Changing Social Justice Attitudes Toward Lesbians and Gay Men: Evaluating Three Interventions

Kirsten A. Gonzalez, Sharon Scales Rostosky, Ellen D.B. Riggle, Michael A. O'Neil

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Many diversity and social justice-related training workshops are conducted on college campuses, in workplaces, and with community organizations each year, yet psychological practitioners and trainers have very little evidence for making decisions about the effectiveness of these trainings. It remains unclear, for instance, whether group specific interventions are necessary or whether general values clarification interventions generalize to specific marginalized groups. The current study used a quasiexperimental design to evaluate one general values clarification intervention and two group-specific interventions (focusing on lesbians and gay men). The interventions were conducted with three sorority and three fraternity groups on a college campus in the United States. The findings in this study suggest that a general values clarification intervention did not significantly increase group-specific positive social justice-related attitudes toward lesbians and gay men or more general social justice attitudes and advocacy. Findings also suggest that specific interventions focused on lesbians and gay men may be effective in facilitating group-specific positive social justice-related attitudes and behaviors. Both group-specific interventions were effective in increasing group specific positive attitudes while the general intervention was not. Men and women in the study responded to interventions differently, and men might need targeted interventions to create meaningful attitudinal and behavioral change. Findings are situated in a discussion of enhancing efforts to cultivate social justice on college campuses and in the general population.

Original languageEnglish
JournalProfessional Psychology: Research and Practice
StateAccepted/In press - 2019

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2019 American Psychological Association.


  • Empathic joy
  • Gay men
  • Interventions
  • Lesbians
  • Social justice

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Psychology


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