Emory University

Location: Atlanta, Georgia
Website: http://www.emory.edu
Type: Private
Federal Circuit: 11th Circuit

Speech Code Rating

Emory University has been given the speech code rating Red. A red light university has at least one policy that both clearly and substantially restricts freedom of speech. Read more here.

At present, FIRE does not maintain information on this school's policies.

Red Light Policies

  • Residence Life Policies: Discrimination and Harassment

    Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies
    Last updated: May 14, 2015

    [Discriminatory harassment] includes but is not limited to, objectionable epithets, demeaning depiction or treatment, and threatening or actual abuse or harm.

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  • Residence Life Policies: Acts of Intolerance

    Speech Code Category: Policies on Bias and Hate Speech
    Last updated: May 14, 2015

    An [Act of Intolerance] is defined as any act directed against any person or group as a result of their personage including but not limited to race, color, national origin, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, age, ability, or veteran’s status and that has the effect of creating an offensive, demeaning, intimidating, or hostile environment for that person in particular or others who may see, hear, or otherwise witness the act. Furthermore, students’ use of epithets or names in a derogatory manner will be constituted as an [Act of Intolerance].

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Yellow Light Policies
  • Office of Equal Opportunity Programs: Discriminatory Harassment Policy

    Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies
    Last updated: May 14, 2015

    Emory’s policy prohibits discriminatory harassment of a non-sexual nature, which includes verbal, physical, or graphic conduct that denigrates or shows hostility or aversion toward an individual or group on the basis of race, color, religion, ethnic or national origin, gender, genetic information, age, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, veteran’s status, or any factor that is a prohibited consideration under applicable law, and that

    • Has the purpose or effect of creating an intimidating, hostile, or offensive employmenteducational, or living environment; or
    • Has the purpose or effect of unreasonably interfering with an individual’s work performance or a student’s academic performance.

    Prohibited behavior includes conduct or material (physical, oral, written, graphic, , electronic messages or media posted or circulated in the community) involving epithets, slurs, negative stereotyping, threatening, intimidating, or hostile acts, that serve no scholarly purpose appropriate to the academic context and gratuitously denigrates or shows hostility or aversion toward an individual or group because of race, color, religion, ethnic or national origin, gender, genetic information, age, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, veteran’s status, or any factor protected by applicable law.

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  • Undergraduate Code of Conduct: Expectations of Conduct

    Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies
    Last updated: May 14, 2015

    Although it is neither possible nor necessary to specify every instance of misconduct that could result in disciplinary action against a student, the following are examples of the types of behavior that are considered violations of this Code.

    . . .

    Misuse of computer or network resources, including but not limited to: use of another individual’s identification or password; using computer or network resources to send anonymous, obscene, unwanted, harassing, or abusive messages;

    . . .

    Engaging in conduct that is likely to cause physical injury or emotional distress or otherwise endanger any person.

    Threatening,  intimidating, or coercing any person.

     

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  • Information Technology Conditions of Use

    Speech Code Category: Internet Usage Policies
    Last updated: May 14, 2015

    Limited and reasonable personal use of Emory’s IT resources is acceptable and allowed, as long as it does not: … Reflect poorly on the institution

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  • Office of Equal Opportunity Programs: Discriminatory Harassment Policy

    Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies
    Last updated: May 14, 2015

    Sexual harassment includes unwelcome conduct, based on sex or on gender stereotypes, when;

    • Submission to such conduct is made either explicitly or implicitly a term or condition of an individual’s employment or student status or;
    • Submission to or rejection of such conduct is used as the basis for employment or academic decisions affecting such individual or;
    • Such conduct has the purpose or effect of unreasonably interfering with a person’s university employment, academic performance or participation in university programs or activities, or creates a working, learning, program or activity environment that a reasonable person would find intimidating, hostile or offensive.

    Sexual harassment may include, for example, repeatedly subjecting a person to egregious, unwelcome sexual attention, physical or verbal advances, sexual flirtations or propositions, vulgar talk or jokes, degrading graphic materials or verbal comments of a sexual nature about an individual or his or her appearance, or the display of sexually suggestive objects outside a scholarly context and purpose.

