Defining Academic Freedom Belief that freedom to inquire and explore by students and faculty members is essential to the mission of the academy Scholars should have the freedom to teach and communicate ideas without being targeted for repression, job loss, or imprisonment IMPORTANT: ACADEMIC FREEDOM IN ITSELF IS NOT A LEGAL CONCEPT
Academic Freedom in the USA Loosely guaranteed through the first amendment in the United States Defined by the 1940 Statement of Principles on Academic Freedom and Tenure, authored by the American Association of University Professors (AAUP) and the Association of American Colleges and Universities
Quotes "Teachers and students must always remain free to inquire, to study and to evaluate, to gain new maturity and understanding; otherwise our civilization stagnate and die.” “To impose any strait jacket upon the intellectual leaders in our colleges and universities would imperil the future of our Nation.” –Chief Justice Earl Warren (Sweezy, 1957)
Importance of Academic Freedom Essential to the mission of the academy Without protection, academic communities are repressed for their ability to shape knowledge According to a reflection by Robert Quinn, historically, the power to shape knowledge is a source of power. Authorities have sought to control societies by controlling scholars We should care about increasing the quality and flow of information and understanding in the world (academic freedom and scholarship promotes these goals)
1940 Statement of Principles on Academic Freedom and Tenure Teachers are entitled to full freedom in research and in the publication of the results, subject to the adequate performance of their other academic duties; but research for pecuniary return should be based upon an understanding with the authorities of the institution. Teachers are entitled to freedom in the classroom in discussing their subject, but they should be careful not to introduce into their teaching controversial matter which has no relation to their subject. Limitations of academic freedom because of religious or other aims of the institution should be clearly stated in writing at the time of the appointment. Teachers are entitled to freedom in the classroom in discussing their subject, but they should be careful not to introduce into their teaching controversial matter which has no relation to their subject. Limitations of academic freedom because of religious or other aims of the institution should be clearly stated in writing at the time of the appointment
Interpretation Institutions can ‘limit’ academic freedom for religious or other beliefs as long as it was explicitly stated in writing at the time of appointment Teachers need to avoid controversial issues that are not related to the subject being taught In public, teachers and others of authority must indicate that what is being said is their personal opinion and does not represent the institution that they are affiliated with The authority to define and enforce academic freedom lies with the institution
Conflict with Institutional Academic Freedom Institutions reserve the right to determine Who may teach Who may be taught How it shall be taught Who many be admitted to study (Regents of the Univ. of Californav. Bakker, 438 U.S. 265, 312 (1978) Piarowski (1985) shows a conflict between individual and institutional academic freedom Faculty member was asked to move his sexually explicit art display from a gallery in a heavily traveled area to a less traveled area Court ruled that a college can regulate the display of explicit material Johnson-Kurekv. Abu-Absi (2005) support the concept that the institution has the right to designate how classes are taught and what grades were issued. First amendment protects the individuals right to their belief in pedagogy but not their right to actually do it.
Students & Academic Freedom Students have the right to learn under the expanded statements issued by the AAUP Students rights are limited Ex: Yacovelliv. Moeser (2004) – Students were assigned an a reading based on the Quran. University lawfully assigned a reading for academic and not religious purposes
Video on Academic Freedom http://vimeo.com/6649380 (Start at 13:40) Denis Rancourt, former University of Ottawa professor recently fired for refusing to grade his students, whose struggle has received national media coverage and whose firing is being investigated by the Canadian Association of University Teachers. Video on the state of academic freedom in Canada. A lot of the issues discussed in this video mirror issues we face in the United States, including the defining of academic freedom, in specific, for the professor, and for the student. Concept of “authentic rebellion” and it’s importance in the classroom.
Questions Question: Should students have equal academic freedom to that of professors? Undergraduates? Masters? Doctoral? Does this impact learning, teaching, or research?
References AAUP. (2009). Recommended institutional regulations on academic freedom & tenure. Retrieved from http://www.aaup.org/AAUP/pubsres/policydocs/contents/RIR.htm. Retrieved on November 1, 2010. AAUP. (1940). 1940 statement of principles on academic freedom and tenure. Retrieved from http://www.aaup.org/AAUP/pubsres/policydocs/contents/1940statement.htm. Retrieved on November 1, 2010. AAUP. (1967). Joint statement on rights and freedoms of students. AAUP Policy Documents & Reports (9th ed.), 261-267. Cameron, C.A., & Meyers, L.E. (2005). Academic bills of rights: Conflict in the classroom, Journal of College and University Law, 31, 243-290. Jorgensen, J.D., & Helms, L.B. (2008). Academic freedom, the first amendment and competing stakeholders: the dynamics of a changing balance. The Review of Higher Education, 32(1), 1-24. Quinn, R. (2004). Defending 'dangerous' minds. Social Science Research Council, 5(1-2), 1-4. Standler, R.B. (2000). Academic freedom in the USA. Retrieved from http://www.rbs2.com/afree.htm. Retrieved on November 1, 2010.