'Male'/'female' is to 'gender' as 'left-handed'/'right-handed 'is to...?

Is there a word to describe this? For example, if I ask a guy

What's your ____?

It should mean I'm asking whether he's left or right-handed.

Another example could be

Our designs are not biased against your ____.

Basically, I'm looking for something that means the state of being left- or right-handed which could be used analogously as gender.

EDIT: Sorry for the delay in the edit, but I was tied up. There are some points I'd like to clarify:

  1. I'm not looking for a way to paraphrase my questions. I'm looking for a single word. I know people normally ask something along the lines of "Are you left-handed or not?" People also ask "Are you afraid of the dark?" instead of "Are you scotophobiac?". The word for it, along with 3 others still exists, right?
  2. It has been pointed out that I should go with Our designs are not biased against left-handed people as that is what I mean. But that is not necessarily what I mean.

For example, let's say there is a washbasin with the tap on the right. Clearly, it's biased against lefties. Sometimes, you come across a washbasin with a tap on the left. (The logic being: you use your left hand to turn the tap as your right one's dirty). But, your right hand might not always be dirty, in which case, it's biased against righties.

A washbasin with the tap on the center is, then, handedness-blind or chirality-blind, if you will. (I foresee that some would dwell on Our designs are symmetrical. Please don't.)

I'm looking for a term that would be applicable here, as well as in the 1st example.

My favorite so far is chirality, suggested by Dan Bron in a comment (with 25 upvotes!) But, I'm reluctant to use it because there's no hard proof it's used in that sense

If we are talking about male-female, gender works perfectly. What's your gender? and Our designs aren't biased against your gender. , both work perfectly here.

Sorry for the late edit again. If the consensus is that I rollback, I will. Let me know in the comments.

  • 53
    If you want to be an unpopular pedant, I offer you chirality.
    – Dan Bron
    Commented Apr 25, 2015 at 13:47
  • 6
    @DanBron do you have a reference for chirality that supports it's use for people? I'm only familiar with chiral structures (e.g. molecules) and a quick check supports this.
    – Chris H
    Commented Apr 25, 2015 at 13:56
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    Note that designs may be described as ambidextrous (e.g.. computer mice).
    – Chris H
    Commented Apr 25, 2015 at 13:57
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    @DanBron: I'll take my turn as the pedant. It's actually not a matter of whether we're talking about molecules or not. Chirality isn't just a fancy name for handedness in the sense that most of us mean when we talk about handedness. Yes, chirality shows up in dictionaries as a sense of handedness. But what it really means is that you have a distinguishable left and right. It doesn't mean one is dominant. There is no such thing as "left chirality". You are chiral or you're not. You have chirality or you don't.
    – John Y
    Commented Apr 25, 2015 at 16:58
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    All the answers so far would confuse me. Everyone I've ever known has asked either are you right- or left-handed? or which is your dominant hand?
    – Anonym
    Commented Apr 25, 2015 at 19:03

13 Answers 13


Another option would be hand-dominance or hand-dominancy as a single word. It is not as common as handedness and I usually see it in medical contexts. (It is usually in two words but you can hyphenate to form a hyphenated compound noun).

Research shows that hand dominancy can be an important feature affecting one's tolerance of pain. According to a 2009 Israeli study from the University of Haifa, right-handed people are more tolerant of pain than left-handed individuals.

Understanding Pain: An Introduction for Patients and Caregivers By Naheed Ali, Moshe Lewis

It might encompass the left-hand-dominance and right-hand-dominance better than handedness. Handedness can be better understood as a broader term that covers mixed-handedness and ambidexterity also.

They are mentioned as synonyms in some contexts but here is an explanation of the differences between hand dominance, handedness and hand preference:

Hand dominance means that one hand has the most influence or control. Handedness means that one hand is more reliable for use across a range of skillful acts. Hand preference means that one hand is preferred or chosen.


