Oregon State University

Location: Corvallis, Oregon
Type: Public

Speech Code Rating

Oregon 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 203 colleges ranked Read more
  • Equal Opportunity & Access: Discrimination and Harassment Policies

    Speech Code Rating: Yellow
    Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies
    Last updated: June 3, 2021

    Oregon State University policy prohibits behavior based on another’s protected status that is sufficiently severe or pervasive that it has the effect, intended or unintended, of unreasonably interfering with an individual’s work or academic performance because it has created an intimidating, hostile, or ... Read More
  • University Policy 05-001: Sexual Misconduct and Discrimination

    Speech Code Rating: Yellow
    Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies
    Last updated: June 3, 2021

    Sexual/Gender-Based Harassment. Any unwelcome sexual advance, request for sexual favor, or other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature when: … Such conduct is sufficiently severe or pervasive that it has the effect, intended or unintended, of unreasonably interfering with an individual’s work or ... Read More
  • Time, Manner, and Place Rules for Speech Activities

    Speech Code Rating: Green
    Speech Code Category: Advertised Commitments to Free Expression
    Last updated: June 3, 2021

    The university recognizes and supports the rights of free expression and speech. … University grounds are open to the public and the university community for speech activities except any grounds designated for authorized access only. … In order to allow scheduling and to assure public safety, persons des... Read More
  • Student Conduct Code: Offenses Proscribed by the University

    Speech Code Rating: Green
    Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies
    Last updated: June 3, 2021

    6. Harm or Endangerment to Persons. Conduct that causes physical harm or endangers the health or safety of any person. 7. Threats: Written, oral, or physical conduct that causes a reasonable expectation of injury to the health or safety of any person or damage to any property. 8. Harassment. Repeated, persistent, se... Read More
  • Equal Opportunity & Access: Bullying Policy

    Speech Code Rating: Green
    Speech Code Category: Bullying Policies
    Last updated: June 3, 2021

    Under this University policy, bullying is prohibited. Bullying is defined as conduct of any sort directed at another that is severe, pervasive or persistent, and is of a nature that would cause a reasonable person in the victim’s position substantial emotional distress and undermine his or her ability to work,... Read More
  • Office of Institutional Diversity: Bias Incident Response Process

    Speech Code Rating: Green
    Speech Code Category: Policies on Bias and Hate Speech
    Last updated: June 3, 2021

    Consistent with the Oregon State’s Statement on Freedom of Expression, the Bias Response Team does not seek to discipline individuals for expression of views in a manner that is protected by their rights under the free speech clauses of the state and federal constitutions, but may chal... Read More
  • University Policy 05-001: Sexual Misconduct and Discrimination- Title IX Sexual Harassment

    Speech Code Rating: Green
    Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies
    Last updated: June 3, 2021

    Title IX Sexual Harassment. Any conduct on the basis of sex that satisfies one or more of the following: … Unwelcome conduct determined by a reasonable person to be so severe, pervasive, and objectively offensive that it effectively denies a person equal access to a university educational program or activity; ... Read More

FIRE surveyed roughly 44,000 students at 203 colleges and universities about the climate for free speech at their institutions. See the full report on FIRE’s 2022 College Free Speech Rankings for more information.


Overall / out of a top score of 100

Overall Score 67.42

Rankings / out of 203 colleges ranked

Overall Ranking 10
Openness 159
Tolerance (Liberals) 95
Tolerance (Conservatives) 18
Administrative Support 83
Comfort 115
Disruptive Conduct 10

Administrative Behavior

Supported Scholars 0
Sanctioned Scholars 0
Successful Disinvitations 0


Speech Climate ABOVE AVERAGE
Speech Code GREEN
At present, FIRE has not been publicly involved in any cases at this school.
  • Universities Give Students Frightening Halloween Assignment: Pick a Costume

    October 31, 2016

    Is your “exhausted undergrad” costume ready for tonight’s festivities? That might be one of the frighteningly few outfit choices remaining if you attend a university expecting you to avoid “cultural appropriation” this year. And beware: The rules are petrifyingly hard to follow. While institutions are well within their rights to suggest costume considerations to their… Read more

  • Oregon State Pays Hefty Price for Censorship via Newspaper Theft

    April 4, 2014

    Torch readers may remember the case of ‘Oregon State University Student Alliance v. Ray’, in which Oregon State University tried to stop distribution of the student newspaper the Liberty by confiscating (okay, trashing; see above) its news bins and citing an unwritten policy to block new news bins back in 2009.

  • 2013 in Review: Threats from Washington, Victories in the States

    December 30, 2013

    As 2013 comes to a close, the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE) looks back on a year that was headlined by dire threats to free speech and student rights on campus.

  • Oregon State Earns Highest Rating for Free Speech Policies

    December 13, 2013

    Oregon State University (OSU) joins an elite group of colleges and universities by becoming just the 17th school in the country to receive FIRE’s highest, “green light,” rating for free speech policies. A college or university earns a green light when its written policies do not seriously imperil free speech. While the clear majority of the nation’s colleges… Read more

  • Oregon State University: One Policy Away from “Green Light

    July 25, 2012

    Emily Harrison is a FIRE summer intern. Oregon State University (OSU) is just one "red light" speech policy away from earning FIRE’s acclaimed "green light" distinction. The university revised its restrictive "Electronic Harassment" policy in 2008, which is a positive indicator of OSU’s willingness to protect the free speech rights of its students and faculty members…. Read more

  • Oregon State University Improves Bias Incident Policy

    December 8, 2008

    Here on The Torch, we have reported on several occasions about the growing number of university policies prohibiting so-called "bias incidents." The problem, from FIRE’s perspective, is that these "bias incidents" are often defined to include constitutionally protected expression. One of the policies we highlighted in the past was a policy at Oregon State University… Read more

  • Unconstitutional ‘Bias Reporting’ Programs: A Nationwide Problem

    November 29, 2007

    This fall, The College of William & Mary launched a Bias Incident Reporting System “to assist members of the William and Mary community—students, staff, and faculty—in bringing bias incidents to the College’s attention.” In its initial incarnation, the system was fraught with constitutional problems, from both free speech and due process standpoints. The system initially… Read more

  • Oregon Governor Signs Bill Protecting Student Press into Law

    July 18, 2007

    The Student Press Law Center reports that last Friday, the governor of Oregon signed into law a bill protecting the free speech rights of high school and college journalists. House Bill 3279 provides that: Student journalists are responsible for determining the news, opinion, feature and advertising content of school-sponsored media.Any student enrolled in a public… Read more

  • Student Editorial Highlights FIRE Case at Marquette University

    November 8, 2006

    A recent editorial in The Daily Barometer, the student newspaper at Oregon State University, picked up on the absurdity of FIRE’s recent case at Marquette University where the chair of the philosophy department, Dr. James South, removed a quote from humorist Dave Barry from a graduate student’s office door because South found the quote “patently… Read more

  • Oregon State’s Double Standard for Vandalism

    November 17, 2005

    Earlier this month, Samantha reported that 2005 FIRE summer intern Luke Sheahan has been shining some much-needed sunlight on newspaper theft at Oregon State University. Luke is a student there and runs a student publication called The Liberty, hundreds of copies of which continue to be stolen—as if the theft of a distribution bin wasn’t… Read more

  • FIRE Intern Fights for Press Freedom at Oregon State

    November 2, 2005

    Luke Sheahan, one of FIRE’s summer interns from 2005, has bravely taken the fight for free speech back to school with him. Sheahan is the publisher and executive editor of The Liberty, a student publication at Oregon State University. In October, a distribution bin for The Liberty was stolen from its location near the OSU… Read more