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Useful research, theses and dissertations on LGBT issues that we think you'll like.


Richmond LGBT Forum homophobia in schools project

Richmond upon Thames LGBT Forum is planning a project to raise awareness of, and address homophobia in schools in their area. Not just on an individual basis within classes, but on a much larger scale, transforming the whole school environment.

The Forum want to find teachers in secondary schools and colleges in the borough, and support them in gaining access to training and other input. The Forum will work with the teachers to develop and deliver an appropriate project for their school (based on the experiences of Elly Barnes at Stoke Newington School). They consider it essential to have one or more teachers engaged in the project, to act as “champions” and to ensure that there are long-term outcomes.

Experience elsewhere has shown that teachers who are both out at work and members of the LGBT community make good “champions”; but it could be anyone with the necessary motivation and enthusiasm - LGBT school support staff in the borough would be able to assist the project too.

Are you an out LGBT teacher in the London Borough of Richmond upon Thames who is interested in engaging with the Forum’s project? Or do you know of anyone else who may be?
If you are an LGBT teacher in the area but are not out at work then you could still assist the project “behind the scenes” and the Forum will keep your details totally confidential.

Contact Peter Kirkham, Chair of the Richmond upon Thames LGBT Forum:
07850 576855

Alternatively contact Schools Out and we will introduce you.


Homophobia: Let's tackle it! - Survey

Consultation with young LGBT people

Show Racism the Red Card want to get feedback from people about their experiences of homophobia. Opinions will be used to guide development of their new film and education pack tackling homophobia.

They are particularly interested in opinions from young people. But also keen to collect opinions and ideas from members of the wider LGBT community and allies. So feel free to share the link with your networks.

Take the Homophobia: Let's Tackle It survey
All responses will be strictly confidential, and valuable in shaping the content of the resource.


Survey of 16- 21 year olds who identify as Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Questioning: "It's OK to be Gay"

Emma Klinefelter, student at Canterbury Christ Church University, would like to hear about your experiences of messages that "It's ok to be gay". Her reserach is into how some young people hear and see messages that it's absolutely ok to be gay, and others don't, in order to better support other young people growing up.

Have you got 20 minutes to complete Emma's survey? Find out more at her It's OK to be GAY survey


How do teachers negotiate in/visible sexualities in school?

Small-scale Masters research project looking to recruit 5-10 LGBTQ teachers already in, or aspiring towards, leadership in schools. The project seeks to explore the experiences of colleagues who are both openly, and not openly, 'out' in their school contexts; considering how in/visible sexual orientation, as an identity, is negotiated in school context by individuals.

All information will remain completely confidential to ensure anonymity (both yours and the school in which you work in) and you will have the right to withdraw from the study at any point.

It is envisaged that your participation will not exceed two hours, including questionnaires, interview and email correspondence.

If you are interested in taking part in the project and would like further information please email Daisy Mitchell-Forster at


A dissertation submitted to The University of Manchester for the degree of Master of Arts in the Faculty of Humanities.
The full research paper can be downloaded here

Homophobia: a global phenomenon - video lecture

To mark LGBT History Month, Professor Michael King (UCL Mental Health Sciences) looks at why homophobia has existed in nearly every society throughout history, and what motivates the hatred of gay people around the world.

This UCL lunchtime lecture video runs for 42 minutes and is sign language interpreted.


Research shows teaching LGBT history reduces bullying and makes all students feel safer

The California Safe Schools Coalition surveyed California students and school administrators to determine whether curriculum that includes attention to LGBT people promotes safer school climates. According to their research, "students who report learning about LGBT issues in school... report fewer mean rumors or lies spread about them, fewer reports of being made fun of because of their looks or the way they talk, and less LGBT bullying at school."

Not only did more LGBT students feel safer at schools with LGBT issues in the curriculum, but more straight students report feeling safe if they learned about LGBT issues.


California Safe Schools Coalition website

Criminal-Justice and School Sanctions Against Nonheterosexual Youth:
A National Longitudinal Study

Kathryn E. W. Himmelstein, BA, and Hannah Brückner, PhD
A study from the USA: Nonheterosexual adolescents are vulnerable to health risks including addiction, bullying, and familial abuse. The authors examined whether they also suffer disproportionate school and criminal-justice sanctions.

