Date of Award

August 2016

Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)


Marriage and Family Therapy


Linda Stone Fish

Subject Categories

Social and Behavioral Sciences



It appears that most of Marriage and Family Therapy (MFT) literature is written for white therapists and their experiences with clients. This impacts the MFT educational experiences of students of color. When students of color are engaged in classrooms, internship experiences, and supervision groups not crafted for their unique experiences with clients as it pertains to race, power dynamics, and other differences highlighted in the therapy room, students are left to decide for themselves how to address these issues in therapy. Furthermore, the lack of literature and discussion in training programs, and the microaggressions that are left unattended and unprocessed may lead to alienation in education and fatigue among persons of color in the field. Surveys were sent to students in MFT graduate programs across the United States and Canada to discern whether and with whom they experienced racial microaggressions in their training programs. The results indicate that many MFT students of color and whites are aware of microaggressions and are impacted by them. Students have opinions about ways to make MFT training programs more inclusive by decreasing microaggression experiences for student therapists.


Open Access