Diversity & Inclusion

The Department of Linguistics at the University of Arizona embraces and celebrates diversity among peoples, both within and across their languages and cultures.

We are committed to a climate of mutual respect among all individuals without regard to (for example) age, culture, ethnicity, gender, gender identity, language, life experiences, physical and mental ability, race, religion, sexual orientation, socioeconomic status, spiritual practice, or world view.

As a discipline engaged in the scientific study of language, where language is considered an inherent attribute of one’s identity, we recognize and advocate that all varieties of human language are equally valid and deserve respect.

Located as we are in the traditional lands of the Tohono O’odham nation, one among twenty-two indigenous nations in the State of Arizona, we are historically rich in linguistic and cultural diversity – a diversity that is only enhanced by the many other communities that now call Tucson home.

Statement written by Diane Ohala, Joseph Dupris, Megan Figueroa, Amy Fountain, Mike Hammond, and Adam Ussishkin.


Inclusive Excellence Resources

Title IX Training: Two mandatory trainings for all University of Arizona instructional and supervisory employees. Required by Office of Institutional Equity.

Office of Instruction and Assessment Workshops and Tutorials
Inclusive Excellence in Teaching is an introductory, online mini-primer/web-resource.
Teaching Diverse Students is a self-paced online tutorial in D2L.
Building Communities in Online Courses is a facilitated online mini-course offered several times per year.

Diversity in the Classroom Workshop Series
This traditional in-person workshop series for instructional faculty who would like to create more inclusive classrooms covers topics including race/ethnicity, gender, international student status, disability, diverse learners, and unconscious bias.  Certificate earned upon completion.
Contact: Laura Hunter, Office of Diversity & Inclusive Excellence (ODIEX)

First Cats (First Generation Students awareness)
First Cats is an initiative that distributes plaques and buttons to staff, alumni, and students who are first generation college students or graduates to bring awareness to the first generation population.

Safe Zone/LGBTQ Ally Training
Train to be an Ally to individuals identifying as LGBTQ. This online trainings is offered through the LGBTQ Affairs office. Plaque awarded.

Undocupeers Training
Train to be an Ally to undocumented or immigrant students. This one-time, 3-hour, in-person training is offered through the Immigrant Resource Center.

VETS Veterans Ally Training
Train to be an Ally to student veterans.  This in-person 3-session training is offered through the Veterans Education & Transition Services office.

Inclusive Excellence in Teaching Professional Learning Community
This professional learning community is a semester-long discussion group, offered by the Office of Instructional Assessment.

Voices of Discovery Intergroup Dialogue Program
Voices of Discovery is a program designed to structure interaction between diverse groups of undergraduate students with the goal of creating greater understanding about intergroup/diversity issues. Faculty can engage as facilitators or offer extra credit for participation.
Contact: Tamara Carter, Office of Diversity & Inclusive Excellence (ODIEX)

University of Arizona Transgender Resources
Includes information on name change options and policy on use of preferred names and gender identity.

Cyberbullying Policy and Resources, University of Arizona Dean of Students

Title IX Reporting Process and ResourcesDean of Students

Disability Resource Center Resources and Policy Information
Accommodations for Parenting and Pregnancy
Universal Design Principles:
Examples of Reasonable Accommodations for Employees:
Resources for Instructors:

National Institute for Civil Discourse

Southern Arizona Aids Foundation (SAAF)
SAAF offers trainings on the intersections of the LGBTQ community with domestic violence, sexual assault, sexual violence, and hate violence.  To request education or training, please call 520-624-0348.

Southern Arizona Center Against Sexual Assault (SACASA)
SACASA presents trainings on personal safety, sexual harassment, relationship abuse and sexual assault to children and adult community members. The presentations are made in small group settings, in classrooms, or at community-wide informational fairs.

Sample Language for Inclusion in Syllabi

The Department of Linguistics Committee on Equity, Respect, and Inclusion have drafted sample language for inclusion in Linguistics course syllabi. We hope you will consider including the following language and/or concepts and resources in your course syllabi.