Additionally, there are eye-dominance and ear-dominance; and there is the hypernym side-dominance that covers all different types of dominance.

  • 2
    Our designs are not biased against your hand-dominance. Sounds right to me. As does What's your hand-dominance. Thanks. This answer, though not ideal, is as close as it gets for my purposes
    – Tushar Raj
    Commented Apr 28, 2015 at 17:41
  • 4
    I think this sounds even better as dominant hand (although I understand that's two words, instead of the desired singleton). Our designs are not biased against your dominant hand.
    – J.R.
    Commented Apr 29, 2015 at 16:59
  • @J.R.: Yes, you are right. It is a more natural way to say it and it was already mentioned before. However, I gave this answer after OP indicated that he doesn't prefer other answers and after his update.
    – ermanen
    Commented Apr 29, 2015 at 17:54

I don't think you'll improve on handedness (wikipedia) (reference.com). It's not a very nice word admittedly, and sounds a bit like what you started with, but there aren't any synonyms listed in this sense.

  • 39
    Handedness is the right word, and I think it doesn’t sound bad at all. It’s often used in a technical sense, as in the handedness of a coordinate system.
    – Jon Purdy
    Commented Apr 25, 2015 at 13:16
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    Our designs do not bias against handedness? Does that sound right?
    – Tushar Raj
    Commented Apr 25, 2015 at 15:09
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    @Area51DetectiveFiction: It sounds absolutely right to me, because it's the right answer. It really is the word you are looking for.
    – John Y
    Commented Apr 25, 2015 at 16:47
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    @ Sounds wrong to me, just like "bias against gender" sounds wrong. If you want to use handedness, you could say something "Our product works equally well regardless of your handedness.". Commented Apr 25, 2015 at 17:16
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    Though handedness is the unambiguously correct single-word answer here, in re. the original question, it's never really idiomatic to ask it in the form of "What's your handedness?", at least not anywhere I've experienced. "Are you left- or right-handed?" is pretty much the form that question always takes.
    – Ben Zotto
    Commented Apr 27, 2015 at 21:23

Handedness is the most common and most understandable term. But I'm going for my pedant merit badge, so I'm going to draw upon and explain the other suggestions.

A history and evolution of meaning: Chiral

@DanBron suggests the technical term Chirality:

The word chirality is derived from the Greek, χειρ (kheir), "hand", a familiar chiral object.

An object or a system is chiral if it is distinguishable from its mirror image; that is, it cannot be superposed onto it.

There has been a great degree of speculation as to whether chirality is applicable to the specific chiral orientation or if it is merely the property of being non-superposable. To clear it up, consider the following definitions.

adjective, Chemistry
1. (of a molecule) not superimposable on its mirror image.

chirality. (n.d.). Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition. Retrieved April 28, 2015, from Dictionary.com website: http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/chirality

Chiral is the adjectival property of whether an object possesses symmetry, dissymmetry; whether it is superimposable or it is achiral/amphichiral. These have the same definition: not chiral; lacking any chirality in the same way that asexual means non-gendered; neither male nor female. In chemistry, pairs of molecules with opposite chirality are called enantiomer's, sometimes optical isomers; in mathematics enantiomorphs is more common.

noun 1. the configuration or handedness (left or right) of an asymmetric, optically active chemical compound. Also called dissymmetry

chirality. (n.d.). Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition. Retrieved April 28, 2015, from Dictionary.com website: http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/chirality

Chiral is a quite new addition to the English language, having only been though up by Lord Kelvin in 1893. The definitions for the word in technical fields and common language are evolving, but the suffix -ity is winning out for the meaning of chirality.

Used to form a noun from an adjective; especially, to form the noun referring to the state, property, or quality of conforming to the adjective's description.

