Summary: Ature Review

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ature Review
It can stand to reason that Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender (LGBT) adolescents and their straight counterparts have distinctly varying experiences in school. Furthermore, LGBT students are “disproportionately at risk for experiencing negative psychosocial well-being and health problems” (Toomey, Ryan, Diaz, & Russell, 2011). Creating spaces in which LGBT students can combat the odds could ‘level the playing field’ so to speak.
GSAs, Gay-Straight Alliances, although having being present in the United States since the introduction of the first Alliance in 1998 in Massachusetts (McCormick, Schmidt, Clifton, 2015), are a relatively new topic of research. Moreover, although previous research has been focused on the collective
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GSAs would seem vital to LGBT students as harassment and teasing continue to be prevalent issues surrounding these students. In the most recent GLSEN report, 55.5 % of LGBT students included in the survey, that is approximately 4,383 participants, reported feeling unsafe at their respective school due to their sexual orientation (GLSEN, 2013). That same study found that 30.3 % of the students reported missing at least one day of school due to concerns of safety or uncomfortableness and that 90.1% , 7116 participants out of the 7898 sample, of LGBT students opted to not attend school functions and extracurricular activities. If LGBT students frequently choose to not attend school functions and extracurricular activities, the students are losing opportunities to join or attend clubs or special events that can “have a positive impact on students’ sense of belonging at school, self-esteem, and academic achievement” (GLSEN, 2013). LGBT students are seemingly withdrawing themselves from a healthy social-life due to oppressive behavior, and as their self-regard relies heavily upon these sociable occurrences, LGBT students would evidently possess lower…show more content…
A study conducted by the combined efforts of varying universities found that the presence of GSAs were negatively associated with depression, but were “positively associated with young adult self-esteem” (Toomey et al., 2011). Students themselves are recounting the positive effect that GSAs may have on them. As described in the research article determining the empowerment that individuals feel from their membership in the Alliance, one participant describes how the GSA at their respective school allowed them to “feel good about [themselves]” (Russell, Muraco, Subramaniam & Laub, 2009). The personal impacts that the presence and membership of GSAs are attributed to may reach even further than simply the self-worth of LGBT adolescents. The presence of GSAs is positively associated with lower rates of high school dropouts and the acquiring of a college education (Toomey et al.,
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