Support for DEIA Work

Three hands laying on top of each other

Put your READI learnings to work to increase diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility in your studies and programs by using these tools. 

Once you’ve built a basic foundation of understanding of principles and values of diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility, it’s time for strategy-building and action. Leverage the insights found in some of the support below to move from introspection and reflection to implementation and evaluation.

Read through the language of diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility with our glossary. Understanding the language is one of the most important steps in building your foundation as someone who champions, lives, and practices the values of diversity, equity, and inclusion–personally and professionally.

Laws that are binding and enforced provide the amplification of the importance of diversity in clinical and translational science while policies provide guidance on effective ways to advance the actual and perceived intent of those laws. Some of these laws and policies are listed below for review and consideration as you think about how you will ensure that your research program aligns with and upholds principles of diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility to help eliminate health disparities and advance health equity.

The National Institutes of Health and other CTSC's have created additional tools to help further the mission of diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility work across different spectrums.


Possession of the means or skill to do something; talent, skill, or proficiency in a particular area.


The quality of being able to be reached or entered, obtained or used, easily understood or appreciated.


The fact or condition of being accountable (of a person, organization, or institution) required or expected to justify actions or decisions); responsibility.

African American

An ethnic group consisting of Americans with partial or total ancestry from any of the black racial groups of Africa.


Describes a person who lacks sexual attraction or desire for other people.


Relating to Asia or its people, customs, or languages.


Be a member or part of (a particular group, organization, or class).


Prejudice in favor of or against one thing, person, or group compared with another, usually considered to be unfair.


An acronym meaning “Black, Indigenous, (and) People of Color”, specific to the United States, intended to center the experiences of Black and Indigenous groups and demonstrate solidarity between communities of color.


An adjective that describes a person who has the potential to be physically, romantically, and/or emotionally attracted to people of more than one gender, not necessarily at the same time, in the same way, or to the same degree.


A member of a dark-skinned people, especially one of African or Australian Aboriginal ancestry.


A physical or mental condition that limits a person’s movements, senses, or activities.


The state of being diverse; variety.


The quality of being fair and impartial; the absence of unfair, avoidable, remediable differences among groups of people.


The fact or state of belonging to a social group that has a common national or cultural tradition.

Explicit Bias

Traditional conceptualization of bias; individuals are aware of their prejudices and attitudes toward certain groups.


An adjective that describes a person whose enduring physical, romantic, and/or emotional attractions are to people of the same sex.


Broadly denotes a range of identities that do not correspond to established ideas of male and female.

Gender Fluid

Describes a person whose gender identity or expression changes over time.


Describes a person who does not follow static categories of gender, embracing a fluidity of gender identity, and oftentimes, sexual orientations.

Gender Non-conforming

Describes a person who does not abide by traditional or cultural expectations—in regards to appearance or behavior—of their gender.

Health Disparities

Preventable differences in the burden of disease, injury, violence, or opportunities to achieve optimal health that are experienced by socially disadvantaged populations.

Health Literacy

The degree to which individuals have the capacity to obtain, process, and understand basic health information needed to make appropriate health decisions.


Denoting or relating to a world view that promotes heterosexuality as the normal or preferred sexual orientation.


An adjective that describes a person whose enduring physical, romantic, and/or emotional attraction is to people of a sex different from their own.


A person of Cuban, Mexican, Puerto Rican, South or Central American, or other Spanish culture or origin regardless of race.

Implicit Bias

When we have attitudes towards people or associate stereotypes with them without or conscious knowledge.


The practice or policy of providing equal access to opportunities and resources for people who might otherwise be excluded or marginalized.


Originating or occurring naturally in a particular place; native.

Institutional Racism

Occurs within institutions and systems of power – refers to the unfair policies and discriminatory practices of particular institutions (schools, workplaces, etc.) that routinely produce racially inequitable outcomes for people of color and advantages for white people; individuals take on the power of the institution when they reinforce inequities.

Internalized Racism

Lies within individuals; comprises our private beliefs and biases about race and racism, influenced by our culture (can take on different forms, including: prejudice towards others of a different race; negative beliefs about oneself by people of color).

Interpersonal Racism

Occurs between individuals – bias that occurs when individuals interact with others and their personal racial beliefs affect their public interactions.


Describes a person who is born with differences in their sex traits or reproductive anatomy that don’t fit typical definitions of female or male (e.g., chromosomes, hormones, internal sex organs, genitalia, or secondary sex characteristics).


Just behavior or treatment; based on or behaving according to what is morally right and fair.


A person of Latin American origin or descent; the gender neutral -x suffix replaces the -o/-a ending of Latino and Latina.


A woman who is physically, emotionally, or romantically attracted to other women.


An acronym for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer or Questioning, Intersex, and Asexual with the plus indicating another identification not included in the acronym.


Of a person, group, or concept, treated as insignificant or peripheral.


Everyday, subtle, intentional – and oftentimes unintentional – interactions or behaviors that communicate some sort of bias toward historically marginalized groups.


An adjective that describes people who experience their gender identity and/or gender expression as falling outside the binary categories of man and woman.

Person or People of Color (POC)

A person who is not white.


The capacity or ability to direct or influence the behavior of others or the course of events.


A special right, advantage, or immunity granted or available only to a particular person or group.


An adjective that describes some people whose sexual orientation is not exclusively heterosexual or straight.


Describes a person who is exploring their sexual orientation or gender identity.


A socio-political construct; categorizations of humans based on shared physical or social qualities into groups generally viewed as distinct within a given society.


The belief that different races possess distinct characteristics, abilities, or qualities, especially so as to distinguish them as inferior or superior to one another.


Any situation or environment that resembles an individual’s trauma literally or symbolically, which then triggers difficult feelings and reactions associated with the original trauma.

Structural Racism

Racial bias among institutions and across society that involves the cumulative and compounding effects of an array of societal factors, including the history, culture, ideology, and interactions of institutions and policies that systematically privilege white people and disadvantage people of color.


Either male and female into which humans and most other living things are divided on the basis of their reproductive functions at birth.

Sexual Orientation

Scientifically accurate term for a person’s enduring physical, romantic and/or emotional attraction to another person, including: heterosexual, lesbian, gay, bisexual, queer, asexual, and other orientations.


Acronym for sexual orientation, gender identity and gender expression, and sex characteristics, more commonly used in countries outside the United States.


An adjective that describes people whose gender identity differs from the sex they were assigned at birth.


An emotional response to a terrible event like an accident, rape, or natural disaster.


Cause (an event or situation) to happen or exist.


Provide with insufficient or inadequate representation.


An acronym used to refer to “underrepresented minorities” in science or research (primarily based on race, ethnicity, sex, gender, primary language, and/or disability).

Source: Dictionary by Merriam-Webster, Oxford English Dictionary, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Institutes of Health, Healthy People 2020, and GLAAD