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DEIA Resources

What are microaggressions?

"Microaggressions are everyday snubs and insults that marginalized groups face. They're often very subtle comments or actions that come from implicit bias and/or stereotypes" that can seem harmless or subconscious, or even like a compliment (Micropedia, n.d.).  Microaggressions "can hurt one's feelings, diminish one's self-confidence, impact one's mental health, etc. Microaggressions also have macro-level impacts. The act of constantly and openly perpetuating stereotypes and putting someone down can reinforce barriers in one's life" (Micropedia, n.d.).

Microaggressions are not always intentional and both are caused by stereotypes/biases and perpetuate them. However, it can be difficult to call out or confront microaggressions due to unconscious biases or perceived minimal harm (Ettarh, n.d.).


Definitions taken or adapted from:


More About Microaggressions

Podcast Credit: NPR, Microaggressions are a big deal: How to talk them out and when to walk away,

Video credit: TEDx Talks, Eliminating Microaggressions: The Next Level of Inclusion | Tiffany Alvoid.

Additional Resources & Further Reading

There are many tools and resources available to learn more about microaggressions and the impact they have on individuals and groups. The following are resources to continue learning about microaggressions, recognizing implicit bias, and gathering advice on what to do when microaggressions happen.


  • The Micropedia  is a collaborative online encyclopedia to educate about microaggressions and the different prejudices, biases, and stereotypes they derive from and contribute to. Entries in the Micropedia serve to demonstrate how everyday microaggressions impact and harm individuals through definitions and real-world examples; the Micropedia is organized into categories based on identity groups, including 2SLGBTQ+, Age, Class, Disability, Ethnicity, Gender, Indigeneity, Race, and Religion.


  • Project Implicit aims to educate about bias by offering 18 implicit bias reaction tests that help to recognize your own held biases and impulses on a range of topics, such as race, gender, disability, and more.


  • Killing Me Softly is a text-based game that has players choose a character and explore the everyday microaggressions they experience to learn how it feels to navigate them day after day. The game follows a choose-your-own-adventure style where players pick their responses and have their energy and mood change based on their choices throughout the various interactions.



  • Salem State University created this Interrupting Microaggressions tool in order to help recognize instances of microaggressions, offer examples of ways to call them out, and advice to open up a broader conversation about the biased behavior/comment. 



  • April Hathcock's blog article "You're Gonna Screw Up" acknowledges that working toward eradicating implicit bias is not going to be perfect and we are all going to screw up at some point, so she offers advice on how to react and respond in instances where we have acted upon implicit biases.