Another university is scrapping ‘he’ and ‘she’ for gender-neutral pronouns
Another university is trying to be more inclusive by encouraging the use of gender-neutral pronouns.
The University of Tennessee is encouraging tutors to ask students which pronouns they want to be referred to using.
Gender neutral pronouns, such as “xe” and “ze” are being encouraged at Tennessee, and tutors are encouraged not to assume that gender-binary pronouns, such as “he” and “she” are correct.
The director of the university’s Pride Centre, Donna Braquet, advised that even university registers may not carry the correct gender identity of students.
“The more we make sharing of pronouns a universal practice, the more inclusive we will be as a campus,” she wrote.
“When our organisational culture shifts to where asking for chosen names and pronouns is the standard practice, it alleviates a heavy burden for persons already marginalised by their gender expression or identity.”
The university is the second in the US to announce such a change in recent months.
The University of California earlier this year announced that it would include six gender categories on its application forms.
Last week the Oxford English Dictionary’s free online version included the title Mx for the first time.
The title Mx is a gender-neutral alternative to Mr and Ms, which has grown in use and popularity – with MPs being sworn into the House of Commons given the option of the gender neutral title for the first time after May’s election.