Florida State University

Location: Tallahassee, Florida
Type: Public

Speech Code Rating

Florida State University has been given the speech code rating Green. Green light institutions are those colleges and universities whose policies nominally protect free speech. Read more

This school has adopted the chicago statement for free speech. This school has adopted the chicago statement for free speech. This school has adopted the chicago statement for free speech.
  • Student Conduct Code: Sex Discrimination and Sexual Misconduct

    Speech Code Rating: Green
    Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies
    Last updated: February 18, 2020

    A. Sex Discrimination and Sexual Misconduct 2. Sex/Gender-based Harassment. Conduct toward a person based on sex, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression that is so severe, pervasive, and objectively offensive that it creates a hostile work or educational environment for the person; a... Read More
  • Discrimination Report

    Speech Code Rating: Green
    Speech Code Category: Policies on Bias and Hate Speech
    Last updated: March 12, 2020

    The University values and embraces the ideals of freedom of thought and freedom of expression, both of which must be vitally sustained as the University pursues its mission of excellence as a comprehensive, graduate-research University with a liberal arts base. While these freedoms protect controversial ideas and di... Read More
  • 4-OP-H-13 Electronic Mail Policy

    Speech Code Rating: Green
    Speech Code Category: Internet Usage Policies
    Last updated: April 9, 2020

    Spam – Unwanted and unsolicited email or material created or knowingly disseminated in such a large volume that it tends to disrupt the proper functioning of university information technology resources or individuals’ ability to use such resources. Spam is most often sent to a large number of email a... Read More
  • Student Conduct Code: Scope

    Speech Code Rating: Green
    Speech Code Category: Advertised Commitments to Free Expression
    Last updated: February 18, 2020

    The University fully recognizes and values the right of all students and individuals to seek knowledge, debate ideas, form opinions, and freely express views in accordance with the expectations set forth in this Code. Read More
  • FSU Policy 2-2: Sex Discrimination and Sexual Misconduct

    Speech Code Rating: Green
    Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies
    Last updated: September 3, 2020

    Conduct violates this Policy when it: … unreasonably interferes with an individual’s access to educational or employment opportunities or benefits; or is severe, pervasive, and objectively offensive enough to create a hostile environment. … Sexual Harassment: Unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sex... Read More
  • Student Conduct Code: Harassment and Bullying Behavior

    Speech Code Rating: Green
    Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies
    Last updated: February 18, 2020

    C. Harassment and Bullying Behavior 1. Conduct, not of a sexual nature, including any gesture, written, verbal or physical act, or any electronic communication (includes text messages and postings on web-sites or social media), that places a person in reasonable fear of harm to their person or damage to their pro... Read More
  • 4-OP-H-5 Information Security Policy

    Speech Code Rating: Green
    Speech Code Category: Internet Usage Policies
    Last updated: March 25, 2020

    Spam – Unwanted and unsolicited email or material created or knowingly disseminated in such a large volume that it tends to disrupt the proper functioning of university information technology resources or individuals’ ability to use such resources. Spam is most often sent to a large number of email accou... Read More
  • Undergraduate Bulletin: A Summons to Responsible Freedom

    Speech Code Rating: Green
    Speech Code Category: Policies on Tolerance, Respect, and Civility
    Last updated: September 3, 2020

    The University is a place of both assent and dissent and is committed to academic freedom and civil dialogue. In a free and vigorous academic community an ongoing clash of ideas is to be expected and encouraged. The University has a special obligation to see that all have an opportunity to be heard. … Relation... Read More
  • Adopted Regulations: Administrative Matters- FSU-2.0131 Posting, Chalking Advertising and Active Distribution of Materials on FSU Campuses

    Speech Code Rating: Green
    Speech Code Category: Posting and Distribution Policies
    Last updated: September 3, 2020

    Materials posted or distributed may not: promote the use or sale of alcohol or illegal drugs; display trademarks and or brand names of alcohol or illegal drug products; contain material that is obscene or defamatory; be directed to incite or produce imminent lawless action; or violate any University policy or regula... Read More
  • Adopted Regulations: Student Life- FSU-3.003 Freedom of Expression Rights and Responsibilities, Open Platform Areas

    Speech Code Rating: Green
    Speech Code Category: Protest and Demonstration Policies
    Last updated: February 18, 2020

    Certain outdoor areas of campus may be reserved by individuals or groups or otherwise may be restricted for official University use. Groups planning outdoor assemblies should provide advance notice per applicable event permitting processes to ensure space availability and the adequate provision of security; however,... Read More
  • Adopted Regulations: Student Life- FSU-3.003 Freedom of Expression Rights and Responsibilities, Open Platform Areas

    Speech Code Rating: Green
    Speech Code Category: Posting and Distribution Policies
    Last updated: September 3, 2020

    Students’ right to write and distribute literature and to express thoughts and beliefs is acknowledged. Individual students, recognized student organizations, and other student groups may circulate non-commercial literature, provided it is identified by authorship and sponsorship, subject to applicable provisions of... Read More
At present, FIRE has not been publicly involved in any cases at this school.
  • City of Aventura demands Florida State University’s administration violate a student’s rights over social media comments

    July 21, 2020

    At Florida State University, an undergraduate’s online comments — some of them posted when he was 12 years old — have yielded calls for the university’s administration to remove him from his role as president of the student senate, if not his expulsion from the university. Now, a city council at the opposite end of… Read more

  • Florida State dumps unconstitutional speech restrictions, earns highest free speech rating from FIRE