Handedness vs. Chiral

Handedness is commonly used to distinguish between the distinct items of a chiral pair – indeed, almost every definition or explanation of chirality I've heard (or Google suggested just now) uses the mirror symmetry of human hands as a prime example. For instance in physics, for subatomic particles that have a spin, one will be referred to as having left-handed spin, the other as having right-handed spin. It's also applied to describe helix structures (DNA/RNA and threaded screws), electromagnetic and other vector fields where the right-hand-rule is well known, knots and several other geometric and mathematical notions.

JasonC suggests that handedness is a behavioral preference and therefore chirality is not an applicable synonym. However, manual dexterity is as least much a matter of skill as preference. Becoming a switch hitter in baseball requires a great deal of work. Many highly trained and motivated professional athletes do not succeed at overcoming this behavioral preference even though it provides a noticeable advantage to their career. People tend to see their hand dominance (or preference) as a part of themselves, a defining characteristic. In that sense, handedness is as much a physical configuration as a behavioral one.

Chirality is technically correct when applied to people's hands, but almost never used. (That's part of why I like it; it's the best kind of correct.) However, in American English, it's not the right way to ask a person about themselves, mostly because it doesn't communicate the question as several commenters have pointed out. Communication will fail at a rate inversely proportional to the renown of the words (and grammar) used; the words chiral and chirality are not well known by many people without specialized knowledge of science, technology, engineering or math, so don't use chirality. It is not used and will not be understood in common language. If you're pitching a design for a nightlight (or even a horror movie), you can't just say "Are you scotophobic, nyctophobic, lygophobic or achluophobic? Then you'll love this!"

I'm basing my suggestion against chirality and the rest of this answer on the assumption that anyone talking about their designs is seeking to communicate with a broad audience. In short, you question sounds like you're trying to market your designs and marketing messages that are not understood often achieve the opposite of the desired effect. You will drive your clientele away if they don't understand you with minimal effort. If you are specifically trying to be coy and pique their interest by challenging their assumptions, I still suggest you stay away from uncommon technical terms. Unless you are speaking directly and exclusively to an audience you have every reason to expect will know the term chirality, I suggest you don't use it.

Furthermore, chirality might be assumed by people who know the greek root to referred to hand preference. Or a listener might assume you're asking about their hand preference because our left and right hands are the most ubiquitous identifiers of our asymmetry. But technically speaking, chirality could refer to any aspect of human asymmetry, of which there are many: wrists, elbows, shoulders, legs, feet, kidneys, ears etc. etc. all cannot be superimposed on their mirrored pair in the body.

  • I lost a foot to a tractor accident.
  • My left nostril is slightly larger.
  • Every body part I have two of.

Are all correct and applicable answers to the question "What is your chirality?"

But even replacing it with the strict synonym 'handedness' can be confusing.

Eliciting a left-or-right response

I think your first example is best filled by using two words (and to hell with the single-word-request tag). I think it's far more common and understandable to ask:

What's your dominant hand?

This makes it most clear that you're interested in an either-or, left-or-right answer. As some commenters point out, handedness is a spectrum; some people may write with one hand and eat, brush their teeth, cut their food etc. with the other. Nonetheless, when asked directly about which hand is dominant, most people will correctly identify that it's left or right, map it to whatever activities they consider most important, and answer 'left' or 'right'.

I'm basing this on the asker's mention of "state of being left- or right-handed" indicating the desire for an either-or, binary answer. If you want a nuanced answer on a spectrum, use the more open ended "handedness" option.

Inclusive instead of Exclusive language

Similarly, I think it would be very weird to hear:

Our designs do not bias against gender. Our designs are a-gendered/gender neutral.

Our designs do not bias against handedness. (Or, for that matter...)

Our designs do not bias against chirality. Our designs are achiral/chiral neutral.

The distinction itself - gender or handedness - isn't what you'd be biased towards or against. That phrasing implies your designs are for suitable for both gendered and asexual people (or handed and ambidextrous people). I think what you're trying to convey is that your designs are suitable for all people, whether they left-handed, right-handed or ambidextrous. Therefore, I humbly suggest (or rather second Chris H.'s suggestion):

Our designs are ambidextrous.

