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Being a Golden Hawk means more than just cheering on our (really good) varsity teams – it means being a student who cares about your community, who works hard in the classroom, and who takes advantage of all the learning opportunities that can happen outside the classroom, too.


The Trauma Certificate will provide you with a comprehensive understanding of what trauma is, how it affects the body, the brain and the memory and how trauma differs from crisis and other distress. The program will also explore various types of trauma, such as interpersonal violence and refugee/war experiences, and how other issues, such as addictions, can interact with trauma. Some of the topics covered in this program include:

  • The neurobiology of trauma.
  • Assessment of trauma.
  • Current, evidence-based treatment models for trauma.
  • The effects of torture, violence or risk of violence.
  • How to effectively manage issues of religion and spirituality while working with triggered refugees or survivors of war.
  • The connection between trauma and addiction.
  • Flashback management.
  • Building resilience in children who have experienced trauma.
  • Strategies for managing the effects of secondary traumatic stress.
  • The basic steps to implementing trauma-informed care in organizations.

Completion Requirements

To complete the Trauma Certificate, you must take a minimum of 84 course hours. It is strongly recommended that you take the Foundations of Trauma workshop if you do not have extensive training or experience working with trauma. You can complete this certificate in as little as one year or take up to seven years.

You do not have to be working toward the Trauma Certificate to take any of these courses.

Courses

An Overview of Therapeutic Models in Treating Trauma

Participants will be introduced to a variety of therapeutic models for treating trauma including, but not limited to, trauma-focused CBT, narrative therapy, mindfulness based cognitive therapy, prolonged exposure, EMDR, ACT, etc. Based on the models overviewed, this interactive workshop will provide opportunities to practice relevant intervention strategies.

Building Resilience in Children Who Have Experienced Trauma

This course focuses on building resilience in children who have experienced trauma by reviewing the various definitions of childhood trauma and exploring how trauma impacts the brain and areas of development specifically in a child or youth. The Adverse Childhood Experiences Study (ACES) is reviewed to demonstrate how trauma interrupts development and presents itself through behaviours, reactions, responses and symptoms that often mimic or contribute to the development of mental health disorders. The critical core components of evidence based treatment models are reviewed to highlight effective intervention practices. Concepts from positive psychology and the narrative approach are integrated into this course, along with the recent research on resiliency, well-being, post traumatic growth and self-regulation. Pathways to resilience and protective factors in childhood are emphasized so that participants feel hopeful and have concrete strategies to help. Strategies on creating a safe place for children and youth who have experienced trauma, that specifically attends to their needs, will be explored along with the key elements involved in helping to create the context to shift a trauma story into one that focuses on resilience.

Information is provided throughout the presentation using video, activities, conversation and handouts. Many resources will be shared to provide participants with tools to further integrate building resilience in their work with children and youth who have experienced trauma.

Participants will learn:

  • Definitions of trauma.
  • What the research is telling us on how trauma impacts childhood development and the elevated risks of unresolved trauma.
  • Critical components common to all effective trauma treatment interventions.
  • How the research from positive psychology, resiliency, well-being, post traumatic growth and self-regulation can help us in our work with children who have experienced trauma.
  • Nine resilience based story shifters that can make a difference for someone who has experienced trauma.

Foundations of Trauma

Understanding the impact of crisis and trauma on peoples’ lives and being able to respond in meaningful ways are crucial skills for those working in the helping professions.

This two-day interactive workshop will provide both a conceptual framework and practical skills for assessment and interventions when working with those who have experienced a range of crisis and/or traumatic experiences.

This workshop will leave participants with:

  • An understanding of the meaning of crisis and practical crisis intervention skills.
  • A conceptual framework for understanding trauma.
  • Practical and applicable therapeutic tools for responding to trauma and traumatized individuals.
  • Specific counseling techniques that are proven effective for people with lived trauma experiences.
  • An understanding of the impact of vicarious trauma and compassion fatigue, as well as skills to manage the impact of the work on ourselves.

Sue and Sandy use a relaxed, interactive teaching style with lots of discussion and time to reflect on the material. Come to the workshop prepared to interact and practice the skills!

Integrative Trauma Treatment: Somatics, Attachment and Neuroscience Approaches

This two-day workshop will introduce students to trauma therapy approaches that incorporate varying degrees of attachment and neuroscience when working with individuals and couples. A review of psychophysiology, polyvagal theory and procedural memory will be provided as context for the rationale of integrating bottom-up approaches with more traditional top-down therapy. Students will learn about Somatic Experiencing, Sensorimotor Psychotherapy, Emotion-Focused Couples Therapy, the Psychobiological Approach to Couples Therapy, Brainspotting, touch work and equine-facilitated therapy as additional modalities to round out one's toolkit.

This workshop has been pre-approved for 12 continuing education credits by the Canadian Counselling and Psychotherapy Association (CCPA).

Mindfulness for Trauma

Combining mindfulness to strengthen emotional regulation with existing empirical supported post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) treatments can improve outcomes through:

  • Increasing engagement.
  • Increasing compliance.
  • Decreasing the level of ruminations in PTSD.

Several psychotherapeutic interventions incorporating training in mindfulness are clinically relevant to traumatic stress. PTSD treatment could benefit from including mindfulness into the therapeutic process. This would include areas such as the neuroscience of mindfulness, assessment instruments for mindfulness, mechanism of mindfulness and the relation between mindfulness and other techniques. Evidence suggests that mindfulness can improve the therapeutic results and the outcome of PTSD clients.

