I’m working on my bachelor’s thesis to get my bachelor’s degree at a German university. I am not sure about the situation in other countries, but German universities are very sensitive when it comes to gender-neutral language. Some professors mark it as a mistake if you use gender-specific terms instead of gender-neutral ones. For example, instead of Studenten (students) you are expected to write Studentinnen und Studenten (i.e. naming both female and male students specifically) or Studierende (the participle form of studieren (studying)).
While I don’t want to be sexist, most variants of gender-neutral language in German are (in my opinion) verbose, disturb the text flow and make the text harder to read. This is why I want to put a disclaimer in the introduction of my thesis stating that I will not use gender-neutral language for the reasons mentioned above.
Here’s what I want to put in that disclaimer:
- Throughout the thesis, gender-specific terms may be used in order to ease the text flow.
- Whenever a gender-specific term is used, it should be understood as referring to both genders, unless explicitly stated.
- This is done solely for the purpose of making the text easier to read, and no offense or sexism is intended.
Is such a disclaimer generally acceptable in a bachelor’s thesis (or any scientific text)? If so, are the three points stated above both adequate and thorough to state my intention, or what should I add/remove? If not, how can I go about not using gender-neutral language without having it possibly be regarded as sexism or influence my grade?
If you can give any examples of a disclaimer like that (either in German or in English), it would be helpful as well (but not required for a satisfactory answer). Thanks!