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Diversify terminology

Resources to help diversify terminology used in your course
  • Ensure that all references to people, groups, populations, categories, conditions, and disabilities use the appropriate verbiage and do not contain derogatory, colloquial, inappropriate, or otherwise incorrect language.
  • In most cases, usage of outmoded terminology in historical situations (e.g., court cases, laws, articles) should be clearly defined in quotations or annotated with contextual information.
  • For example, the use of “illegal alien” in a discussion of law can be framed as “as stated in the decision” or something similar.
  • Recognize that appropriate terminology changes constantly, and do your best to use current verbiage. Consult style guides as necessary; note they may be in conflict. Do not feel obligated to use the latest term if it is not widely used or controversial.
  • Avoid idioms or colloquialisms, particularly those that will lead to misconceptions among those who natively speak other languages or may not have the educational or cultural context to understand them.


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Improving Representation and Diversity in OER Materials
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Keywordsterminology, inclusive, language, termsDoc ID119897
OwnerTimmo D.GroupInstructional Resources
Created2022-07-25 12:14:19Updated2023-12-26 15:01:47
SitesCenter for Teaching, Learning & Mentoring
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