This study examines various environmental factors that may impact a lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, or queer (LGBTQ) social work student’s level of ‘outness’ (disclosure) with regard to their sexual orientation or gender identity. An internet-based survey was conducted, comprised of LGBTQ undergraduate and graduate students from social work programs across North America (n ¼ 1,018). Utilizing Pearson’s chi square analysis, significant associations correlated between outness and the following six areas: (1) LGBTQ student perception of other students’ overall level of comfort with their sexual orientation or gender identity within the program; (2) the number of faculty that know about their sexual orientation or gender identity; (3) the number of students that know about their sexual orientation or gender identity; (4) how supported they felt with regard to their LGBTQ identity within the program; (5) the percent of faculty that are supportive of LGB and Q issues; and (6) awareness of openly LGBTQ administrators or staff members. Implications for social work education and practice are examined, as are suggestions for continued research.
Dentato, Michael P.; Craig, Shelley L.; Messinger, Lori; Lloyd, Michael; and McInroy, Lauren B., "Outness among LGBTQ Social Work Students in North America: The Contribution of Environmental Supports and Perceptions of Comfort" (2013). Social Justice. 10.