University of North Texas

Location: Denton, Texas
Type: Public
Federal Circuit: 5th Circuit

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Speech Code Rating

University of North Texas 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 here.

At present, FIRE has not been involved in any cases at this school.

Red Light Policies

Yellow Light Policies
  • Policy Manual: 14.003 Computer Use

    Speech Code Category: Internet Usage Policies
    Last updated: November 9, 2018

    When communicating with others via the University computer system, a user’s communications should reflect high ethical standards, mutual respect and civility.

    » Read More

  • Policy Manual: 16.005 Sexual Harassment

    Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies
    Last updated: November 9, 2018

    4. Sexual Harassment. “Sexual Harassment” means unwelcome sex-based verbal or physical conduct that:

    B. in the education contest, is sufficiently severe, persistent, or pervasive that the conduct interferes with a student’s ability to participate in or benefit from educational programs or activities. For purposes of this policy, conduct is sufficiently severe, persistent or pervasive if its frequent, or threatening, or humiliating nature unreasonably interferes with or limits the student’s ability to participate in or benefit from the University’s educational program or activity, including when the conduct reasonably can be considered to create an intimidating, hostile, abusive or offensive educational environment.

    Examples of conduct which might be considered sexual harassment under this policy include but are not limited to:
    a. repeated and unwanted requests for dates, sexual flirtations, or propositions of a sexual nature,
    b. subtle pressure for a sexual relationship,
    c. sexist remarks about a person’s clothing, body or sexual activities,
    d. unnecessary touching, patting, hugging, or brushing against a person’s body,
    e. direct or implied threats that submission to sexual advances will affect or be a condition of employment, work status, grades, or letter of recommendation,
    f. conduct of a sexual nature that causes humiliation or discomfort, such as use of inappropriate terms of address, and
    g. sexually explicit or sexist comments, questions or jokes.

    » Read More

  • Policy Manual: 07.012 University of North Texas Code of Student Conduct

    Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies
    Last updated: November 9, 2018

    Engaging in physical, and/or verbal abuse, domestic violence, threats, intimidation, harassment, coercion, physical or electronic stalking or any other conduct which threatens of endangers the health, safety or welfare of any person. Speech protected by the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution is not a violation of this provision, though fighting words and statements which reasonably threaten or endanger the health and safety of any person are not protected speech.

    » Read More

Green Light Policies
  • Policy Manual: 07.006 Free Speech and Public Assembly on Campus Grounds

    Speech Code Category: Protest and Demonstration Policies
    Last updated: November 9, 2018

    The University of North Texas recognizes that freedom of expression and public assembly are fundamental rights of all persons and are essential components of the education process.

    Campus grounds generally are open to students, employees and sponsoring organizations for expressive activity during university business hours. However, these individuals and organizations are encouraged to reserve areas on campus that are designated for expressive activity when the activity is promoted in advance or when the activity may reasonably be anticipated to draw a crowd of 25 or more people. Designated areas may be reserved on a first-come, first-serve basis and are subject to the reservation procedures published by the Dean of Students and set out in this policy. Only the individuals or sponsoring organization that reserves a designated space may use the area for expressive activity during the reserved period. A reservation is required for use of amplified sound and/or outdoor structure.

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  • Jefferson Muzzles go to 50 Colleges and Universities

    April 20, 2016

    By Eugene Volokh at The Washington Post The Thomas Jefferson Center (with which I’m involved as a member of the board of trustees) has just released its yearlyJefferson Muzzles, so I thought I’d pass along the center’s explanation of who the “winners” are this year. Note that the Ccnter supports academic freedom and free speech broadly, and not just those aspects that are legally protected by the First Amendment; so you’ll see many private institutions mentioned here, even though the First Amendment as such does not restrict private entities, as well as the public institutions to which the First Amendment applies… Read […]

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  • The University of North Texas grants students campus wide free speech

    October 24, 2009

    The University of North Texas had six designated free speech zones, where students were allowed to demonstrate, protest, preach or otherwise express an opinion or point of view. reported that that has all changed. Ay first, it didn’t appear that this was going to happen. The UNT Free Speech Coalition brought a list of demands to University President Gretchen Bataille in July. Bataille said that she wouldn’t negotiate with people who brought  demands, and that she didn’t like the tone of the people she was meeting with. Even so, she expressed willingness to discuss the issue at some later […]

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  • Student Spotlight: Alex Anderson, Marketing Freedom at University of North Texas

    June 27, 2014

    Alex Anderson is a junior at the University of North Texas (UNT), where she is ramping up the student movement for free speech on campus. As a public relations and strategic communications major, Alex has been applying her ingenuity in marketing to the fight for freedom of expression.

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  • How Students Made a Difference for Liberty in 2009

    January 6, 2010

    For the past few days FIRE has been looking back over our list of accomplishments in 2009. That list would not be complete without mentioning the students who have worked so hard to make their campuses more free. At the College of William & Mary, former FIRE intern and Campus Freedom Network member Braum Katz led a reform effort from within the student government as Student Assembly Secretary of Student Rights to revise all constitutionally problematic speech codes. In October, William & Mary eliminated the last of its troublesome policies and FIRE officially gave the college’s policies a green-light rating in […]

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  • Under Pressure from FIRE and Students, University of North Texas Eliminates Free Speech Zones

    October 26, 2009

    FIRE is very pleased to report that the University of North Texas (UNT) has revised its “Free Speech and Public Assembly Policy,” which previously provided for only six “free speech areas” on campus where students could “engage in constitutionally protected speech and expression at the University of North Texas.” The policy further required students and student groups intending to use the free speech zones to request approval from the Dean of Students and to make reservations “at least two working days in advance.” The new policy, which will reportedly go into effect this week, eliminates UNT’s free speech zones. The […]

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  • Play Nice or Else

    March 17, 2005

    Everybody loves free speech until they’re the one offended. Then somebody had better pay. Or so it would seem at the University of North Texas, where the residue from a student protest six weeks ago finds a Hispanic organization searching for vindication, a conservative group refusing to apologize and a university chancellor failing to appease all sides. “We have a long way to go in all this,” says the aforementioned chancellor, Lee Jackson. They do indeed–with nothing less than the First Amendment on the line. But first, some background. The Young Conservatives of Texas, a student organization that takes stances […]

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  • Bigger in Texas?

    February 22, 2005

    Responding to our recent post about the University of North Texas, a reader from Texas wrote: Well, I appreciate your understanding of the scale of things here in Texas. I noticed that, in your discussion of the fun at North Texas, you made reference to “nearby Texas Tech.” We are about 300 miles from North Texas. Yeah, that’s sorta “nearby” in Texas. Great point and thanks for writing! The scale of Texas plays havoc with my New York mind. I looked it up, UNT and TTU are therefore ten Rhode Islands away from each other! Not shocking to Texans, I […]

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  • Calls for Censorship in Texas

    February 21, 2005

    The Denton, Texas, Record-Chronicle carried a story on Saturday (registration required) about an uproar over a free-expression issue at the University of North Texas. Apparently, the university chapter of the Young Conservatives of Texas (YCT) at UNT held a “Capture an Illegal Immigrant” event to draw attention to what they see as the problem of illegal immigration in Texas (you can read about it in the UNT student paper or read a bunch of articles about it at the UNT YCT website). Basically, YCT had a few students around campus put on orange shirts with the words “Illegal Immigrant” on […]

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