Abstract

The purpose of this phenomenological study was to explore the intersection and experiences of spiritual and sexual orientation identity development in LGBT graduates of faith-based institutions. Guided by Crenshaw's (1984), framework on intersectionality, this qualitative study was conducted through six in-depth interviews with LGBT graduates of faith-based institutions from Protestant faiths. Collected data was transcribed and analyzed using Colaizzi's (1978) process for phenomenological data. Four themes emerged from the data analysis: commitment to religious affiliation; positive campus environment; negative campus environment; and identity congruence and dissonance. Additionally, participants were asked to identify their institutions as liberal, conservative, or neither liberal or conservative. Individuals that identified their institutions as liberal described a supportive campus environment and experienced congruence with their spiritual and sexual orientation identity. Individuals that identified their institutions as conservative, described a campus environment that lacked support and experienced dissonance with their spiritual and sexual orientation. Their sexual orientation identity developed, and their spiritual identity changed. The experiences of these participants are not generalizable yet provide implications for improved practices at faith-based institutions to support their LGBT student population further develop their spiritual identity. Results from this study are intended to inform the faith-based higher education community about the needs of LGBT students and assist with the advancement of resources to support the development of these students.

Notes

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Graduation Date

2020

Semester

Fall

Advisor

Cox, Thomas

Degree

Doctor of Education (Ed.D.)

College

College of Community Innovation and Education

Department

Educational Leadership and Higher Education

Degree Program

Educational Leadership; Higher Education Track

Format

application/pdf

Identifier

CFE0008386; DP0023823

Language

English

Release Date

December 2023

Length of Campus-only Access

3 years

Access Status

Doctoral Dissertation (Campus-only Access)

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