In English some nouns that identify roles, titles or professions can be used regardless of gender (teacher, friend, colleague). If you want to indicate the sex of the person holding that position, you have to add ‘female’ or ‘male’. For example: “My male colleague is paid more than me.” “Tonight, I’m going out with a female friend and three male friends.” “The female doctor left the room.

A small number of nouns are gender-specific (waiter, waitress), while in some nouns the word ‘man’ is synonymous with ‘person’ (mankind).
However, it’s becoming more common, especially in some settings, to use a genderneutral language to convey inclusion of both genders. Complete the table using the gender-neutral words/expressions at the bottom. In some cases there is more than one possible answer.

gender neutral









waitperson / individual / mail worker / person in business / synthetic / waiting staff / legislator / server / people / table attendant / the average person / salesperson / coordinator / bartender / sales representative / chair / sales clerk / waitstaff / letter carrier / person / law-enforcement officer / human being / machine-made / people in business / congressional representative / flight attendant / business people / first-year student / postal worker / To Whom it May Concer / chairperson / mail carrier / head / business person / police officer / humanity / Dear Sir or Madam / actor / artificial

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