Understanding Diversity in Nursing

A Collection of Resources

A board displays Post-it Notes with answers from campus community members on what diversity means to them.

About the Resources

The resources listed on this page are curated by the School of Nursing’s diversity officer. The UW–Madison Nursing Diversity & Inclusion Facebook page is another source of resources, articles, events, and community.

Inclusive Excellence Plan (pdf) Anti-Racism Commitment (pdf)

Resources at the School of Nursing

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Diversity and Inclusion in Our Curriculum

School of Nursing courses with a social justice focus include 510, 437, and 702.

Diversity and Inclusion for Faculty Development

The School of Nursing developed and designed its own in-house Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Certificate Program. The development team was comprised of faculty and staff across job classifications.

The certificate includes leveled courses that address personal, interpersonal, and systems-level DEI content and application to nursing. The cohort-based courses are comprised of 15-20 faculty and staff each term who meet face to face and complete online modules.

The content is interactive, community-based, and includes foundational concepts like diversity, equity, inclusion, microaggressions, and social identity, as well as tools and strategies for building inclusive classrooms and content related to health equity in nursing. Tracks also include direct application to their roles within the school’s Inclusive Excellence Action Plan and equity-based research design, among other tailored content.

The certificate program requires attending campus and community events and critically reflecting on how they impact participants’ teaching, research, and service. Lastly, the program includes a capstone project where the faculty and staff can disseminate what they learned for a variety of purposes, including course revisions, peer-reviewed articles, or poster presentations.

Lawton Undergraduate Minority Retention Grant

The Lawton Grant was established to increase the retention and graduation rates of underrepresented students and reduce their loan indebtedness post-graduation. The award can range from $1,000 to $3,000 per academic year, with a maximum of 8 semesters of eligibility.

People Program at SoN

The School of Nursing works with the PEOPLE (Pre-College Enrichment Opportunity Program for Learning Excellence) each summer by participating in a health care high school internship and a middle school nursing career exploration workshop. PEOPLE High School and Middle School students learn the roles nurses play through clinical internships, simulation labs, field trips, and interactive activities.

PRIDE in Healthcare

PRIDE in Healthcare is an interdisciplinary health sciences student organization dedicated to improving the healthcare conditions for lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, queer, and other sexual orientation and/or gender identity minority (LGBTQ+) people. Nurses as well as nursing students, faculty and staff can play an important role in advancing health for the LGBTQ+ community as healthcare providers and patient advocates.

More Campus Resources


  • AHANA (African, Hispanic, Asian, and Native American)-MAPS Pre-Health Society is a student organization to help achieve a well-rounded perspective of the healthcare field, enriching experiences, and community service opportunities.
  • The Gender and Sexuality Campus Center: Supporting LGBTQ+ students and their communities is a unit of the Division of Student Life
  • The Multicultural Student Center strengthens and sustains an inclusive campus.


Resources by Topic

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Adichie, C.N. (2009, July). The danger of a single story. [Video File].

Chescaleigh. (2014, Nov 22). 5 tips for being an ally. [Video File].

Cullen, M. (2010, Oct 20). 35 things well-intentioned people say: Surprising things we say that widen the diversity gap. [Handout].

Frankenberg, R. (1994). White women, race matters: The social construction of whitenessRace, Gender & Class Journal. 1(2), 147-149.

Hobson, M. (2014, March). Color blind or color brave?. [Video File].

Kools, S., Chimwaza, A., Macha, S. (2015). Cultural humility and working with marginalized populations in developing countries. Global Health Promotion. 22(1), 52-59.

Pinto, E. (2010, Nov 14). The unequal opportunity race. [Video File]

Smith, C. (2014, July). The danger of silence. [Video File].


COVID-19 Resources

This set of resources relates to the intersection of the COVID-19 global crisis with diversity, equity, and inclusion and health. Updated periodically, resources are intended for faculty, staff, and students within the School of Nursing, other health sciences schools, and community members looking for support, guidance, and information during this challenging time. 

View all resources

Topics include:

  • Healing and Community Care
  • Community Resources and Toolkits
  • Teaching & Health Equity Curriculum during COVID-19
  • Funding Opportunities
  • Virtual Workforce & Online Engagement


Health Disparities and Health Equity

American Association of Colleges of Nursing’s DEI Toolkit.

American Nurses Association’s National Commission to Address Racism in Nursing.

Dill, B. T. and Zambrana, R.E. (2009). Critical thinking about inequality: An emerging lens. In B.T. Dill and R.E. Zambrana (eds.) Emerging intersections: Race, class, and gender in theory, policy, and practice. New Brunswick, N.J.: Rutgers University Press.

Institute of Medicine. (2003). Unequal treatment: Confronting racial and ethnic disparities in healthcare. [Report].

Leininger, M. (1998). Leininger’s theory of nursing: Cultural care diversity and universality. Nursing Science Quarterly, 1(4), 152-160.

Health Policy

Intersectionality and Identity in Nursing

Jones, S.R. and Wijeyesinghe, C.L. (2011). The promises and challenges of teaching from an intersectional perspective: Core components and applied strategies. New Directions for Teaching and Learning, 125, 11-20.

