Here Are the Best, Worst Colleges for Free Speech

Per Foundation for Individual Rights and Expression, 3 Ivy League schools are in bottom 10
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 8, 2022 5:50 PM CDT
Here Are the Best, Worst Colleges for Free Speech
Stock photo of Columbia University campus in New York City.   (Getty Images/peterspiro)

Students usually head off to college excited to open their minds, on campuses where academic freedom is said to be valued and the exchange of ideas paramount. However, per Greg Lukianoff, CEO of the Foundation for Individual Rights and Expression, free speech "has gotten far worse in the last few years" in academia, and a bunch of the Ivy Leagues are especially culpable, reports the National Review. That's according to this year's "College Free Speech" rankings put out by FIRE and College Pulse, which they deem the "largest survey on student free expression ever conducted," per a release.

To come up with its list, the assessment relied on responses from nearly 45,000 students at more than 200 colleges and universities nationwide, as well as such factors as guest-speaker disinvites, faculty sanctions, and policies restricting speech. Columbia University was ranked the worst, per FIRE, followed by the University of Pennsylvania (Yale also made the bottom 10). The college where free speech is apparently thriving: the University of Chicago. See what other schools make up the best and worst:

10 Best Colleges for Free Speech

  1. University of Chicago
  2. Kansas State University
  3. Purdue University (main campus)
  4. Mississippi State University
  5. Oklahoma State University
  6. Claremont McKenna College
  7. University of North Carolina at Greensboro
  8. Northern Arizona University
  9. North Carolina State University at Raleigh
  10. Oregon State University

10 Worst Colleges for Free Speech
  1. Santa Clara University
  2. Scripps College
  3. Pitzer College
  4. Northwestern
  5. Yale
  6. Skidmore College
  7. Georgetown
  8. Rensselaer Polytechnic University
  9. University of Pennsylvania
  10. Columbia University
See all the rankings here. (Check out the top 10 colleges overall in the US.)

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