Psychological Trauma Studies

“Trauma is perhaps the most avoided, ignored, belittled, denied, misunderstood, and untreated cause of human suffering”
-Peter Levine

The impact of trauma has developed in its sophistication within the last two decades. While always having been a core aspect of psychology practice, there is now recognition that chronic exposure traumatic events can have a devastating effect on psychological, emotional and social wellbeing.

Psychological trauma can occur when one has “Exposure to actual or threatened death, serious injury, or sexual violence in one (or more) of the following ways: (1) directly experiencing the traumatic event(s); (2) witnessing, in person, the event(s) as it occurred to others; (3) learning that the traumatic event(s) occurred to a close family member or close friend; and (4) experiencing repeated or extreme exposure to aversive details of the traumatic event in the course of their profession” (American Psychiatric Association [DSM-IV-TR], 2013). Events can include natural disasters, accidents, abuse, physical injury, bullying, etc. The resulting impact is on the individual is varied, however one’s ability to cope, regulate emotions and perceptions are often altered.  The Psychological Trauma Studies specialization prepares students to work with those who have experienced such trauma, in an effort to resolve its lasting effects.

The Psychological Trauma Studies specialization (PTS) offers core courses, elective courses and workshops to students interested in learning more about the causes, assessment, and treatments of psychological trauma. In addition, concerns specific to therapists and first responders are explored, including those of burnout and vicarious traumatization. Strong emphasis is placed on the use of evidence-based and evidence- informed treatment protocols to service survivors. Successful completion of the specialization includes field clinical experience in an agency setting providing trauma-related mental health services to the civilian and/or military community.

The Psychological Trauma Studies specialization prepares students to work with those who have experienced such trauma, in an effort to resolve and release its lasting effects.

Please click here to learn more about our PTS curriculum.

Please click here to learn more about the program.