The prefix ambi- is inclusive, meaning both, unlike a prefix of un- or a- which would mean neither. Saying a person is ambidextrous means they use both hands equally well. Saying an inanimate object or design is ambidextrous implies that people can use either hand to hold, use or operate it equally well. A steering wheel is ambidextrous - it would be hard to imagine one that wasn't (because circles lack chirality). A gear shifter is typically right-handed in cars with a left-handed driver seat (and vice-versa in Britain, e.g.).

And if you're talking about an animate object, ambidextrous is the only way to go!

Our robot designs are ambidextrous.

As you correctly point out, however, you can't remove the prefix from ambidextrous and make any kind of sense. Dexterity by itself doesn't describe handedness or chirality. If you ask someone about their dexterity, you'd get a wide variety of interpretations - my grandmother would start talking about knitting and I'd roll three six-sided dice.

Sliding back into the marketing angle, promoting your product or design as not biased is taking a defensive tone. It is building a subtle connection in the listeners mind between your product and bias. I suggest you try very hard to find a positive or neutral way to describe your designs.

A washbasin with the tap on the center is, then, handedness-blind or chirality-blind, if you will.

It's also precisely ambidextrous.

1.1 (Of an implement) designed to be used by left-handed and right-handed people with equal ease:

ambidextrous. (n.d.). In Oxford Dictionaries. Retrieved April 29, 2015, from http://oxforddictionaries.com/definition/english/ambidextrous

  • 12
    It's "technically correct" when applied to people, but not in the way you seem to think it is. Someone who is left-handed has exactly the same chirality as someone who is right-handed, or someone who is ambidextrous. It's a property that you have or you don't, and every human has it.
    – John Y
    Commented Apr 25, 2015 at 17:03
  • 2
    I do agree that ambidextrous is a nice option, though, if rephrasing the sentence is an option.
    – John Y
    Commented Apr 25, 2015 at 17:09
  • 3
    "A pedant would never misspell pedant!" I'm not yet a certified pedant, thus the need to earn my badge :-D @JohnY Regarding chirality, I disagree. Chiral is the adjective of possessing chirality; it's antonym is " non-chiral object is called achiral (sometimes also amphichiral) and can be superposed on its mirror image."(Wikipedia). Chirality is not a synonym of chiral. Chirality is a noun; it is the specific property of chiral orientation. So, about that badge...
    – Patrick M
    Commented Apr 25, 2015 at 17:16
  • 1
    "Chirality is technically correct when applied to people, but almost never used." - But can be great when it is
    – Izkata
    Commented Apr 27, 2015 at 14:43
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    @PatrickM The "exact definition" of the word concerns the physical appearance of an object, which has zero relevance to handedness. So going by that, it is definitely the wrong word. You stretching it to somehow also cover behavioral preferences is creative, and if nobody understands what you've meant, then it is a failure of communication as well. The suggestion to use the word "chirality" is terrible indeed, and a claim of caring about "exact definitions" hurts the case even more, as the exact definition bears no relevance to the question asked. No dictionary supports your claim.
    – Jason C
    Commented Apr 28, 2015 at 5:51

I suggest laterality.
I think this works, it's less obscure than chirality; and readers should find the term, laterality, self-explanatory if used in the proper context.

noun; 1640-1650

  1. the use of one hand in preference to the other.
    Compare handedness.

laterality in Medicine
laterality lat·er·al·i·ty (lāt'ə-rāl'ĭ-tē)
n. Preferential use of limbs of one side of the body.

  1. the dominance or superior development of one side of the body or brain.

