Missouri State University

Location: Springfield, Missouri
Type: Public
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Speech Code Rating

Missouri State 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
  • Title IX Policy on Sexual Misconduct

    Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies
    Last updated: March 27, 2018

    Sexual Harassment includes sexual assault and any unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, or other unwelcome written, verbal, or physical contact of a sexual nature, when: … Hostile environment: such conduct has the purpose or effect of unreasonably interfering with an individual’s academic or ... Read More
  • Dean of Students Office: Bias Response Team

    Speech Code Category: Policies on Bias and Hate Speech
    Last updated: March 27, 2018

    The BRT will provide an organized and coordinated method of assessment of the severity of an incident or situation affecting the University community. The BRT determines the need to refer the incident to the appropriate University official or committee.  Any BRT response will be educational at its core.  Voluntary i... Read More
  • Code of Student Rights and Responsibilities: Proscribed Conduct

    Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies
    Last updated: March 27, 2018

    4.3 Harassment, which is unwelcome conduct toward another person or an identifiable group of persons which is severe or pervasive and has the purpose or effect of creating an intimidating, hostile, or offensive learning, working, or living environment (see section 4.19 for sexual harassment). Read More
  • Expressive Activity Policy

    Speech Code Category: Protest and Demonstration Policies
    Last updated: March 27, 2018

    Missouri State University is committed to providing an environment where issues can be openly discussed and explored. The freedom to exchange views is essential to the mission of the University. This policy is in place to provide a community environment in which open discussion can occur without disrupting the acade... Read More
  • Code of Student Rights and Responsibilities: Student Rights

    Speech Code Category: Advertised Commitments to Free Expression
    Last updated: March 27, 2018

    Federal and State constitutional guarantees of free inquiry, expression, and assembly are specifically restated as guarantees on this campus. Read More
  • Code of Student Rights and Responsibilities: Student Responsibilities

    Speech Code Category: Policies on Tolerance, Respect, and Civility
    Last updated: March 27, 2018

    The search for knowledge can only take place within an atmosphere of open exchange. Open exchange can only take place in an environment of respect and civility. The University has an economically, culturally, and ethnically diverse population. Students are encouraged to respect differences of culture, lifestyles, an... Read More
  • Advertising, Distribution, Solicitation and Facilities Usage Policy

    Speech Code Category: Protest and Demonstration Policies
    Last updated: March 27, 2018

    In order to provide an atmosphere in which open communication can occur without disrupting the academic mission or daily functions of the University, the following procedures are established to govern the distribution of published materials, handbills, posters, petitions for signature, etc., on campus: Individuals ... Read More
  • Missouri State University: Political Litmus Test in School of Social Work

    March 14, 2007

    Emily Brooker sued Missouri State University (MSU) after she was threatened with expulsion and charged with violating MSU’s “Standards of Essential Functioning” for refusing to lobby the Missouri legislature on behalf of homosexual adoption. The lawsuit was settled in her favor. An outside investigation of the School of Social Work found ideological coercion on the… Read more

  • Missouri State University: Investigation of Student Paper for Editorial Cartoon

    March 26, 2004

    At Missouri State University (then called Southwest Missouri State University), administrators investigated a faculty advisor, Professor Wanda Brandon, and student editor, Mandy Phillips of its campus newspaper, The Standard, for publishing an editorial cartoon that a Native American group found “offensive.” Jana Estergard of SMSU’s Office of Equal Opportunity (OEO) contacted Professor Brandon to request… Read more

  • When Campus Intolerance Means Free Speech Gets Torn Up and Run Over, Literally

    March 21, 2014

    Being offended is what happens when you have your deepest beliefs challenged. And if you make it through four years of college without having your deepest beliefs challenged, you should demand your money back. I have been saying that line in speeches on campus for more than a decade. Even though it often gets a laugh, the idea that students have an overarching “right not to be offended” seems more entrenched on campus than ever.

  • Missouri State Latest School to Succumb to OCR Mandate

    August 29, 2012

    According to an article by Steve Pokin in Springfield, Missouri’s The News Leader, another school has succumbed to the Office for Civil Rights’ (OCR’s) April 4, 2011, "Dear Colleague" letter. Missouri State University (MSU) is the most recent casualty of OCR’s push to have colleges and universities across the country lower their standard of evidence… Read more

  • This Month in FIRE History: Missouri State’s Attack on Press Freedom

    April 20, 2012

    Eight years ago this month, FIRE continued its fight for freedom of the press at Southwest Missouri State University (SMSU, currently known as Missouri State University), renewing pressure on the school after it targeted the campus paper The Standard for an "offensive" cartoon.   The controversy began in November 2003, when The Standard printed the… Read more

  • Thought Reform and Ideological Screening on Campus in 2009

    December 31, 2009

    Liberty cannot exist in a society where people are forced to conform their thoughts and expression to official viewpoints. Differences of opinion are natural in a vibrant, free society, yet at too many of our nation’s colleges and universities, students and professors are expected to share a single viewpoint under the banner of "community values"… Read more

  • FIRE DVD Distributed in Print Edition of ‘National Review’

    September 30, 2009

    Readers and subscribers of the print edition of National Review will have a pleasant surprise as they flip through their October 5, 2009 edition. FIRE has inserted a DVD with three of our recent documentaries: Think What We Think…Or Else! Thought Control on the American Campus, which documents the shocking indoctrination program at the University… Read more

