Date of Graduation


Document Type


Degree Type



Eberly College of Arts and Sciences


Communication Studies

Committee Chair

James C. McCroskey.

Committee Co-Chair

Virginia Richmond

Committee Member

Scott A. Myers


This study examined the stereotypical communication behaviors of gay males. The study examined the associations of assertiveness, responsiveness, homonegativity and biological sex. Participants were 359 (195 men, 164 women) students. Participants provided responses to questions about verbal and nonverbal behaviors for known gay individuals and individuals perceived to be gay. The participants then completed the Assertiveness-Responsiveness Measure (Richmond & McCroskey, 1990) in a self-report and observer-report, and the Modern Homonegativity Scale (Morrison & Morrison, 2002). Results indicated some of the more predominant responses to verbal and nonverbal behaviors are inconsistent with the prevalent societal perceptions of homosexuality. Significant associations between biological sex, assertiveness and responsiveness were discovered. The results show that perceived responsiveness and homonegativity were associated. Self-reported assertiveness and self-reported responsiveness were consistent with perceptions of other's assertiveness and responsiveness. There were significant differences based on biological sex, assertiveness and responsiveness. Future research would resolve some of the questions that this research raised, in particular, why are men consistently more likely to illustrate higher levels of homonegativity. Future research should examine other communication constructs that could further resolve many of the questions that plague gay males.