Date of Paper

5-2013

Type of Paper

Clinical research paper

Degree Name

Master of Social Work (M.S.W.)

Department

Social Work

First Advisor

Sarah Ferguson

Abstract

This study sought to explore the extent to which Bachelor’s level licensed social workers utilized Gay Affirmative Practice within their work with Lesbian, Gay, and Questioning clients. 300 Licensed Social Workers in the state of Minnesota were surveyed, with a total of 49 respondents. The survey used the Gay Affirmative Practice Scale developed by Crisp (2002) and a series of questions inquiring about respondent demographics. The scores of the respondents were measured against the demographics gathered in order to test hypotheses surrounding Gay Affirmative Practice Scale scores and the years elapsed since one’s degree was earned; respondents sexual orientation and gender identity; primary geographic location of practice; and the faith-affiliation of one’s undergraduate educational institution. None of the research hypotheses posed were supported with statistically significant findings, indicating that, overall, Bachelor’s level licensed social workers practice affirmatively regardless of personal and practice characteristics. The findings in this study may not be as valid as hoped as data collected was skewed due to lack of completion by respondents, and/or the size of the sample. However, implications for future research include the need for continued effort to explore practice behaviors and abilities of Bachelor level social workers in their practice with Gay, Lesbian, and Questioning clients.

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