Reinhardt University SACSCOC Compliance Certification
Comprehensive Standards - Faculty
|3.7.5||Faculty Role in Governance|
|Part 1||Signature Attesting Integrity|
|Part 2||Substantive Changes|
|Part 4||Inst. Summary Form|
|3.7.4 Academic Freedom
The institution ensures adequate procedures for safeguarding and protecting academic freedom. (Academic freedom)
Faculty members at Reinhardt University— regardless of rank or status— are entitled to academic freedom as set forth in the standards written by the American Association of University Professors in 1940. The AAUP standards were adopted, verbatim, for use in the Reinhardt University Faculty Handbook. Reinhardt holds that academic freedom is essential to an institution dedicated to teaching, service, and scholarship, as all of these professional activities are in search of knowledge to serve the public good.
Here are the core principles inherent in Reinhardt University’s policy on academic freedom, which also serves as a guide for faculty when entering into discourse on controversial and political topics:
In addition to providing a policy and procedural guidelines for academic freedom, Reinhardt University also publishes a statement on “Professional Ethics,” which works hand-in-hand with the responsibilities provided by freedom in the classroom, on campus, in research, in publication, and in the community:
The members of Reinhardt University’s faculty, administration, and staff are expected to maintain the highest level of ethics to reflect favorably upon their profession, their status as role models for students, and their position as representatives of the University and its mission. Ethical standards are especially crucial if the various members of the Reinhardt community are to continue to enjoy the mutual respect and collegiality that have traditionally characterized this institution. In particular, it is important for the faculty, the administration, and the staff to establish warm, mentoring relationships with students, yet to maintain a professional level of discretion regarding the release of sensitive, private information about other students, administrators, faculty members, staff members, or the internal workings of the University. With regard to issues of sexual harassment, faculty, administrative, and staff members should be especially aware of their positions of relative power in relation to students and subordinate employees. Faculty, administrative, and staff members are ethically obligated to model principles of academic and personal integrity. In the classroom, faculty members are to conduct themselves in a manner that reflects their professional status, respects the students they teach, and creates an environment of mutual respect and tolerance that allows for discussion of conflicting ideas, beliefs, and opinions without fear or distrust. 
In Section II, 5.0 of the Faculty Handbook, Reinhardt uses the “Professional Ethics” statements provided by AAUP adopted in 1987 as its policy:
Reinhardt University publicizes its policies on “Academic Freedom and Responsibility” and “Professional Ethics” in the Faculty Handbook, which is updated annually. The Faculty Handbook may be accessed via Reinhardt’s campus management system, EagleWeb.  New members to the Reinhardt University faculty experience a day of orientation lead by the Provost and School Deans, which covers important policies such as academic freedom and professional ethics.
There have been no instances in recent University history where the policy on academic freedom or ethics has been challenged.