The Working Group proposes that SPD 15 make the following changes in regards to terminology:
Terminologies Used Within Minimum Categories
Question Stem and Instructions
The terminology used in SPD 15 should seek to ensure that all people are able to identify themselves within one or more of the minimum categories, that the minimum and detailed categories reflect meaningful and easy to understand distinctions, and that the language used is respectful of how people refer to themselves.
In the current SPD 15 the minimum category definitions are internally inconsistent in their descriptions, and in some places use outdated or unclear terminology. Recent research shows inconsistent understanding and use of the terms “majority” and “minority,” and that the terms may be perceived by some as pejorative and not inclusive. Decennial census and ACS research suggests that some respondents are confused by the distinction between the terms “race,” “ethnicity,” and “origin” used in question stems. The research also suggests that some respondents stop reading the instructions “mark one or more” after the word “one.”