    Sexual harassment includes sexual misconduct, sexual violence, sexual assault, intimate partner violence, stalking, and gender-based bullying.  Prohibited sexual harassment in the working or learning environment includes an attempt to coerce an unwilling person into a sexual relationship; to punish a refusal to comply with a sexual based request; to condition a benefit on submitting to sexual advances, and to make direct or implied threats that submission to sexual advances will be a condition of employment or academic opportunity. Sexual harassment may also occur in the form of unwelcome, sexually suggestive cartoons, pictures, email, text, tweets, video or other graphic materials that may contribute to a hostile working or learning environment.

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Green Light Policies
  • Office of Equal Opportunity Programs: Discriminatory Harassment Policy

    Speech Code Category: Advertised Commitments to Free Expression
    Last updated: May 14, 2015

    Emory University is an inquiry-driven, ethically engaged, and diverse community dedicated to the ideals of free academic discourse in teaching, scholarship, and community service. Emory University abides by the values of academic freedom and is built on the assumption that contention among different views is positive and necessary for the expansion of knowledge, both for the University itself and as a training ground for society at large. Emory is committed to the widest possible scope for the free circulation of ideas.

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  • Campus Life Student Organization Speakers Policy

    Speech Code Category: Advertised Commitments to Free Expression
    Last updated: May 14, 2015

    The University places a very high value on freedom of speech and on the opportunity for intellectual stimulation that can be a product of controversial content.

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  • Sensitive Students, Faculty Make for Interesting Times on Campus

    May 10, 2016

    By Staff at The Oklahoman DURING a commencement speech at the University of Michigan last month, former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg talked in part about the need for students to expose themselves to new ideas and try to get along with people they don’t agree with. This is among “the most important skills in the working world,” Bloomberg said… Read more here.

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  • Hamilton Awards Speech: “The Only True ‘Safe Space’ is Liberty and Freedom”

    May 10, 2016

    By Heather Mac Donald at Heatstreet A college bureaucrat, gazing over this gathering, would undoubtedly conclude that she was in an “unsafe space.”… Read more here.

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  • Emory University Open Expression Committee Opinion on Trump Chalkings, ‘Mein Trumpf’ Poster and Other Matters

    May 10, 2016

    By Eugene Volokh at The Washington Post Emory University’s Standing Committee for Open Expression — an official university body — has just issued another broadly speech-protective opinioninterpreting the Emory Open Expression Policy. (Note that my brother and co-blogger Sasha Volokh, a professor at Emory Law School, is on the committee.) The opinion, of course, is constrained by the terms of the policy, but I think it faithfully interprets the policy as offering broad protection for student speech. The opinion has no formal precedential value, as I understand it, but I suspect that in practice it will be quite influential. An […]

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  • Chalk One up for Free Speech on Campus

    May 3, 2016

    By Dick Poman at NewsWorks The freak show grinds on — Carly Fiorina fell off a stage, a perfect metaphor; Ted Cruz tried in vain to reason with Trumpitistas who brainlessly chanted Der Leader’s “Lyin’ Ted” mantra; Hillary Clinton said that her March promise to put coal miners “out of business” was merely a “misstatement” (yeah, sure); Trump said that Cruz’s dad aided Lee Harvey Oswald (?!?) — but let’s briefly leave the trail. Please. If only to salvage our sanity… Read more here.

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  • What Might Save us From ‘Victimhood’ Culture

    April 29, 2016

    By Mary Rezac at Catholic News Agency Denver, Colo., Apr 29, 2016 / 03:02 am (CNA/EWTN News).- “I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it. This quote from British author Evelyn Beatrice Hall (often misattributed to Voltaire) might sound rather foreign on many college campuses throughout the country today, who in many ways seem to prefer to be defended from the First Amendment rather than to defend it… Read more here.

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  • Sidewalk Messages Result in Free Speech Dust-up at UW-La Crosse

    April 22, 2016

    By Nathan Hansen at La Crosse Tribune Pro-Trump political messages — and the campus’ official response to them — have upset a number of students at the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse… Read more here.

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  • Iowa Students Fight for Right to Chalk

    April 20, 2016

    By Jeff Charis-Carison at Iowa City Press-Citizen When members of Students for Life drew hearts on a walkway at the University of Iowa last week, they kicked off the latest skirmish in a new frontier of free-speech controversies on college campuses nationwide: a battle over chalk art… Read more here.