America reveals its sexual secrets

From Jon Henley in The Guardian

"The most comprehensive national survey of Americans' sex lives for nearly two decades - arguably the most revealing since Dr Alfred Kinsey's two now-celebrated reports some 60-odd years ago - throws up some fairly intriguing findings.
And, as always with this kind of behavioural thing, if it's happening in the US, it's more than likely happening here too."


Lesbian parents have very well-adjusted kids, study finds

Via Los Angeles Times

Some people might be surprised by the latest research on children of lesbian parents, published in the journal Pediatrics. But perhaps they should give it more thought. 

This was the objective of researchers at the University of California and the University of Amsterdam:

To document the psychological adjustment of adolescents who were conceived through donor insemination by lesbian mothers who enrolled before these offspring were born in the largest, longest running, prospective, longitudinal study of same-sex–parented families.

This was the conclusion:

The [National Longitudinal Lesbian Family Study] adolescents are well-adjusted, demonstrating more competencies and fewer behavioral problems than their peers in the normative American population.

Here's a WebMD story with author Nanette Gartrelle explaining the positive results. "These are not accidental children," she points out. And that's just for starters. 

Read the full lesbian parenting study here.

Safeguarding of students and teachers in the North West

The prevalence of Homophobia survey launches in the north west were a huge success, according to Oldham NUT Equalities Officer Jeff Evans.

Timed to coincide with International Day against Homophobia (IDAHO), the Prevalence of Homophobia survey among the nation's teachers reveals that nearly 100% of teachers see or hear homophobia among pupils and over 50% have been on the receiving end themselves.

Schools OUT team member Jeff, who has designed and taught lessons challenging homophobia, said, "It's the elephant in the classroom. When will people realise that homophobia is a form of child abuse? Outside the protective walls of the school, many homophobic incidents would be seen as hate crimes. It really is time now to eradicate homophobia and homophobic abuse in our schools."

NUT Prevalence of Homophobia survey results:

'The Trace of the Mother' - Mothering and Disability in the Lives of Visual Artists who are Lesbian

By Diane Walker Check out the document here.

Visioning Difference: Lesbian and Gay Experiences in Multi-Cultural Britain and The Theory and Method of Differential Oppositional Consciousness.

There are many different kinds of communities in Great Britain which at first glance may appear to have disparate agendas for political and social change, yet the struggles of the lesbian and gay movement have parallels to those fought by multi-cultural and immigrant communities everywhere.  As a group however the opinions of gay people from different ethnic and cultural backgrounds are often not reflected in research studies, even though these are particularly vulnerable groups for ‘hate crime’. The Stonewall riots in New York in 1969, led to the modern gay liberation movement that originally modelled itself on Black Militancy to transform ‘“stigma” into a source of pride and strength’. (D’Emilio, 1989: 466)  Legal and social change has also been driven by British and European legislation such as The Human Rights Act of 1998, The Employment Equality (Sexual Orientation) Regulations of 2003 and the Civil Partnerships Act of 2005, which gave gay people rights and responsibilities similar to those of heterosexual couples.  Yet despite changes of this kind there remains a discrepancy between a veneer of acceptance and recent research findings that reveal a high incidence of harassment and bullying of gay people in the workplace and the doubling of homophobic verbal abuse in schools since 1984. (Building Confident Communities Report, 2005, Hunt & Jenson, 2006, Savage, 2007) What are the experiences of lesbians and gay men in different cultural communities in Great Britain and how can positive identities founded on ‘difference’ be protected and different communities learn from each other to benefit all? The Method and Theory of Differential Oppositional Consciousness proposes the use of ‘coalitions across differences’ made up of ‘oppositional actors’ who ‘claim new grounds for generating identity, ethics, and political activity’ in order to re-vision ‘difference’ as something to be nurtured, ‘an essence of what is good in human existence.’ (Sandoval, 2004: 199, 204)

To download the full essay by Diane Walker, click here (Word document)

Stonewall's Education for All - The Teachers' Report 2009

YouGov surveyed a sample of 2043 teachers and non-teaching staff from primary and secondary schools across Great Britain.The survey asked staff about their experiences of homophobic bullying of pupils in their schools and the inclusion of sexual orientation issues in their classrooms. Eighty per cent of the respondents were teachers. Half of the respondents work in primary schools and half in secondary schools. Ninety per cent work in state schools and eight per cent work in independent or private schools. Twenty three per cent of the respondents work in faith schools. Data have been weighted by school type and teaching /non-teaching staff.

