Dean's Notes: Apology Regarding Recent Survey

As we strive for greater knowledge and understanding, we should always uphold the principle of "do no harm". As trained researchers, it is our responsibility to follow research protocols that uphold this commitment to protect our participants. 

Many research participants and members of the greater community were hurt by the harmful and inflammatory statements in the study and survey titled “Bystander Intervention to Racial Aggression” and we apologize.

The research was intended to improve our understanding of the harmful effects of racially inflammatory language and hate speech that is found on social media, in order to identify meaningful ways to combat these statements. However, the survey caused undue harm and distress for many. 

Our most sincere apologies to research participants and our broader MSU community. 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.

At the College of Communication Arts and Sciences, we care deeply about an inclusive culture, and we will listen, learn and act.

I would like to meet with students to understand their experiences with this study, and I invite you to attend a forum to share your thoughts and experiences on Tuesday, October 29 at 7 p.m. in Room 147 of the ComArtSci Building. You may also feel free to contact me directly with your concerns or to contact Teresa Mastin, Chairperson for the Department of Advertising and Public Relations. 

Dean Prabu David, College of Communication Arts & Sciences

For complete information regarding the survey, please click here. For a study description, click here.