Author(s): Herek GM, Kimmel DC, Amaro H, Melton GB
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Abstract The authors describe various ways that heterosexist bias can occur in scientific research and suggest ways that social and behavioral scientists can avoid it. Heterosexist bias is defined as conceptualizing human experience in strictly heterosexual terms and consequently ignoring, invalidating, or derogating homosexual behaviors and sexual orientation, and lesbian, gay male, and bisexual relationships and lifestyles. The deleterious scientific, social, and ethical consequences of such biases are discussed. Questions are provided for researchers to use in evaluating how heterosexist bias might affect their own selection of research questions, sampling, operationalization of variables, data collection, protection of participants, and dissemination of results. Suggestions also are offered for reducing heterosexist bias in academic journals, in textbooks, and in colleges and universities.
This article was published in Am Psychol
and referenced in Journal of Psychology & Psychotherapy