Ninety per cent of secondary school teachers say pupils in their schools are bullied, harassed or called names for being – or perceived to be – lesbian, gay or bisexual.
One in four say this happens ‘often’ or ‘very often’. Secondary school teachers say that homophobic bullying is the second most frequent form of bullying (happening ‘very often’ or ‘often’) after bullying because of weight and three times more prevalent than bullying due to religion or ethnicity.

More than two in five primary school teachers (44 per cent) say children experience homophobic bullying in their schools. Primary school teachers explain that this occurs for various reasons often unrelated to sexual orientation.

To download a copy of the full report click here (pdf)

Including Lesbian and Gay Youth in Schools - Parents Find a Voice (Disertation)

This study seeks ways of better including lesbian, gay, questioning and gender non-conforming young people in educational settings. It also considers how to enable their parents to play a more inclusive part in their education. To this end, the parents of lesbian and gay young people were asked to complete a short questionnaire. Two parents then provided their detailed recollections of their experiences throughout their children’s nursery and school years. This evidence is used to consider the successes and the difficulties that presented themselves over the issues of the children’s atypical choices and how these were interpreted by others. The struggles of both the children and their parents to be accepted and understood are considered in the light of current educational practices and the impact of social, cultural and religious values.

Recommendations are offered for enabling nurseries and schools to become more inclusive places for all children and young people, and their parents.

To download a copy of the full document click here (word doc)

Young LGBT Acknowledged as Vulnerable Group

The final report of the Children and Adolsecent Mental Health Services review was published on the 18th November. Part of this review looked at vulnerable groups of children and young people; the report says, "Young people who are lesbian, gay or bisexual may be more vulnerable to self-harm, suicide and bullying, though there is currently a lack of robust evidence." The reference for this is a paper written by Jan Bridget of Gay and Lesbian Youth in Calderdale which can be found on the national CAMHS network website.

Jan Bridget, Gay and Lesbian Youth in Calderdale, welcomed the report and said, "It is important that LGBT young people are acknowledged as a vulnerable group. This coincides with a Council of Europe report earlier this year which also identified LGBT young people as especially vulnerable to self-harm and suicide and called on member states to develop appropriate services to meet their needs, and a United Nations Report which called on the UK to tackle discrimination against LGBT young people.".

To download a copy of the full report click here (pdf)

Samtosha Training Consultancy LGBT Newsletter Special

Applying your work to LGBT communities – asking the questions:
How do you identify LGBT issues within the broader context of your service
provision locally?
How do you identify joint working opportunities across organisational
How well do you understand LGBT communities – those within your organisation
and service users?
What national initiatives might you use to incorporate LGBT needs within
mainstream services?

To download a copy of the Newsletter click here (pdf)

Teachers Discourse on the Inclusion of Lesbian, Gay and Bisexual Pupils in Scottish Schools

The Standards in Scottish Schools Act (2000) identifies the need to ensure all pupils benefit from education and learn to respect self, one another their neighbour and society. These ideals are reflected in a number of Scottish Education policy documents (Scottish Executive 2001,20004b, 2004c).This paper reports on a study which surveyed head teachers and interviewed nursery, primary and secondary teachers on their perceptions of the barriers and facilitators to inclusion of lesbian gay and bisexual (LGB) pupils in one rural Scottish Education Authority. The outcomes indicated that there was a silencing of diverse sexualities in schools. In theory, teachers had adopted an individual liberal humanitarian stance of “we treat all pupils alike”. In practice this has resulted in confusion on how to respond to the needs of LGB pupils and a silence on (homo) sexuality, believing that sexuality is a private matter. This paper further discuses the implications of the outcomes of this study for the implementation of the government equality agenda and the Standards in Scottish Schools Act (2000) in relation to sexual orientation.

