We will write a custom Coursework on Dr.Knightly’s Problems in Academic Freedom specifically for you
301 certified writers online
The American Association of University Professors (AAUP) in the year 1994 did approve the adoption of a policy paper, named, On the Relationship of Faculty Governance to Academic Freedom. This policy paper has further reiterated the inextricable link that exists between the governance of the faculty and academic freedom and that neither can thrive without the other.
Prior to the adoption in 1994, there had been recognition of the profound connection between academic freedom and faculty governance by the committee that was set up by the AAUP in 1915 during their first ever meeting and the subsequent formation of a committee on the place and function of faculties in the university government and administration.
The 1994 statement policy did uphold the importance of academic freedom, the freedom of inquiry and research, the freedom of teaching, and the freedom of expression and publication as part of its key elements. The elements that have been mentioned had been acknowledged by the founding members of the AAUP through their experiences at German institutions of higher learning.
Palmetto State University recognizes that the faculty will in most cases have opinions and ideas which at best of times are contradictory to the commonly held wisdom or norms.
At the university, academic freedom is considered to be focused on developing a sound scholarship and teaching excellence with total disregard for political correctness towards the government or the administration. This kind of approach is consistent with the prevailing wisdom on the idea of delegation of authority and its division between the administration, the faculty and the board of governors.
Policies and Academic Freedom
The policy statement of 1994 gives three reasons as to why the voice or the viewpoints of the faculty should be allowed in an authoritative dimension across the whole spectrum of the decision making process( Gordon, 1998). This statement also puts emphasis on the importance of the faculty having an atmosphere in which the members do not feel intimidated and are not afraid to express their views for fear of reprisal.
The first reason that was advanced to support this notion is that it provides an avenue for the most efficient implementation and accomplishment of the universities’ goals and objectives due to the competency and expertise provided by the faculty committee and the individual scholars associated with the particular department (Kneller, 1964).
The second reason is that universities exist for the purpose of teaching and carrying out research and finally, the drafters believed that giving authority to the faculty especially in areas of their expertise is a pre-requisite for the protection of academic freedom at any university.
The policy statement talks about the freedom of the faculty and it includes such things as being able to express their views on issues affecting academic matters both in the classroom and while carrying out the research. They can also express their views on issues concerning the university and its policies and also on matters which are of general public interest.
The 1994 policy statement emphasizes the protection of the academic principles and outlines the necessary requisites for this freedom to be maintained. It also details ways in which faculty members can be held responsible and be accountable for their speech. The faculty can only be discredited on the basis of its speech, violating the basic tenets of academia such as fraud, and plagiarism or deceit.
This position has to be clearly articulated and judged by peers as a sure sign of incompetence on the part of that particular faculty member. I am inclined to think that Dr. Knightly has every right to present his viewpoints in whatever manner he deems fit provided he is not in breach of any academic tenet.
Gordon, M. (1998). A Dictionary of Sociology (Article: Sociology of Education). Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press.
Kneller, G. (1964). Introduction to the Philosophy of Education. New York, NY: John Wiley & Sons.