What is the full form of etc.

Many facets

Gender- and diversity-friendly communication means making people with all their differences visible in language. If women and men are meant and should be addressed, women and men must be named explicitly. Women and men should be equally and symmetrically present in the language.

Despite many opposing opinions, the following applies: bare things "With my" of women or so-called general clauses, such as "The following text means women and men alike, the masculine form is used due to legibility", are not gender-equitable and should be avoided.

If you want to address women and men equally and address messages to both genders, you have to explicitly name both.

Language socializes, creates reality, sets signals and serves as a role model. Communication is an interplay between sender and recipient. It works well when the recipients of a message (= your target group) are "picked up".

It is therefore essential to address female and male users equally - as customers, as employees, as clients, as multipliers. If you address women and men in their diversity, you will be better able to inspire them for your organization / company.

In the case of gender-equitable use of language, the aim is to make all the people involved - women AND men - visible in word and in writing and to create a symmetry between women and men. There is no magic formula for this, creative formulation is and will remain a requirement.

  • Language means creativity. Gender-equitable language means cultivating a creative approach to it, making visible which people are written or spoken by.
  • When formulating the texts, always think of women AND men.
  • Avoid language images that reproduce clichéd ideas about women and men. This applies to writing as well as to images that are used to illustrate texts.
  • Avoid derogatory terms ("Miss") and do not depict women in relation to the man ("To Hans Krankl his wife her stadium").
  • Avoid comparisons between humans and animals (“two perky bees” “they are chattering upset”). Do not depict people like objects ("The men are at the feet of the dancers").
  • Different forms of gender-sensitive language within a text are possible - make sure that it is easy to read.
  • Make sure that job titles are also formulated in a gender-sensitive manner.
  • Check your finished texts by reading them out loud if possible. This is how you can tell whether the text can be read easily and fluently.

There are specific guidelines and language guides from ministries, administrative units, large organizations and companies on gender-equitable use of language.

In order to make women and men "visible" linguistically, there are the following options for gender-sensitive writing:

Complete pair shape

By using the full pair form, women and men are named equally next to each other. The female form is always mentioned first (e.g. head of department, applicants, citizens, etc .; “We are still looking for a student for library service”).

Complete pair form with slash

Make the female and male form visible with a slash (e.g. the head of department).

Abbreviated pair form with a slash

The feminine ending of a word is appended directly with a slash. This form can be used if, for reasons of space, the conjunctions “and” / “or” are dispensed with in the complete pair form (e.g. “department head”, “the applicant must sign”).

Short form with Binnen-I

The feminine and masculine form are made visible by the so-called capital "I" (internal I) (e.g. "sender", "representative", "technician", "engineer" etc.).

For the shortened pair form with a slash and for the short form with the inner I, always do the Omission sample: When omitting the slash or the "In" or "Inside", a meaningful, grammatically correct word must still be present. Also check the correct use of all required items.

An underscore ("employees") is also called a gender gap or gender gap and draws attention to the fact that there are more than two genders and gender identities between and beyond the woman-man duality.

The following options are available to avoid long word constructions:


For stylistic reasons and to improve readability, reformulations are often useful. There are the following options:

  • Paragraph with an impersonal pronoun: those, all, who etc.
  • Use of adjectives instead of nouns: advisory activity (instead of: advisor activity)
  • Passive forms: a form must be filled out for the application (instead of: the applicant must fill out a form); After completing the course, everyone is entitled to ... (instead of: those who have completed the course are entitled to ...); You are a team player and experienced (instead of: We are looking for an experienced and team player)
  • Use plural (e.g. "All who ...", "People who ...")

Gender neutral forms

In texts that are formulated briefly, gender-neutral terms are to be used. For general written documents (legal texts, forms, etc.), neutral formulations are well suited for stylistic reasons and to improve readability.

  • Gender-neutral personal designations: person, member, personality, parent, etc.
  • Word compositions with -person, -worker, -help, -people: worker, information person, teacher, manager, etc.
  • Personal designations that are gender-neutral only in the plural: the students, the participants, the chairpersons (but: the students and the student or the participants and the participant)

Gender-neutral institution, function or collective names

Administration, secretariat, directorate, management, representation, team, committee, workforce;

Gender should also be taken into account when designating functions and abbreviations of titles. For academic titles, the long version and the abbreviated form should always be used in a gender-equitable manner:

  • Graduate engineer (Dipl.-Ing.in) - Graduate engineer (Dipl.-Ing.)
  • PhD (Dr.in) - Doctor (Dr.)
  • Magistra (Mag.a) - Magister (Mag.).
  • The academic degrees BA and MA for Bachelor and Master have only one form in German and always remain the same.

To overview