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Cultural Diversity in the U.S. Flag

Beginning Spring 2023, the faculty committee that oversees the Cultural Diversity in the United States flag is implementing an updated definition and interpretation for the Flag in response to a formal request from UT Austin student government.

The purpose of the Cultural Diversity in the United States Flag is for students to explore in-depth the cultural experiences, perspectives, and/or practices of marginalized groups in the United States. In addition to learning about the complexity and diversity within these groups, and their social and political context, you’ll also reflect on the impact of the course material on your own life and community.

For a course at UT to satisfy the Cultural Diversity Flag, it must meet the following definition:

  • At least one-half* of the course grade must be based on content dealing with the cultural experiences, perspectives, and/or practices of marginalized groups in the United States.
    *For three- or four-credit courses. For one- and two-credit hour courses, the entire course grade should be based on Flag content.
  • Courses must engage students in thinking critically about at least three of the following: gender identity/expression, race, ethnicity, indigeneity, disability, sexuality, religion, nationality, language, and/or class.
  • Courses should not focus on broad or systemic issues at the expense of a focus on the experiences of cultural group members.
  • Whenever possible, courses should include texts (including art, music, written work, scholarship, etc.) created by members of those cultural groups in their own voices that reflect diverse perspectives.
  • Students will learn to analyze the forces – social, political, historical, and/or economic – that have shaped their own cultural experiences, those of the groups they are studying, and those of others in their communities.

What is a Cultural Diversity Flag class like?

Cultural Diversity courses are taught across the curriculum in departments all over campus, both at the upper- and lower-division levels and cover a wide variety of topics. Each instructor will use the Cultural Diversity requirement in unique ways to enhance the class. You might be asked to:

  • Write about how your beliefs or assumptions have been affected by a reading or assignment in the course
  • Share your perspectives on the course material in small-group or class discussions
  • Engage in creative projects related to the course materials, such as making a podcast, drawing a comic, writing an autobiography, attending a performance, or exploring a place

Any such activities are designed to help you master course content while deepening your appreciation for the variety of lived experiences in the U.S.

Examples of courses that carry the Cultural Diversity Flag:

  • AFR 330O: Black Film at the Oscars
  • MUS 307: History of Rock Music
  • J 328S: Reporting En Español
  • WGS 303: Introduction to LGBTQ Studies