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Employee Overview


The MSU Diversity Equity and Inclusion (DEI) Employee Overview dashboard provides a high-level view across selected employee characteristics, broken down by employee category. These data span five years across various DEI demographic data points to help track progress in areas outlined in the DEI Report and Plan recommendations. Data included in this dashboard are retrieved from MSU data systems with information aggregated to the university level. 

Information contained in this dashboard is for active employees only (employees on leave are not included here). Additionally, information on graduate assistants or student employees is also not included here.

Small Numbers and Required Federal Reporting

This dashboard contains data that are required to be federally reported to the U.S. Department of Education’s National Center for Education Statistics data collection program, Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS). Therefore, many data points included in this dashboard are already available to the public through the IPEDS. Participation in IPEDS “is mandatory for all institutions that participate in or are applicants for participation in any Federal financial assistance program authorized by Title IV of the Higher Education Act (HEA) of 1965, as amended. The completion of the surveys is mandated by 20 USC 1094, Section 487(a)(17) and 34 CFR 668.14(b)(19). More information regarding mandated participation in IPEDS reporting may be found on the Statutory Requirements for Reporting IPEDS Data website

Due to these data being publicly available, data on race or ethnicity, and sex by employee category are available in this dashboard if the count is below five. For data on disability status or veteran status, data are only available in small numbers for five-year change. 

Please consider the following definitions and limitations when utilizing the interactive dashboard:


Federal Guidelines and Definitions

The categories used in the data included in this dashboard are derived from the federal race/ethnicity categories with minor variations as recommended by members of the MSU community. Further, International is used for individuals who are not U.S. citizens or permanent residents instead of the federal category of “nonresident.”

For IPEDS reporting, individuals are counted once in the following groups. 

International. A person who is not a U.S. citizens or permanent resident. An individual who is not a U.S. citizen or permanent resident is not counted in any race or ethnicity category.

Hispanic or Latino. A person of Cuban, Mexican, Puerto Rican, South or Central American or other Spanish culture or origin regardless of race. While a person who is Hispanic or Latino may choose to specify a specific race or races, for the purposes of federal IPEDS reporting, persons who indicate Hispanic or Latino ethnicity are only counted once as Hispanic or Latino and not represented in another race category.

Two or More Races. A person who selects two or more listed races are counted once in the category of Two or More Races. Specific race categories are not represented when multiple races are indicated.

African American or Black. A person having origins in any of the Black racial groups of Africa.

American Indian or Alaska Native. A person having origins in any of the original peoples of North and South America (including Central America) and who maintains tribal affiliation or community attachment.

Asian. A person having origins in any of the original peoples of East and Southeast Asia or the Indian subcontinent, including, for example, Bangladesh, Cambodia, China, India, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, Pakistan, the Philippines, Thailand, Vietnam and more. This designation was separated from Pacific Islanders as of 2010.

Hawaiian or Pacific Islander. A person having origins in any of the original peoples of Hawaii, Guam, Samoa or other Pacific Islands. Separate category as of 2010.

White. A person having origins in any of the original peoples of Europe, the Middle East or North Africa.

Limitations of Federal Race/Ethnicity Categories Used in this Dashboard

The current race and ethnicity categories are limited and do not accurately capture the racial diversity of MSU employees. For example, Middle Eastern and North African identifying individuals are categorized as White, which may not be the group’s overall preference. The category of Asian combines everyone despite their different multicultural and multilingual backgrounds. Two or More Races does not include details here about specified race or ethnicity. International is based on residency and does not include details here about origin, race, ethnicity or culture. 

Applicants for employment voluntarily respond to the demographic question asking that they identify their “gender” and can select between “female” or “male.” The data collected by MSU Human Resources for employees as “female” or “male” is labeled as “sex” for the purposes of this dashboard to reflect the categories applicants are requested to select, even though under the label of “gender.” However, when reporting to the federal government, categories are mapped to “woman” and “man” to meet requirements of federal reporting.

MSU is currently updating its data systems as it relates to collecting sex and gender in ways that will more fully represent the diversity of the broader institutional community. More information on these changes may be found at MSU Name, Gender, Sexual Identity and Pronoun Data Policy.

Limitations of Gender Data as Presented in this Dashboard

Gender, sex and sexual identity are distinct concepts and the binary way (female, male) that sex is collected and displayed here does not adequately represent the diversity of the MSU community. Sex does not capture gender and does not include intersex, transgender, nonbinary or genderqueer.

For information on gender, sex and birth-assigned sex, please visit The Gender and Sexuality Campus Center.

Disability Status

Disability is self-reported by the employee and does not necessarily indicate that the employee receives services from the Resource Center for Persons with Disabilities. As reporting is voluntary, it is generally understood that the actual number of employees at Michigan State University who have a disability is higher than the number of employees included in this dashboard as living and working with at least one permanent disability. 

Veterans Status

Veteran status is self-reported by the employee and includes any employee who served in the military, naval or air service, and who was discharged or released under conditions other than dishonorable. Veterans include disabled veterans. As reporting is voluntary, it is generally understood that the actual number of employees at Michigan State University who have served in the armed forces is likely higher than those included in this dashboard as being a veteran.

Keyboard Navigation

The Comparisons dashboard has been remediated for keyboard navigation. 

  • Using the Tab key, you will be able to navigate dashboard items in chronological order. 
  • To access the data summary when tabbed over a data visualization, press enter twice. 
    • Once in the data summary, use the arrow keys to navigate the pop-up data window. 
    • Ctrl+W, for Windows users, or Cmd+W, for Mac users, will exit the data summary window. 
  • When tabbed onto a menu button use the arrow keys to change the dashboard view.
  • To navigate through the filter drop down boxes, referred to as combo boxes by the NVDA screenreader, press Enter to find and select/deselect more objects. 
  • When navigating the dashboard with a keyboard, if your focus order disappears or tabs onto seemingly empty objects, keep pressing the Tab key and it should reappear. 
    • These blank items exist for data stored behind other views within the dashboard. 
  • For a more in-depth explanation on keyboard navigation in Tableau, see Keyboard Accessibility for Tableau Views.

Text Elements and Third Party Screen Reader Software

To navigate to specific text items in a Tableau dashboard, the user will need to utilize a screen reader to read text objects displayed on screen. This will require the use of a cursor to hover over the text object while having your screen reader software active.

Color Vision Deficiency/Color Blindness

Using these tools, dashboards have been checked for grayscale viewability, color contrast and accessibility for individuals with color vision deficiency/color blindness (e.g., deuteranopia, protanopia and tritanopia).

If you require further assistance, please contact

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