Purdue University

Location: West Lafayette, Indiana
Type: Public
Thank Purdue University for its commitment to free speech.

Speech Code Rating

Purdue 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.

Campus Climate

Overall Ranking

out of 203 colleges ranked Read more
  • University Policies: Anti-harassment Policy, Interim (III.C.1)

    Speech Code Rating: Yellow
    Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies
    Last updated: June 17, 2021

    Harassment Conduct towards another person or identifiable group of persons that is so severe, pervasive or objectively offensive that it has the purpose or effect of: Creating an intimidating or hostile educational environment, work environment or environment for participation in a University activity; Unreasonably... Read More
  • Title IX Harassment, Interim (III.C.4)

    Speech Code Rating: Green
    Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies
    Last updated: June 17, 2021

    Conduct on the basis of sex that satisfies one or more of the following: … Unwelcome conduct that a reasonable person would determine is so severe, pervasive and objectively offensive that it effectively denies a person equal access to the University’s educational programs or activities; … Read More
  • University Policies: Electronic Mail (VII.A.1)

    Speech Code Rating: Green
    Speech Code Category: Internet Usage Policies
    Last updated: June 17, 2021

    Policies and regulations that apply to other forms of communications at the University also apply to electronic mail. In addition, the following specific actions and uses of University Email Services and University Email Accounts are considered a violation of this standard: … 5. Use of email to harass or threa... Read More
  • University Policies: Anti-harassment Policy, Interim (III.C.1)

    Speech Code Rating: Green
    Speech Code Category: Advertised Commitments to Free Expression
    Last updated: June 17, 2021

    The University reaffirms its commitment to freedom of speech as guaranteed by the First Amendment to the United States Constitution. Read More
  • University Catalog: Student Conduct- Purdue University Bill of Student Rights

    Speech Code Rating: Green
    Speech Code Category: Advertised Commitments to Free Expression
    Last updated: June 17, 2021

    It is the right of every student to exercise freely full rights as a citizen. Read More
  • University Catalog: Student Conduct- Purdue University Bill of Student Rights

    Speech Code Rating: Green
    Speech Code Category: Policies on Tolerance, Respect, and Civility
    Last updated: June 17, 2021

    [T]he student shall be free to discuss and express any view relevant to subject matter presented by the instructor or other class members.  However, in exercising this freedom, the student shall not interfere with the academic process of the class by speaking to or behaving towards others in a manner constituting un... Read More
  • Statement of Commitment to Freedom of Expression

    Speech Code Rating: Green
    Speech Code Category: Advertised Commitments to Free Expression
    Last updated: June 17, 2021

    Because Purdue University (the “University”) is committed to free and open inquiry in all matters, it guarantees all members of the University community the broadest possible latitude to speak, write, listen, challenge, and learn. Except insofar as limitations on that freedom are necessary to the functioning of the ... Read More
  • University Policies: Violent Behavior (IV.A.3)

    Speech Code Rating: Green
    Speech Code Category: Other Speech Codes
    Last updated: June 17, 2021

    Threat A serious expression of intent to commit an act of unlawful violence to a particular individual or group of individuals or to cause damage to another person’s property, or other conduct which threatens or endangers the health and safety of another person or another person’s property. 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 75.81

Rankings / out of 203 colleges ranked

Overall Ranking 3
Openness 87
Tolerance (Liberals) 175
Tolerance (Conservatives) 27
Administrative Support 4
Comfort 55
Disruptive Conduct 74

Administrative Behavior

Supported Scholars 0
Sanctioned Scholars 0
Successful Disinvitations 0


Speech Climate GOOD
Speech Code GREEN
  • Mohammed Cartoon Controversy: FIRE Response to Intimidation and Newspaper Disputes

    February 22, 2006

    As a result of worldwide controversy regarding caricatures of the prophet Mohammed, first published in a Danish newspaper, free speech was being openly disregarded on American college campuses. In the weeks following the printing of the cartoon, students, professors, and student publications not only reprinted the controversial cartoons but even created their own satirical cartoons… Read more

  • Purdue University: Refusal to Allow Christian Women’s Group to Require Christian Membership

