Mississippi State University

Location: Mississippi State, Mississippi
Type: Public

Speech Code Rating

Mississippi 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

Campus Climate

Overall Ranking

out of 154 colleges surveyed Read more
  • OP 03.04: Sexual Misconduct

    Speech Code Rating: Yellow
    Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies
    Last updated: November 19, 2021

    Sexual Harassment is unwelcome conduct of a sexual nature that is sufficiently severe, pervasive, or persistent and objectively offensive that it denies or limits or is likely to deny or limit a reasonable person’s ability to participate in or benefit from university programs, services, opportunities or activitie... Read More
  • Policy 3.03: Discrimination, Harassment, and Retaliation

    Speech Code Rating: Yellow
    Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies
    Last updated: October 20, 2021

    Harassment is unwelcome conduct based on a protected status that is sufficiently severe, pervasive, or persistent and objectively offensive that it denies or limits, or is likely to deny or limit a reasonable person’s ability to participate in or benefit from University programs, services, opportunities, or activiti... Read More
  • OP 03.04: Sexual Misconduct- Title IX Sexual Harassment

    Speech Code Rating: Green
    Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies
    Last updated: October 20, 2021

    Title IX Sexual Harassment is defined as conduct on the basis of sex that falls within one or more of the following categories: … Hostile Environment Harassment occurs when conduct on the basis of sex is sufficiently severe, pervasive, and objectively offensive, as determined by a reasonable person, that it ef... Read More
  • Use of Information Technology Resources

    Speech Code Rating: Green
    Speech Code Category: Internet Usage Policies
    Last updated: October 20, 2021

    Examples of inappropriate and unacceptable use of IT resources include, but are not limited to: … Using IT resources to harass or threaten others … Read More
  • STUDENT AFFAIRS OP 91.304: Free Speech and Assembly Policy

    Speech Code Rating: Green
    Speech Code Category: Protest and Demonstration Policies
    Last updated: October 20, 2021

    The university will protect the rights of freedom of speech, expression, petition, and peaceful assembly and affirms all rights and freedoms guaranteed under the Constitution of the United States. … Mississippi State University provides forums for the expression of ideas and opinions, such as the following: 1.... Read More
  • Housing and Residence Life: Policies & Procedures- Posting Policies

    Speech Code Rating: Green
    Speech Code Category: Posting and Distribution Policies
    Last updated: October 20, 2021

    Content Disclaimer: The advertisement, posters, flyers, notices, signs or banners should adhere to all university policies and state and federal laws. Promoting the use of alcohol and/or illegal substances is also prohibited. It may not include any reference to or support of violations to the code of student conduct... Read More

FIRE surveyed roughly 37,000 students at 154 colleges and universities about the climate for free speech at their institutions. In 2021, FIRE released rankings of those schools, based on a number of factors, including openness, tolerance, self-expression, administrative support for free speech, and campus policies, scoring overall speech climate on a scale from 0-100. See the full report on FIRE’s 2021 College Free Speech Rankings for more information.


Rankings / out of 154 colleges surveyed

Overall Ranking 16
Ideological Diversity 4

Overall / out of a top score of 100

Overall Score 65.06
Openness 8.8
Tolerance (Liberals) 8.05
Tolerance (Conservatives) 8.64
Administrative Support 6.47
Comfort 16.85
Disruptive Conduct 10.25
Speech Code GREEN
  • FIRE, PEN America, condemn new rule forcing some Mississippi universities to consider ‘collegiality’ in tenure review

    April 27, 2022

    FIRE and PEN America wrote the board of the Mississippi Institutions of Higher Learning today to object to a new rule that forces presidents at eight of the state’s public universities to consider vague standards like “collegiality” when granting faculty tenure. The rule, quietly adopted last Thursday, says college presidents at IHL universities “shall take… Read more

  • Tensions Rise, But Mississippi State Administrators Stand by Free Speech

    October 23, 2015

    Administrators at Mississippi State University (MSU) offered the rest of the country a lesson in upholding free speech last week when an off-campus group with an anti-gay message clashed with gay rights supporters on campus. The Reflector, MSU’s student paper, reported yesterday that tensions between Consuming Fire Fellowship, a Mississippi-based Christian group, and student members… Read more

  • Why Mississippi State’s Harassment Policy Earns a ‘Green Light’

    December 27, 2013

    In a new series here on The Torch, FIRE will be examining some of the best “green light” university policies out there. These policies illustrate how colleges and universities can uphold the First Amendment on campus while still preventing unlawful and actionable conduct. Today, we take a look at how Mississippi State University’s harassment policy protects students’ free speech rights… Read more

  • ‘The College Fix’ Covers New “Green Light” Schools

    September 28, 2012

    This year FIRE was proud to add two new schools to our list of institutions that have “green light” policies for free speech: Mississippi State and the University of Mississippi. We also were happy to add both of those schools to our Seven Best Schools for Free Speech list published in The Huffington Post last month…. Read more

  • Mississippians Celebrate Free Speech on State Campuses

    September 12, 2012

    Mississippi news outlets continue to celebrate the state’s good record for freedom of speech on its flagship campuses, with both Ole Miss and Mississippi State listed among the top seven colleges for free speech on campus by FIRE. The Dispatch is the latest to remark upon the Magnolia State’s high ranking for freedom of speech,… Read more

  • ‘Starkville Daily News’ on Mississippi State’s Green Light

    July 11, 2012

    The Starkville Daily News of Starkville, Mississippi, draws attention to Mississippi State University’s success in becoming the latest "green light" school in FIRE’s Spotlight database. Not only does MSU’s commendable compliance with the First Amendment match the work done by rival Ole Miss earlier this year, we also hope it encourages many other colleges nationwide… Read more

  • Mississippi State University Earns ‘Green Light’ Rating

    June 19, 2012

    STARKVILLE, Miss., June 19, 2012—Free speech is the rule at Mississippi State University (MSU), which no longer maintains any policies restricting student speech protected by the First Amendment. MSU now holds the highest, "green light," rating for free speech from the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE). While the overwhelming majority of the nation’s… Read more

  • FIRE Speaker at Miss. State Conference This Week

    May 2, 2012

    This Thursday, FIRE’s Director of Legal and Public Advocacy, Will Creeley, will be one of the featured speakers at a Legal Issues Conference to be held at Mississippi State University. The conference, co-sponsored by Mississippi State University, Mississippi Institutions of Higher Learning (IHL), and the National Center for Higher Education Risk Management (NCHERM), will discuss… 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… Read more