Explain what you understand by ‘Diversity’. Describe some of the barriers to diversity in the workplace and your educational environment. Present some strategies for addressing issues of diversity.
You must use at least 5 sources. You must use the two sources provided and at least 3 of your own. You must use at least five different resources in your research. You may use more than five resources if you wish. In addition, good quality sources, consisting mainly of a mix of journal database articles and academic library books, will be rewarded with high marks. Wikipedia is banned as a source. Using Wikipedia will result in failure for this assessment.
When you write the essay, you must supply a copy of the relevant pages of sources used. You must underline/number the sections you have referred to and paraphrased in your essay.
You must use correct APA referencing in your essay and provide a reference list at the end. Incorrect use of referencing will be penalized. Only 10% of your essay can be directly quoted from resources. All other references must be paraphrased or summarised.
Any evidence of plagiarism will result in failure for this assessment. Plagiarism includes:
- Copying directly from texts.
- Copying directly from other current students.
- Submitting an essay written by someone else.
The following will also result in failure:
- Submitting an essay without any consultation.
- Submitting an essay that is different to the one shown in consultation.
You will be assessed on:
- Presentation (Layout, typing, margins etc)
- Essay Structure (Introduction – opening statement, thesis, plan of development, Body – topic sentences, support for main points, concluding sentences, Conclusion – restate thesis, restate main points, concluding statement)
- Research (Minimum of 5 reliable, relevant and up-to-date sources. Please attach copies of your resources to your assignment. You can photocopy pages you used in your book. Highlight all sections you used in your essay).
- Referencing (Correct use of APA in-text and end-text referencing)
- Grammar (Range of grammar structures used – simple, compound and complex sentences, and accuracy of grammar structures used).
- Vocabulary (Range of vocabulary used, correct use of vocabulary, spelling)
Diversity Essay Plan
- The essay introduces the topic of diversity and explains its intentions to discuss the barriers to diversity.
- Diversity is portrayed along ethical dimensions, physical abilities, racial lines, gender, and socio-economic status.
- The essay gives an in-depth explanation of diversity in society.
- The barriers of diversity at the workplace are outlined and explained.
- The barriers of diversity in question are socio-economic status, religious differences, and racism.
- The essay summarizes the barriers of diversity by showing its implications in the workplace and educational institutions.
Diversity refers to the aspect of being different and coexisting with these differences (Parrillo, 2009). It is recognizing the individual differences in people, celebrating and embracing each other’s uniqueness. No two people are the same, even twins and triplets who share many similarities have a form of uniqueness that is personal and that makes them stand out from the rest. These differences can be the cause of conflict and even war if not embraced as something positive and something that can cultivate growth in a community. The sources of diversity arise from our different cultures, our upbringing, political beliefs, religious beliefs, education history; some are more elite than others and the perceptions we hold concerning different things. In addition, diversity is also seen along the dimensions of ethnicity, sexual orientation, race, physical abilities, gender, and socioeconomic status.
The same aspects that can be useful for cultivating a culture of oneness can be a barrier in other circumstances depending on how they present themselves. For example, culture can be a source of richness when each community shares its diversity with others and learn from each other and also when every community is equally embraced. On the other hand, it can be a source of contention if one community views its ways to be more superior to others. Some of these barriers that exist in the work and school environments include; racism, religious differences, differing political beliefs, discrimination, xenophobia, gender differences, and socio-economic differences.
Racism refers to the animosity against people who belong to other races. It arises from the belief that one race is superior to the other in one given way and that different races have different abilities and qualities some of which are held to be better than others (Langwith, 2008).
For years, the black community was viewed as uneducated and due to being enslaved by the white community, they were seen as only good for labor. However, with the dawning of a new era of freedom, the black community gained a different status in society and co-existed with other races as equal members of the society. Some people still ascribe to the belief that they are better than the black community, and thus the incidences of racism are still existent in many areas despite there being a President, who is black. These perceptions are unhealthy especially when they present themselves in the workplace and schools. It can cripple the growth of a company when some members of a particular community are discriminated against. Some go to the extent of refusing to give people from particular community promotions.
Religious beliefs can also be a barrier in education institutions and workplaces when one religion is considered more than others. In some areas, some systems lockout students who do not profess the faith that is advocated in the school’s system. For example, a Christian University may refuse to admit a non-Christian even though the prospective student desires to be part of the institution and is qualified to join. Therefore, this limits the growth of the education center as these universities that ascribe to a particular religion close their doors on others and thus miss out on experiencing the diverse nature of the different religious beliefs (Tierney, (2007).
Socioeconomic differences are a source of inequality in almost all nations. These differences that arise as a result of who has more material wealth create a class society whereby one falls in the upper, middle or lower class. Each class relates exclusively to its members and two social classes rarely see eye to eye because one class believes it’s either inferior or superior to the other. Socioeconomic differences lead to people having access to different resources, the rich can access most of what they want and need while the low class is limited in their resources and accessibility (Wrench, 2007). This is the case scenario that is seen in the health sector; the upper class can access the best of hospitals and services while the low class suffers from illnesses due to being financially limited to seek help from well-funded hospitals. It’s the same issue that is existent in the education centers, those who have money take their children to the best of schools while the poor children either stay at home and miss education or receive a substandard public education where they are not as exposed as the rich receive. It also trickles down to the work sector, as the rich keep getting richer; having received the best of education, they secure the best jobs while the poor branch off to the informal sectors to look for a means to survive. This further aggravates the situation by creating an even larger gap between the wealthy and the have-nots.
Lastly, discrimination based on gender and one’s sexual orientation is a warring issue in the workplace. Chauvinists in the work do not consider the views of the opposite gender important and thus, disregard their ideas and opinions that could be useful for the company (Fisanick, 2011). Some institutions and organizations have not warmed up to the LGTB community. Therefore, some still experience some form of discrimination even when trying to secure jobs. In conclusion, it is evident that diversity can be strength or a weakness depending on how it is perceived and handled. Therefore, it is up to the people to take up the mantle and change our perceptions of the growth of the nation at large.
Fisanick, C. (2011). Discrimination. Farmington Hills, Mich.: Greenhaven Press.
Langwith, J. (2008). Discrimination. Detroit: Greenhaven Press.
Parrillo, V. (2009). Diversity in America. Thousand Oaks, Calif.: Pine Forge Press.
Tierney, S. (2007). Accommodating cultural diversity. Aldershot, England: Ashgate.
Wrench, J. (2007). Diversity management and discrimination. Aldershot, England: Ashgate.