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Freedom of Expression

Freedom of expression is a foundational condition of all functioning democracies. At the University of Washington, it is also a core component of our mission to educate, discover and serve the public good.

As a public university, we are firmly committed to supporting and legally bound to permit speech that falls within the broad definition of protected expression. We believe that upholding the right to free speech is not only consistent with our commitment to remaining a diverse, welcoming and inclusive community, but is, indeed, a necessary condition for cultivating and welcoming the kind of robust debate and thriving public discourse that is essential to every institution of higher learning.

Academic rights

UW faculty members have the right to academic freedom and the right to examine and communicate ideas by any lawful means.

Learn about academic rights

Events & UUF

The University of Washington has rules and guidelines for holding events on campus and the use of University resources.

Guidelines for campus events

University policy

The University of Washington’s policy directory contains institution-wide policies, orders and rules.

Learn about University policy

Student speech

UW students have the right to free expression on campus, within the guidelines of the law and student conduct code.

Guidelines for student conduct

Political activity

Political activity that follows federal and state laws and court decisions is allowed on campus.

Guidelines for political events

Religious activity

Religious activity at the University of Washington is permitted, in accordance with federal and state law.

Guidelines for religious activities