Elizabeth McIntyre Senior Educational Psychologist Dumfries and Galloway Council

Teachers Discourse on the Inclusion of Lesbian Gay and Bisexual Pupils in Scottish Schools
E McIntyre, 2008 (doc)

The Silence. Barriers and Facilitators to Inclusion of Lesbian, Gay and Bisexual Pupils in Scottish Schools. Thesis.
E McIntyre, 2008 (doc)

Non-Normative Gender and Sexual Identities in Schools

This research interrogates how schools are approaching queerphobia and addressing heteronormativity and the success of policies and guidance in addressing these issues. It includes young people who identify, or who are beginning to identify, as lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender (LGBT) talking about their experiences at school and to a lesser extent it looks at LGBT identified or perceived teachers, how the school environment affects them and how all teachers contribute to the well-being of LGBT pupils. It shows that there continues to be little opportunity for LGBT teachers to be openly visible and that there are major barriers for LGBT pupils to negotiate their identities. Furthermore, it highlights some of the devastating effects that queerphobia and heteronormativity can have on LGBT young people and teachers.

Gender and Sexual Identity in British Schools, A MacMillan, 2008 (pdf)

Independant Academic Research Studies - Homophobic Bullying in Schools: Young People Speak Out

On 11 August 2008, the youth-led charity Independent Academic Research Studies (IARS) releases the findings of a one year research project which provides new data on what young people think about homophobic bullying in schools. The study was carried out by a group of young researchers and included interviews and questionnaires with 70 other young people who had experience homophobic bullying.


Gay Youth Report Higher Rates Of Drug And Alcohol Use - University Of Pittsburgh Researchers Report Findings In Journal Addiction
The odds of substance use for lesbian, gay and bisexual (LGB) youth are on average 190 percent higher than for heterosexual youth, according to a study by University of Pittsburgh researchers published in the current issue of Addiction.
What's more, for some sub-populations of LGB youth, the odds were substantially higher, including 340 percent for bisexual youth and 400 percent for lesbians, researchers found
Medical News Today

Managing Equality and Diversity in the Public Services: Moving Forward on Lesbian, Gay and Bisexual Equality?
Fiona Colgan, Tessa Wright, Chris Creegan and Aidan McKearney
Comparative Organisation and Equality Research Centre
London Metropolitan University

Involved, Invisible, Ignored: The Experiences of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Parents and Their Children in Our Nation's K-12 Schools

NEW YORK, Feb. 28 – The first comprehensive report on lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) families’ experiences in education, released today by GLSEN, the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network, in partnership with the Family Equality Council and COLAGE, has found that LGBT parents are more likely to be involved in their children’s K-12 education than the general parent population. These parents are more involved in school activities and more likely to report consistent communication with school personnel. In addition, both LGBT parents and children of LGBT parents often report harassment because of their family structure.

Current estimates indicate there are more than seven million LGBT parents with school-age children in the United States. Involved, Invisible, Ignored: The Experiences of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Parents and Their Children in Our Nation’s K-12 Schools examines and highlights the school experiences of LGBT-headed families using results from surveys of LGBT parents of children in K-12 schools and of secondary students who have LGBT parents.

Involved, Invisible, Ignored: Read the full report here (pdf)

This article begins from imagining what it would be like to target recruitment for teachers at lesbian, gay, bisexual, transsexual (LGBT) people, and then examines in some detail two kinds of discrimination (or pathology) which makes life in the world of education problematic. I then turn to why, in spite of these difficulties, lesbian and gay teachers bring particular personal qualities to teaching, as well as inspiring necessary structural changes

David Nixon - Forum

Writer Paul Hartnett has worked as a Special Needs teacher in a number of schools and has been Head of two Learning Support departments in East London's Bethnal Green. He has also worked with Lancashire Constabulary on Hate Crime initiatives and has given talks to Police re issues relating to homophobia at Preston HQ.