Examples of laterality used in literature

  • Humans are bilateral animals; accordingly, laterality is the dominance, or preference of, one side of the body or brain, such as the hand or foot (sides usually being left or right).
  • There is no extensive agreement on the origin of manual preferences. Some believe such laterality is inherited; others, that the child is trained to it; and still others, that biases are initiated in an infant during pregnancy

  • Laterality refers to an important change in the brain that permits an ‘internal awareness of the two sides of the body and their differences’ (Newel Kephart) [...] Until a child is about 3 years of age both sides of the brain perform the same types of functions. [...] The two hemispheres of the brain are still doing the same things in the same way. If your child has had plenty of sensory and motor experiences as an infant and toddler, the brain matures and certain functions are specialised in one hemisphere or side of the brain – this is the process of lateralisation (the word lateralisation’ comes from the Latin word meaning ‘side’).

  • Other existing asymmetries or lateralities in humans, such as arm folding, hand clasping, and leg crossing, have been ...

There are two advantages to preferring laterality which the term handedness does not offer. It is a more rigorous expression. And it fits perfectly in the following statement—

Our designs are not biased against your laterality.

  • 5
    "Whose side are you on, anyway?" <silence> "Hey! I asked you, WHAT'S YOUR LATERALITY?!"
    – Dan Bron
    Commented Apr 25, 2015 at 14:46
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    it's self-explanatory. Is it, though? Not to knock your answer, but I've never heard it used in that sense.
    – Tushar Raj
    Commented Apr 25, 2015 at 15:13
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    It's not self-explanatory to me (native British English speaker). It would make me stop and think "What word does this person using EFL really mean?". Or more whimsically, "OK , so the opposite of laterality is presumably formerality, but I don't quite get the pun on "literal" or "later" and "formal" here ... or was the question about about left-wing and right-wing politics? Chirality is the right word, but it's not common enough to really answer the OP's question. You would normally just ask "are you right or left handed?"
    – alephzero
    Commented Apr 25, 2015 at 16:14
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    Lateral thinking? Brain hemispheres... lateral: early 15c., from Middle French latéral and directly from Latin lateralis “belonging to the side” Your average Romance speaker will understand the term IMO.
    – Mari-Lou A
    Commented Apr 25, 2015 at 16:42
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    This is the word I came up with too. It's exactly correct. However, it suffers from being obscure; not everyone would understand it.
    – Kurt Tappe
    Commented Apr 25, 2015 at 16:52

I cannot quite tell why you want to know this, but I strongly advise rewording.

You seem to think everybody is one thing or the other, while in fact this has no basis in biology; most people’s handedness exists on a continuum, just as they do with so many other factors, including footedness and eyedness and a whole lot more. Although I am not one of them, I know lots of people whose handedness, footedness, and eyedness are not all three of them the same sort of lateral dominance. For example, they might be left-handed and -footed but right-eyed.

However, if you just want clumping not nuance, you should ask exactly what you mean and not use fancy words or beat around the bush:

  1. Are you left-handed?

If you want nuance, then ask about each aspect:

  1. What hand do you usually write with?
  2. What hand do you usually eat with?
  3. What hand do you usually throw with?
  4. What hand do you usually catch with?

What is your purpose? I feel like you’re trying to squeeze something into a slot that English doesn’t put there. If you what to know whether someone is right- or left-handed, for goodness’ sake just ask them that! You are making a mistake by trying to formulate a complete sentence and then seeking a single word that fits in that slot. So your sample:

What’s your ____?

Is a problem because that isn’t what people ask. They ask:

  • Are you right-handed or left-handed?

Now and then they might ask:

  • Which hand do you use?

Sure, you could ask

  • What’s your dominant hand?

But that’s a pretty specialized and clinical use. The same goes with eyes and feet, where just like hands, a person tends to be dominant in one but not the other. The right question then is:

  • Are you left-eyed?

or even

  • Are you left- or right-eye dominant?

Even so, that sounds intrusive. For the most part, this is just not a question that gets asked, and if it is, one asks in the normal way, not in a way that reaches for some abstruse term nobody ever uses. That’s completely counterproductive.

