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Document Type



Educational Leadership

First Advisor's Name

Bruce Nissen

First Advisor's Committee Title

Committee Chair


Interventions, Homophobia, Social Contact Theory

Date of Defense



Homophobic attitudes, irrational fears and negative attitudes against gay men and lesbians exist on the college campus (Lance, 2002; Rankin, 2003). Educators wishing to change these attitudes need to know what types of intervention would be effective. This investigation empirically assessed the degree of homophobia in a group of college students, and changes in the degree of homophobia following two levels of educational intervention that were rooted in educational theories and social contact theory. A 25-item scale developed by Hudson and Ricketts to measure the degree of negative attitudes toward gay men and lesbians was used in English classes at a southeastern university. This study examined the relationship between different demographic groups and the degree of change obtained as a result of the interventions. Findings did not suggest that either interaction with gay men and lesbians in the form of a speaker panel or viewing a “coming out” episode of the Ellen show reduced homophobia to a significant extent. Results did demonstrate the Caribbeans and right wing authoritarians tend to be more homophobic. Post hoc analysis investigated factors that may have contaminated the interventions. Speaker Identification was a significant predictor of change in degree of homophobia.





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