Paul has also worked with School's Out on the subject of homophobic abuse, putting together this essay

THE SCHOOL REPORT, STONEWALL. The Experience of Young Gay People in Britian's Schools
by Ruth Hunt and Johan Jensen. Survey hosted and results collated by Schools Health Education Unit

The study In 2006, Stonewall asked young people from Great Britain who are lesbian, gay, bisexual (or think they might be) to complete a survey about their experiences at school. The survey received 1145 responses from young people at secondary school. The survey was conducted by the Schools Health Education Unit on behalf of Stonewall.
Just under half the respondents are girls (48 per cent). Fourteen per cent are from black and minority ethnic backgrounds and 12 per cent are disabled. Forty six per cent stated that they have a religious belief. Over half of these (29 per cent) are Christian.The majority of respondents (79 per cent) attend a state school, and 12 per cent attend private schools. One in ten respondents (110) attends a faith school. This report presents the results of the survey.

Download the full report here (pdf document)

Living Together - A Stonewall Report on British Attitudes to Lesbian and Gay People

In October 2006 Stonewall commissioned YouGov to survey a nationally representative sample of 2,009 adults. The survey canvassed opinion on:

  • lesbian and gay people and their legal rights
  • gay people as family and friends
  • gay people in public life, including politics and
    the media
  • awareness of anti-gay prejudice and discrimination
  • causes of anti-gay discrimination
  • responsibility for tackling prejudice against lesbian and gay people

The aim of the research was to understand the nature of feelings towards lesbian and gay people in Britain today. See the full report here

Sexual Orientation and Religion or Belief Discrimination in the Workplace - ACAS

This report describes the findings of a programme of research exploring the impacts of the Employment Equality (Sexual Orientation) Regulations 2003 and the Employment Equality (Religion or Belief) Regulations 2003.

Author - Ben Savage (Acas Research and Evaluation Section)

Sexual Orientation and Religion or Belief Discrimination in the Workplace - pdf (new window)

Homophobic attitudes of Year 11 pupils in relation to the Sex Education they receive
Helen Stamp, BA in Professional Education - May 2006
Institute of Education - The University of Stirling

This study was conducted in an English school. The Health Education teacher was interviewed and 217 year 11 children completed a questionnaire. The focuses of this dissertation were homophobic attitudes in pupils, and how the curriculum serves to inform children about the inequalities faced by LGB people. 6.9% of my sample said that they were not straight.

Large proportions of children were exposed to homophobic language by other pupils and more than three quarters admitted to using homophobic language that term. 70.4% said that teachers usually ignored homophobic language, and 20.4% said that they had heard a teacher make a homophobic comment. Generally, children were very unaware of LGB inequalities and poorly informed by their Health Education teacher who did not appear to pass her knowledge on. This teacher was unaware of the levels of homophobia in the school, and in particular the attitudes of staff. Though lesbian/bisexual herself she only allocated a proportion of 2 lessons to discussing homosexuality.

Interesting gender comparisons were drawn from the results. Boys appeared to be more aware of the inequalities faced by LGB people. Boys were also a lot more homophobic with 12.4% of boys strongly agreeing that they did not want to be friends with someone who is gay. 51.4% thought male homosexual relationships were wrong, they were more tolerant of lesbian relationships. Interestingly boys were less likely than girls to have an LGB role model. Boys reported hearing homophobic language a lot more than girls, which leads me to question why.

Homophobic Attitudes Year 11 - pdf (new window)

A systematic review of research on counselling and psychotherapy for lesbian, gay, bisexual & transgender people by Michael King, Joanna Semylen, Helen Killaspy, Irvin Nazareth, David Osborn.

'A well conducted review of the evidence concerning psychological therapy for LGBT Clients' – Pete Bower, Senior Fellow, National Primary Care Research and Development Centre

For the first time, this publication reviews existing research on counselling and psychotherapy for LGBT clients and draws from studies carried out over the last forty years, describing and evaluating the contribution of different research measures, and identifying future priorities for policy, practice and research.

This review will be of use to students of counselling and psychotherapy, researchers, counselling practitioners and service managers who want to focus on this client group.

Click Here to visit their website and download the review for Free.

