Columbia University Digital Knowledge Ventures
Helping Students Cope with Trauma and Loss: Online Training for School Personnel with Helene Jackson, Ph.D.
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This course was edited by Sharon Kay. The project was developed by the Columbia University School of Social Work with support from the Bank Street College of Education.

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Childhood Trauma: Protective Factors

Similar to risk factors, protective factors are cumulative; the more they are present, the more likely it is that students can adapt successfully to trauma. 5 Thus, in the case of Sandra, it is important to evaluate and reinforce her psychological, physical, and social resources. For example, consider how well Sandra has coped with adverse situations in the past. Has she achieved a sense of competence and mastery at home and at school? Has she developed a stable sense of self? Despite some of the obstacles commonly experienced by a 13-year-old, does she have a worldview characterized by hope and optimism about her future? Does she have physical resources such as good health and intelligence? Does she have a solid family and social support network that will encourage and enable her to draw upon her strengths? These are all vital influences that can mitigate the negative impact of risk factors. Their positive or negative contribution will influence Sandra's ability to cope with and recover from trauma.

View "Trauma Protective-Factors Chart."

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