Ortbals, C. (2013). Intersectionality, reflexivity, and assessment. Conference Paper from APSA 2013 Teaching and Learning. American Political Science Association. Washington, DC.

Timmons, F. (2006). Critical practice in nursing care: Analysis, action, and reflexivity. Nursing Standard, 20(39), 49-54.

Van Herk, K.A., Smith, D., & Andrew, C. (2011). Examining our privileges and oppressions: Incorporating an intersectionality paradigm into nursing. Nursing Inquiry, 18(1), 29-39.

van Mens-Verhulst, J & Radtke L. (n.d.) Socio-cultural inequities in health research: What does the intersectionality framework offer? Intersectional Health Research.

LGBTQ Health

National Center for Transgender Equality (2013). Annual report 2013. [Report].

Robertson, M.A. (2014).Coming out and coming up: LGBT-identified youth and the queering of adolescence. [Dissertation]. University of Colorado at Boulder, Ann Arbor: ProQuest.

Shattell, M.M. & Chinn, P.L. (2014). Nursing silent on LGBTQ health: Rebel nurses provide hope. Archives of Psychiatric Nursing, 28, 76-77.

Sutter, M. & Perrin, P.B. (2016). Discrimination, mental health, and suicidal ideation among LGBTQ people of color. Journal of Counseling Psychology 63(1), 98-105.

Nursing Education, Cultural Competency Curriculum, Theory

American Association of Colleges of Nursing (2008). Cultural competency in baccalaureate nursing education. [Report]

Alejano-Steele, A.J., Hamington, M., MacDonald, L., Potter, M., Schafer, S., Sgoutas, A., Tull, T. (2011). From difficult dialogues to critical conversations: Intersectionality in our teaching and professional lives. New Directions in Teaching and Learning, 125: 91-100.

Asher, N. (2007). Made in the (multicultural) U.S.A.: Unpacking tensions of race, culture, gender, and sexuality in education. Educational Researcher, 36(2), 65-73.

Faculty Focus. (n.d). Diversity and inclusion in the college classroom [Report].

Deardorff, D.K. (2011). Assessing intercultural competence. New Directions for Institutional Research 149: 65-79.

Deardorff, D. K. (2009). The SAGE Handbook of Intercultural Competence. [Book]. Los Angeles: SAGE Publications.

Delgado, R. and Stefancic, J. (2001). Critical race Theory: An introduction. [Book]. New York:  New York University Press.

Douglas, M.K., Pierce, J.U., Rosenkoetter,M., Pacquiao, D., Callister, L.C., Hattar-Pollara, M., Lauderdale, J., Nardi, D.,Purnell, L. (2012). Standards of practice for culturally competent nursing care: 2011 update. Journal of Transcultural Nursing, 22(4), 317-333.

Gee, J. (2010). An introduction to discourse analysis: Theory and method. [Book]. New York: Routledge.

Georgetown University Center for Child and Human Development: National Center for Cultural Competence. (n.d.). Curricular advancement module series. [Website].

Ladson-Billings, G. (2009) Just what is critical race theory and what’s it doing in a nice field like education? In Taylor, E. and Ladson-Billings, G. (Eds.) Foundations of critical race theory in education. [Book]. Routledge: New York.

Muzumdar, J.M., Holiday-Goodman, M., Black, C., & Powers, M. (2010). Instructional design and assessment: Cultural competence knowledge and confidence after classroom activities. American Journal of Pharmaceutical Education, 74 (8).

Pinar, W.F. (1993). Notes on understanding curriculum as racial text. In C. McCarthy & W. Crichlow (eds.) Race, identity, and representation in education (p. 60-70). New York: Routledge.

Sue, D.W., Arredondo, P., & McDavis, R.J. (1992). Multicultural competencies and standards: A pressing need. Journal of Counseling and Development, 70(4), 477-486.

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services: Office of Minority Health (2013). National standards for culturally and linguistically appropriate services in health and health care: A blueprint for advancing and sustaining CLAS policy and practice. [Report].

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services: Health Resources and Services Administration. (n.d.). Culture, language, and health literacy. [Video file]

Xu, Y., Lippold, K., Gilligan, A., Posey-Goodwin, P., Broome, B. (2004). A model for enhancing intercultural communication in nursing education. Home Health Care Management & Practice, 17(1), 28-34.

Victoria’s Big Binder of Transgender Care: Gender Confirming Surgery and Transitioning

Nursing Research

Clandinin, D. J. and Connelly, F. M. (2000). Narrative Inquiry: Experience and Story in Qualitative Research. [Book]. Josey-Bass: San Francisco, CA.

Griffin, K.A. and Museus, S.D. (2011). Using mixed-methods approaches to study intersectionality in higher education: New directions for institutional research. [Report]. Published in New Directions for Institutional Research, 151.

Rogers, J. and Kelly, U. (2011). Feminist intersectionality: Bringing social justice to health disparities research. Nursing Ethics, 18 (3), 397-407.