Date Approved

5-2-1995

Embargo Period

9-12-2016

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

M.A. in School Psychology

Department

Educational Services and Leadership

College

College of Education

First Advisor

Dihoff, Roberta

Subject(s)

Bisexuals; College students--Psychology; Depression, Mental; Gay college students; Self-esteem

Disciplines

Educational Psychology

Abstract

The purpose of this research was to determine if gay, lesbian, and bisexual youth are at a higher risk for low self-esteem and depression than straight male and female youth. This study further investigated whether gay and bisexual male youth are at a higher risk for low self-esteem and depression than lesbian and bisexual female youth.

The 59 participants, ages 15 to 21, were obtained through a general undergraduate college sample and a selected sample of subjects involved in gay/lesbian community youth groups and college organizations. Of the 59 subjects, 29 were straight males and females and 30 were gay, lesbian, and bisexual males and females. Each subject completed two self-administered measures: the Self-Esteem index (SEI) and the Beck Depression Inventory (BDI).

Four independent measures t-tests were conducted utilizing the scores of the SEI and the BDI. The analysis of results demonstrated that there was a significant difference in the levels of self-esteem and depression between gay, lesbian, and bisexual youth and straight male and female youth. There were no significant differences in the levels of self-esteem and depression between gay and bisexual males and lesbian and bisexual females.

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