Murray State Theses and Dissertations


Murray State University (Murray State) is in far Western Kentucky. Murray State prides itself on being a safe campus for prospective students. In this study spatial analysis was used to analyze the relationship among crime hotspots, campus safety measures, and students’ perception of safety on campus the campus of Murray State. A survey was distributed to students to determine the areas of the campus where students feel safe and unsafe. Geographical Information Systems (GIS) were used to determine the location of crime hotspots over eight years (2014-2022) to measure the spatial relationship between logged crime hotspots and perceived safe and unsafe areas. The Euclidean Distance tool was used to determine the maximum, minimum and average coverage of Emergency Call Boxes located on the campus. An Emergency Call Box coverage was overlayed with crime hotspots to determine if there was a correlation between the coverage and the location of hotspots. The results show that the location of the emergency call boxes does not have an effect on crime as most crimes that occurred on campus occurred in residential halls that had the emergency call boxes located in the buildings. Students felt the safest in high trafficked areas such as the student center (Curris Center) and dining hall (Winslow Dining Hall) while areas further away from buildings were deemed unsafe such as parking lots and one academic building (Physics Building). Theft was the highest occurring crime on campus in all hotspot areas ensuring that campus administrators and public safety on crimes they should focus on.

Year manuscript completed


Year degree awarded


Author's Keywords

GIS, Campus Safety, Crime Mapping, Survey, Student Perception, Emergency Call Boxes

Dissertation Committee Chair

Robin Q. Zhang

Thesis Advisor

Robin Q. Zhang

Committee Chair

Haulk Cetin

Committee Member

Jane Benson

Committee Member

Alaina Steele

Document Type