University of Wisconsin–Madison Medical College of Wisconsin

Microaggressions: Underrepresented Minority Physical Therapist Student Experiences While on Clinical Internships

Lisa Steinkamp, PT, PhD, MBA

WMJ. 2021;120(Suppl 1):S61-65.

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Purpose: The purpose of this study was to determine whether underrepresented minority (URM) students in the University of Wisconsin-Madison (UW-Madison) Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) Program had experienced derogatory behavior while on clinical internships.

Methods: Six URM students were surveyed while on clinical internships to ascertain whether they had encountered discrimination, racism, or microaggressions.

Results: Four of the 6 URM students reported experiencing microaggressions while on their clinical internships.

Conclusion: Education and training in the recognition and management of incidents involving derogatory behavior are imperative to foster safe and inclusive clinical environments.

Author Affiliations: Department of Family Medicine and Public Health, University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health, Madison, Wis (Steinkamp).
Corresponding Author: Lisa Steinkamp, PT, PhD, MBA, 5175 Medical Sciences Center, 1300 University Ave, Madison, WI 53706; phone 608.263.9427; email
Funding/Support: None declared.
Financial Disclosures: None declared.
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