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Student Research Guide: Conversion Therapy: Top 10 Resources

Top 10 Resources

Here is a list of my top ten resources! I've looked through so many articles, but these ones were the ones that I found to be the most helpful. There is a mix of articles and videos to provide different ways of learning the information as well. Almost all of my articles were found through Skagit Valley College's databases, but all of them should be available for your use.

Effectiveness of Conversion Therapy

Beckstead, A. L. "Can we Change Sexual Orientation?" Archives of Sexual Behavior, vol. 41, no. 1, 2012, pp. 121-34. ProQuest. Accessed 8 Nov. 2019.

This article talks about how the science behind SOCE (sexual orientation change efforts) is still unable to prove whether or not patients who went through it have actually been able to change their sexual orientation. It's a good resource because not only does it tal about how complicated the issue is when it comes to effectiveness, but also touches on some mental repercussions as well. It's work cited list is incredibly long, and it has itself been cited many times.


One Nation Under God.” Films Media Group, 2004, Accessed 8 Nov. 2019

The video segment "Homosexuality as a Mental Illness" provides interviews with individuals who have gone through some form of SOCE. The outcome implies that any change in the patients is behavioral and not a change in sexual orientation per se. It's also worth noting that willing recipients have "changed" their orientation. It's part of a documentary that was aired.


Bright, Chuck. "Deconstructing Reparative Therapy: An Examination of the Processes Involved when Attempting to Change Sexual Orientation." Clinical Social Work Journal, vol. 32, no. 4, 2004, pp. 471-481. ProQuest.

This article breaks down claims made by therapists that offer reparative therapy, which is another name for conversion therapy. The works cited list is very long, and it is listed as a scholarly journal. After researching the author using Google and ProQuest, I didn't find anything particularly helpful, however it was cited by 20 other atricles found in the ProQuest database. 


 Horner, Jessica. Undoing the Damage: Working with LGBT Clients in Post-Conversion Therapy. 2010, pp. 8–16, doi:10.7916/d8-8xxa-aq93.

This article talks about ways that individuals who have gone through conversion therapy cope with the mental repercussions of the therapy. I felt like it was authoritative because of the current nature of the article. It is also featured on The Trevor Project website, which is an organization that provides information and support to LGBTQ+ youth. 

Mental Reprecussions of Conversion Therapy

"Homosexuality is not a Mental Illness: American Psychiatric Association Reclassifies (1952, 1973)." Opinions throughout

History: Gender: Roles & Rights, edited by Grey House Publishing, 1st edition, 2018. Credo Reference. Accessed 29 Oct. 2019.

This encyclopedia resource covers the American Psychiatric Association's decision to take homosexuality off of the list of mental disorders in the DSM, the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders. It's helpful because it provides a basic understanding of not only why homosexuality was removed, but also the impact it has caused. Encyclopedia articles are a good source of background information, and I feel like it's reliable as I found it on Credo Reference.


Stonewall Uprising.” Films Media Group, 2011, Accessed 1 Nov. 2019

DISCLAIMER: This video shows footage of conversion therapy. The video segment "Torturous Cures" covers the procedures taken by medical facilities to attempt to cure non-heterosexual patients. While it covers the physical aspects of the therapy, it follows that up with the mental damage caused by the therapy. While the footage is upsetting, it provides a visual representation of conversion therapy. This is part of a documentary that aired.

Religion and Conversion Therapy

"Ex-Gay/Ex-Gay Ministry Movement" Historical Dictionary of the Lesbian and Gay Liberation Movements. Credo Reference. Accessed 8 Nov. 2019.

This encyclopedia article talks about the ex-gay movements and gives background information on the religious groups that support conversion therapy. Found in Credo Reference, the article seems to provide relevant and accurate information.


A Boy Named Lucas.” Films Media Group, 2017, Accessed 8 Nov. 2019.

This video provides a visual source of information on the harmful measures taken to combat homosexuality based in religion. NOTE: Not all religions or congregations are supportive of conversion therapy and several are welcoming of LGBT+ individuals. It provides interviews with individuals who went through conversion therapy. It is a documentary that was aired.


Ethical Implications of Conversion Therapy

Gamboni, Casey, et al. “Prohibiting Versus Discouraging: Exploring Mental Health Organizations Varied Stances on Sexual Orientation Change

Efforts (SOCE).” American Journal of Family Therapy, vol. 46, no. 1, Jan. 2018, pp. 96–105. EBSCOhost, doi:10.1080/01926187.2018.1437572.

This article is quite interesting as it talks about how different organizations view conversion therapy, and how a bar needs to be set to define ethics when it comes to the topic. There are multiple authors as well as a lengthy works cited list. Gamboni has a Ph.D. in family therapy.


Jenkins, David, and Lon B. Johnston. “Unethical Treatment of Gay and Lesbian People With Conversion Therapy.Families in Society; Milwaukee, vol. 85, no. 4, Dec. 2004, pp. 557–61.

This article presents a different ethical issue of conversion therapy, which is the issue of false advertisement concerning therapy offered by conversion therapists. Written by two authors, one of which holds a Ph.D. in social work, this source is also a scholarly article.

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