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Title: Children and adolescents who have experienced trauma : the role of cognitions, locus of control and features of the trauma
Author: Thompson, Marie
ISNI:       0000 0001 3530 0052
Awarding Body: University of Surrey
Current Institution: University of Surrey
Date of Award: 2007
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Background: A number of models of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) suggest the role of cognitive appraisals in underpinning post traumatic responses in adults. Greater understanding of cognitive appraisals in young people who have experienced trauma would further understanding of the mechanisms underpinning post traumatic responses and inform trauma-focused intervention for children and adolescents. Increased insight into those aspects of the trauma most closely associated with post traumatic symptomatology would also provide greater insight into post traumatic responses in children and adolescents. Method: Two protocols were employed. Firstly, children aged 8-14 who presented with post-traumatic symptoms at a GAMHS trauma service completed measures pre-treatment (n=26). Secondly, a small case study was employed after participants had completed intervention (n=2) to determine whether exploration of these case studies of clients who had completed treatment furthered understanding of the role of cognitive appraisals and aspects of the trauma. Participants received Eye Movement Desensitisation and Reprocessing (EMDR) treatment. Results: Data relating to cognitive appraisals indicate that negative view of the self, negative view of the world and self-blame were positively correlated with post-traumatic symptoms. External locus of control was associated with emotional and behavioural difficulties, hyperactivity/inattention and conduct problems. Demographic features of the trauma were associated with post-traumatic symptomatology to varying degrees. Case analyses post-treatment tentatively suggest the utility of interventions which focus on these cognitions. Conclusions: This study supports the application of most of the aspects of Foa, Tolin, et al’s (1999) adult model of cognitive appraisals to children and adolescents post-trauma. Trauma-focused interventions for young people need to focus on these cognitions.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (D.Psych.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available