Duke University Now Asks Students to Talk About Their Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity on New Common Application


Students applying to Duke University will now have the option to answer a question about their sexual orientation and gender identity on the new Common Application that was recently introduced.

The question posed on the application reads:

“Duke University seeks a talented, engaged student body that embodies the wide range of human experience; we believe that the diversity of our students makes our community stronger. If you’d like to share a perspective you bring or experiences you’ve had to help us understand you better – perhaps related to a community you belong to, your sexual orientation or gender identity, or you family or cultural background – we encourage you to do so. Real people are reading your application, and we wat to do our best to understand and appreciate the real people applying to Duke.”

Students are encouraged to answer the question in essay form with a 250 word limit. The question is being asked in an attempt by Duke to encourage students to be themselves and embrace diversity within the student body.

Duke’s dean of undergraduate admissions, Christoph Guttentag reports that the response has been positive thus far and that more students answer the question than not.

USA Today College quotes an email he wrote that says, “They give an additional valuable insight into the students we don’t always get elsewhere in the application. As on staff member said, it encourages students to be a bit more free, candid and engaging.”

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