Freedom of expression and academic freedom

In Australian universities it is normal for people to discuss opinions that are controversial – neither students nor staff have to agree with the Australian Government.

The University fully supports the right of staff and students to discuss controversial ideas – the only restrictions are those imposed by federal or state laws or regulation authorised by UWA’s Code for the Protection of Freedom of Speech and Academic Freedom.

You may encounter ideas and opinions from your lecturers or other students that you disagree with or that are in conflict with the policies or extra-territorial laws of your home government. Unless there is a breach of federal or state law, or of UWA’s Code, the University will not require staff to change course content, limit the direction of their research or how they report it, or to withdraw or modify statements.

As a UWA student you have the right to:

  • Express your opinions
  • Disagree with the opinions of others
  • Join or leave student clubs

Types of behaviours that may occur, and which UWA does not tolerate include the following:

  • Intimidation of staff and students by individual students or staff
  • Inappropriate actions by foreign student associations operating at UWA
  • Inappropriate identification of, or sharing of, student or staff details (‘doxxing’)
  • Reporting, or threatening to report on, fellow staff or students to foreign government bodies

Reporting Foreign Interference Concerns

If you are concerned about foreign interference on campus, or you are being harassed or pressured

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Submit a report

Submit a report to the University via our online portal.

Integrity and Standards Unit

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Discuss your concerns

Discuss your concerns by emailing

Mental health and wellbeing support

For more support visit the mental health and wellbeing page

For more information about Foreign Interference please visit UWA's Foreign Interference website.

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