Same with feet. Asking

  • What’s your dominant foot?

Just sounds funny, and people do not usually talk that way.

You have the same problem with saying:

Our designs are not biased against your ____.

While it is possible to say

  • Our designs are not biased against your manual orientation.

You are apt to confuse all but the quick-witted, again because people really don’t talk about these things this way in English.

I suppose you could say

  • Our designs are not biased against left-handers.

Which is what you really mean, but it comes off sounding more than a little sinister, so I wouldn’t trust that not to bother someone or other. Then again, so does everything.

  • 2
    Thanks for answering. I have a good reason for asking. And I intend to edit my question to include it as soon as I get the chance. (I'll be traveling for a few days and I can't make long posts on my phone). Long story short, I want it to distinguish things designed for righties (scissors) from things that aren't (spoons). A majority of things are. And it ticks me off that I don't even know the word for it. Or worse, that there no such word. I'm a lefty, BTW.
    – Tushar Raj
    Commented Apr 25, 2015 at 19:34
  • @Area51DetectiveFiction Hand only, or also foot and eye?
    – tchrist
    Commented Apr 25, 2015 at 19:34
  • If you're asking about me, then yes, I do put my left foot first in a pair of pants.
    – Tushar Raj
    Commented Apr 25, 2015 at 19:39
  • 2
    You may want to add a note that "handedness" itself need not be uniform or "dominant" across all activities: Some tennis players (most famously, Rafael Nadal!) play tennis left-handed but use their right hand for writing; some write with their right hand but use their left hand for cutting with scissors; etc.
    – Mico
    Commented Apr 25, 2015 at 22:53
  • 2
    This post doesn't really offer any solution, instead it offers a whole variety of different approaches, and at the same time, says neither one is perfectly suitable. :)
    – Mari-Lou A
    Commented Apr 28, 2015 at 5:40

In relation to firearms that are designed to operate indifferent of left/right handed use, the description is always "ambidextrous design" implying designed for use with EITHER hand, instead of saying "designed for ambidextrous use" which could entail requires both hands (ie handlebars)

  • 2
    Hello Charles. Ambidextrous would be an answer to 'Male'/'female' is to 'hermaphrodite' as 'left-handed'/'right-handed 'is to…? Commented Apr 25, 2015 at 22:35
  • 1
    You're absolutely right. I mistakenly thought the OP was asking in regard to the appropriate method for advertising a product that is designed indifferent to which hand it is used with. Commented Apr 26, 2015 at 3:02
  • 3
    I'm glad you agree. I don't like to argue with people who can shoot with either hand. Commented Apr 26, 2015 at 8:20
  • I typically encounter that term with computer mice. Interesting that you went with firearms instead...
    – T.E.D.
    Commented Apr 27, 2015 at 10:31
  • Thanks for answering. I wasn't aware of 'ambidextrous' being used in this way. Upvote. But you're right about being mistaken. I'm looking for a term that fits do not bias against ..... But thanks for showing a way to paraphrase this.
    – Tushar Raj
    Commented Apr 28, 2015 at 11:50

The most fun answer is: sinisternessRef.
From the Latin, it literally means "Left Handed"-ness.

Appropriately enough, usage grew with the run-up to WWII and the Cold War:

Sinisterness usage

  • 1
    Damn eastern lefty chiralistic anti-rightists... Commented Apr 27, 2015 at 13:13
  • 1
    I'd wager the majority of those uses are in the sense of how sinister ("threatening or portending evil, harm, or trouble; ominous") something is, not how left-handed it is Commented Apr 27, 2015 at 18:00
  • @user568458, maybe so. But as the ancients knew, and by the Latin word definition, left-handed and many of those adjectives you listed, are one and the same. (^_^) Commented Apr 27, 2015 at 18:26
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    Such an astonishing term! At first I was suprised, but then, I remembered righteous and now I see the trace of the process that formed both of them. Left-side was often a synonym for bad, wrong or evil.. Sinistra/destra = left/right in Italian (close to Latin).. ->How did sinister the latin word for left handed get its current meaning What a beautifuly naturally-misunderstadable term! Pure evil! So pretty! Commented Apr 29, 2015 at 17:56

