Campus Climate Survey Terms And Definitions

Campus Climate Survey Terms and Definitions


Discrimination or prejudice against an individual or group of people with disabilities.


Discrimination or prejudice against an individual or group of people on the basis of their age.

American Indian (Native American)

A person having origin in any of the original tribes of North America who maintains cultural identification through tribal affiliation or community recognition.

Assigned Birth Sex

Refers to the assigning (naming) of the biological sex of a baby at birth.


An irrational dislike or fear of bisexual people. Bisexual people may be attracted, romantically and/or sexually, to people of more than one sex, not necessarily at the same time,not necessarily in the same way, and not necessarily to the same degree.


Unwanted offensive and malicious behavior which undermines, patronizes, intimidates or demeans the recipient or target.


Discrimination or prejudice against an individual or group of people based on social or economic class.


Current attitudes, behaviors, and standards of employees and students concerning the access for, inclusion of, and level of respect for individual and group needs, abilities, and potential.


The hiring or promoting of friends or associates to positions without proper regard to their qualifications.


A physical or mental impairment that limits one or more major life activities.


Discrimination refers to the treatment or consideration of, or making a distinction in favor of or against, a person based on the group, class, or category to which that person belongs rather than on individual merit. Discrimination can be the effect of some law or established practice that confers privileges based on of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, gender, gender expression, gender identity, pregnancy,  physical or mental disability, medical condition (cancer-related or genetic characteristics),  genetic information (including family medical history), ancestry, marital status, age, sexual identity, citizenship, or service in the uniformed services. 


Judging another culture solely by the values and standards of one's own culture. Ethnocentric individuals judge other groups relative to their own ethnic group or culture, especially with concern for language, behavior, customs, and religion.

Experiential Learning

Experiential learning refers to a pedagogical philosophy and methodology concerned with learning activities outside of the traditional classroom environment, with objectives which are planned and articulated prior to the experience (e.g., internships, service learning, co‐operative education, field experience, practicum, cross‐cultural experiences, apprenticeships).

Family Leave

The Family Medical Leave Act is a labor law requiring employers with 50 or more employees to provide certain employees with job-protected unpaid leave due to one of the following situations: a serious health condition that makes the employee unable to perform his or her job; caring for a sick family member; caring for a new child (including birth, adoption or foster care). For more information:

Gender Identity

A person’s inner sense of being man, woman, both, or neither. The internal identity may or may not be expressed outwardly, and may or may not correspond to one’s physical characteristics.

Gender Expression

The manner in which a person outwardly represents gender, regardless of the physical characteristics that might typically define the individual as male or female.

Gender Non-Binary

Gender non-binary is an umbrella term covering any gender identity that doesn't fit within the gender binary. The label may also be used by individuals wishing to identify as falling outside of the gender binary without being any more specific about the nature of their gender.


A person who does not subscribe to conventional gender distinctions but identifies with neither, both, or a combination of male and female genders.


Harassment is unwelcomed behavior that demeans, threatens or offends another person or group of people and results in a hostile environment for the targeted person/group.


Discrimination or prejudice against an LGBQ person or group of people based on the assumption that heterosexuality is the only sexual orientation.


A general term used for a variety of conditions in which a person is born with a reproductive or sexual anatomy that doesn’t seem to fit the typical definitions of female or male.


The hiring or promoting of family members to positions without proper regard to their qualifications.

Non-Native English Speakers

People for whom English is not their first language.


A person who is fluid in sexual identity and is attracted to others regardless of their sexual identity or gender.

People of Color

People who self-identify as other than White.

Physical Characteristics

Term that refers to one's appearance.


The status one holds by virtue of her/his position/status within the institution (e.g., staff, full-time faculty, part-time faculty, administrator).

Racial Identity

A socially constructed category about a group of people based on generalized physical features (e.g., skin color, hair type, shape of eyes, physique). 

Sexual Identity

Term that refers to the sex of the people one tends to be emotionally, physically and sexually attracted to; this is inclusive of, but not limited to, lesbians, gay men, bisexual people, heterosexual people, and those who identify as queer.

Sexual Assault

Sexual Assault is unwanted or unwelcome touching of a sexual nature, including: fondling; penetration of the mouth, anus, or vagina, however slight, with a body part or object; or other sexual activity that occurs without valid consent.

Socioeconomic Status

The status one holds in society based on one's level of income, wealth, education, and familial background.


An umbrella term referring to those whose gender identity or gender expression is different from that associated with their sex assigned at birth.


An irrational dislike or fear of transgender, transsexual and other gender non­traditional individuals because of their perceived gender identity or gender expression.

Unwanted Sexual Contact

Unwanted or unwelcome touching of a sexual nature that includes fondling (any intentional sexual touching, however slight, with any object without consent); rape; sexual assault (including oral, anal or vaginal penetration with a body part or an object); use of alcohol or other drugs to incapacitate; gang rape; and sexual harassment involving physical contact.


Irrational dislike or fear of people from other countries.