Free Speech at SJSU

SJSU community members standing and listening to a speech.

San José State University believes that freedom of expression is a cornerstone of a democratic society and essential to the educational process. Universities like SJSU have a special obligation to encourage and support the free expression of ideas, values, and opinions, even when they may be unpopular or controversial. The university shall ensure that individuals and groups are afforded wide latitude in exercising the right of free expression and that their constitutionally protected right to free expression is protected while on campus. Freedom of expression, however, is not an absolute right and it coexists with other rights and the need for public safety.

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Time, Place, and Manner Policy

The time, place and manner policy provides guidelines to our campus community on how they can express their rights. Guidelines also include how to limit speech that threatens public safety or goes against the educational goals of SJSU.

What is Freedom of Speech?

Learn how the First Amendment guarantees freedom of speech and how this right is protected here at SJSU.

Is There Any Speech Prohibited by the First Amendment?

The First Amendment does not prohibit any speech, but there are some types of speech for which there is no, or very limited, First Amendment protection.

Recognized Student Organizations

SJSU has more than 350 Recognized Student Organizations (RSOs) spanning a wide array of topics, interests and viewpoints. RSOs are free to invite speakers to campus and provide access to campus venues.

SJSU students huddling together for a selfie at a voting center.

Election Activities and Other Advocacy

SJSU encourages our Spartan community to be civically engaged and make their voices heard on the issues they care about. Learn more about the university’s status as a public institution informs what organized activities and use of public resources are allowed within the public university context.

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Additional Resources

Learn about on- and off-campus resources.