Document Type



The purpose of this study is to review the consistency of definitions used for the term transgender in instruments for studies measuring attitudes towards transgender individuals. Scales and measurements used to examine attitudes towards individuals that identify as transgender often do not include a clear definition of the term. There is a lack of consensus on the definition of the term transgender if a definition is presented at all. This is a threat to the validity of attitude studies and perpetuates confusion through misinformation, or lack of information. The rate of discrimination and violence this population faces is distressing. In the 2011 National Healthcare Disparities Report, transgender individuals who are visibly gender non-confirming were found to be more likely to experience violence in a variety of settings. Transgender individuals were also found to be at a greater risk for HIV and suicide attempts (The GenIUSS Group, 2014). Where there is a dearth of empirical research on this population, strong empirical studies are needed. Assessments of attitudes toward this population are a step to quantifying the problem of discrimination and subsequently, addressing it. This paper presents a systematic review of studies that measure attitudes toward transgender individuals. The goal of this study is to discern how and if definitions are used for the term transgender in current attitude and survey research.


Transgender, Attitude toward Transgender, Social Constructionism


Social Work

Thesis Comittee

Kathleen Bailey (Thesis Director)

Arnaa Alcon

Beverly Lovett

Copyright and Permissions

Original document was submitted as an Honors Program requirement. Copyright is held by the author.

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