restricted access "My Voice Is Definitely Strongest in Online Communities": Students Using Social Media for Queer and Disability Identity-Making


In this qualitative study I explored the social media activities of 25 lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer students with disabilities at a research-intensive university. Using a framework of identity-making that accounts for students' reflections, narrations, and actions, I detail students' experiences exploring queer/disability identities through social networking sites, smartphone applications, and blogs. Students described going online to find validation, become involved, and manage identities contextually; however, students also described experiencing marginalization online and feeling isolated, suggesting implications for higher education, including the need to critically evaluate students' online engagement.