The University of Arizona strives to foster inclusive learning environments in which diversity is recognized and valued.  This course strives to create a civil and welcoming environment for everyone, including students of diverse ethnic, cultural, linguistic, national, and familial backgrounds and gender identities, ages, abilities, and veteran status.  Students and faculty are responsible for creating an inclusive learning environment through respectful and civil discussion in the classroom and inclusive practices in class and group work.

  • We will use the names and pronouns as selected and proposed by each individual in the course in acknowledgment of the intricate nature of our identities and in respect of each other’s integrity.  Students may request a University wide name change through LGBTQ Affairs at and learn more about name and pronoun use at http://lgbtq.arizona.edu/transgender-resources
  • If you anticipate or experience physical or academic barriers based on disability, pregnancy, or parenting status, please contact your instructor as soon as issues are known and contact Disability Resources (520-621-3268) to establish reasonable accommodations.  For additional information on Disability Resources and reasonable accommodations, please visit http://drc.arizona.edu/.
  • If you have questions about particular policies concerning gender equity, sexual harassment, or sexual assault, please contact the Office of Institutional Equity (http://www.titleix.arizona.edu/) or the Dean of Students Office (www.deanofstudents.arizona.edu).

All communication in this class adheres to the principles of civil discourse. Civil discourse is guided by mutual respect and appreciation. Diversity of knowledge is an asset to class discussions. In all communication, you are expected to be scholarly, professional, and respectful. Constructive criticism in discussion of course concepts is highly encouraged.  Mocking and/or bullying are never allowed. To be critical does not exclude being polite. See:

Departmental Statement on the BLM Movement

The Department of Linguistics at the University of Arizona stands in solidarity with the Black Lives Matter movement, as well as the Black community in the city of Tucson, the state of Arizona, and across the United States.

The murder of George Floyd by several Minneapolis police officers, following the deaths of Breonna Taylor, Sandra Bland, Philando Castille, Eric Garner, and so many others, has again made clear that state-sponsored violence against Black people is a constant of American history from its founding and continues to today. Moreover, it takes place against a backdrop of wider systemic violence and discrimination against Black, Indigenous, and People of Color. We must acknowledge that the field of Linguistics and academia more widely are part of this system, and so have been shaped by systemic anti-Blackness.

Recognizing this, in the coming year, the Department of Linguistics will specifically prioritize the following actions to reflect our solidarity with the Black Lives Matter movement and minority communities in Tucson and beyond.

  • Increase representation of BIPOC faculty, staff, and administrators. In the short term, the department commits to increasing the representation of BIPOC speakers in our colloquium series. In the medium term, we work to bring prospective BIPOC faculty to campus in all ways possible, and work towards a hire.
  • Listen to students of color in the department on what diversity means to them, not the university. Responses will be centered in an annual diversity report. Going forward, the previous 5 years of reports will be consulted in preparation of the annual report to measure progress.
  • Re-evaluate curriculum at the graduate and undergraduate level (especially in the introductory sequence) to include scholars of color in the reading list, to eliminate loaded vocabulary like “Standard English”, and to include more sociolinguistics, especially sociolinguistic scholarship on race and language.
  • Scale up anti-racist resources in TA training. Students will learn how to foster an inclusive environment in their own courses, as well as how to respond if students or faculty do or say something that creates a non-inclusive environment.
  • Provide a faculty training to mirror what students receive in TA training.
  • Work, in our capacity as linguists, to highlight and condemn linguistic discrimination as part of broader systemic racism.
  • Feature in our departmental re-opening planning and actions the prominence in our community of students/employees and their families from communities that are disproportionately suffering from the impact of COVID-19.
  • Agitate at the College and University level to increase equity in pay and job security insofar as they disproportionately affect people of color in the most precarious positions of employment (e.g., lower-wage staff, faculty and staff serving departments that serve students of color, etc.)

In closing, we want to recognize that freedom of speech and freedom of expression are central values of this university and colleges and universities more widely. We stand firmly by the protesters and their right to protest, and call on all law enforcement agencies to refuse to participate in acts of repression against protesters. Furthermore, we roundly condemn the mobilization of the military and unidentifiable paramilitary forces against Black Lives Matter and the wider protest movement. It is antithetical to life in a free and democratic society, and we insist that it end.