Unconscious Bias

Content Courtesy of the Department of Laboratory Medicine and Pathobiology - Special Thanks to Dr. Isabelle Aubert and Ms. Patricia Cayetano 

The Department of Medical Imaging is committed to providing a create a safe, supportive, equitable and bias-free environment for learners, faculty and staff.  One of the department’s goals is to increase knowledge and awareness in unconscious bias, and outline fair processes required for success in career paths.  It has been documented that these internalized biases can affect many areas of work including the admissions process, faculty hiring, peer review and patient care.

What is unconscious bias?

The Kirwan Institute for the Study of Race and Ethnicity at The Ohio State University defines unconscious or implicit bias as attitudes or stereotypes that affect our understanding, actions, and decisions in an unconscious manner.  These biases can be positive or negative and differ from known biases that people may intentionally hide.

Other Resources

‘What you don’t know: the science of unconscious bias and what to do about it in the search and recruitment process’


Proceedings (105 pages!) https://store.aamc.org/downloadable/download/sample/sample_id/168/

Video (29 min) https://www.aamc.org/what-we-do/mission-areas/diversity-inclusion/unconscious-bias-training

Unconscious Bias and Search Committee Resources

University of Toronto Faculty of Medicine - https://medicine.utoronto.ca/unconscious-bias-and-search-committee-resources

Faculty Search Committee

U of T Office of the Vice-President and Provost - Search Committee Principles and Practices (policy document)

U of T Office of the Vice-Provost, Faculty and Academic Life - Strategies for Recruiting an Excellent & Diverse Faculty Complement (policy document)

U of T Department of Medicine - Gender Equity Guidelines for Department of Medicine Search Committees (policy document)

U of T Department of Medicine - Recruitment of Faculty Members to the Department of Medicine at the University of Toronto (policy document)

Centre for Health Equity, Diversty and Inclusion - Search Committee Training Modules (workshop materials)

Chronicle of Higher Education - How Search Committees Can See Bias in Themselves (news article)

Canada Research Chairs - Equity, Diversity and Inclusion: Best Practices for Recruitment, Hiring and Retention (policy document)

Ontario Human Rights Commission - Interviewing and making hiring decisions (policy document)

Admissions Process

U of T Postgraduate Medical Education - Best Practices in the Applications and Selection (policy document)

The Association of American Medical Colleges - Rooting out implicit bias in admissions (article)