    November 4, 2003

    Purdue University nearly evicted a Christian women’s housing group on campus for refusing to abide by a “nondiscrimination” statement that required student groups not discriminate on the basis of a long list of characteristics, including religious belief, when selecting members. Any groups failing to abide by this policy could face the loss of rights and… Read more

  • Purdue must regain trust after passing civics requirement over faculty objections

    June 15, 2021

    Update (June 18, 2021): On June 16, the Purdue board of trustees sent a letter to the Purdue chapter of the American Association of University Professors arguing that their decision to approve a controversial civics literacy requirement for all undergraduate students after the measure was rejected by the faculty senate did not violate shared governance… Read more

  • Seventh Circuit upholds accused student’s due process, sex discrimination claims

    July 1, 2019

    Since 2011, more than 480 students accused of sexual misconduct have sued their universities over campus judicial processes they believe were fundamentally unfair and led to erroneous findings of responsibility. However, relatively few of these cases, which often settle in the early stages of litigation, have made it to the federal appellate courts.  In the… Read more

  • Indiana court decision threatens professorial free speech

    November 17, 2017

    Last week, we covered a disturbing decision by the Court of Appeals of Indiana granting absolute immunity to college administrators who violated a professor’s free speech rights. Today we return to dissect the decision’s retaliation analysis — or lack thereof. Like the absolute immunity holding, the court’s flawed determination regarding a college’s retaliation policy opens… Read more

  • Indiana court invokes absolute immunity in denying professor’s free speech claim  

    November 7, 2017

    In a recent ruling, the Court of Appeals of Indiana denied a professor’s free speech claim, holding that Purdue University administrators are absolutely immune from suit. The ruling sets a dangerous precedent for students and faculty seeking vindication for First Amendment violations in our nation’s courts. The court’s decision revolved around an extraordinary expansion of… Read more

  • Free Speech Orientation Program Keeps Conversation Going at Purdue

    December 5, 2016

    Purdue University has been making good on its promises to promote free speech on campus. In May of last year, it became the first public institution to formally commit to upholding free expression by adopting the FIRE-endorsed Chicago Statement, and it eliminated all of its speech-restrictive policies to become one of FIRE’s distinguished “green light”… Read more

  • VIDEO: Geoffrey Stone, FIRE’s Azhar Majeed on Free Speech Panel at Purdue

    December 15, 2015

    Two weeks ago, I had the pleasure of speaking on a panel at Purdue University about free speech on campus and the new challenges facing student rights. I was joined on the panel by Geoffrey Stone, professor of law at the University of Chicago Law School and one of the foremost experts on constitutional law… Read more

  • Purdue Admits ‘Overreaction’ in Snowden Censorship Gaffe

    October 9, 2015

    As the first public university in the country to adopt the University of Chicago’s robust statement on free expression, Purdue University found itself responding this week to reports that it had deleted video of a presentation by Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and author Barton Gellman. Gellman was the keynote speaker for Purdue’s “Dawn or Doom” colloquium,… Read more

  • Purdue President and Students Join Forces for Free Speech on Campus

    October 1, 2015

    Purdue University President Mitch Daniels had found what he was looking for. Since late 2014, Daniels had, with the help of FIRE, been taking a hard look at the university’s written policies to ensure they didn’t infringe on speech rights on campus. But Daniels wanted to do more. “We were already busy trying to make… Read more

  • Purdue’s Dean Supports Free Speech Without Ifs, Ands, or Buts

    September 4, 2015

    As dedicated Torch readers know, I’ve been known to engage in a rant or two about university presidents who wax poetic about the value of free speech and then go on to carve out all sorts of exceptions for unpopular speech—which is precisely what the First Amendment is designed to protect. (University of Iowa and… Read more

  • ‘NY Daily News’ to NY Colleges: Adopt U. of Chicago Statement on Free Speech

    August 24, 2015

    Back in January, FIRE proudly endorsed the excellent free speech policy statement issued by the Committee on Freedom of Expression at the University of Chicago. In the months since, we’ve been pleased to see Purdue University and Princeton University follow suit by adopting the statement as institutional policy—and this fall, FIRE will mount a national… Read more

