Date of Paper


Type of Paper

Clinical research paper

Degree Name

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


Social Work

First Advisor

Carol F. Kuechler


Social Work


This study assessed clinical social workers’ beliefs and behaviors about working with gay and lesbian clients using the Gay Affirmative Practice Scale (GAPS) (Crisp, 2006). The survey, completed by 18 clinical social workers in Minnesota, consisted of the GAP Scale, demographic questions, and an open-ended question. The scores from this survey were slightly higher than those from previous studies (a higher score representing more affirmative practice with gay and lesbian clients). Respondents who had specific training related to working with gay and lesbian clients had lower GAPS scores than those who had no specific training. This study reinforced previous research which suggested that social workers are practicing affirmatively with gay and lesbian clients. Although respondents had high GAP scale scores, the answers to the open-ended questions suggested that the respondents are not considering sexuality as a component in the assessment of clients.

Included in

Social Work Commons