LGBTQ Week: Incorporating LGBTQIA Sensitivity into Every Evaluation by Amanda Jones

Hi again, Fellow Evaluators! Amanda Jones, LGBT TIG Program Co-Chair, here again to provide some concluding thoughts on incorporating sensitivity to LGBTQIA (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, questioning/queer, intersex, asexual) folks into evaluations. Just as culturally competent evaluators think through all aspects of every evaluation as they relate to race and ethnicity, these same evaluators should also consider how their methods, measures, and reports relate to issues important to the LGBTQIA community.

Hot Tips:

  • Learn the meanings of the terms important to LGBTQIA individuals, and advocate for sensitivity to these individuals in all evaluations. Before we can ensure that LGBTQIA folks are well-served by our evaluations, we must first recognize who they are! UC Davis provides a useful glossary to explore.
  • Watch your assumptions. Do not assume everyone involved in your evaluation is heterosexual, or that that they identify with the sex they were assigned at birth. Read over your evaluation materials to see if they would address someone who is gay or transgender as well as someone who is heterosexual or cisgender (check that glossary!).
  • If you need to measure gender or sexual orientation in your evaluation, consult experts who have thought through the options. Luckily, many have put guidelines online, including the Human Rights Campaign and the Williams Institute at the UCLA School of Law. In addition, you could contact the leadership of the LGBT TIG to see if they might be able to help.

The American Evaluation Association is celebrating LGBT TIG Week with our colleagues in the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual & Transgender Issues Topical Interest Group. The contributions all this week to aea365 come from our LGBT TIG members. Do you have questions, concerns, kudos, or content to extend this aea365 contribution? Please add them in the comments section for this post on the aea365 webpage so that we may enrich our community of practice. Would you like to submit an aea365 Tip? Please send a note of interest to aea365 is sponsored by the American Evaluation Association and provides a Tip-a-Day by and for evaluators.

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