NEW HAVEN >> While a large majority of Yale University undergraduates believe the university should promote free speech and diverse views, many are reluctant to express their own opinions in class, according to a new survey by the William F. Buckley, Jr. Program at Yale. According to the survey, conducted by the polling firm McLaughlin & Associates, 42 percent of students are \u201cnot comfortable\u201d expressing their opinions about politics, race, religion and gender, either in class or on campus, and 70 percent of students have experienced political bias in the classroom from students, professors or teachers. This is accompanied by a belief by 88 percent of survey respondents that their professors are liberal, compared with 6 percent who see them as moderate and just 1 percent who see them as conservative. \u201cI see that there\u2019s good news and some bad news in the survey,\u201d said Lauren Noble, founder and executive director of the Buckley program. \u201cNone of this is particularly shocking, given stories that I\u2019ve heard from current students but also headlines that we\u2019ve seen in the national news.\u201d In answer to the question, \u201cHave you felt intimidated to share your ideas, opinions or beliefs in class because they were different than those of your professors and teaching fellows?\u201d 45 percent said they had, but 76 percent of conservatives said they had felt intimidated, compared with 62 percent of moderates and 26 percent of liberals. On the most publicized issue on campus in the last two years, the renaming of Calhoun College, 67 percent agreed with Yale\u2019s decision to change the name to Grace Murray Hopper College, a decision which followed a months-long process in which a committee was commissioned with drawing up principles about renaming. John C. Calhoun, class of 1804, was U.S. vice president and a senator from South Carolina and a vocal and ardent promoter of slavery. Yale President Peter Salovey originally announced in April 2016 that the name would remain but then, as protests grew on campus and spilled into the New Haven community, Salovey formed the committee, as well as a three-professor panel to apply the committee\u2019s recommendations to Calhoun. The announcement to rename the college for Hopper was made in February. Only 13 percent of those surveyed, however, believe additional names should be changed. Eight percent said the name of the university itself should be changed, with 84 percent opposed. Elihu Yale, who helped finance the original Collegiate School of Connecticut, benefited from the slave trade through dealings with the East India Company, as Yale College Dean Jonathan Holloway pointed out in his 2015 freshman address. \u201cThere\u2019s also some positive takeaway here,\u201d Noble said. \u201cFor example, for the most part students across the board want intellectual diversity on campus.\u201d According to the survey, 84 percent believe \u201cYale should always do its best to promote intellectual diversity and free speech by allowing a wide range of people with differing views and opinions to speak on campus.\u201d Also, \u201cby a large margin [72 percent], students opposed having speech codes,\u201d Noble said. The Foundation for Individual Rights in Education, defines a speech code as \u201cany university regulation or policy that prohibits expression that would be protected by the First Amendment in society at large. Any policy \u2014 such as a harassment policy, a protest and demonstration policy, or an IT acceptable use policy \u2014 can be a speech code if it prohibits protected speech or expression.\u201d \u201cI would say that from the survey, 60 percent of students approve of the job that Yale is doing when it comes to promoting free speech on campus, but among conservative students, only 31 percent approved,\u201d Noble said. \u201cI personally think that Yale could be doing a much better job to promote free speech on campus,\u201d she said, giving as an example an open letter the Buckley program wrote \u201casking the candidates for the upcoming trustee election, which concludes on May 21 \u2026 to participate in a forum on free expression and intellectual diversity on campus. We\u2019ve had 450 alumni sign onto that letter.\u201d The trustees are known as the Yale Corporation. Also, the Yale Daily News attempted to interview the candidates but the administration \u201cbasically imposed a gag rule where the candidates aren\u2019t allowed to comment on what their views and values are.\u201d The program\u2019s website refers to Buckley as \u201cthe father of modern conservatism,\u201d but Noble said \u201cOur mission statement is to promote intellectual diversity on Yale\u2019s campus. \u2026 There is political diversity within our ranks and we do host \u2026 debates between liberals and conservatives.\u201d Buckley, who graduated from Yale in 1950, published \u201cGod and Man at Yale\u201d in 1951, criticizing what he saw as a left-wing climate on campus. He was also host of the television show \u201cFiring Line\u201d for 35 years, which pitted guests of varying views in debate. McLaughlin & Associates surveyed 872 Yale undergraduates between April 17 and 23 through an online survey promoted through emails and Facebook. Students who completed the survey were offered a $5 gift card. The margin of error is plus or minus 3.3 percent. Call Ed Stannard at 203-680-9382.