Theses Doctoral

Arming Targets, Allies, and Bystanders in the Face of Microaggressions: A Qualitative Examination of Microintervention Response Strategies and Their Efficacy

Alsaidi, Sarah

The need to arm targets, allies, and bystanders in the face of increased discrimination and political unrest is imperative to the well-being and mental health of minorities in the United States. Most recently, Sue and colleagues (2019) introduced “microinterventions” a taxonomy of anti-discrimination strategies that aim to disarm or counteract the experience of a microaggression and enhance overall psychological well-being (Sue, 2019). Utilizers of mental health services may seek treatment due to symptoms of depression, anxiety and/or PTSD related to repeated instances of microaggressions (Sue et al.,2007). The field of psychology must respond by sharing resources and providing identity affirming counseling to help clients process feelings of negative sense of self, helplessness, and internalized attitudes (Anderson & Stevenson, 2019; Miller et al., 2018).

There is a significant gap in the psychological literature with regard to the effectiveness, benefits and associated outcomes of individual-level strategies and tactics to disarm and disrupt instances of microaggressions (Brondolo, Pencille, Beatty, Contrafa, 2009). The purpose of this study was to contribute to the multicultural and social advocacy literature by training individuals on microintervention tactics and utilizing qualitative methodology to evaluate participants experiences and outcomes. A pre and post design with short answer responses and a one month follow up was conducted using consensual qualitative research data analysis methods (CQR-M). The results of the study are discussed in terms of their applicability to multicultural workshops and trainings, clinical practice and future areas of microintervention and response strategy research.

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More About This Work

Academic Units
Thesis Advisors
Smith, Laura
Ph.D., Columbia University
Published Here
July 28, 2021