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The CALS Human Diversity (D) Requirement

Definition of Human Diversity:

It is expected that in the process of earning a degree, students will enhance their abilities to communicate with people of different cultural perspectives; to listen carefully and respectfully to views of others, especially views with which they disagree; and to employ ethical reasoning in judging ideas, actions, and their implications. These courses explore the challenges of building a diverse society, and/or examine the various processes that marginalize people and produce unequal power relations in terms of race, nationality, ethnicity, sexuality, religion, gender, age, or economic status.

Human Diversity Areas:

All courses that satisfy the Human Diversity requirement have at least 50% content in one of the following areas:

  • critical analysis of historically or contemporary marginalized* communities
  • examination of diverse processes that produce unequal power relations in terms of race, nationality, ethnicity, sexuality, religion, gender, age, or economic status.
  • review of the challenges of building a diverse society

*Any groups with reduced access to social status, political influence, economic advancement, educational advancement, health care, information, or any of the goods, services, and powers of a society can be considered marginalized. Causes of marginalization may be related to ethnic status, religion, country of origin, sexual orientation, geography, economics, and government policies. Those who exist on the furthest margins of a society are frequently subject to several of these forces.

A student can complete the Human Diversity (D) requirement in one of two ways.

  1. Enrolling in an approved course at Cornell University.
  2. Request substitution of a Cornell course not currently approved, or approval of a transfer course (including courses taken abroad). This process is a minimum of 4-6 weeks. The petition is reviewed upon receipt of requested material from instructor of record, so please plan accordingly.