flexityflex86 wrote:But does the question ask black? If it asks OP what he identifies with, it might well be african american. If he upholds Libyan customs whatever those are, is aware of his culture and calls himself Libyan, he is African American. I think including a diversity statement where it's clear that you identify as Libyan, but are not black might be a good call. Schools will still give you the URM bonus, but it won't be the same as being black.
Most questions ask "African-American/Black". It's widely understood that "African-American" refers to people of racially black heritage as well, so it's clear that they're just including that for blacks who prefer the phrase "African-American". Even questions that don't say "black" would still be asking if OP was black because of the clearly understood definition of "African-American".
You seem to be operating on the same misconception that many others in this thread are, which is that "African-American" simply means an American of any African geographic origin. That is not what the phrase means, no matter how many times people try to claim it should or argue that it should be "logically" read that way. The phrase isn't meant to be logical. It's meant to be a way to refer to people of black descent as something a little more dignified than "black". It's the black equivalent of "Caucasian", which is well understood to mean white, even though most whites don't identify as being from the Caucasus Mountains.
"African-American", like "Caucasian", is a term referring to the geographic origins of the race it refers to, but is intended to represent race/ancestry and not geography.