Policy Number: 856

Policy Suffix:

I. General Policy

Rice University supports the safe, non-disruptive exchange of information and ideas, and the expression and discussion of diverse points of view, even when those exchanges and expressions are controversial. Consistent with this policy and Rice’s statements and policies on freedom of expression and academic freedom, the policy enables the public display of posters, flyers, signs, and other printed or projected information at the university. Without prior, written permission from an authorized official, only University departments, University organizations, and University community members may display these materials in public spaces on Rice’s campus. With prior, written permission from an authorized official, University schools and buildings, including residential colleges, may impose additional requirements that are consistent with this policy. Permission to post under this policy does not imply University endorsement of the content of any posting.

II. Definitions

  1. Authorized Official – Rice employee appointed by the Provost who is responsible to review requests from organizations or individuals outside of Rice departments, organizations, and community members to display posters. Only an authorized official can approve these requests. Additionally, only an authorized official can approve supplemental requirements or guidelines by University schools and buildings, including residential colleges, regarding postering.
  2. Poster – printed or projected media intended to publicize an event, exhibit, activity and/or viewpoint in the form of a flyer, poster, handbill, sign, chalking, or other similar material. Academic posters are not subject to this policy.
  3. Postering – displaying a poster in a public space on Rice’s campus.
  4. Campus – property that is owned, operated, occupied or controlled by Rice University. This includes, but is not limited, to all buildings and structures, sidewalks, parking lots, walkways, grounds and attached parking structures owned or controlled by Rice University.
  5. Sponsor – the University community member, University department, or University organization responsible for displaying a poster.
  6. University community members – current students, staff, and faculty of Rice University.

III. Elaboration of Policy

  1. Location: Posters may be displayed only on bulletin boards or other spaces the university, school, building, or residential college has designated for postering. Posters may also be carried by a person during a campus demonstration or protest authorized under Policy 820. No posters may be placed on other campus spaces (for example, on or hung from windows or elevator doors, the exterior of any buildings, gates, fences, or walls). Sponsors may place only one poster per designated postering space to allow for ease of reading and to give others equal opportunity to post. Posters may not cover up any posters currently displayed.
  2. Format: Unless otherwise permitted in a designated postering space or for a campus demonstration or protest authorized under Policy 820, posters may not exceed 11 inches by 17 inches or be affixed using any damaging materials.
  3. Content: Posters must clearly and visibly display the name of the sponsor; the date of postering; and the email address and/or phone number of the sponsor. Posters for an event, exhibit, or activity must also clearly and visibly display its name, date, time, and location. Except for posters being carried by persons during a campus demonstration or protest authorized under Policy 820, only one copy of a poster may be displayed in the same designated postering space at any one time. Posters may not include content that is harassing, that contains hate speech, or that violates the law or any Rice University policy; concerns regarding this type of content should be reported to EthicsPoint.
  4. Removal: Posters must be removed by the earlier of (a) two business days after the event, exhibit, or activity concludes or (b) 10 business days after the date of postering if the poster does not promote a specific event, exhibit, or activity.
  5. Consequences: Any poster that does not comply with this policy may be removed immediately by the appropriate University school or building staff. In addition, its Sponsor may be subject to further disciplinary action.
  6. Additional permissions: With prior, written permission from an authorized official appointed by the Provost, individuals who are not University community members may display posters in designated postering spaces on Rice’s campus.
  7. Additional requirements: Additional requirements issued by university schools, campus buildings, and residential colleges are available here and considered part of this policy.

IV. Cross References or Related Policies

Policy 820, Campus Demonstrations, Protests and Organized Expressions of Opinions
Policy 802, Use of University Buildings and Grounds for Campus Events
Policy 807, Partisan Political Activities
Policy 100, Standards of Ethical Conduct
Policy 830, Policy on Discrimination and Harassment
Resolution on Free Speech, Academic Freedom, and Tenure
Code of Student Conduct
Undergraduate Handbook

V. Responsible Official and Key Offices to Contact Regarding the Policy and its Implementation

Responsible Official: Executive Vice President for Operations, Finance, & Support

Other Key Officials/Offices: Office of the Provost, Office of the General Counsel, Public Affairs

VI. Procedures, Forms and Guidelines

Supplemental Approved Requirements by University Buildings, including Residential Colleges, or Schools for Display of Posters
Form to Request Supplemental Requirements for Display of Posters
External Organization Request for Posting Permission at Rice
Rice University Brand Standards


Reginald DesRoches, President

Policy History

Issued: February 27, 2024

Clerical Changes

March 4, 2024