Sexuality Research and Social Policy

, Volume 15, Issue 2, pp 151–162 | Cite as

Support for Policy Protecting LGBT Student Athletes among Heterosexual Students Participating in Club and Intercollegiate Sports

  • Brittanie Atteberry-Ash
  • Michael R. Woodford
  • Spectrum Center


Athletic spaces on campuses can be hostile for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) college students. Policies that foster safe sporting spaces are needed. By examining the nature of support for guidelines protecting LGBT athletes among a convenience sample of heterosexual students involved in club and intercollegiate sports (N = 290), this cross-sectional study offers a starting place for institutional leaders who want to implement such policies. Four independent variables were significant in multivariable linear regression analysis: gender, political ideology, knowing an LGBT athlete, and frequency of hearing homophobic language in a team setting. The findings and recommendations provide administrators and staff with insights about areas to address in order to minimize potential student opposition to LGBT anti-discrimination and other LGBT-inclusive policies.


Lesbian Gay Bisexual Student athletes LGBT policy 


Compliance with Ethical Standards

No funding was provided for this research.

Ethical Approval

All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.

Informed Consent

Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.

Conflict of Interest Statement

Brittanie Atteberry declares she has no conflict of interest. Michael R. Woodfood declares he has no conflict of interest. The Spectrum Center (Jackie Simpson is contact person) declares they have no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Brittanie Atteberry-Ash
    • 1
  • Michael R. Woodford
    • 2
  • Spectrum Center
    • 3
  1. 1.Graduate School of Social Work, University of DenverDenverUSA
  2. 2.Lyle S. Hallman Faculty of Social WorkWilfrid Laurier UniversityKitchenerCanada
  3. 3.Division of Student AffairsUniversity of MichiganAnn ArborUSA

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