Date of Graduation


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts in Communication (MA)

Degree Level





Myria W. Allen

Committee Member

Lindsey S. Aloia

Second Committee Member

Patricia Amason


Attribution, Intercultural Communication, Intercultural Communication Competence, Japan, Job Satisfaction, Microaggressions


This thesis reports the results of a mixed method study investigating the microaggressions that Americans working as Assistant Language Teachers (ALTs) experience in popular English as a Second Language jobs such as the Japan Exchange and Teaching Program (JET Program) and Interac. Utilizing a survey, this study identifies the types of microaggressions American ALTs experience and at what frequency, in both the general and workplace environment, the emotional valence of these utterances, how ALTs respond verbally and emotionally, how they cope, their job satisfaction, intercultural communication competence, and relational intimacy with Japanese Teachers of English. A series of interviews portrays a deeper look at the specific microaggressions ALTs experience, as well as its uniqueness compared to other studies that focus on microaggressions in America. Ultimately, this study aims to find the differences and similarities in microaggressions through the lens of the American expatriate. Using this, recruiters can see what their employees face while working abroad, and future ALTs can learn strategies when they face similar encounters in their future field of work.