  • FIRE’s YouTube Channel Grows in Popularity

    June 11, 2009

    Earlier this week, FIRE released a new addition to its video library with a short documentary titled "Threats, Coercion, and Bullying at Missouri State." The video explores the case of Emily Brooker, a social work student at Missouri State University. Emily had her rights violated when a professor in the School of Social Work attempted… Read more

  • FIRE Releases New Short Documentary on Freedom of Conscience Case at Missouri State, Announces Student Video Contest Winners

    June 9, 2009

    FIRE is pleased to announce the release of a new video on DVD and online called "Threats, Coercion, and Bullying at Missouri State." The short documentary covers FIRE’s case at Missouri State University (MSU), where social work student Emily Brooker was threatened with expulsion after she refused (as a matter of personal belief) to send… Read more

  • FIRE Releases New Short Documentary on Freedom of Conscience Case at Missouri State, Announces Student Video Contest Winners

    June 9, 2009

    PHILADELPHIA, June 9, 2009—The Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE) is pleased to announce the release of a new video on DVD and online called “Threats, Coercion, and Bullying at Missouri State.” The short documentary covers FIRE’s case at Missouri State University (MSU), where social work student Emily Brooker was threatened with expulsion after… Read more

  • Threats, Coercion, and Bullying at Missouri State

    June 9, 2009

    This short documentary covers FIRE’s case at Missouri State University, where social work student Emily Brooker was threatened with expulsion after she refused (as a matter of personal belief) to send a signed letter to the Missouri state legislature in favor of homosexual foster parenting and adoption. This violation resulted not only in a federal… Read more

  • Binghamton Social Work Case Gets National Attention, Student Government Support

    November 14, 2008

    The Chronicle of Higher Education (subscription required) and The Volokh Conspiracy both have reported on the case of Binghamton University Department of Social Work master’s student Andre Massena, who was suspended for one year with no guarantee of return, required to apologize, required to disavow his own views, and required to make every effort to… Read more

  • Binghamton University Department of Social Work Declares War on Student for Posters Criticizing Department and Government Agency

    November 13, 2008

    Today’s press release paints a very disturbing picture of Binghamton University’s Department of Social Work. The department ordered the suspension of a master’s student for one year with no guarantee of return, required him to apologize, and demanded that he publicly disavow his own views after he put up posters challenging the department for having… Read more

  • Vandals Trample Upon Students’ Rights at Missouri State—Literally

    October 24, 2008

    FIRE has received some troubling news from Missouri State University. Earlier this month, a student group at MSU had a campus display vandalized. The group, Bears for Life, sought to draw attention to their pro-life stance by setting up four thousand popsicle-stick crosses on a campus lawn. While the group’s intention may have been to… Read more

  • Another Emily Brooker?

    April 11, 2008

    In 2006 and 2007, FIRE publicized the case of Emily Brooker, who sued Missouri State University (MSU) after she was charged with violating MSU’s “Standards of Essential Functioning” for refusing to lobby the Missouri legislature on behalf of homosexual adoption. MSU settled the lawsuit, and Brooker came out a clear winner. Later, an independent report… Read more

  • Missouri State Releases Report on Social Work Department

    April 9, 2007

    Last year, FIRE reported that Missouri State University had settled a lawsuit filed by the Alliance Defense Fund on behalf of social work student Emily Brooker. Ms. Brooker sued MSU after she was charged with violating MSU’s “Standards of Essential Functioning” for refusing to lobby the Missouri legislature on behalf of homosexual adoption.   David… Read more

  • Missouri State Settles Freedom of Conscience Lawsuit

    November 13, 2006

    In a quick turn of events, Missouri State University didn’t hesitate to settle a freedom of conscience lawsuit that was filed less then two weeks ago. The lawsuit was filed in response to an incident in which student Emily Brooker was interrogated for two and a half hours by faculty members who attacked her religious beliefs concerning… Read more

  • Social Work Injustice on Inside Higher Ed

    November 1, 2006

    Today’s Inside Higher Ed carries an article covering the ADF’s lawsuit against Missouri State University for its outrageous, ideologically based treatment of social work student Emily Brooker. The case, which was covered by our own Luke Sheahan in a blog yesterday, involves, among other things, Brooker’s being forced to write a letter to legislators supporting… Read more

  • Missouri State Violates Freedom of Conscience

    October 31, 2006

    Last week FIRE asked the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to “take action against political litmus tests in America’s schools of social work.” HHS requires its social workers to have degrees from schools accredited by the Council on Social Work Education, which requires its schools to “integrate social and economic justice content grounded… Read more

  • More Shocking Offensiveness from a College Newspaper

    May 9, 2006

    With the ongoing censure of and strike at Le Moyne College that FIRE reported on yesterday, FIRE was reminded that there are many reasons that college administrators have decided that a free press is simply not something with which they should have to contend. The Missouri State cartoon we reprinted on the blog yesterday is… Read more

  • Press Freedom Under Assault at Southwest Missouri State University

    March 26, 2004

    SPRINGFIELD, MO —Southwest Missouri State University (SMSU), a public institution bound by the First Amendment, is investigating the faculty advisor and student editor of its campus newspaper, The Standard, for publishing an editorial cartoon that a Native American group found “offensive.” SMSU has refused to rule out a formal hearing on the matter, has requested… Read more