The following terms and phrases appear throughout all Viewfinder surveys. These definitions are provided to help ensure proper understanding of questions and garner accurate responses.
Agender: A person who might define their gender as being neither man nor woman or not having any gender at all.
Bias: The belief that certain people, ideas, etc. are worth less than others, which may result in discriminatory treatment of those populations.
Cisgender: A person whose gender identity matches the sex they were assigned at birth; is the opposite of transgender.
Civil Union: A legal partnership between two people that provides legal and fiscal benefit. Civil Unions were the only option for same- gender couples to receive financial benefits similar to marriage before the legalization of same-gender marriage nationwide in 2015.
Climate: Climate is the cumulative result of an organization’s programs, practices and policies on the way people of various identities experience inclusion.
Cultural Competence: The ability to effectively deliver education or services that meet the social, cultural, and linguistic needs of those being educated or served.
Discrimination: The unjust or prejudicial treatment of different categories of people or groups, especially on the grounds of race, color, national or ethnic origin, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, age, political affiliation, disability, marital status, ancestry, genetic information, citizenship, or veteran status. Treating an individual or group of individuals unfavorably in their employment or education because of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or gender expression, age, disability, genetic information, or veteran status.
Disability: A person who (1) has a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities, (2) has a record of such impairment, or (3) is regarded as having such an impairment.
Diversity: The multiple identities around which people differ that make one individual or group different from another and impact one’s perceptions, experiences, and interactions. These include identities such as race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, socioeconomic status, gender and gender identity, religion, etc.
Employee Resource/Affinity Group: A voluntary, employee-led group that serves as a resource for members and organizations by fostering a diverse, inclusive workplace that is aligned with the organizational mission, values, goals, and business practices.
Equity: The fair treatment, access, opportunity, and advancement for all students, faculty, and staff, while simultaneously working to identify and eliminate barriers that have prevented the full participation of some (usually historically underrepresented and marginalized) groups.
Gender Identity: An individual’s personal experience of their own gender; gender identity is not determined by sex assigned at birth.
Genderqueer: A person who might define their gender as neither man nor woman, possibly a mix of genders, and possibly fluid.
Gender Non-Conforming: A person who does not fully conform to the expectations around their gender that their society enforces.
Harassment: Unwelcome verbal or physical conduct because of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or gender expression, age, disability, genetic information, or veteran status, that demeans, threatens or offends an individual or group of individuals when such conduct interferes with a student’s ability to participate in or benefit from educational programs or activities; or when the conduct unreasonably interferes with an employee’s work performance or creates an intimidating, hostile, or offensive work environment.
Inclusion: Active, intentional, and ongoing engagement with diversity; embracing and affirming differences and offering respect in words and actions (such as language) for all groups and people.
International Student: A student studying at a U.S. college or university who is not a U.S. citizen, US Permanent Resident, DACA, Asylee, nor Refugee. This includes students whose visas are sponsored by the schools where they study, generally F-1 and J-1 students, and whose schools have a federally mandated reporting requirement.
International Faculty: A faculty member who is sponsored to work in the United States by the University. This includes faculty members in H1B, TN, or O1 status as well as those who are pending employment based US Permanent Residency.
International Staff: A staff member who is sponsored to work in the United States by the University. This includes staff members in H1B, TN, or O1 status as well as those who are pending employment based US Permanent Residency.
Latinx: An identity that may be chosen by people who are descendants of regions that were colonized by Spain which includes but is not limited Mexico, Central America, and South America. This term intentionally includes Trans and Non-binary people by using an “x” at the end of the word rather than the gendered terms Latino or Latina.
LGBTQIA+: An acronym that represents identities in Queer and Trans communities that includes but is not limited to: Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, Intersex, and Asexual.
(Cisgender) Man: A person who is assigned male at birth and identifies as a man.
Mental Disability: Disorders or conditions that influence one’s emotions, cognitions, and behaviors, which may include depression, anxiety, schizophrenia, and bipolar disorder.
Microaggressions: Brief and commonplace daily verbal, behavioral, or environmental indignities, whether intentional or unintentional, that communicate hostile, derogatory, or negative slights and insults toward a social group. Can be interpreted as “backhanded communications."
Multiculturalism: The presence of, or support for the presence of, several distinct cultural or ethnic groups within a society.
Multiracial: A person identifying with two or more races.
Naturalized U.S. Citizen: A person not born in the United States who is granted U.S. citizenship after they fulfill the requirements established by Congress in the Immigration and Nationality Act.
Non-Binary: A person who might define their gender as not fitting within the gender binary of man and woman.
On-boarding: The initial training or steps provided to orient new employees to the UNT organizational culture.
Permanent Resident: Any person not a citizen of the United States who is residing in the U.S. under legally recognized as an immigrant. Also known as “Green Card Holder.”
Person of Color: A person who is not white or of European parentage. Referred to as “Employees of Color” and “Students of Color” in this survey.
Political View: A set of doctrines or beliefs that are shared by the members of a social group or that form the basis of a political, economic or other system.
Retaliation: Any adverse action, treatment or condition; including an act intended to intimidate, threaten, or coerce, that is likely to dissuade a reasonable individual from opposing discriminatory practices, filing a charge of discrimination, or participating in an investigation regarding discrimination.
Sexual Assault: Sexual contact or intercourse with a person without the person’s consent, including sexual contact or intercourse against the person’s will or in a circumstance in which the person is incapable of consenting to the contact or intercourse.
Sexual Identity: How people think of themselves in terms of whom they are romantically or sexually attracted to. Also known as sexual orientation.
Sexuality: Attractions, feelings, and thoughts that deal with desire, contact, or interest in another person(s), or lack thereof.
Spiritual Affiliation: The beliefs, practices, and/or deeply held values that one holds; including but not limited to religious.
Transgender: A person whose gender does not match their sex assigned at birth, based on what their society has prescribed.
Transman: An identity label sometimes adopted by a person who is assigned female at birth that signifies that they identify as a man, while still affirming their trans history.
Transwoman: An identity label sometimes adopted by a person who is assigned male at birth that signifies that they identify as a woman, while still affirming their trans history.
Veteran: A former member of the Armed Services of the United States (Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps, and Coast Guard) who served on active duty and was discharged or released under conditions other than dishonorable.
(Cisgender) Woman: A person who is assigned female at birth and identifies as a woman.
Worldview: An individual’s or groups’ theory of the world, used for living in the world and framing a mental model of reality, ideas, and attitudes.