    April 9, 2020

    FIRE’s top rating is held by only two other institutions in Florida, and just 54 nationwide. Florida State: “…we believe that the ability to freely engage in the exchange of ideas is an integral part of a thriving campus community.” TALLAHASSEE, Fla., April 9, 2020 — Florida State University revised its policies on free expression… Read more

  • Florida becomes ninth state to ban restrictive campus free speech zones

    March 12, 2018

    Florida State, University of West Florida, Florida Atlantic, and other schools must change speech policies TALLAHASSEE, Mar. 12, 2018 — Yesterday, Florida Gov. Rick Scott signed into law SB 4, a broad higher education bill, which was amended to include free speech protections at the state’s public colleges and universities. The new law prohibits Florida… Read more

  • Florida State University suspends free speech and freedom of assembly until further notice

    November 10, 2017

    In the wake of a student’s tragic death, administrators at Florida State University are clamping down on free speech and freedom of association by banning Greek activities until further notice. If this sounds familiar, it’s because the facts closely match what happened at Louisiana State University just over a month ago. Following the possibly alcohol-related… Read more

  • Students at Florida State University Show What Campus Dialogue Can Look Like

    September 29, 2016

    We see too many stories about students who try to silence viewpoints they don’t want expressed on campus and who thus miss opportunities to take part in difficult, and often important, conversations. But not enough focus is given to students who make an effort to engage with the views of those with whom they passionately… Read more

  • Speech Code of the Month: Florida State University

    July 10, 2015

    FIRE announces its Speech Code of the Month for July 2015: Florida State University (FSU). FSU’s Equal Opportunity and Non-Discrimination Statement provides that “[b]ehavior that may be considered offensive, demeaning, or degrading to persons or groups will not be tolerated.” This language is so broad that you could drive a truck through it, leaving the… Read more

  • FIRE Staff Appearing on Campus in Honor of Constitution Day

    September 17, 2014

    FIRE staff members will be traveling to Florida State University (FSU) and North Carolina State University (NC State) to speak to student groups as a part of their Constitution Week celebrations. Azhar Majeed, Director of FIRE’s Individual Rights Education Program, will be speaking at FSU on “Fighting Back Against Speech Codes and Free Speech Zones at Florida State.” Robert Shibley, FIRE’s Senior Vice President, will be speaking at NC State on “Liberty in Peril: Speech Codes on Our Nation’s College Campuses.” Students, faculty, and FIRE supporters in both areas are invited to hear the presentations.

  • FIRE’s Sevcenko: A Closer Look at the Winston Case

    January 31, 2014

    College football’s 2013 season is over, but unfortunately the issue of sexual assault on campus is a year-round issue. A few days ago, The Michigan Daily reported that former kicker Brendan Gibbons was expelled from the University of Michigan, soon after he was no longer eligible to play football but years after an alleged sexual assault… Read more

  • ‘Tampa Bay Times’ on Potential for Civil Rights Violations at Florida State

    December 13, 2013

    For her most recent column, Tampa Bay Times columnist Robyn E. Blumner spoke with FIRE’s Robert Shibley about campus sexual misconduct hearings. Blumner discussed why universities are “stuck in the middle” between allegations that they are not doing enough to punish students accused of sexual misconduct and reminders from FIRE and other civil liberties organizations that they must… Read more

  • Ball State Student’s Tweets Receive Criticism, No Official Sanction

    September 13, 2013

    After Ball State University Student Government Association (SGA) president Malachi Randolph posted a series of derogatory tweets last week, the Ball State administration shared just the right message about the repercussions of such speech: “His remarks are not a violation of any university policy or law,” said Tony Proudfoot, a university spokesperson. “He is likely… Read more

  • ‘Zero Tolerance’ for Racist Speech Raises First Amendment Concerns at Florida State

    September 6, 2013

    At Florida State University, a controversy has erupted in response to a student’s posting on the social media platform Vine. FSUNews.com reports: The student, Mandy Thurston, made racially-charged comments on the social media platform Vine, which ignited outrage from Florida State and Florida A&M University students alike. The statement was perceived as highly offensive and… Read more

  • Students Strive to Open Florida State’s Campus to More Free Speech

    April 12, 2013

    If ever a major public university needed campus activism to prod along improvement of its policies regulating student speech, Florida State University does. Despite being legally bound by the First Amendment as a public institution of higher education, FSU has a whopping 11 speech codes, including two “red light” policies and nine “yellow light” policies…. Read more

  • More Sunlight Needed to Disinfect Speech Codes in Florida

    November 13, 2012

    FIRE’s own Greg Lukianoff and Azhar Majeed highlight speech code problems at colleges and universities in the state of Florida in an interview with Eric Giunta in today’s Sunshine State News. As Azhar notes in the article: "The vast majority of Florida schools have at least one policy that clearly and substantially restricts free speech… Read more

  • Still Looking for Answers from Phi Beta Kappa

    December 14, 2005

    FIRE recently wrote a letter to John Churchill, secretary of the Phi Beta Kappa Society, in which we ask the organization to stand behind its stated commitment to freedom of expression by addressing the issue of repressive speech codes at its member institutions. In a recent article in The Chronicle of Higher Education (subscription required),… Read more

  • So, What I Hear You Saying Is—You Aren’t Offended

    August 29, 2005

    The NCAA controversy surrounding the supposedly “hostile” and “abusive” Native American team names is a reflection of more than a good idea gone bad—it’s a classic case of what happens when a body of administrators enacts policies that are too vague and subjective. As noted by my colleague Robert in a previous entry, the NCAA… Read more