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Title: The impact of social support and coping style on post-trauma symptoms in children following traumatic events
Author: Ward, Julia
Awarding Body: UCL (University College London)
Current Institution: University College London (University of London)
Date of Award: 2005
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Post-trauma adjustment in children and adolescents has attracted increasing research and clinical interest in recent years and workers have been particularly interested in identifying the risk and protective factors influencing trauma outcome. These issues form the focus of this research thesis, which will be presented in three parts. (1) The literature review examines current evidence on children's psychosocial functioning following trauma, and the risk and protective factors influencing outcome, with particular emphasis on coping style and social support. The review highlights the complexity of this area, reflected in multifactorial models of children's post-trauma adjustment and suggests that coping and social support may be particularly important. However few childhood trauma studies have directly examined these factors and future directions are suggested for addressing these issues in childhood trauma research. (2) The empirical paper therefore examines the influence of coping style and social support on children's post-trauma adjustment. Fifty-six children aged 7-14 years, and their main caregiver, completed a battery of measures 3-4 weeks after a traumatic event and again 3 months later. Children frequently experienced post-traumatic stress, anxiety and depressive symptoms, and these symptoms were associated with reduced social support and increased use of coping strategies, the latter finding indicating a bi-directional relationship between distress and coping. The findings are discussed in relation to multifactorial models of children's posttrauma adjustment, and recommendations made for further research. (3) The critical appraisal discusses the methodological and theoretical issues, which emerged during the course of the study and considers implications for future research and clinical practice with children exposed to traumatic events.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available