Is “we” first-person?

Yes, the personal pronoun we and the related pronouns us, ours, and ourselves are all first-person. These are the first-person plural pronouns (and our is the first-person plural possessive determiner).

If you’ve been told not to refer to yourself in the first person in your academic writing, this means you should also avoid the first-person plural terms above. Switching from “I” to “we” is not a way of avoiding the first person, and it’s illogical if you’re writing alone.

If you need to avoid first-person pronouns, you can instead use the passive voice or refer to yourself in the third person as “the author” or “the researcher.”