Brigham Young University

Location: Provo, Utah
Type: Private
Federal Circuit: 10th Circuit

Speech Code Rating

Brigham Young University has been given the speech code rating Warning. FIRE provides a "Warning" rating to prospective students and faculty members when a private university clearly and consistently states that it holds a certain set of values above a commitment to freedom of speech. Read more here.

At present, FIRE has not been involved in any cases at this school.
Not Rated Policies
  • Sexual Misconduct Policy

    Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies
    Last updated: June 25, 2018

    Sexual harassment is unwelcome and unwanted conduct of a sexual nature, whether verbal, nonverbal, or physical, and can include unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other conduct of a sexual nature. Conduct is unwelcome and unwanted if the individual toward whom it is directed did not request or invite it and regarded the conduct as undesirable or offensive. A wide variety of sexual conduct may constitute sexual harassment, including, but not limited to, the following:

    • Sexually suggestive or sexually offensive joking, flirting, or comments
    • Unwelcome and intentional touching
    • Sexually oriented verbal abuse or threats
    • Sexually oriented comments about an individual’s body
    • Displaying objects or pictures that are sexual in nature
    • Sending sexually explicit or offensive communications (e.g., text messages, emails, social media messages or posts)
    • Sexual exploitation
    • Voyeurism

    Sexual harassment of any kind is contrary to the teachings of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and the Church Educational System Honor Code. It is also prohibited by Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (prohibiting unlawful discrimination, including sex discrimination, in employment) when it affects the conditions of employment, and Title IX of the Educational Amendments of 1972 (prohibiting sex discrimination in federally-funded education programs and activities) when it affects the educational environment. Sexual harassment generally falls within one of the two following categories: … Hostile environment sexual harassment—when the unwelcome and unwanted sexual conduct is so severe or pervasive that it alters the conditions of an employee’s employment and creates a hostile, intimidating, or abusive working or educational environment or it denies or limits a student’s or employee’s ability to participate in or benefit from the university’s programs or activities.

    Unwelcome sexual conduct that is mildly offensive and isolated, incidental, or sporadic does not rise to the level of unlawful sexual harassment under Title IX or Title VII, even though it may still be considered sexual harassment in violation of this policy and the Church Educational System Honor Code.

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  • Undergraduate Catalog: Church Educational System Honor Code

    Speech Code Category: Other Speech Codes
    Last updated: June 25, 2018

    As a matter of personal commitment, the faculty, administration, staff, and students of Brigham Young University, Brigham Young University-Hawaii, BYU-I, and LDS Business College seek to demonstrate in daily living on and off-campus those moral virtues encompassed in the gospel of Jesus Christ, and will:

    • Be honest
    • Live a chaste and virtuous life
    • Obey the law and all campus policies
    • Use clean language
    • Respect others
    • Abstain from alcoholic beverages, tobacco, tea, coffee, and substance abuse
    • Participate regularly in church services
    • Observe Dress and Grooming Standards
    • Encourage others in their commitment to comply with the Honor Code

    Sexual misconduct; obscene or indecent conduct or expressions; disorderly or disruptive conduct; participation in gambling activities; involvement with pornographic, erotic, indecent, or offensive material; and any other conduct or action inconsistent with the principles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and the Honor Code is not permitted.

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  • BYU action on Jones lamented

    September 12, 2006

    PROVO — Leaders of the American Association of University Professors are criticizing Brigham Young University for placing physics professor Steven Jones on paid leave while university administrators conduct a review of his statements and research about the attacks on the World Trade Center. AAUP general secretary Roger Bowen called BYU’s decision “distressing” and said Jones shouldn’t have been removed from teaching two classes this semester for statements made outside the classroom. Jones has published a paper — — suggesting that evidence shows the World Trade Center towers fell on Sept. 11, 2001, because of pre-set demolition charges, not just […]

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  • BYU criticized for putting professor on leave

    September 12, 2006

    A BYU professor’s conspiracy theory about 9-11 is generating plenty of talk. But this morning the criticism is aimed not at the professor, but at Brigham Young University, for putting Dr. Steven Jones on paid leave. Critics say the issue here is academic freedom. The American Association of University Professors, or AAUP, believes academic freedom protects the professor’s statements outside the classroom. But the major question that remains– what did he say in the classroom? Physics Professor Steven Jones says he only offered his 9-11 theory when students asked him about it. Dr. Jones says evidence at Ground Zero suggests […]

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  • Weekly Media Round-Up: Quick Victory at Binghamton Keeps FIRE Looming Large

    November 21, 2008

    It’s a good day when FIRE is able to declare victory in a nasty dispute before the waves of attention generated by our initial involvement have had time to settle. Such was the case with Binghamton University’s (BU’s) Department of Social Work, which dropped its investigation of graduate student Andre Massena within a day of FIRE exposing his egregious treatment at the hands of BU administrators. The Volokh Conspiracy, which picked up FIRE’s press release detailing BU’s appalling violations of Massena’s constitutional rights within hours of its being issued, was equally quick to report FIRE’s victory. Students for Academic Freedom […]

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  • Sectarian Institutions and Free Speech

    April 17, 2007

    As mentioned in previous blog entries, George Mason University Professor Jon B. Gould’s call for the dissolution of FIRE (subscribers only, unfortunately) in The Chronicle of Higher Education’s Review section is riddled with mischaracterizations and inaccuracies. Having disproved his example of FIRE’s “exaggeration” of speech codes and pointed out his questionable understanding of how sexual harassment regulations are constructed on campus, we would like to turn now to his contention that FIRE does not much care about censorship on sectarian religious campuses: One need only look at FIRE’s Web site. During the first week of February this year, half of […]

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  • Embattled Professor to Leave Brigham Young

    October 23, 2006

    Inside Higher Ed reports today that Professor Steven Jones—whom BYU stripped of his teaching duties because of his view that 9/11 was orchestrated by the United States—has reached an agreement with the university under which he is “retiring from his job as a physics instructor” at BYU.

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  • ‘Inside Higher Ed’ Reports on Recent Cases of Censorship on Campus

    September 12, 2006

    As classes begin this fall across the nation, debate over censorship on university campuses continues to rage. Inside Higher Ed had an article yesterday, on the fifth anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks, detailing several recent controversies. Some involve the censorship of controversial ideas and figures by the university, others the defense of those ideas.   At Brigham Young University, a professor has been relieved of his two courses because of his statements supporting a conspiracy theory that explosives led to the collapse of the World Trade Center. An art exhibit at the University of Maine was shut down by […]

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