Northwestern State University

Location: Natchitoches, Louisiana
Website: http://www.nsula.edu
Type: Public
Federal Circuit: 5th Circuit

Speech Code Rating

Northwestern State University has been given the speech code rating Yellow. Yellow light colleges and universities are those institutions with at least one ambiguous policy that too easily encourages administrative abuse and arbitrary application. Read more here.

This school does not have any cases at this time.
Yellow Light Policies
  • Registered Student Organization Manual: Outdoor Event & Sound System Policy 13-14

    Speech Code Category: Other Speech Codes

    CDs/iPods utilized for campus events may not contain foul language or language that degrades one’s age, gender, religion, language, sexual orientation, socioeconomic status, ethnicity, race, exceptionalities, or geographic background. Any RSO not adhering to the clean music policy will have their event shut down and risk losing outdoor event privileges for the remainder of the semester.

    » Read More

  • Student Handbook: Code of Student Conduct- Informational Infractions 13-14

    Speech Code Category: Internet Usage Policies

    Use of computing facilities to access, send, or receive obscene and/or abusive messages.

    » Read More

  • Student Handbook: Cyberbullying 13-14

    Speech Code Category: Bullying Policies

    Cyberbullying involves the use of information technology (email, websites, social networking, internet messaging, or any other technology) for hostile behavior to harm or to upset others. A person cannot easily get away from cyberbullying since using email and the internet are everyday practices.

    » Read More

  • Student Handbook: Sexual Assault and Sexual Harassment 13-14

    Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies

    No student or employee at Northwestern State University shall be subjected to unsolicited and unwelcome sexual conduct, either verbal or physical. Sexual misconduct violates University policy as well as state and federal laws and is specifically prohibited. It is neither permitted nor condoned.

    Sexual harassment occurs when such behavior constitutes unwelcome sexual advances, unwelcome requests for sexual favors, and other unwelcome verbal or physical behavior of a sexual nature, when: …

    • Such conduct has been or is sufficiently severe and pervasive that it has the effect of substantially and unreasonably interfering with an individual’s academic or professional performance or creating an intimidating, hostile, or offensive employment, educational, or living environment, or adversely affecting any student. …
    • Such conduct has the purpose or effect of substantially interfering with an individual’s academic or professional performance or creating an intimidating, hostile, or offensive employment, educational, or living environment, or adversely affecting any student. …
    • Other unwelcome conduct directed at an applicant, employee, or student because of his or her gender may also be deemed to be sexual harassment.

    The following situations, if sufficiently severe and pervasive, may rise to the level of sexual harassment:
    1. Verbal conduct of a sexual nature such as talking about sex or sexual feelings, telling sexual jokes or stories, asking personal questions about dating or sexual life, making sexual comments or innuendo, whistling or making other suggestive sounds, repeatedly asking for dates or other personal attentions.
    2. Nonverbal conduct of a sexual nature such as displaying materials with sexually suggestive words or pictures, making sexual gestures, and giving gifts or other items of a sexual or personal nature.
    3. Physical conduct of a sexual nature such as touching, kissing, hugging, messaging, brushing up against another person, having sex or attempting to have sexual relationships with another person.

    » Read More

  • Registered Student Organization Manual: Advertisement, Promotion, and Solicitation 13-14

    Speech Code Category: Other Speech Codes

    1. Advertising, promoting, soliciting, selling, or distributing or posting of material of any nature by commercial or noncommercial organization on University-owned or University-controlled property or at University-sponsored activities is prohibited without prior approval from the Director of Student Activities.

    » Read More

  • Student Handbook: Code of Student Conduct- Personal Conduct Infractions 13-14

    Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies

    Physical abuse, verbal abuse, intimidation, harassment, coercion, or threat thereof against any person on
    campus or at any University authorized event.

    » Read More


Green Light Policies
  • Free speech at Louisiana universities? It’s never too late to start: James Varney

    December 30, 2012

    by James Varney The Times-Picayune   Here’s a New Year’s wish for 2013: this year, on the 222nd anniversary of the Bill of Rights’ ratification, Louisiana colleges and universities will honor the freedom of speech. Thus far, unfortunately, defending the First Amendment is not a resolution many Louisiana schools of higher learning have kept. The Foundation for Individual Rights in Education grades schools nationwide in terms of their commitment to free speech, a thing that, in theory anyway, would need no protection in a genuine marketplace of ideas. In Louisiana, not one of 7 public and 1 private colleges and universities analyzed […]

    » Read More
  • UMass Chancellor: Campus Leaders Must Encourage Debate, Not Censorship

    July 31, 2013

    Far too often, college administrators fail to recognize the value of free speech in education and instead take action to censor students’ protected expression. However, Kumble Subbaswamy, Chancellor at University of Massachusetts, Amherst, commendably advocated for free speech in a recent article for The Huffington Post.  Commenting on recent free speech controversies involving Rolling Stone magazine and Northwestern University, Subbaswamy voiced his support for the freedoms FIRE works hard to defend: The Bill of Rights in the Constitution is unprecedented in its protection of free speech, even hateful speech. It is those protections that form the enduring foundation of U.S. […]

    » Read More
  • FIRE Cited in University Policy, But Speech Code Gets It Wrong on ‘Cyberbullying’

    August 16, 2012

    In what may be a first, FIRE has been directly cited in a university policy regulating student expression. Northwestern State University (NSU) in Louisiana maintains a Student Handbook policy on “Cyberbullying” (PDF) that states, in relevant part:  Cyberbullying involves the use of information technology (email, websites, social networking, internet messaging, or any other technology) for hostile behavior to harm or to upset others. A person cannot easily get away from cyberbullying since using email and the internet are everyday practices. For more information on bullying, visit the following sites: [...] http://the fire.org/article/12945.html While we have a lot of experience analyzing […]

    » Read More