ISSI team members conduct research on a variety of issues related to sexual identity. We have conducted studies of milestone events in sexual identity development, the experiences of couples in mixed sexual orientation marriages, whether sexual orientation can change, and so on. These studies are often presented at professional conferences and published in peer-reviewed journals. Also, because most ISSI core team members are doctoral students in clinical psychology, their dissertations are often completed through ISSI. A brief description is provided for several of the research projects at various stages of development.

Christian Parental Responses

Olya Zaparozhets is leading a team of students in the analysis of data from Christian parents whose son or daughter came out as LGBT. Melissa, Justin, and Ashley are conducting their dissertations based on some of the data, and Charity and Ashley are co-coordinators of the project.

Side B Gay Christians

Mark Yarhouse and Tranese (Project Coordinator) are conducting a study of Side B Gay Christians, which refers to gay Christians who do not believe same-sex relationships are morally permissible. We are in the process of conducting interviews and transcribing.

Youth Ministry Projects

This is a series of studies of the experiences and attitudes of youth ministers and youth ministry educators in relation to students who are navigating sexual identity issues. Emma and Tranese are Project Coordinators for the different studies underway.

Mixed Orientation Couples Longitudinal Study

This is a longitudinal study based upon what has been learned from the Resilient Couples study of sexual minorities in heterosexual marriages. We have now collected data through Time 3 and are in the process of analyzing the data and writing up the results. Charity is analyzing data for her dissertation.

Christian Sexual Minority Project

This is a line of research related to the dilemma faced by Christian college students who are sexual minorities. Mark Yarhouse, Stephen Stratton (Asbury Theological Seminary), Janet Dean (Asbury University), and Michael Lastoria (Houghton College) are conducting the longitudinal study with Emma as Project Coordinator.

Support Group Study

Mark Yarhouse and Christopher Yuan are conducting a study of “best practices” in the development of support groups for students navigating sexual identity on Christian college and university campuses. Justin serves as Project Coordinator for this study.

The Church Survey

Mark Yarhouse and Gary Barnes (Dallas Theological Seminary) are conducting a study of pastors and their experiences with congregants who are navigating sexual identity concerns in the church. Emma serves as Project Coordinator for this study.