False Advertising: A Look at Crisis Pregnancy Centers

A crisis pregnancy center (CPC) is an anti-abortion organization that “counsels” pregnant individuals while pretending to be pro-choice, often giving out false or misleading medical information. For my BFA thesis, I researched the practices of CPCs in Northwest Ohio and published the information in an easily distributed format in order to raise community awareness.



Social good




Independent study, Bowling Green State University

Gallery exhibition with two computers and text on the wall that says "It's not okay to be lied to by a doctor"

The challenge

Fake clinics are slippery. Due to funding from national organizations, their PR statements are ironclad and their branding is deliberately deceptive. Students are an especially vulnerable population—CPCs advertise heavily on college campuses, and young people who are new to the area may not know the difference between a real clinic and a fake one.

I wanted my thesis to address this question: How can the anti-abortion bias of CPCs be made more visible to students, and why might this bias be harmful to people seeking reproductive healthcare?

Desktop mockup of final designMobile mockup of final design
Spread from informational booklet defining crisis pregnancy centers

The solution

After conducting months of research—including an undercover appointment at a CPC to collect audio and print materials—I compiled my findings into a booklet with an accompanying microsite. The design is black and white and speaks directly to the viewer, urging them to spread the information.

My work was exhibited at the Dorothy Uber-Bryan Gallery in Bowling Green, Ohio, and published on ScholarWorks, where it is available for download.

Cover of informational booklet that says "Her Choice is anti-choice. A pocket guide to pregnancy centers."
Example spreads from the pocket guide explaining evidence and how to spot a CPCPrinted booklets on display at gallery exhibition, opened to a spread about why CPCs are harmfulUniversity student using a computer at the gallery exhibition to view the thesis website

Award-winning research

I defended my thesis at the Northwest Ohio Undergraduate Symposium for Research and Scholarship (2019), where I received an award for Best Poster Presentation.

Morgan giving two thumbs up in front of their award-winning research poster at the symposium


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