Newsletter | November 2017

Wake Forest University AAUP

Mark your calendars!
Upcoming Meeting: Thursday, December 7, 2017, 3:30-4:30.
Room: Tribble A108

Next meeting: Thursday, February 1, 2018, 3:30-4:30, Tribble A108.


  1. Approval of minutes of last meeting (see attachment).
  2. Discussion of faculty rights, responsibilities and opportunities in governance at WFU, with special attention to: acceptance of gifts and grants; determination of salaries; budget priorities; revision of student code of conduct; establishment and review of centers and institutes; creation and implementation of conflict of interest policy. Come find out how faculty can influence all of these issues.


The next Faculty Senate meeting is January 24, 2018, 4:00-5:30, in DeTamble Auditorium. Did you know you are welcome to attend Senate meetings?

Food for thought…

The WFU AAUP executive committee posted a comment on two of the proposed changes to the Student Code of Conduct.

Proposed changes to Student Code of Conduct, Section Two: Prohibited Behavior:

12. Disorderly Conduct. Conduct that is disorderly, lewd, or indecent; breach of peace.

13. Disruption or Obstruction of University Activities. Substantial disruption or obstruction of any University activity and/or other authorized non-University activities which occur on or off campus. Disruptive or obstructive actions include but are not limited to: preventing an instructor or speaker from giving a lecture, by means of shouts, interruptions, chants or other verbal or audible means; interfering with the audience’s view of an instructor or speaker; preventing members of the university community from participating in class, hearing a lecture or taking an examination; disrupting business operations of the university; disrupting use of or access to libraries or residential housing; obstructing passage within, into, or out of buildings; interfering with prospective student or employer recruitment or university activities for alumni, parents or other invited guests; refusing to leave a closed meeting when unauthorized to attend; and preventing free pedestrian or vehicular movement onto or about campus.

WFU AAUP Comment:

The AAUP prioritizes academic freedom above all. In response to the University’s call for comment on the proposed changes to the Student Code of Conduct, the Wake Forest University chapter of the AAUP wishes to reaffirm this, and to identify specific areas where the proposed changes to the conduct code appear to pose a direct threat to the academic freedom of both faculty and students. As free expression of ideas, reasoned debate and dissent are fundamental to learning and teaching and the core of academic freedom, the WFU AAUP opposes the proposed changes to the student code of conduct in section two, numbers 12 and 13.  They violate the principle and practice of academic freedom on this campus.

The procedure by which the Student Code of Conduct is being revised is particularly troubling to the WFU AAUP. The AAUP promotes shared governance, which means the faculty has areas of primacy, including: “curriculum, subject matter and methods of instruction, research, faculty status, and those aspects of student life which relate to the educational process” (1966 AAUP Statement on Government of Colleges and Universities). Under the principle of shared governance, the faculty of WFU should have a key role in rewriting the student code of conduct, given that university activities such as classes, guest speakers, and extracurricular activities are all part of the educational process. In future, under the proposed changes to the Student Code of Conduct, student art work might be considered “disruptive” of the university’s activities and subject to restriction; student speech expressive of diverse views might be limited.

The WFU AAUP requests that the process of revising the Student Code of Conduct be halted; that the committee rewriting the Student Code of Conduct go back to the beginning and be reformed to include a faculty majority (including at least one member of the Law School faculty with expertise in civil liberties and free speech law); that the College and undergraduate Business faculties and the Senate be able to discuss any proposed revisions; and that a review board with a faculty majority be formed to oversee policies and review cases. If the process does continue at this time, the WFU AAUP asks that the revision process include the preceding elements and members in all meetings, and that the revised Code be open to another round of public comment and collaborative revision before implementation.

You can find all of the proposed changes and public comments at:

Join the National AAUP:

The national office has a history of assisting the WFU-AAUP, especially on matters of tenure and promotion. Please support the work of the AAUP by joining now at:

Call for Papers

For its next volume, scheduled for publication in fall 2018, the AAUP’s Journal of Academic Freedom seeks original, scholarly articles exploring current mobilizations of the term free speech and their connections to existing practices and concepts of constitutionally protected speech and academic freedom. We will consider any essay on the topic of academic freedom, but are especially interested in the following:

  • Precarity, identity, and labor: Is there such a thing as equal and undifferentiated access to the right of “free speech”? How does the increasingly precarious nature of academic labor relate to calls for “free speech” on and off campus? How do notions of “free speech” operate along lines of race, class, gender, national origins, and sexuality?  What is the relationship between freedom of speech and economic or workplace precarity? In what ways are students, administrators, faculty, and staff affected by and responsive to questions of “free speech”? What relations might obtain between “free speech” and “sanctuary campus”?
  • Campus discourse: What is the relationship between contemporary discourses of “free speech” and concepts, practices, and policies regarding academic freedom? How and why are colleges and universities particular sites of conflict around questions of free speech? What are the relationships between free speech, workplace democracy, and faculty governance? How do these issues extend to K–12 education?
  • Globalization: We continue to welcome nuanced articulations of the challenges for academic freedom in an era of globalization. How does the internationalization of higher education both rely on and transform ideas of “free speech”? What kinds of rights discourses function or fail in transnational contexts? What are the connections between “free speech” discourses and international solidarity movements?
  • Social media and communications: In what ways are social media arenas for “free speech”?  How is “free speech” practiced in libraries and archives? How do university policies around the use of technology impact the rights and practices of free speech? How do social media and mass culture impact practices of speech on campus? We continue to seek new analyses of the vexed relationship between freedom of speech, “civility,” and academic freedom. How “free” are social media, and what is the relationship between communication there and in more traditional locations?

Electronic submissions of no more than 8,000 words should be sent to by January 31, 2018 and must include an abstract of about 150 words. While this is an academic journal with submissions subject to peer review, we welcome innovative and journalistic prose styles. The journal uses the seventeenth edition of the Chicago Manual of Style, and authors should anticipate that, if an article is accepted for publication, it will need to be put into Chicago style.