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Curious to see if there are any other non-binary applicants on this site! I've applied to clinical and counseling psychology PhD programs, and most of them didn't allow me to apply gender-neutrally (i.e., I had to choose a gender marker/title). I'm not sure how to respond to interview invitations that have the wrong pronouns (I use they/them/theirs, my interviews have primarily used she/her) on them -- do I email the department and gently correct them when I respond to the invitation? Or do I just quietly let them misgender me in hopes of gaining a placement?

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First, congratulations on your interview offers!  While I definitely understand if you're not comfortable reaching out to the department now, I think it's completely appropriate to correct them.  If they are put off by your gentle correction, it's probably not somewhere you'd want to end up. I took note of applications that allowed me to expand on my gender identity, and felt like those were probably institutions with a better culture fit!  (Sorry I'm not more help!) 

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If you don't want to directly correct them (although it's well within your rights to!), you could just put your pronouns as part of your email signature when you respond to the invitation. The downside of this is that they might not notice it, but you could consider that if you don't feel comfortable directly correcting them yet.

Similarly, you can also write your pronouns on your nametag when you go to visits etc. The major conferences in my field have pronoun stickers for everyone now.

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I'm also non binary and applying to clinical psych programs. Congrats on your interview offers!

 

I agree with the above! I talked about my involvement with the LGBT community but didn't specify what I identify as specifically and asked my recommenders to use she/her pronouns just in case. While I agree that you probably don't want to be somewhere that won't accept your trans/nonbinary identity, it's so hard to be picky in this field, so I personally decided not to bring it up unless directly asked. I do have my pronouns in my email signature though. At my current institution those who bring it up tend to be very receptive, so it helps me avoid any potentially hurtful interactions since people who are uncomfortable with it generally do not bring it up. After gaining placement, though, I highly encourage you to be your authentic self to the fullest extent that you can! 

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  • 5 weeks later...

I'm trans, but not non-binary. I definitely recommend putting your pronouns in your e-mail signature. This is getting more and more common in Psychology. Further, I would put write "they/them" on name tags (just to be on the safe side). Remember: during the interview process, you are interviewing them as much as they are interviewing you! Assessing campus climate can be an important aspect of that!

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I'm in the social sciences and it's pretty standard now to see pronouns in people's email signature. I have it in mine and I am neither trans nor nonbinary. I would definitely correct them and use that as an opportunity to assess their openness to it and thus the kind of environment you'd be walking into. I would definitely do so in advance if they're using gender as a basis for housing assignments (e.g., trying to have people room with someone of the same gender) as you wouldn't want to make a fellow interviewing applicant uncomfortable. Otherwise, I'd wait and make corrections in person so that you can read body language.

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I also agree with the "Put pronouns in your signature."  At my school, there's even a "standard" way to do it, that I've seen multiple cisgendered folks use.

 

One word of caution - in looking at the list of schools you've applied, you may want/need to vary your pronoun approach by school.  Universities tend to be more liberal, of course, but I'd be actively concerned for you in four out of five of the states you have interviews in.  If nothing else, I doubt the have nondiscrimination policies that cover trans/non-binary folks.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I've been thinking about this too. Even though most of the schools I applied to allowed me to select gender non-binary, I just got a response back addressing me as "Mr"! I didn't feel comfortable correcting them over email; I was planning on indicating in person.

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