Controversial Social Media Expression – On-Demand Training

Sale price$399.00


What to Do When Free Speech and a Safe, Inclusive Community Collide

Social media has dramatically transformed college and university life, increasing both the speed and “democratization” of communication. However, it also presents serious challenges to student wellbeing when persons inside or outside the community bully, harass, shame or “cancel” them. Faculty and staff also face challenges in their use of social media, placing employment at risk or inciting protests against the institution as a result of controversial or ill-considered posts.

Our seasoned expert presenter offers crucial, effective and actionable takeaways on dealing with controversial social media activity by students, faculty and staff.

You’ll explore issues including:

  • The types of online behavior that may warrant withdrawal of an offer of admission when later revealed to your institution.
  • When aggressive engagement on social media platforms crosses into criminal or civil cyberbullying or stalking.
  • The limits of “cancel culture” and how you should respond to efforts to “cancel” a student, faculty or staff member.
  • What constitutes a true threat as opposed to aggressive rhetoric or protected political speech?
  • Where the line is drawn between faculty/staff “personal” and “professional” social media activity.
  • How to teach norms of constructive and respectful debate in a social media climate where outsized language and behavior are often celebrated.
  • Where the line is drawn between college/university-sanctioned expression and harassment
  • The limits on social media activity when engaged in by a student leader.
  • Your level of duty in monitoring GroupME or other chat groups/lists maintained by students engaged in college/university business.

Walk away with a comprehensive understanding of tools and strategies available to your institution so you can effectively – and legally – deal with controversial social media activity by students, faculty and staff.

Topics Covered

Get crucial, actionable takeaways that will help you:

  • Understand the intersection of social media harassment and Titles VI and IX – ensure your institution is in compliance to avoid a legal issue.
  • Respond to revelations of concerning prior social media activity and related efforts to “cancel” the applicant, student, faculty or staff member – know where to draw the line between a true threat and aggressive rhetoric.
  • Recognize cyberbullying as a potential criminal act or a civil tort – know when to get authorities involved so you can respond swiftly and effectively.
  • Improve the nature of discourse and debate in your community – respond effectively to hateful rhetoric and ensure an inclusive and welcoming community where the language at issue is considered protected speech.


Allen Groves serves Syracuse University as Senior Vice President for the Student Experience, the chief student affairs officer of the University.
Click here for full bio.

Included When You Purchase

  • 90-minute online session with carefully selected expert(s)
  • Unlimited access to view webinar recording on demand
  • Materials for your team (handouts, discussion questions, etc.)
  • Certificate of completion for each participant
  • Weekly newsletter – What's Working on Campus

Instructions for access are available immediately upon checkout. You may share this On-Demand Training with any staff members from your campus community for unlimited viewing. For information about licensing this webinar for unlimited distribution on your institution’s internal network/server, email

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