Theses and Dissertations

Issuing Body

Mississippi State University


Oliveros, Arazais

Committee Member

Armstrong, Kevin J.

Committee Member

McKinney, Cliff

Committee Member

DeShong, Hilary L.

Date of Degree


Document Type

Dissertation - Open Access



Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


College of Arts and Sciences


Department of Psychology


Growing evidence of the health risks associated with adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) has prompted public health and community initiatives to promote awareness, detection, and responses that are trauma informed. Nationwide programs to integrate trauma-informed care into education, health care, and child serving agencies, have thus far led to the proposal and advancement of trauma-informed policies and practices in many communities. While Mississippi agencies include trauma-specific intervention and training, statewide ACEs initiatives and relevant data are still limited. This project aimed to contribute to the larger goal of a statewide trauma-informed paradigm shift, by increasing ACEs awareness and developing recommendations for the integration of such research into programs aimed at serving vulnerable populations. Sixty-one child-serving professionals participated in adversity and resilience training (ART), a 3-hour workshop addressing childhood adversity, traumatic stress, resilience, and secondary traumatization. Outcomes measured were changes in trauma knowledge, trauma informed attitudes, attributions regarding difficult child-behaviors, and secondary trauma knowledge and self-care. Participants also provided ratings on a training evaluation survey. There were significant changes in trauma knowledge (F(1,22) = 6.418, p = .000, ηρ2 = .226) and trauma-informed attitudes (F(1,22) = 11.014, p = .003, ηρ2 = .334) between pre- and post-training. Training evaluations were generally positive (M = 4.61, SD = 0.13, on a 1 to 5 Likert scale). The current study contributes to the research an evaluation of a training intervention that offers feasible strategies for scalable training and assessment of outcomes.