Skip to main content
Article
Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, and Questioning Youths' Perspectives of Inclusive School-Based Sexuality Education
Journal of Sex Research (2014)
  • Kris Gowen, Portland State University
  • Nichole Winges-Yanez, Portland State University
Abstract
Sexuality education is perceived as one way to prevent unhealthy sexual behaviors. However, current sexuality education materials are not tailored to fit the needs of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer/questioning (LGBTQ) youth, and many have been critiqued for disenfranchising these populations. This study solicited the perspectives of LGBTQ youth on their experiences with school-based sexuality education in order to create a framework of LGBTQ-inclusive sexuality education. Five semistructured focus groups (N = 30 LGBTQ participants) were conducted to investigate the sexuality education experiences of LGBTQ youth and to solicit youth suggestions for improving the inclusiveness of sexuality education curricula. Results indicate that LGBTQ youth perceive current sexuality education as primarily "exclusive," although examples of "inclusive" sexuality education were provided. In addition, participants provided suggestions for creating a more inclusive experience, such as directly discussing LGBTQ issues, emphasizing sexually transmitted infection (STI) prevention over pregnancy prevention, and addressing healthy relationships. Educators and policymakers can use these ideas to help improve the quality of sexuality education-not only to make it more inclusive for LGBTQ youth but to make sexuality education more inclusive for all young people.
Disciplines
Publication Date
2014
DOI
10.1080/00224499.2013.806648
Citation Information
Gowen, K. and Nichole Winges-Yanez , (2014). Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, and Questioning Youths' Perspectives of Inclusive School-Based Sexuality Education. The Journal of Sex Research. Vol. 51, Iss. 7.