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Associated Students | San Diego State University


Resolution in Support of Academic Freedom

WHEREAS, the Associated Students (A.S.) of San Diego State University (SDSU) is the representative body and the single recognized voice of the approximately 30,000 students at SDSU; and

WHEREAS, the SDSU policy on academic freedom states, "Academic freedom insures that scholarship, whether constituted as formal research and publication, teaching, creative activity, or in the mere exploration of new ideas, is protected from any restriction, harassment, or surveillance, absent a warrant[i];" and

WHEREAS, academic freedom and freedom of expression are necessary components of a healthy campus environment where an array of opinions leads to thriving discussion and the advancement of knowledge; and

WHEREAS, the obstruction of freedom of expression translates to the obstruction of education and the stifling of diverse perspectives on which our campus thrives; and

WHEREAS, every student has the right to express opinions against those of their colleagues and their professors; and

WHEREAS, students are provided with mechanisms to address their grievances within the university before approaching outside organizations, such as: the A.S. University Affairs Board, the Freedom of Expression Senate Committee, the Student Grievance Council, the corresponding department head or the Division of Academic Affairs; and

WHEREAS, students should support academic freedom as it is promoted by the University Policy on academic freedom, which reads, "San Diego State University is committed to academic freedom as a core value that underlies its mission of teaching, scholarship and creative activity, and service to the public[ii];" therefore be it

RESOLVED, the A.S. supports academic freedom and faculty who are at liberty to teach what they deem necessary, and who present controversial and interesting topics; and further be it,

RESOLVED, the A.S. recognizes that students play a vital role in the maintenance of academic freedom and discussion that is inclusive of our diverse student body, and further be it,

RESOLVED, the A.S. shall promote communication between faculty and students; and further be it,

RESOLVED, the A.S. recommends the University put forth additional efforts to inform students of their role in the maintenance of academic freedom by, and not limited to, including information at new student orientation, faculty and dean announcements; and further be it,

RESOLVED, the A.S. recommends that professors include a section regarding academic freedom in their syllabi which informs students how to express any concerns regarding the content of their course; and finally be it,

RESOLVED, this resolution is to be distributed widely including, but not limited to: SDSU President Elliot Hirshman, SDSU University Senate, SDSU University Senate Freedom of Expression Committee, SDSU Provost Nancy Marlin, Acting SDSU Vice President of Student Affairs Eric Rivera, and the SDSU Office of New Student and Parent Programs.

[i] https://newscenter.sdsu.edu/universitysenate/files/02146-2013pf.pdf

[ii] https://newscenter.sdsu.edu/universitysenate/files/02146-2013pf.pdf