  • FIRE’s Majeed: 2015 Already a Good Year for Speech Code Reform

    July 30, 2015

    Over at The Huffington Post today, my colleague Azhar Majeed takes an encouraging survey of the solid progress FIRE has already made in 2015 in reforming restrictive speech codes. Azhar reviews the four schools that have already earned FIRE’s best, most speech-friendly “green light” rating thus far in 2015—George Mason University, Purdue University, the University… Read more

  • Purdue University Eliminates All of Its Speech Codes, Earns FIRE’s Highest Rating

    May 15, 2015

    WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind., May 15, 2015—The Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE) is pleased to announce that Purdue University has earned FIRE’s highest, “green light” rating for free speech. With help from FIRE, Purdue revised its speech-related policies to comply with the First Amendment. Purdue further affirmed its commitment to academic freedom and freedom… Read more

  • Purdue Plans to Invite Freshmen to Pledge Themselves to ‘Creed’

    August 2, 2013

    Kathy Mayer writes for the July/August issue of the Purdue Alumnus magazine that a new “creed,” currently being written by Purdue University students, will outline for freshmen “what’s expected of those who take on the name Boilermaker.” (The Boilermakers is Purdue’s athletic nickname.) “If you cannot follow the creed, then this is not the place… Read more

  • FIRE President Greg Lukianoff Speaking at Purdue University Tomorrow

    April 8, 2013

    FIRE President Greg Lukianoff will be on the campus of Purdue University this Tuesday, April 9, to discuss free speech on campus and his book Unlearning Liberty: Campus Censorship and the End of American Debate. Greg’s speech will take place at 7 p.m. in Stewart Center, room 218 A-B, and is free and open to… Read more

  • Mitch Daniels, in First Week as Purdue President, Talks Freedom of Opinion and Inquiry

    January 24, 2013

    Former Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels may have declined to run for President of the United States last year, but he has nevertheless landed a presidency of his own—that of Purdue University. And as Inside Higher Ed reports, he’s already made a splash in his first week on the job, with an open letter (PDF) to… Read more

  • Jonathan Turley: ‘Free Speech Under Fire’

    March 12, 2012

    Last Friday, Jonathan Turley penned an excellent column about new threats to freedom of expression at home and abroad in the Los Angeles Times. Turley, a well-known legal commentator and professor at The George Washington University Law School, surveys the legal landscape in both Europe and the United States and concludes that “Western nations appear… Read more

  • Victory: All Nine Complaints Dismissed for Professor Who Criticized Muslims

    March 1, 2012

    After investigating nine complaints of harassment and discrimination against Professor Maurice Eisenstein, Purdue University Calumet has dismissed all of them. Among other comments on his personal Facebook page, Eisenstein had criticized "‘moderate’ Muslims" who he believed had not condemned violence after an attack by "a radical Muslim group" killed Christians in Nigeria. Faculty members, students, and the… Read more

  • Purdue Offers Admirable Lessons in Liberty, Despite Having a Speech Code

    November 13, 2009

    Yesterday, Peter pointed out Purdue University’s admirable defense of the rights of a faculty member who published a controversial "Economic Case Against Homosexuality" on his personal blog at Townhall.com, fully within Purdue’s policy on such publications. Some students have called on Purdue to punish the professor, but Purdue appears to have turned the controversy into a valuable… Read more

  • FIRE, Purdue Defend Rights of Conservative Faculty Blogger Amidst Calls for Dismissal

    November 12, 2009

    A controversial blog post by a conservative faculty blogger at Purdue University has had some members of the Purdue community calling for him to be disciplined or dismissed from Purdue. Fortunately, the Purdue administration isn’t among them. Bert Chapman, a tenured professor and Purdue’s government information and political science librarian, also posts on a blog… Read more

  • Victory for Religious Freedom at Purdue

    May 19, 2004

    WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind., May 19, 2004—After six months, Purdue University has finally granted a Christian women’s housing group an exemption from a mandatory “nondiscrimination” policy that would have made voluntary religious association impossible. The policy threatened the housing of the group as well as its very existence. On April 19, 2004, the women of the… Read more