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National survey to investigate sexism in further and higher education 

mirrored face in painting

(Photo: Mette Koors)

As a consequence of the recent debates on sexism and sexual harassment in Denmark, the Minister of Higher Education and Science is requesting a clearer picture of the situation at higher education institutions.

News |   24. Sep 2020

Anne Thora Lykkegaard


Every other year, all students taking further or higher educations receive the national questionnaire Uddannelseszoom, which explores different topics regarding educational quality and satisfaction with their study environments.

This year, the questionnaire will include additional questions regarding experiences with sexism and sexual harassment, according to an article in the Danish newspaper Berlingske.

“We need to deal with the issue of sexism where it exists. If there’s one thing the recent debates in Denmark have shown it is that it’s everywhere,” says Ane Halsboe-Jørgensen, Minister of Higher Education and Science to Ritzau and continues:

“What I can do as a minister is obtain an overview of the scale of the problem. In that way, we have the best possible prerequisites for creating a new culture and a space where we can talk about it.”

The additional questions have not yet been finalized, according to the news article. However, they will be something along the lines of whether the students have received offensive, insulting or patronizing comments, or have been exposed to unwanted sexual attention.

The Chair of the National Union of Students in Denmark, Johan Hedegaard Jørgensen, is positive about extending the questionnaire to ask about sexism. He hopes that the survey can help uncover the scale of the issue, so that action can be taken.

For example, what to do about educators who consequently use sexist expressions.

“For example, that women can’t figure out finance. What to do about it must be explicit,” he says in the news article and continues:

“And then the students should know where to go if they experience offensive behavior. What is being done about it, and who will know.”

The questionnaire from Uddannelseszoom will be sent to the students later in October.


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