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  • Jefferson Muzzles go to 50 Colleges and Universities

    April 20, 2016

    By Eugene Volokh at The Washington Post The Thomas Jefferson Center (with which I’m involved as a member of the board of trustees) has just released its yearlyJefferson Muzzles, so I thought I’d pass along the center’s explanation of who the “winners” are this year. Note that the Ccnter supports academic freedom and free speech broadly, and not just those aspects that are legally protected by the First Amendment; so you’ll see many private institutions mentioned here, even though the First Amendment as such does not restrict private entities, as well as the public institutions to which the First Amendment applies… Read […]

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  • ‘The Chalkening’ of Trump: Terror Grows on Campuses

    April 18, 2016

    By Bob Unruh at WND On university campuses, where many enthusiastic students vote for the first time, political candidates’ slogans typically appear on signs, bumper stickers, T-shirts, placards, dorm-room walls and even in chalk on sidewalks… Read more here.

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  • Poll: Students Support Free Speech, as Long as You Don’t Intend to Offend Anyone

    April 7, 2016

    By Stephen Loiaconi at KVAL WASHINGTON (Sinclair Broadcast Group) — A majority of American college students support restrictions on “intentionally offensive” speech on campus, according to a new study, but their broader views on First Amendment rights reflect those of society in general… Read more here.  

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  • The Sissification of Academia

    April 6, 2016

    By Bob Barr at Townhall For decades, liberals have forewarned the destruction by conservatives of their Ivory Towers of academia. They whine that conservatives are out to “starve” educational institutions by cutting their bloated, taxpayer-funded budgets; they blame conservative opposition to their precious Common Core scheme as “paranoia,” and they defend teacher unions to the death… Read more here.

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  • Emory University Prez Just Responded to ‘Offensive’ Chalk Hoopla in a Way Trump Fans Are Gonna Love

    April 4, 2016

    By Chris Martin at Independent Journal  Last week, students at Emory University were all aflutter over “#Trump2016” and similar political phrases scrawled in chalk on the school’s campus. Feeling “unsafe” and “afraid,” they took their concerns to the administration… Read more here.

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  • Hoff: Divisive Rhetoric no Excuse for Stifling Speech

    April 2, 2016

    By Casey Hoff at Sheboygan Press The outcry of students at Emory University in Atlanta — who felt intimidated and “unsafe” because they had the horror of seeing “Trump 2016” written in chalk on the campus grounds — is an example of a dangerous trend on college campuses in the United States where feeling “unsafe” is cited as a reason to suppress political speech… Read more here.

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  • Pro-Trump Chalk Messages Cause Conflicts on College Campuses

    April 1, 2016

    By Katie Rogers at The New York Times Students at several college campuses are clashing with their administrations and debating the limits of free speech after finding chalk messages voicing support for Donald J. Trump scrawled on campus property… Read more here.

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  • Emory President Responds to Chalk Incident with Chalking of His Own

    April 1, 2016

    By Anthony Gockowski at Campus Reform Despite pressure from students, Emory University President James W. Wagner has reaffirmed his school’s commitment to free speech… Read more here.

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  • Action Bronson Cut From University Concert: Another Free Speech Violation

    April 1, 2016

    By Max Kutner at Newsweek In what is being called another attack on free speech at American colleges by campus liberals, a student-run programming board at George Washington University (GW) has responded to student outcry by removing a controversial rapper, who some say is transphobic and promotes rape, from an upcoming concert lineup… Read more here.

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  • Some Emory Students Push Back on “Fear” Over Trump Messages

    March 30, 2016

    By Staff at Atlanta Journal Constitution  Another chapter is rolling out at Emory University, after last week’s messages supporting Donald Trump were written on chalk on the Atlanta school’s sidewalks… Read more here.

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  • Emory President Does His Own Chalking: ‘Emory Stands for Free Expression!’

    March 30, 2016

    By Greg Piper at The College Fix  He can chalk the chalk, but can he walk the walk?… Read more here.

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  • Emory Students Explain Why ‘Trump 2016’ Chalk Messages Triggered Protest

    March 25, 2016

    By Max Kutner at Newsweek When the words “Trump 2016” and other chalked messages supporting the Republican presidential front-runner appeared Monday around the Emory University campus in Atlanta, students say they immediately felt threatened. Within hours, they launched a protest. … Read more here.

