Optical emisssion spectroscopy was employed to study a high pressure (100 s of Torr), slot-type (600 μm interelectrode gap), argon dc microdischarge, with added traces of nitrogen. Spatially resolved gas temperature profiles were obtained by analyzing rovibrational bands of the N2 first positive system. The gas temperature peaked near the cathode and increased with current. The contribution of Stark broadening to the hydrogen Hβ emission lineshape was used to extract the electron density. The axial distribution of electron density as well as visual observation revealed that the microdischarge positive column was highly constricted. The electron density near the sheath edge increased with both pressure and current.