Diversity, Equity, Inclusion & Belonging

Students are seated and working with laptops along a partition
A group of athletes or a group of participants playing wheelchair basketball.
Two students seated together on a bus are happily engaging in discussion

The Mission

The mission of the Department of Educational Psychology is to cultivate a scholarly community in which everyone is welcomed, celebrated, and respected. The department strives to train multiculturally competent professionals, and we are committed to diversity, equity, inclusion & belonging in our teaching, research and service to our institution. We actively seek to foster an environment that promotes equity, intellectual diversity, integrity, reflection, and disciplined inquiry for all faculty, staff, and students.

We seek to:

  1. Foster a new generation of leaders who appreciate the value of unique identities and experiences
  2. Forge relationships between and among groups and people of different backgrounds
  3. Create an environment that accepts and celebrates difference
  4. Acknowledge and address intolerance and insensitivity, even when it may not directly impact a member of our community
  5. Actively promote democracy, diversity, equity, and justice in education and in research

Our mission is grounded within a broader historical context. Thus, it is imperative we recognize: that the KU campus is standing on a land inhabited by the Kansa and many Woodland and Plains peoples, that although we are located in the Free State’s historical center, the wealth of our university’s founders and builders was dependent on generations of unpaid labor and suffering of enslaved African and indigenous persons, that today many of us have benefitted from privilege accorded White, male, heterosexual, English-speaking American citizens, and that in order to protect and support our students, we are cautious in our relationships with entities that have historically been part of a system of oppression. 

In the light of that knowledge, we commit ourselves to:


Diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging in our teaching through the 1) variety of voices and texts we use; the composition of our classes; and the representativeness of our instructors; 2) through the respect we give one another as potential and current scholars and practitioners, and in the individualization of our teaching toward meeting the needs of each student; and 3) in the openness and honesty with which we provide and receive feedback; in the fairness with which we recognize contributions, determine grades, and compose recommendations.


Diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging in our research through 1) the variety of our interests, representation in our participant samples, and variety of our methodology; 2) in the citations we use, the scholars we recognize and uplift, and the fairness with which we judge the contributions of our students and colleagues; and 3) Through involvement of the voices of our participants and team members; the sourcing of hidden voices in our writing; and the ethics we uphold and the respect we maintain for readers and users of our research.


Diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging in the service we provide our institution, our profession, and our world by recognizing the global impact of our local actions; by seeking out and serving those populations that are marginalized and neglected, and by striving to make our service reflect our vision of a just, fair, and equal society.

EPSY Response to Killing of Persons of Color

We, the faculty of the Department of Educational Psychology at the University of Kansas, comprised of scholars, educators, and clinicians:

  • Stand with our Black students, colleagues, and community members in protest over recent (and ongoing) police violence against and killing of persons of color;
  • Unapologetically say the names of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor, Tony McDade and all others unjustly killed;
  • Recognize that the recent killings of persons of color by police are but a few in a history of killings

Award for Dedication to Social Justice and Liberation

This award is presented to a current graduate student in the Department of Educational Psychology whose commitment to seek, find, and forge the advancement of social justice and liberation is demonstrated through any of the following: research or scholarship, practice, teaching, advocacy, activism, or professional service or leadership. The award recipient would epitomize the values held by the department’s Diversity, Equity, Inclusion & Belonging statement:

Purpose: Throughout our nation’s history, there have been individuals, groups, and institutions of privilege that have used their power to create systems that actively subjugate, discriminate and exploit marginalized individuals. This award’s purpose is threefold:

  1. to encourage action (including but not limited to policy, reform, consultation, teaching, research, and fundraising) that actively works to dismantle unjust systems;
  2. to reward the changes that the action has created by spreading awareness; and
  3. to give appreciation to the individual who exhibited the leadership, creativity and scholastic work connected to that action.

Eligibility: Current enrollment in a master’s or doctoral program in the Department of Educational Psychology at the University of Kansas. Recipients will receive a monetary award, and previous recipients are ineligible for future awards.

DEIB Initiative

Learn more about the School of Education and Human Sciences Diversity, Equity, Inclusion & Belonging Initiative.
learn about the DEIB initiative