Articles on Academic freedom

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Do universities model the ethics they teach? John Walker

Who is to teach ethics to the university?

Universities are places that teach ethics to students. But, on any given day, you can read about several university scandals. Do universities practice what they teach?
No platform policies are morphing into bans that threaten free speech. Chris Radburn/PA Archive

New ranking exposes curbs on university freedom of speech

Freedom of speech is at the heart of academic life and a university should be a place where every issue is discussed and debated. Not so, according to the findings presented in the first ever Freedom of…
Who’s attacking who? Freedom via alexskopje/Shutterstock

Even extremists have a right to freedom of speech on campus

There may well be an outcry from student unions and lecturers’ organisations against proposals in a new counter-terrorism bill from home secretary Theresa May for a new statutory duty on universities and…
Not just for gathering dust. Man blowing dust via Luis Louro/Shutterstock

Why important education research often gets ignored

Teachers’ professional development is “fragmented, occasional and insufficiently informed by research”. These were the conclusions of a recent British Educational Research Association (BERA) and Royal…
The threat of legal action can have a “chilling effect” on academic freedom. Shutterstock

The journal that gave in to climate deniers’ intimidation

In February 2013, the journal Frontiers in Psychology published a peer-reviewed paper which found that people who reject climate science are more likely to believe in conspiracy theories. Predictably enough…
Turkey erupts in protest at the death of a 15-year-old boy. Depo photos/EPA

Turkish students and academics treated as state’s enemy within

Demonstrations have broken out across Turkey following the death of Berkin Elvan, a 15-year-old boy, who fell into a coma during last summer’s Gezi park protests after he was struck in the head by a teargas…
Xu Zhiyong, jailed for four years. for inciting public disorder. Wikimedia Commons

China’s war on thought is being waged in Western universities

In the past decade, US and UK universities have embarked on a program of developing formal relationships, exchanges, and partnerships with their counterparts in China. No scholar interested in promoting…
Which self are you expressing when you vent online? west.m

140 thoughtless characters cost dear in academia

The censuring of an academic in the US for sending out an offensive tweet has led many university tweeters to pause for thought. Geoffrey Miller, an Associate Professor of Psychology at the University…
Universities just got a little more chilling … emdot

Spying on academics will not help fight terrorism

Universities in this country are under increased pressure to share information about the activities of students and staff whether for immigration purposes, in relation to activism on campus or even in…
Continued boycotts of Israeli academics pose a threat to the very freedoms that academics hold dear. AAP/Joe Castro

Boycotting Israeli academics, or boycotting academic freedom?

On Wednesday last week, the Student Representative Council at the University of Sydney adopted a motion to boycott Israeli academics. The motion called specifically for the University to cut its current…

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