Alcorn State University

Location: Alcorn State, Mississippi
Website: http://www.alcorn.edu
Type: Public
Federal Circuit: 5th Circuit

Speech Code Rating

Alcorn 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.

At present, FIRE does not maintain information on this school's policies.
Yellow Light Policies
  • Student Handbook: Code of Conduct- Cyber-Bullying and Social Media Abuse

    Speech Code Category: Bullying Policies
    Last updated: October 20, 2015

    Cyberbullying is the use of cell phone or other devices to send or post emails, text messages or images intended to harass (See Student Conduct definition of Harassment) another person.

    » Read More

  • Student Handbook: Code of Conduct- Assault

    Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies
    Last updated: October 20, 2015

    The intentional harassment, degradation, threat or intimidation of another in an attempt to commit a battery or the intentional placing of another in reasonable apprehension of receiving a battery. This includes engaging in, attempting or intending to engage in any form of verbal or mental abuse or coercion that is directed toward another person or group of people which creates an intimidating, fearful or offensive environment in the classrooms, offices, residence halls and anywhere else on the University premises.

    » Read More

  • Student Handbook: Code of Conduct- Sexual Harassment

    Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies
    Last updated: October 20, 2015

    Regardless of sexual gender, personal affiliation, and/or affiliation with the University, sexual harassment is defined as repeated unsolicited sexual advances, request for sexual favors or other verbal, visual or physical conduct or communication with sexual overtones deemed by the victim as harassment (See Student Conduct definition of Harassment).

    » Read More

  • Educational Equity and Inclusion: Sexual Misconduct

    Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies
    Last updated: October 20, 2015

    By definition, sexual harassment is

    • unwelcome, gender-based verbal or physical conduct that is,
    • sufficiently severe, persistent or pervasive that it,
    • unreasonably interferes with, denies or limits someone’s ability to participate in or benefit from the university’s educational program and/or activities

    It is important to note that harassment can occur in a variety of contexts, including face-to-face interactions, emails, and other forms of written communication, social media, etc.

    Examples of Harassment

    Most of us are familiar with the general concept of sexual harassment, yet the term has a wide range of meanings.  Clearly, it is unacceptable to utilize sexualized words or actions that create discomfort for others.  Thus, inappropriate touching, comments, gestures, or other behaviors that reasonably make another individual uncomfortable enough to interfere with their ability to fully participate in their educational program or unemployment would constitute sexual harassment.  It could include attempts to: coerce an unwilling person into a sexual relationship; repeatedly subject a person to inappropriate, unwelcome sexual attention; punish a refusal to comply with a sexual based request; or condition a benefit on submitting to sexual advances. The key notion is not what you intend – it’s about the other person’s interpretation.

    Here are a few concrete examples that may help to provide additional understanding:

    • A professor insists that a student have sex with him/her in exchange for a good grade. This is harassment regardless of whether the student gives in to the request.
    • A student repeatedly sends sexually oriented jokes around on an email list s/he created, even when asked to stop, causing one recipient to avoid the sender on campus and in the residence hall in which they live.
    • Explicit sexual pictures are displayed in an advisor’s office, on the exterior of a residence hall door, or on a computer monitor in a public space.
    • Two supervisors frequently ‘rate’ several employees’ bodies and sex appeal, commenting suggestively about their clothing and appearance.
    • A professor engages students in discussions in class about their past sexual experiences, yet the conversation is not in any way germane to the subject matter of the class. She probes for explicit details, and demands that students answer her, though they are clearly uncomfortable and hesitant.
    • An ex-girlfriend widely spreads false stories about her sex life with her former boyfriend to the clear discomfort of the boyfriend, turning him into a social outcast on campus
    • Male students take to calling a particular student “Monica” because of her resemblance to Monica Lewinsky. Soon, everyone adopts this nickname for her, and she is the target of relentless remarks about cigars, the president, “sexual relations” and Weight Watchers.
    • A student grabbed another student by the hair, then grabbed her breast and put his mouth on it.  He says it was just being playful, but it’s not appropriate or allowed.

    » Read More


Green Light Policies
  • Student Handbook: Code of Conduct- Harassment (Physical or Verbal)

    Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies
    Last updated: October 20, 2015

    Harassment: (physical, verbal, graphic, written or electronic) that is (1) unwelcome; (2) discriminatory on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age disability, genetic information, sexual orientation, or veteran status; (3) directed at an individual; and (4) so severe, pervasive, and objectively offensive that a reasonable person with the same characteristics of the victim would be adversely affected to a degree that interferes with his or her ability to participate in or to realize the intended benefits of an institutional activity, opportunity, or resource.

    » Read More


  • FIRE Report Finds Very Restrictive Speech Codes at American Universities

    January 21, 2014

    by Alec Torres The Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE) released its annual report on college-campus speech codes last week finding that while the percentage of colleges that seriously infringe upon students’ free-speech rights has diminished in recent years, many universities still burden students with overbearing and sometimes ridiculous speech regulations. Here’s a look at some of the most egregious speech codes that FIRE found: The University of Connecticut requires that “every member of the University shall refrain from actions that intimidate, humiliate, or demean persons or groups, or that undermine their security or self-esteem.” At Athens State University in Alabama, […]

    » Read More
  • Free-speech policies questioned

    August 16, 2010

    Students at Mississippi universities may have to watch what they say more than those in other states because of policies that free-speech advocates say are oppressive. At Ole Miss, someone could theoretically get in trouble for sending an e-mail about how much they “hate” rival Mississippi State. Jackson State students could be punished for unsolicited flirting. Speaking freely outside so-called “free-speech zones” on most of the campuses could get students in trouble, even though a federal court has deemed that unconstitutional. Adam Kissel, of the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education, said the nonprofit group hears from hundreds of college […]

    » Read More
  • In Mississippi, ‘The Clarion-Ledger’ Reports on Dangers of State Colleges’ Speech Codes

    August 16, 2010

    In today’s edition of The Clarion-Ledger, the Jackson, Mississippi newspaper reports on speech codes maintained at public colleges statewide. Spurred by FIRE’s recent victory at nearby Hinds Community College, reporter Elizabeth Crisp writes: Students at Mississippi universities may have to watch what they say more than those in other states because of policies that free-speech advocates say are oppressive. At Ole Miss, someone could theoretically get in trouble for sending an e-mail about how much they “hate” rival Mississippi State. Jackson State students could be punished for unsolicited flirting. Speaking freely outside so-called “free-speech zones” on most of the campuses […]

    » Read More