. While an individual’s culture should be recognized and valued, it’s important to remember that everyone is a culturally located individual rather than solely a member of a homogeneous group.


3. Decolonial Approach

Decolonization involves valuing and revitalizing Indigenous knowledge and approaches and addressing the impact of past and ongoing colonization on Indigenous ways of being.

In PSIs, this work can include creating spaces that are inclusive and respectful and honour Indigenous knowledge, ways of knowing, and approaches. It may include integrating curriculum on topics such as land dispossession, historic and contemporary treaty relationships, and the role of colonization in perpetuating sexual violence. For non-Indigenous people, decolonization may include the process of examining colonial beliefs about Indigenous Nations and culture and working to dismantle them through learning about their relationships to the communities where they live and the people with whom they interact.

Decolonial approaches to SV can include acknowledging the impact of colonization in causing sexual violence in Indigenous communities, working to dispel stereotypes, and highlighting the resiliency and capacity of Indigenous peoples and communities to resist and overcome violence.


4. Evidence-Informed

Evidence-informed practice brings together lived experience and diverse expertise with the best available evidence from research. It means using evidence to identify the potential benefits, harms and costs of any intervention and also acknowledging that what works in one context may not be appropriate or feasible in another.

Evidence-informed practice acknowledges that evidence and research will change over time and, as a result, best practices cannot remain static.

Elements required for effective SV training resources include: comprehensiveness, community engagement, theory-driven programming, contextualized programming, and evaluation. Other practices can include recognizing the experience and knowledge of grassroots student groups, decolonizing approaches to SV, and reflection on moral/ethical issues related to initiatives and activities.


5. Gender-Inclusive

It is important to understand and acknowledge the gendered nature of SV and to bring a gender-based analysis to the development of training and resources. At the same time, SV training and resources must create capacity to understand experiences of SV across the gender spectrum, recognizing that anyone can cause, experience, or mitigate harm related to SV.

This means recognizing how different aspects of gender, such as gender identity and gender expression, results in certain groups of people being more likely to perpetrate or be targets of SV. Gender also interacts with factors like race, ethnicity, age, and ability (see Intersectionality in the next section) to influence access to resources for recovery and healing.

SV training and resources benefit from being inclusive of and responsive to the varied needs of women, men, and gender diverse people.


6. Intersectionality

Intersectionality promotes an understanding of people as shaped by the interactions of different social locations or categories ― for example, race, ethnicity, Indigeneity, gender, class, sexuality, geography, age, ability, migration status, and religion.

When applied to SV training resources, intersectionality can help increase understanding of how certain populations face increased risks of perpetrating SV and others face increased risks of being targeted by it. It also highlights how different groups of people experience systemic barriers to disclosing and accessing support services. It can also help ensure that responses to SV are attentive to and reflective of the diverse needs of campus communities.


7. Survivor-Centred

Survivor-centred approaches are grounded in the lived experiences of survivors of sexual violence and misconduct. Being survivor-centred means prioritizing the rights, needs, and wishes of survivors in all processes and responses to SV.

Ways that this might be reflected in training resources include: challenging victim-blaming attitudes; working to create a supportive learning environment that assumes that survivors are present; and ensuring that training initiatives and resources include the input and experiences of survivors.


8. Trauma-Informed

Trauma-informed practice is about developing approaches to training resources that avoid re-traumatizing people and place priority on their safety, choice, and control. Trauma-informed practice also includes an understanding of the social, systemic, and structural roots of violence and trauma.

Trauma-informed practice works from the perspective of “universal precautions” or assuming any learners may have past or current experiences of trauma and violence and responding accordingly. Strategies can range from providing welcoming physical spaces to providing choices about how to engage with learning materials to opportunities for learning wellness skills.




We acknowledge with respect the Musqueam, Squamish, and Tsleil-Waututh Nations and the Lekwungen-speaking peoples from Songhees and Esquimalt Nations, and the WSÁNEĆ peoples on whose lands the Evaluating SV Training and Resources: A Toolkit for Post-Secondary Institutions was created.

This toolkit was a collaboration between the public post-secondary institutions of British Columbia, Grounded Thoughts Therapy & Consulting, BCcampus, and the Ministry of Advanced Education and Skills Training.

We would like to thank the SV Training and Resources Community of Practice and the core development team who contributed to the toolkit, including:

Contributor Organization
Amy Baylis Ministry of Advanced Education and Skills Training
Ashley Bentley Capilano University
Bryanna Anderson University of the Fraser Valley
Chantelle Spicer Simon Fraser University
CJ Rowe Simon Fraser University
Danielle Landeta-Gauthier British Columbia Institute of Technology
Greg Mather University of the Fraser Valley
Kenya Rogers University of Victoria
Sasha Wiley-Shaw University of British Columbia
Patrick Bourke Kwantlen Polytechnic University
Tashia Kootenayoo University of British Columbia – Okanagan
Tasnim Nathoo Grounded Thoughts Therapy & Consulting

We acknowledge the Ending Violence Association of BC (EVA BC) for leadership and consultation throughout this project, with a special thank you to:

Finally, we acknowledge the readers of this toolkit, who are bravely taking steps to evaluate and to improve their own training and resources around sexual violence and misconduct for the safety of all post-secondary students in British Columbia.

We acknowledge BCcampus and the Ministry of Advanced Education and Skills Training for funding and managing this project.

The British Columbia Ministry of Advanced Education and Skills Training logo
BC Campus Logo. Tagline: Learning, Doing, Leading

Versioning History


This page provides a record of edits and changes made to this book since its initial publication. Whenever edits or updates are made in the text, we provide a record and description of those changes here. If the change is minor, the version number increases by 0.01. If the edits involve substantial updates, the version number increases to the next full number.

The files posted by this book always reflect the most recent version. If you find an error in this book, please fill out the Report an Open Textbook Error form.

Version Date Change Details
1.01 May 6, 2020 Published.
1.02 May 5, 2021 Updated theme, added additional front and back matter. Changed theme from Jacobs to McLuhan, which will affect styles. Added an “Accessibility Statement” and “Versioning History.”