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  • Trump Chalk at Emory University

    March 24, 2016

    By Peter Hart at National Coalition Against Censorship  On March 22 the watchdogs at FIRE (Foundation for Individual Rights in Education) posted a piece headlined, “Good News for Free Speech at Emory University.” The Atlanta college was commended for how it handled a case of vandalism against a pro-Palestine student exhibit, and a working group addressing student complaints decined to support a ban on the controversial app Yik Yak. … Read more here.

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  • Emory Students Want Professors Evaluated on Number of Microaggressions They Commit

    December 14, 2015

    By Robby Soave at Reason.com If Emory University students got their way, end-of-semester course evaluations would ask them to indicate whether their professors had committed “microaggressions” against them. The explicit goal of such a question on evaluations would be to punish professors who engaged in speech that offended students. According to student-protesters, as reported by The Emory Wheel: We demand that the faculty evaluations that each student is required to complete for each of their professors include at least two open-ended questions such as: “Has this professor made any microaggressions towards you on account of your race, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, […]

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  • Emory Committee Releases Formal Statement on ‘Chalkening’ Controversy, Political Expression

    May 11, 2016

    The Emory University Senate’s Standing Committee for Open Expression has seen the writing on the wall. Or, more specifically, on the sidewalk. The university-affiliated committee tasked with interpreting Emory’s Open Expression Policy released a comprehensive 12-page statement this week urging increased free speech protections at Emory in the wake of this semester’s controversy over pro-Donald Trump chalk messages and several other incidents that ignited debate over the bounds of political speech. The group, composed of students, faculty, administrators and staff, formally voted on the statement in late April. Emory University School of Law professor and committee member Alexander “Sasha” Volokh […]

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  • Emory President Chalks Pro-Speech Message After Trump Controversy as Students, Alumni Urge More Action (VIDEO)

    March 30, 2016

    Emory University President James Wagner has expressed his support of free speech —in chalk— following the controversy over chalk messages written on campus last week in support of Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump. President Wagner’s supportive message comes after students from Emory’s Young Americans for Liberty (YAL) chapter and a separate, non-partisan coalition of Emory alumni began parallel initiatives asking Emory to overhaul the university’s restrictive speech codes and officially commit to protecting free expression on campus. Wagner visited a YAL campus event last Friday, talked to the students, and even added his own sidewalk chalk message to the array […]

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  • So About Free Speech at Emory…

    March 23, 2016

    Just yesterday, we reported that the Emory University Senate Standing Committee for Open Expression had issued a statement strongly supporting free speech on campus. But just over the past 24 hours comes news of Emory’s apparent implosion over the appearance of “Trump 2016” chalkings on campus. Most notable, from FIRE’s perspective, is this suggestion from Emory President James Wagner: The University will review footage “up by the hospital [from] security cameras” to identify those who made the chalkings, Wagner told the protesters. He also added that if they’re students, they will go through the conduct violation process…. While Emory does […]

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  • Good News for Free Speech at Emory University

    March 22, 2016

    Last week, The Volokh Conspiracy reported that the Emory University Senate Standing Committee for Open Expression released an opinion strongly supporting free speech on campus. The opinion responds to two separate acts of vandalism within 48 hours last February targeting a wall display posted by Emory Students for Justice in Palestine (ESJP). The vandals apparently disagreed with the political messages about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict displayed on the wall and aimed to suppress ESJP’s speech. The committee’s opinion explains that the vandalism of ESJP’s display violates Emory’s Open Expression Policy. Additionally, the committee concludes the only way the wall display would […]

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  • Emory Students Demand Course Evaluations Include Rating for Microaggressions

    December 11, 2015

    College course evaluations, while valuable, do not always give a precise measure of the competence of a professor. Students, who have been judged all semester by professors, have an opportunity to pass judgment themselves. Some of them take the task seriously and offer constructive comments. For others, it’s payback time. This is a process with which I am familiar: I teach appellate legal writing at George Mason University’s law school, a required course which some students approach with as much delight as a trip to the dentist. I do my best to make the material engaging, and some students respond […]