If you're looking for something that sounds a little more scientific/technical (though they would not be as immediately understood as handedness, nor as technical as chirality), you could use something in between like:

manual bias


dextral bias


In your specific example, there's a much easier way to phrase what you want to say.

"Our product does not bias against Left-handedness."

Since left-handedness is the less common state of being, it is the more likely state to be biased against - and by clarifying that your product is not biased against left-handedness, you clarify that it does not discriminate in the expected way.

It doesn't specify that it also does not bias against right-handedness, but because right-handedness is more common, it's not assumed that it will be biased against, and therefore does not have to be explicitly stated. While there are some rare cases where there is bias against right-handedness, such as left-handed scissors, this isn't explicit in non-bias towards left-handedness.

  • Left-handed scissors are biased against right-handed people; your phrasing would be "correct" for them but for the wrong reason.
    – Wooble
    Commented Apr 27, 2015 at 16:29
  • @Wooble Noted. I still believe there wouldn't be very many cases for confusion, and that it isn't explicitly biased against right-handedness for not being biased against left-handedness.
    – Zibbobz
    Commented Apr 27, 2015 at 16:44
  • I also feel it's a bit like the phrase "reverse discrimination". It sort of suggests there's a correct thing to be biased against, and that it should be notable you're not being biased against it.
    – Wooble
    Commented Apr 27, 2015 at 17:19
  • @Wooble While ideally nothing would be biased against anything, in this case it is a design principle that causes the bias. While it's not an ideal situation, it is an honest explanation of how things are.
    – Zibbobz
    Commented Apr 27, 2015 at 17:23

Could it not be described as dexterity?



skill in performing tasks, especially with the hands.

Ref. Google - Define dexterity

  • 1
    Welcome to the ELU. Can you please edit to provide a reference for the definition, as suggested by the help centre instructions :-)
    – Lucky
    Commented Apr 27, 2015 at 13:02
  • 2
    "Our designs are not biased against your dexterity" sounds more like "Our designs are not biased against your level of skill in performing tasks with the hands", i.e. designs that are usable by clumsy people or people with manual disabilities such as arthritis Commented Apr 27, 2015 at 18:02

The Single Word

I completely agree with many others that handedness is the word you're looking for here, if you're looking for a single word.


However, I think your phrasing sounds awkward. Rather than

Our designs are not biased against your gender

I would expect

Our designs are not gender-biased

Similarly, rather than

Our designs are not biased against your handedness

I would expect

Our designs are not handedness-biased

Positive Statements

However, you generally want to make positive statements about your products, rather than negative ones, so it would probably be better to say

Our designs are gender-neutral


Our designs are handedness-neutral

But, I agree with Charles Watson that ambidextrous is the appropriate way to describe a product that ignores handedness, so I would say

Our designs are ambidextrous


I like "laterality". In psychology there's a thing called bilateral transfer, which is where practicing a task with one hand produces a (usually smaller) improvement when using the other.


I submit dextriosity or dextrosity. Most people are familiar with the term ambidextrious, so it's a logical derivation, and this is the way new words are created - through common usage and general understanding. Handedness can work, though many people seem to agree that it feels clumsy; hence the search for a new word. Let the pedants weigh in!

  • @erich the OP says that these words are neologisms.He's submitting them.
    – Mari-Lou A
    Commented Apr 29, 2015 at 4:38
  • i'm not sure a neologism is necessary; you may be thinking of dexterity, but this has already been suggested.
    – Erich
    Commented Apr 29, 2015 at 4:44

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