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Communication Arts and Sciences to host forum regarding recent racist survey

October 24, 2019
The Communication Arts and Sciences Building on March 25, 2019.
The Communication Arts and Sciences Building on March 25, 2019. —
Photo by Matt Zubik | The State News

Following backlash from a recent Sona survey — which contained racist, homophobic and transphobic slurs — the College of Communication Arts and Sciences will host a forum at 7 p.m. on Oct. 29 in Room 147 of the Communication Arts and Sciences Building.

The survey was within the college, President Samuel L. Stanley Jr. said in an email to the community.

“As we strive for greater knowledge and understanding, we should always uphold the principle of ‘do no harm,'" College of Communication Arts and Sciences Dean Prabu David said in a written apology. “As trained researchers, it is our responsibility to follow research protocols that uphold this commitment to protect our participants.”

According to David, the survey, titled "Bystander Intervention to Racial Aggression," was intended to assess the effects of “racially inflammatory language and hate speech” found on social media. 

However, David recognized the “undue harm and distress” the survey caused for many students. 

“Our most sincere apologies to research participants and our broader MSU community,” David wrote in the apology. “I will be working with our faculty to ensure that this does not happen again, and we will continue our work with utmost sensitivity and caution.”

David invites concerned students to share their experiences and thoughts at the forum so the college can better understand their experiences with the study.

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