Date of Award

January 2012

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Counseling Psychology & Community Services

First Advisor

David Whitcomb


Although a large body of literature exists on training clinical and counseling psychology researchers, scant empirical work has been published that looks at the unique needs of students working with lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) populations. This study explores researcher development experiences of those students.

Two hypotheses are tested with a sample of 59 doctoral students in APA-accredited clinical and counseling psychology program. The first hypothesis posits that Exploration and Commitment Factors of the Measure of Sexual Identity Exploration and Commitment (MoSIEC) will account for variance on the Research Outcome Expectations Questionnaire (ROEQ) beyond that accounted for by social cognitive variables such as Research Self Efficacy, Research Training Environment, and Psychosocial Research Mentoring. This hypothesis was partially supported. A hierarchical multiple regression demonstrated that although the Exploration Factor of the MoSIEC accounted for a significant amount of variance beyond social cognitive factors, the Commitment factor did not. The second hypothesis - that students identifying as LGB would score higher on the Psychosocial Factor of the Research Mentorship Experiences Scale - did not result in significant findings. Post-hoc analyses explored differences between four groups of participants: heterosexual and non-heterosexual participants, clinical psychology students and counseling psychology students, students with and without records of publication or presentation of LGBT-research, and students who had passed comprehensive exams and those who had not. Results and implications for training doctoral students in clinical and counseling psychology who conduct research with LGBT populations are discussed.