“gender inclusivity is fundamental to Villanova’s mission…”
Faculty and staff at Villanova University should make sure to create a “gender inclusive” environment, according to a new guide from the Catholic college.
The Pennsylvania university’s document “introduces Villanova faculty and staff to best practices for being gender inclusive in our work spaces, laboratories, and classrooms—especially for those who identify within transgender, nonbinary, gender nonconforming, and/or gender questioning communities.”
The guide states that “gender inclusivity is fundamental to Villanova’s mission,” citing it as part of its diversity mission.
This comes after the university gave the option “to enter chosen first name and personal pronouns into Banner,” a database for course information and grades, according to the document.
The guide encourages faculty to incorporate discussions of gender in the classroom through gender-focused readings. “If gender is relevant to what you’re teaching, then be explicit about these connections and, if possible, teach the research and scholarship of transgender, nonbinary, and gender-nonconforming people,” the guide suggests.
The university also encourages faculty to include a statement on gender inclusion in the class syllabus, attaching an example to reference: “Names and Pronouns: Pronouns can be a way to affirm someone’s identity. They are a public way to refer to people in place of their name (e.g. “he” or “she” or “they”),” the guide explains. “In this classroom, you are invited to share what pronouns you go by, and we seek to refer to people using the pronouns and names that we share.”
For those who use pronouns that are unfamiliar to the faculty, they are encouraged to “practice these ways of speaking to become fluent.”
For instances of “misgendering” in the classroom, Villanova gives ways to address this. Faculty should “acknowledge mistakes and correct yourself swiftly,” “avoid a long or drawn-out apology” and “politely intervene when misgendering occurs, whether that person is present or not.”
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