University of Florida: Faculty Reportedly Told To Avoid Words ‘Critical’ And ‘Race’ In Course Design

Category: Free Speech
Schools: University of Florida

On November 30, 2021, Christopher Busey, a professor at the University of Florida, filed a grievance alleging that he was pressured not to use the words “critical” or “race” in his curriculum and program design. On December 2, FIRE wrote to UF arguing that directing faculty to avoid specific words in course titles or program design creates a chilling effect on faculty members’ academic freedom rights, which are protected by the First Amendment and UF policy. FIRE called on UF to affirm that it would not discipline or interfere with the pedagogical autonomy of Busey or any other faculty member based on the language that they choose to describe their courses, programs, or concentrations or the content therein. On December 9, UF responded affirming its “commitment to the pedagogical autonomy of its faculty.”