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Trauma and Biology

Registration: Please click here.

Richmont is opening a portion of this course in the Trauma Certificate to Richmont alumni and the surrounding community for Continuing Education Credit. This event is not sponsored by the alumni association and does not fall under the benefits of founding membership status. 

When: Friday, February 12 from 8:30am – 5:30pm with a 1 hour lunch break

             Saturday, February 13 from 8:30am-5:30pm with a 1 hour lunch break

Where: Richmont Graduate University, Atlanta Campus, 1900 The Exchange SE, Building 100, Atlanta, GA 30339

Presenter: Wendy D’Andrea, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Psychology at The New School for Social Research

Dr. D’Andrea’s research focuses on the differences between acute trauma, such as an auto accident or single-incident assault, and chronic trauma, such as sustained physical, emotional, or sexual abuse. Her lab investigates how information processes, especially attention and cognition, are impacted by prolonged trauma exposure and re-shaped through therapeutic interventions. She is also particularly interested in the physiological signature of chronic trauma, and the ways in which it differs from the signature of acute trauma. They use measures of autonomic reactivity such as heart rate, skin conductance, and respiratory sinus arrhythmia (RSA), to investigate these differences.

Topic: This seminar will review physiological impacts of traumatic experiences, including psychobiology of the acute trauma response; impact of chronic traumatic stress on a functional and anatomical neurological level; and physiological markers of the chronic stress response and their behavioral manifestations. The course will review current research regarding theintersect between trauma and the body, and implications for treatment will be discussed.

Learning Objectives: As a result of this seminar, participants will be able to:

  • Summarize a basic understanding of the links between brain systems and cognitive-emotional responses.
  • Summarize a basic understanding of the links between brain systems and relational attunement and capacities.
  • Describe the biological systems implicated in the traumatic response, in its immediate and long-term aftermath.
  • Identify ways self-regulatory capacity is impacted in trauma survivors.
  • Describe ways in which capacities of cognition, emotion, and relational function are biologically inter-related.
  • Identify at least three ways that physiological changes linked to trauma may manifest as emotional or behavioral symptoms.
  • Articulate indicators of hyper-and hypo-arousal.
  • Link DSM diagnoses to biological mechanisms related to trauma responses.
  • Apply at least three techniques used to stabilize physiological responses to trauma and return a client’s arousal level to their window of tolerance.
  • Discuss the psychophysiology of compassion fatigue and vicarious trauma and begin to identify self-care methods for the therapist to minimize vicarious trauma in their work with traumatized clients.
  • Create at least three ways of explaining the psychobiology of trauma to clients via layperson explanation.
  • Describe at least one finding of neuroplatsticity for recovery from trauma in layperson terms.

Continuing Education: 15 NBCC CE Clock hours Awarded. 15 approved CE Clock Hours Awarded to Psychologists.

Fees: $275.00

Note: Attendees are required to attend both days to receive CE credit for this event. Space is limited. Please register early to reserve your spot. Attendees will be admitted to this seminar on a first come, first serve basis.

Registration: Please click here.

Please direct your questions regarding this seminar to Autumn Stephenson at or 423-648-2679. 

Refunds will only be issued if requested prior to the event.

Richmont Graduate University has been approved by NBCC as an Approved Continuing Education Provider, ACEP No. 4534. Programs that do not qualify for NBCC credit are clearly identified. Richmont Graduate University is solely responsible for all aspects of the programs. 

Richmont Graduate University is approved by the American Psychologist Association to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. Richmont Graduate University maintains responsibility for this program and its content.

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Trauma and Biology