The Silent Art:  Lesbians and Lesbian Art in UK Art & Design Education
An essay by Diane Walker
The Art of Silencng - word doc (new window)

Abstract - This essay examines the difficulties and problems which can be faced by both art students and artists who are lesbian in the United Kingdom today for those who have an interest in expressing or investigating their sexuality in their studies or practice.  It examines discourses that can act as obstacles to positive lesbian identity development, and suggests a lack of educational resources can leave gay students wishing to focus on this area of study vulnerable to homophobic bullying.  The absence of material and critical input on gay and lesbian artists in libraries and art curricula has come about in part as a consequence of 1990’s government legislation in the form of Section 28 which forbade the ‘promotion of homosexuality’ in education. Many staff have then had a reluctance to address issues around homo/sexuality, homophobic bullying and discrimination which lesbian and gay teachers are not immune from. Some of the potentially far-reaching psychological difficulties, which can result from these experiences, are also highlighted.  The essay asks whether Queer Theory also might oppress lesbians and their ability to voice and write of their own experiences as women.  The conclusion suggests the strategic importance of lesbian studies in reducing isolation and alienation for both lesbian art students and artists and that lesbian feminist ideas from 1960’s and 70’ America still have a place for students today.

A Serious Business (April 2007)
An NUT survey of teacher's experience of sexism and harrassment in schools and colleges.
Analysed for the National Union of Teachers by Dr. S.R.St.J. Neill
A Serious Business - pdf (new window)

Introducing Sci:dentity: What’s The Science Of Sex And Gender? (FEB 2007)
Sci:dentity is an inter disciplinary arts project funded by the Wellcome Trust which engages young transsexual and transgendered people in a series of creative workshops exploring the science of sex and gender through creativity. The project is organised into 4 distinct phases: lead-in, creative arts workshops and exhibition, reflection and development, and an outreach programme.

The executive summary of the Sci:dentity phase 1 and 2 Evaluation Report and a PDF of the whole report.
scidentity executive summary - pdf (new window)
sciidenty evaluation - pdf (new window)

The National Bullying Survey 2006 - Results
The National Bullying Survey 2006 has revealed pupils in UK schools are suffering extreme misery at the hands of classroom bullies, and teachers across the UK say they want more training to deal with the problem.

Social exclusion of young lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people (LGBT) in Europe (APRIL 2006)

The Comparative Organisation and Equality Research Centre (COERC) has produced a report that focuses on the experiences of LGB people within sixteen 'good practice' employers including two schools following the introduction of the Employment Equality (Sexual Orientation) Regulations 2003. This study addresses the gap in knowledge that exists regarding the experiences of LGB people within UK workplaces. A full copy of the report can be accessed on

Different in more ways that one - providing guidance for teenagers on their way to identity, sexuality and respect a manual

Guidance on Dealing with Homophobic Bullying (Scottish Executive)

Lesbian and bisexual women's health: different from heterosexual women?

Sexual orientation per se does not directly have any influence on cancer or any other disease. But double discrimination based on gender and on sexual orientation can have a significant impact on the mental and physical wellbeing, preventing also some women to seek assistance from health care providers.

You can download the report, or the chapter you are interested in, from ILGA's website
To order hard copies email and make a donation to cover the postal costs:

Teacher Support Info: Results on survey on workplace discrimination against LGBT teachers and lecturers
Press Release (Word Doc)
Case Studies (Word Doc)

Summary of Findings (Word Doc)

I am the hate that dare not speak its name... (PDF)
A report on how effectively homophobic bullying and sexualities are addressed through secondary school formal policies

How can young people be empowered to achieve justice when they experience homophobic crime? (PDF)
A study of the nature and prevalence of homophobic crime committed against young lesbian, gay and bisexual people; and the measures that should be taken to tackle it. By Sally Averill LLB (Hons.) Barrister at Law.

Homophobic Bullying in schools (PDF) Baseline Research - Northants

ReachOUT (Reading's Lesbian, Gay and Bisexual Youth Project)
A website containing the research conducted a few years ago at ReachOUT (Reading's Lesbian, Gay and Bisexual Youth Project). It includes research on homophobia, housing, mental health, sexual health, etc. It also includes a summary of previous British research on these subjects.

Documents are provided for information only. Schools Out is not responsible for the content of material in this section.

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