Tufts University is an educational community that has as its paramount mission the discovery and dissemination of knowledge and the pursuit of the arts through study, teaching, and research. For this community to achieve its mission, all members must have full and equal opportunity to pursue personal and intellectual growth.
Freedom of expression and inquiry are fundamental to the academic enterprise. Without freedom of expression, community members cannot fully share their knowledge or test ideas on the anvil of open debate and criticism. Without freedom of inquiry, community members cannot search for new knowledge or challenge conventional wisdom.
Freedom of expression and inquiry are not absolute. The law, for example, provides that freedom of expression does not include the right to slander the reputation of another, to engage in specified forms of harassment, to threaten or obstruct a speaker who advances unwelcome ideas, or to incite another person to violence. Scholarly inquiry also is limited by federal and state regulation, ethical tenets, and professional standards designed to protect human and animal subjects. In addition, the University seeks to ensure the orderly function of the educational enterprise and to ensure that all members of the community have the opportunity to participate in and benefit from the discovery and dissemination of knowledge.