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Boundaries, Respect and Positive Intervention

Imperial is committed to being a respectful and safe environment for everyone. We know that experiences of sexual harassment can have a serious impact on people and make it more difficult to achieve their potential. Everyone at Imperial is responsible for their part in creating this respectful environment. Consent and active bystander education have a proven positive impact on preventing sexual harassment and giving people the skills and confidence to positively intervene and support each other.

All Imperial students are invited to complete a short online course called Consent Matters. The course will help you to understand Imperial’s expectations, recognise acceptable boundaries and learn how to support your friends and colleagues. The course will show you what consent looks and sounds like, how you can clearly communicate what you want, when consent can be given and when it can’t, how and when you might step in when consent is not present. Talking about sex can be difficult, and through the completion of the programme we hope students will learn how to recognise and ask for sexual consent, look out for others at the University, and find support if it’s needed.

The course is all online, and self-paced. It’s divided into three modules each taking around 20 minutes to complete

  • Module 1: Thinking about consent. Defining and understanding consent, so you know when you have it as well as when it can and can’t be given, whatever your gender or sexuality.
  • Module 2: Communication skills and relationships. Recognising and asserting your own boundaries, and how to talk about boundaries with others.
  • Module 3: Looking out for others. How to take simple, safe and effective steps to challenge harassment when you see it.

More Information

three people negotiating consent saying go stop pause

What is Consent Matters?

It is an award-winning online programme developed by experts used by Universities to support the development of a positive consent culture on campus. It enables Imperial to set clear expectations and provide information on clear communication, boundaries, mutually respectful relationships and the ways in which we can support others.

people saying yes

Why Consent Matters?

University students are up to three times more likely to experience sexual harassment and in a 2021 survey run by ICU over 30% of Imperial students said that they had experienced sexual harassment. Consent and active bystander education have a proven positive impact on preventing sexual harassment and giving people the skills and confidence to positively intervene and support each other.

How to Access the Consent Matters Course

The Consent Matters course can be access on Blackboard Learn - the main Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) used at Imperial. If you have been invited to complete the course, you have been auto-enrolled and can access the course by following the instructions below.

  1. Follow this link to the course.
  2. Log into Blackboard using your usual Imperial username (without @ic.ac.uk) and password. You can access guidance for using Blackboard on this page.
  3. Start by clicking on 'Course Information and Instructions' at the top of the content list to see full details of how to complete the course.

The Blackboard course contains a 'Learning' item and an 'End of Module Quiz' for each of the three modules described above. To mark your completion of the course, you must complete the Learning for each module and achieve 100% on the End of Module Quiz for each module.

You will know you have completed the course when you can see the 'Course Completed' notification at the end of the course content list - it will look like below.

If you are having difficulty with completing the course for whatever reason, please visit our Consent Matters FAQs for technical support. If that doesn't help, you can contact us on consent-matters@imperial.ac.uk

Survivors Matter - further support

We run Consent Matters because we want the Imperial community to understand the importance of sexual consent. Consent Matters is designed to be helpful and informative however we understand that those who have experienced sexual violence may find the content of this course difficult or upsetting. To opt-out of the course you can email us at consent-matters@imperial.ac.uk with the subject line ‘OPT OUT’. No further information will be required in this email. You will receive one email with information about support that is available. 

This will stop any further communications or reminders to complete the course, and you can choose to hide the course from your Blackboard list if you want.

The opt out process is confidentially managed by the Student Services sexual violence prevention team and no one else will be informed of your opt out.