As stated in the Institute values, Georgia Tech aims to foster an environment where all members of our community can ask questions, seek truth, and express their views. Academic freedom and freedom of expression are considered essential cornerstones to the advancement of knowledge. We recently reaffirmed this through the faculty governance process with updated faculty handbook language as well as this dedicated commitment page.
Freedom of Expression
Georgia Tech holds the First Amendment guarantees of freedom of speech, freedom of expression, and the right to assemble peaceably as an essential cornerstone to the advancement of knowledge and the right of a free people.
Freedom of expression is one of the six focus areas outlined in our strategic plan:
We safeguard freedom of inquiry and expression.
We protect the freedom of all members of our community to ask questions, seek truth, and express their views.
We cherish diversity of ideas as necessary for learning, discovery, scholarship, and creativity.
In accordance with our values and policy, individual members of the Georgia Tech community shall not attempt to prevent or otherwise interfere with the free expression of others, except in the instance that expression violates the law or University System of Georgia (USG) or institutional policies.
The Board of Regents of the University System of Georgia (USG) has reaffirmed its commitment to the freedom of expression, a constitutionally protected right, and to the longstanding principles of academic freedom. The USG and all of its institutions shall vigorously protect these freedoms. [Board of Regents Policy Manual Section 6.5, Revised May 16, 2023]
In America’s colleges and universities, academic freedom is the commitment necessary to allow faculty members to be able to teach and perform research freely and effectively.
Teaching at Georgia Tech has become synonymous with free and open dialogue integral to developing leaders from all backgrounds who are innovative thinkers.
In research, academic freedom has fostered an environment that is inclusive, innovative, and transdisciplinary. This environment has resulted in breakthroughs in countless fields, garnering a national and international reputation for the work and legacy of the Georgia Tech community.
We protect freedom in academic instruction, research, publication, and individual expression.
We can celebrate free expression and academic freedom. That value coupled with critical thinking is what higher education is at its core. That’s who we are at Georgia Tech.
If you are faculty, staff, or a student and believe that your freedom of expression is being infringed upon, you can report the concern as follows:
Faculty: Contact Kyla Ross, Assistant Vice Provost for Advocacy and Conflict Resolution, firstname.lastname@example.org
Staff: Contact GTHR’s Employee Relations department, https://hr.gatech.edu/employee-relations
Students: Contact the Office of the Dean of Students, email@example.com
USG also offers an Ethics & Compliance Reporting Hotline (Ethics Line) for use by any members of the USG community.
University System of Georgia Board of Regents
Campus Use Procedures