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  • Not Everyone at Emory Got Salman Rushdie’s Important Message About Free Speech

    February 26, 2015

    Acclaimed writer Salman Rushdie spoke to students at Emory University last week about what it means to defend freedom of speech and why students must vigilantly do so. Though his plea was well-argued and powerful, it didn’t reach all Emory community members—particularly not whoever destroyed a display set up by student group Emory Students for Justice in Palestine (ESJP) Sunday night and Monday morning. In his final lecture as University Distinguished Professor, Rushdie reflected on his own experiences, from assuming in 1968 when he graduated from Cambridge University that “the battle of free expression had been won,” to facing death […]

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  • Is Emory’s Student Government Ready to Take a Stand for Free Speech?

    November 21, 2011

    There’s some good news on the free speech front at Emory University, where (as I wrote here last week) a proposed “free expression zone” policy had all appearances of being woefully misguided and actually quite bad for free speech at Emory. The Emory Wheel expressed worry about the implications of such a zone as well. Now, Student Government Association (SGA) official Andrew Hull is hitting back against the notion that this new policy will restrict free speech. Of the Wheel‘s editorial against the new policy, Hull writes: The first point that the Wheel brings up is that a free expression zone implies limitations […]

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  • Emory Students Speak out Against Proposed ‘Free Expression Zone’ Policy

    November 11, 2011

    On Wednesday I gave Emory University a shellacking over a proposed “free expression zone” policy, which was hailed in The Emory Wheel as a step forward by Emory’s student government president and a number of Emory administrators. As I wrote, the fact that such initiatives on supposedly free liberal arts campuses are so positively received does far more to show how far our tolerance for free speech has plummeted rather than grown, seeing the extent to which students are willing to censor themselves today. Fortunately, I’m not alone. Today in the Wheel, Emory graduate student Andy Ratto expresses similar sentiments, saying that […]

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  • At Emory, Understanding of Free Speech so Bad it Makes a ‘Free Speech Zone’ Sound Good

    November 9, 2011

    You know standards for free speech on campus have fallen pretty far when a plan to establish a “free speech zone” policy seems like progress and not regression. Just such a move—a joint effort between students and administrators—is underway at Emory University, The Emory Wheel student newspaper reports. The Wheel‘s article merits quoting at length because it’s chock-full of infantilization from Emory’s administrators, as well as the perception—both from students and the administration—that free speech is something that requires permission to exercise and should be turned off the moment it becomes troublesome. The Wheel reports that Student Government Association (SGA) president Adam […]

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  • Emory Professor Allowed to Say He’s an Emory Professor on Private Blog

    July 14, 2009

    Steadily growing scrutiny from the higher education media and organizations including FIRE has caused Emory University to backtrack on its previous demand that Professor J. Douglas Bremner remove the name of the university—including the fact that he is an Emory professor—from his private blog. Bremner, a professor of psychiatry and radiology at Emory’s School of Medicine, has used his blog Before You Take That Pill as a launching pad for his criticism of the pharmaceutical industry. Emory demanded that Bremner remove its name from his blog because of a January 28 post in which Bremner mocked a Seattle apartment complex’s […]

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  • The State of Free Speech on Campus: Emory University

    March 2, 2009

    Throughout the spring semester, FIRE is drawing special attention to the state of free speech at America’s top 25 national universities (as ranked by U.S. News & World Report). Today we review policies at Emory University, which FIRE has given a red-light rating for restricting free expression on campus. We start by examining whether Emory—a private institution—has made any commitments to free expression that would lead students and faculty to believe they are entitled to free speech at the university. One such commitment is found in the university’s Discriminatory Harassment Policy, which provides that Emory University abides by the values […]

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  • Free Speech under Attack during Islamo-Fascism Awareness Week

    October 25, 2007

    This week, as the Terrorism Awareness Project provides speakers at college campuses in order to increase awareness about terrorism of the Muslim extremist variety, the predictable has come to pass: speakers have been prevented by protesters from enjoying their freedom of speech. At Emory University, David Horowitz’s lecture ended prematurely when audience members refused to hear him out. A photo essay describes what protesters did to Nonie Darwish at Berkeley. Rick Santorum suffered a similar fate at Penn State. The Washington Times has a list of those who are blogging about such events here. Students who are hosting a screening […]

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