Diversity Institute

Key Terminology and FAQ

Social Identities: Our individual sense of self derived from membership to identity-based categories. ​

Diversity: Differences (of social identities and perspectives/worldviews) within and between groups. ​

Inclusion: State of feeling valued, respected, and supported. ​

  • Recognition, appreciation, and effective use of talents, skills, and perspectives of everyone. ​

Inequality: Unequal access to opportunities, tools, and resources. ​

Equality: Evenly distributed tools and resources. ​

Equity: Tools and resources are distributed based on what people or communities need to succeed.

Social identitiesDiversity doesn't apply to me. All people have social identities, which are simply memberships to groups and communities. We work with all people on diversity-related content because understanding ourselves and learning from other's perspectives will help us to work together more effectively.

Why are we talking about diversity? Isn't everyone too sensitive these days?

If we feel someone is being sensitive, it might be because a topic is a crucial part of their identity that has led them to have a different understanding of the world. We can listen to and believe people who are different than us because they are just as discerning and knowledgeable about their life and experiences as we are about our own. Our ability to recognize when we have been hurt and be able to make amends when we have hurt others is a test of our ethical awareness.