Dr. Throckmorton and Exodus Media are touting a new study that shows reorientation therapists rating well amongst their clients. Exodus brags for several paragraphs about how it was published in the Journal of Psychology & Christianity, which they note “is a peer-reviewed journal published by the Christian Association of Psychological Studies” and is “…edited by American Psychological Association Fellow, Peter Hill, PhD.”
The study is available for download in Word (.doc) format here. The study is composed of 28 individuals who rated 80 therapists. All the clients rated themselves as more homosexual than heterosexual before therapy, and 82% rated themselves as more heterosexual than homosexual after therapy. 89% said religion was “extremely important” to them.
Frankly, this kind of study doesn’t even need peer review. Anybody can look at those numbers and figure out the bias. I would hope anyone would be shocked by drawing conclusions from a sample of 28 people. Throckmorton admits that the study should be reconducted with more representative sample techniques, and I would hope he aims to include more former clients who don’t have so much incentive to be nice to their conversion therapists. Maybe even find some former clients who aren’t white protestant males.
The fact is that with such a small and biased sample, this study is meaningless. That hasn’t kept Exodus clear of proclaiming how scientifically valid the study is, however, and I expect this will join the Spitzer study in the ex-gay library of self-refuted reference material.