Personnel Policies And Procedures

Policy 05:06:00

Academic Freedom and Responsibility


To define academic freedom and establish expectations for academic responsibility for faculty

Revision Responsibility: Dean of Nursing

Responsible Executive Office: Dean of Nursing

Created: August 5, 2009


I. The faculty member is entitled to freedom in the classroom in discussing their subject, being careful not to introduce into the teaching controversial matter that has no relation to the subject.

II. The faculty member is entitled to full freedom in research and in the publication of the results, subject to the adequate performance of their other academic duties. Research for financial gain must be based upon an understanding with the authorities of the college, which is documented, reduced to writing, and signed by the faculty member and the appropriate administrator.

III. The faculty member is a citizen, a member of a learned profession, and an officer of an educational institution. When the faculty member speaks or writes as a citizen, they should be free from institutional censorship or discipline, but their special position in the community imposes special obligations. As a person of learning and an educational officer, they should remember that the public might judge the profession and the institution by the faculty member’s utterances. Hence, a faculty member should at all times be accurate, exercise appropriate restraint, show respect for the opinions of others, and make every effort to indicate that they do not speak for the college.

Academic freedom is essential to fulfill the ultimate objectives of an educational institution – the free search for an exposition of truth – and applies to both teaching and research. Freedom in research is fundamental to the advancement of truth, and academic freedom in teaching is fundamental for the protection of the rights of the faculty member in teaching and of the student to freedom in learning. Implicit in the principle of academic freedom is the corollary responsibilities of the faculty who enjoy that freedom. Incompetence, indolence, intellectual dishonesty, failure to carry out assigned duties, serious moral dereliction, arbitrary and capricious disregard to standards of professional conduct – these and other grounds may constitute adequate cause for dismissal or other disciplinary sanctions against faculty members.