Gender on App.

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virginialittle1209
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Gender on App.

Postby virginialittle1209 » Sun Dec 01, 2013 1:46 pm

Greetings, I am applying for the current cycle and I need some advice as to how I should address my gender identity. I am technically a ‘male’ by birth and per my physical arrangement, but I am, inside, and to the appearance of others, a female. No need to really address the elephant in the room more than that, but my question is should this be noted on the application somewhere? I’ve always, in general, had trouble with appropriately marking the gender checklist, but I don’t know if I’ll just be exacerbating the elephant by openly discussing it. I would surely hate to select the female check list, and then have them see my records which are more aligned with my original male persona. I did have a name change recently (but most of my records indicate my original), but not a sex change FYI. I guess I’m trying to figure out mainly if I should simply not even address it so it doesn’t reflect poorly upon my application, or if I should address it thoroughly to be transparent and honest with the admissions committees. Any advice would be helpful.

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TheSpanishMain
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Re: Gender on App.

Postby TheSpanishMain » Sun Dec 01, 2013 1:53 pm

I have no basis for knowing if this is the "right" answer or not, but maybe select the gender you identify as, and then weave the transgender thing into a diversity essay. That should clear up any confusion

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LeDique
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Re: Gender on App.

Postby LeDique » Sun Dec 01, 2013 2:03 pm

I would not be particularly worried about how it reflects on your law school applications, and I think you should be okay to mark whichever gender you identify as on your law school application. I would also feel free to write about it if you so choose, but I would not feel compelled to. I can't see why it would cause a problem for your bar application later either, as your gender identity is inevitably going to come up during that process anyway.

One difficulty might be that your identity documents identify you as male (or so I would guess because you mention you haven't had surgery). Schools will be understanding of this, but it's a way it's going to be discussed eventually.
Last edited by LeDique on Sun Dec 01, 2013 2:08 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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midwest17
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Re: Gender on App.

Postby midwest17 » Sun Dec 01, 2013 2:06 pm

Addressing it would almost certainly be a positive, not a negative. If you think you can write a good diversity essay about being transgender I would do so, and otherwise you can include a short addendum explaining the gender/name change, framed as clearing up any confusion about having records with two different names. (It's possible -- I don't really know -- that schools will want to see documentation of the name change, especially if you have transcripts under your old name. I don't think you should submit anything with the original applications, but I'd have it on hand in case the schools ask for it.)

The only ways I can see a transgender diversity essay being a negative are those that could be a problem for any diversity essay: being overly hostile, or inviting the committee to a pity party. There's nothing about being transgender in particular that would be a problem for law schools in this day and age.

So in short: mark whatever you identify with (they're asking for gender anyways, not sex), and either write a DS or a short addendum to explain the multiple names (and genders, if the old records say male).

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Happy Gilmore
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Re: Gender on App.

Postby Happy Gilmore » Sun Dec 01, 2013 6:02 pm

I'd just mark what you are. If your a male then mark male. If you identify as a female then write a diversity statement later explaining you identify as such. The question is asking what you biologically are and not what you identify as.

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midwest17
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Re: Gender on App.

Postby midwest17 » Sun Dec 01, 2013 6:17 pm

Happy Gilmore wrote:I'd just mark what you are. If your a male then mark male. If you identify as a female then write a diversity statement later explaining you identify as such. The question is asking what you biologically are and not what you identify as.


I don't think this is right. The applications ask for gender, not sex, if I remember correctly.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sex_and_gender_distinction

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LeDique
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Re: Gender on App.

Postby LeDique » Sun Dec 01, 2013 6:18 pm

Happy Gilmore wrote:I'd just mark what you are. If your a male then mark male. If you identify as a female then write a diversity statement later explaining you identify as such. The question is asking what you biologically are and not what you identify as.


Ugh.

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cotiger
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Re: Gender on App.

Postby cotiger » Sun Dec 01, 2013 6:26 pm

Happy Gilmore wrote:I'd just mark what you are. If your a male then mark male. If you identify as a female then write a diversity statement later explaining you identify as such. The question is asking what you biologically are and not what you identify as.


Schools aren't interested in how many XXs, XYs, and XXYs they have. They're interested in how many males and females they have. OP, cosign what others have said. Mark female and include a DS if you want.

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Nova
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Re: Gender on App.

Postby Nova » Sun Dec 01, 2013 6:35 pm

Your gender is female, so put that.

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TheMostDangerousLG
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Re: Gender on App.

Postby TheMostDangerousLG » Sun Dec 01, 2013 6:57 pm

Mark it what gender you identify as. Screw anyone who disagrees.

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TheSpanishMain
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Re: Gender on App.

Postby TheSpanishMain » Mon Dec 02, 2013 7:29 am

You mention the "elephant in the room" which I assume means gender reassignment surgery. I can understand if you prefer not to make your application about being transgender, but I think you should at least mention it somewhere for clarification. Law school admissions officers aren't fourteen year old boys. They're not going to be so tactless as to start asking invasive questions about the state of your genitals.

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chuckbass
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Re: Gender on App.

Postby chuckbass » Mon Dec 02, 2013 9:00 am

Happy Gilmore wrote:I'd just mark what you are. If your a male then mark male. If you identify as a female then write a diversity statement later explaining you identify as such. The question is asking what you biologically are and not what you identify as.

Gender =/= sex.




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