‘Justice for Victims is Possible’: Student Reflections on #MeToo in an Online Gender and Justice Course

Lynn C. Jones

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


A Spring 2020 online undergraduate gender and justice course included a redesigned emphasis and approach with a focus on gender-based victimization in the #MeToo era. The course emphasized victims’ experience of gender-based violence and justice, with particular attention to how recent social change efforts by and for survivors of sexual violence have raised awareness and pointed to needed reforms in the justice system. Students demonstrated learning and personal reactions to the educational materials through journals and group discussions. This article investigates student engagement and reactions to #MeToo-related content in the course, using qualitative coding of online discussions and journal entries regarding course materials on campus sexual assault, #MeToo activism, and the personal memoir Know My Name (2019) by survivor Chanel Miller. Findings from qualitative analysis of student narratives in the course demonstrate how (1) students felt supported expressing varied emotions through online discussion of gender-based violence, and (2) while students sometimes experienced negative emotion, this was balanced with hope and empathy for victims in reflections on #MeToo and gender-based victimization topics. This research contributes to the literature on teaching about gender-based violence and exploring the student experience in this #MeToo era, with strategies for online approaches.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)344-360
Number of pages17
JournalJournal of Criminal Justice Education
Issue number3
StatePublished - 2021


  • #MeToo
  • Teaching victimology
  • empathy
  • online teaching
  • sexual violence
  • victim blaming

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Law


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