Using the Sociocultural Theory to Explain the Perceptions of Homosexuality among Kenyan and U.S. University Students


This study examined perceptions, attitudes and beliefs about homosexuality among Kenyan and United States (U.S.) university students. Participants included 2169 students from Kenya (n = 1044) and the U.S. (n = 1125) who completed a questionnaire on perceptions of homosexuality. Results showed Kenyan students held more negative attitudes and beliefs about homosexuality. Both groups acknowledged homosexuality exists on their campuses. Kenyan students reported parents were not aware of homosexuality practice. Significant gender differences were found with females holding positive attitudes and beliefs about homosexuality. The findings lend further support to sociocultural theory and provide evidence that the social context influences perceptions and understanding of social norms. Furthermore, the findings suggest the level of education may not influence attitudes and beliefs towards homosexuality similarly across cultural contexts.