University: Professor Who Failed Student for Writing 'Biological Women' Won't Be Punished

Michael Foust | CrosswalkHeadlines Contributor | Updated: Jul 17, 2023
University: Professor Who Failed Student for Writing 'Biological Women' Won't Be Punished

University: Professor Who Failed Student for Writing 'Biological Women' Won't Be Punished

The University of Cincinnati has rescinded the reprimand of a teacher who had been punished after she failed a student for a project that used the phrase "biological women."

The reprimand, issued in June, asserted that adjunct professor Melanie Nipper had violated the university's free speech policy when she gave a student a grade of 0 out of 20 points for a project that argued trans women – biological men who identify as women – have an advantage over biological women in sports. Nipper criticized the student's usage of the phrase "biological women."

Nipper appealed the decision, arguing that the issuance of the grade was within her rights in the university's policy. In late June, the university said it agreed and would rescind the reprimand. Nipper still will be required to attend free speech training and submit her syllabus for approval, according to the Cincinnati Enquirer newspaper.

The professor argued the controversy – which has gained nationwide attention – shows the "very real harm and threat people can pose when their worldview is informed by white supremacy, cisheteronormativity, classism, patriarchy, and more."

But Olivia Krolczyk, the student involved in the case, criticized the university's choice to rescind the reprimand. Krolczyk labeled it an "injustice to students everywhere."

"UC is affirming that professors will have no consequences for failing students with dissenting opinions," Krolczyk told the Enquirer. "They will not uphold a student's rights to free speech and will take no action to ensure that the educators hired are acting in a professional manner. At what point is the line drawn? What kind of example has the University just set? The University shouldn't pick and choose which policies they decide to enforce based on whether the professor follows in line with their woke ideologies or goes against them."

The University of Cincinnati, Krolczyk said, has "solidified that using 'biological' is a harmful, transphobic, and outdated term."

"Congrats to the University of Cincinnati for contributing to the erasure of women and for letting future students know that they must conform to certain ideologies or else they will be punished," Krolczyk said.

Photo courtesy: Dom Fou/Unsplash 


Michael Foust has covered the intersection of faith and news for 20 years. His stories have appeared in Baptist PressChristianity TodayThe Christian Post, the Leaf-Chronicle, the Toronto Star and the Knoxville News-Sentinel.



University: Professor Who Failed Student for Writing 'Biological Women' Won't Be Punished