From Curiosity to Care: Heterosexual Student Interest in Sexual Diversity Courses

Amy D. Waterman, James D. Reid, Lauren D. Garfield, Sandra J. Hoy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

40 Scopus citations


In this study, we examined the impact of a course, the Psychology of Homosexuality, on heterosexual students' attitudes toward and knowledge about sexual minorities (i.e., lesbians, gay men, bisexual men and women, and transgendered persons). We investigated who enrolled in a class about sexual diversity and what they most wanted to learn. Enrolled students reported increased exposure to issues of homosexuality since entering college, and many had sexual minority friends. At preclass, students were most interested in knowing why people are homosexual, whereas at postclass they were interested in supporting someone coming out. Students left the class with significantly decreased homophobia. We discuss the most effective teaching strategies and additional recommendations for discussing sexual diversity in the classroom.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)21-26
Number of pages6
JournalTeaching of Psychology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2001

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Psychology(all)


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