Free Speech

Iowa State University is committed to fostering a learning environment where free expression, vigorous debate, and open inquiry are encouraged. Consistent with the Iowa State Principles of Community (, honest and respectful expression of ideas and open-minded understanding which promotes the full inclusion of all individuals, organizations and groups, is a critical component of a thriving learning community. 

This KNOW THE CODE site is intended to provide information and resources pertaining to Iowa State's policy on harassment and discriminatory harassment. Additionally, there is information which helps explain freedom of speech, and what is and isn't considered protected speech under the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution. There are a number of links and resources that may be helpful to gain a more comprehensive understanding of this topic (additional information at the University Free Speech Website)

The content of this website is for general informational purposes only and should not be understood as legal advice. For help with any legal problems or concerns, including those similar to the situations described herein, a licensed attorney should be contacted. The contributors to this site do not claim or guarantee that the information provided is or will be accurate, correct, or effective in any particular situation, and should not serve as a substitute for competent legal counsel.  In addition, the information presented here is summary in fashion and does not state official university policy. This content does not supersede, amend, modify, or replace official university policy. University policies on these subjects may be found at:


Harassment and Discriminatory Harassment

Iowa State University has policies pertaining to harassment and

discriminatory harassment that can be found here:

Where there are allegations of violations of the policy (review the policy and procedural definitions for more information), the Office of Student Conduct will review the information provided. For cases involving reports of discriminatory harassment or sexual harassment, the Office of Equal Opportunity may take complaints and conduct investigations, sharing their findings with the Office of Student Conduct.

Information on Iowa State’s Title IX Sexual Harassment, Sexual Assault, Dating Violence, Domestic Violence, and Stalking can be found here:

Iowa Criminal Code pertaining to Harassment can be found here: [PDF].

Additional Information




Free Speech Related Policies and Laws Additional Resources