Mindfulness can be used in two ways:

  1. As an emotional regulation support technique for existing empirically supported PTSD treatments.
  2. As a stand-alone treatment (mindfulness based cognitive behaviour psychotherapies).

Secondary Traumatic Stress, Compassion Fatigue and Resilience

An informative and interactive workshop designed for service providers in order to understand the conceptual impact of the helping field on personal and professional selves. Skills, theories and practical applications will be explored and practiced on both an individual and organizational level.

Theory and Practice of Trauma Informed Services

This workshop will include an extensive review of the research on the prevalence of psychological trauma across sectors, the psychobiology of trauma and presents the case for the implementation of a service system that is trauma-informed. Participants will be engaged in a review of the theory and practice of a trauma-informed system and examine a variety of approaches and sector specific toolkits available for implementing standards at the organizational level. A range of practical suggestions for using a trauma lens in the screening of individuals coping with the aftermath of psychological trauma will be discussed. Laurie will also present a review of the advances being made in Canada in implementing a trauma-informed approach in a variety of levels of care. Challenges in advocacy and leading change will be discussed, including the role that direct service providers can play in influencing change at the client service, organizational, community and policy level.

Trauma and Addiction

Recent research has confirmed what addiction treatment providers already knew to be true: the large majority of people who suffer from addiction issues also have a history of trauma and/or victimization. Experiences of trauma can cause lasting psychological and physiological effects including deficiencies in emotional regulation, problem solving and impulse control. This, in turn, can lead to the use of alcohol, drugs and/or addictive behaviours as a "functional fit" to cope with overwhelming emotions, physical dysregulation and other post-traumatic symptoms. This two-day workshop explores the connection between trauma and addiction with a focus on providing knowledge, tools and resources to effectively serve clients who are dealing with both trauma and addiction issues.

Upon completion of this training participants will be able to:

  • Explain the link between trauma and addiction, including the neurobiology, physical and emotional responses of trauma and how they intersect with addictions.
  • Understand the role of compassion fatigue when providing treatment to individuals with trauma/addictions.
  • Understand addiction as a survival/coping strategy for traumatic memories and symptoms.
  • Describe best practices for treating trauma.
  • Teach clients tools and practical strategies to regulate autonomic arousal and trauma-related emotions and body sensations without resorting to addictive behaviours.
  • Explain and demonstrate strategies for flashback management.
  • Trauma treatment models.
  • Review of seek safety model.
  • Review of CBT, prolong exposure and cognitive processing models for trauma therapy.

Trauma and Addiction (Online)

Recent research has confirmed what addiction treatment providers already knew to be true: the large majority of people who suffer from addiction issues also have a history of trauma and/or victimization. Experiences of trauma can cause lasting psychological and physiological effects including deficiencies in emotional regulation, problem solving and impulse control. This, in turn, can lead to the use of alcohol, drugs and/or addictive behaviours as a "functional fit" to cope with overwhelming emotions, physical dysregulation and other post-traumatic symptoms.

This workshop explores the connection between trauma and addiction with a focus on providing knowledge, tools and resources to effectively serve clients who are dealing with both trauma and addiction issues.

Upon completion of this training participants will be able to:

  • Explain the link between trauma and addiction, including the neurobiology, physical and emotional responses of trauma and how they intersect with addictions.
  • Understand the role of compassion fatigue when providing treatment to individuals with trauma/addictions.
  • Understand addiction as a survival/coping strategy for traumatic memories and symptoms.
  • Describe best practices for treating trauma.
  • Teach clients tools and practical strategies to regulate autonomic arousal and trauma-related emotions and body sensations without resorting to addictive behaviours.
  • Explain and demonstrate strategies for flashback management.
  • Trauma treatment models.
  • Review of seek safety model.
  • Review of CBT, prolong exposure and cognitive processing models for trauma therapy.

Working with Refugees and Survivors of War

Refugees and survivors of war are often left to face a lasting impact that trauma, violence or risk of violence may cause. Even after making the journey to a safe country, the immigration process (resettlement and acculturation) may also cause a stress that could have an impact on refugees’ and survivors of wars’ physical and mental health.

This two-day interactive workshop will provide both a conceptual framework and practical skills for assessment and interventions when working with refugees and survivors of war.

Throughout this workshop participants will:

  • Gain an understanding of the effect of torture, violence or risk of violence.
  • Understand the effect of migration and post migration trauma.
  • Learn and practice effective skills for working with refugees and survivors of wars.
  • Learn and practice effective skills for working with triggered refugees or survivors of wars.
  • Learn how to effectively manage issues of religion and spirituality while working with triggered refugees or survivors of wars.
  • Learn effective ways to manage self-care.

Working with Survivors of Interpersonal Violence

This workshop will focus on issues specific to experiences of sexual assault and intimate partner violence. Using a trauma informed lens, participants will be introduced to concepts central to the impact of violence, offered opportunities to explore power dynamics inherent in interpersonal violence and practice strategies for intervention.

Contact Us:

Lynne Jordan, Coordinator, Professional Development

E: ljordan@wlu.ca
T: 519.884.0710 x5265


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