Overall Rating Gold - expired
Overall Score 71.76
Liaison Mike Versteege
Submission Date Oct. 10, 2014
Executive Letter Download

STARS v1.2

University of Alberta
PAE-7: Measuring Campus Diversity Culture

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 2.00 / 2.00 Lisa Dockman
Program Lead (Outreach & Engagement)
Office of Sustainability
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Has the institution assessed attitudes about diversity and equity on campus in a way that meets the criteria for this credit?:

A brief description of the assessment(s):


Through its employment equity program, the University of Alberta endeavours to recruit and retain a diverse and representative workforce. Creating and maintaining a teaching and research environment that is supportive and welcoming for members of the designated groups is critical to the successful implementation of employment equity on campus. Since the early 1990s, the employment equity program manages the U of A’s collection of equity data through the distribution of the Equity Census Questionnaire to new permanent employees both full- and part-time on a monthly basis. Employees are asked to self-report on their membership in federally designated equity-seeking groups (women, members of visible minorities, persons with disabilities, and Aboriginal people). At this time we do not specifically ask for feedback on their experiences, however the data collected in the census is used to shape employment equity-related programming.

Website: http://www.osdhr.ualberta.ca/

The Office of Safe Disclosure and Human Rights has been tracking human rights complaints since 2008. All campus organizations that deal with reporting and referring human rights complaints (examples include the Office of the Dean of Students, the Non Academic Staff Association, the Students’ Union and the Graduate Students’ Association) currently meet biannually to share resources, ideas and informally assess campus equity. In addition to these measures, all these stakeholders are participating in the implementation of shared software expected to be in use by the end of 2012, meaning that one database will house all cases and will be managed by the Office of Safe Disclosure and Human Rights. This system would allow for appropriate referrals and tracking of issues.

Website: http://nsse.iub.edu/

Operated by the Office of the Dean of Students, NSSE is an internationally available online survey tool that is used primarily for measuring student engagement and satisfaction. UAlberta hosts this survey annually or biannually to gauge student participation in programs and activities provided for their learning and personal development. The results can also provide an estimate of how undergraduates spend their time and what they gain from attending college.

Although student invitations to participate in this survey come from the Office of the Dean of Students, the Strategic Analysis Office administers the survey and shares the results widely – providing important information on the student experience to all aspects of the institution. Within the survey there are a number of questions related to diversity. The survey provides the opportunity for respondents to disclose (if they so choose) their parents' educational background, their racial/ethnic background, whether they have been diagnosed with disabilities, and their sexual orientation.

Year the assessment was last administered:

A brief description of how the results of the assessment(s) are used in shaping policy, programs, and initiatives:


The results of the Employment Equity Census Questionnaire are used to provide internal stakeholders and the Federal Contractors Program with quantitative data on the University’s progress in achieving a representative workforce.

The Employment Equity Assistant provides advice to administrators and supervisors on fair and equitable hiring practices and offers training sessions on equity in recruitment. The focus of these sessions is on helping recruiters become familiar with human rights and employment equity considerations to help them meet the challenge of fairly choosing new employees and to avoid legal liabilities.

In addition to offering advice and training sessions, we can provide statistical reports on the composition of the University’s workforce to assist with the recruitment process. The reports can be university-wide or tailored to the needs of each individual unit, department, or faculty. Only aggregate data are reported to ensure confidentiality.

In 1994 the Board of Governors, our highest decision making body, approved Opening Doors: A Plan for Employment Equity at the University of Alberta. Since its’ adoption this plan has been influencing equity and decision making on campus. The University’s Employment Equity Advisory Committee has reviewed the current plan and is in the process of gathering University feedback on its recommendations.

The plan is available here: http://www.hrs.ualberta.ca/EmploymentEquity/OpeningDoors.pdf.


The University of Alberta uses the results of this survey for all kinds of things – however, primarily it is a tool for measuring student engagement and satisfaction. NSSE has been used for general benchmarking and in various projects to improve student engagement. The survey has also been used widely in faculty and department reviews among various other applications of the survey data.

The website URL where information about the assessment(s) is available:

Additional Responsible Parties

Catherine Anley
Employment Equity Advisor
Human Resource Services
Topic: Employment Equity Program Census

Wade King
Office of Safe Disclosure and Human Rights
Topic: Human Rights Case Tracking

Nadine Desaulniers
Finance & Human Resources
Office of the Dean of Students
Topic: National Survey of Student Engagement

Dale Olausen
Senior Research Analyst
Strategic Analysis Office
Topic: National Survey of Student Engagement

The information presented here is self-reported. While AASHE staff review portions of all STARS reports and institutions are welcome to seek additional forms of review, the data in STARS reports are not verified by AASHE. If you believe any of this information is erroneous or inconsistent with credit criteria, please review the process for inquiring about the information reported by an institution or simply email your inquiry to stars@aashe.org.