Neurodiversity, short for neurological diversity, refers to the diversity of human brains and minds, and to the idea that this is a natural, valuable form of diversity.


There is a great deal of variation among human brains and human minds, and this variation is called neurodiversity. Different people think differently – not just because of differences in culture or life experience, but because their brains are “wired” to work differently.

Neurodiversity is a natural form of diversity, found in every human society. It is similar in many ways to other forms of diversity, such as ethnic, racial, cultural, sexual, or gender diversity. Like these other forms of diversity, neurodiversity can enrich a society or community that embraces it; however, it is frequently met with prejudice and hostility by people who believe that there’s just one “right” way for others to be, to think, or to act.

The adjective “neurodiverse” is used the same way one would use a phrase like “ethnically diverse”. As such, individuals should not be described as “neurodiverse.” An individual is either neurotypical or a member of a neurominority.

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  • Usage example: A group or social setting is neurodiverse if it contains both neurotypical and neurominority individuals, or if it contains individuals from more than one neurominority group.

  • Case example: A family with at least one autistic member and at least one non-autistic member is a neurodiverse family.

  • Case example: A classroom that includes neurotypical, autistic, and ADHD students is a neurodiverse classroom.

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