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3 Hours Graduate Level Credit (ED501) through Colorado State University - Pueblo

Course Facilitator: Lin Mohr

Instructor of Record: Jennifer Hair 



Course Description: 

“Students who are loved at home come to school to learn, and students who aren’t, come to school to be loved.” by Nicholas A. Ferroni


Trauma is possibly the largest public health issue facing our students today and more than half of U.S. children have experienced at least one type of serious childhood trauma, such as abuse, neglect, natural disaster, or experiencing or witnessing violence.  (CDC, 2019). Traumatized students are especially prone to difficulty in self-regulation, negative thinking, being on high alert, difficulty trusting adults, and inappropriate social interactions (Lacoe, 2013; Terrasi & de Galarce, 2017). As educators, we are on the receiving end of trauma-induced behaviors on a daily basis and not always prepared to guide students through the process of healing.Imagine a classroom of students who often haven't learned to express emotions healthily and instead show their distress through aggression, avoidance, shutting down, or other off-putting behaviors. These actions can feel antagonistic to teachers who don't understand the root cause of the student's behavior, which can lead to misunderstandings, ineffective interventions, and missed learning time. This constant frustration is also one of reasons for teachers being burnt out.

Neurobiologically, students can't learn if they don't feel safe, known, and cared for within their schools (Aupperle et al., 2012). When teachers are proactive and responsive to the needs of students suffering from traumatic stress and make small changes in the classroom that foster a feeling of safety, it makes a huge difference in their ability to learn.

 This course is designed to support K-12 teaching professionals to gain a more nuanced understanding of trauma-informed instructional strategies and thus develop a trauma responsive classroom to meet the needs of students suffering from traumatic stress and make gradual changes to foster a more engaged and joyful learning environment.


Required Text(s) and Other Materials:

All materials will be provided through open educational resources by the instructor in the Canvas classroom free of cost.

Learning Management System: Internet access, connection to Canvas learning management system portal.


 Course Objectives: 

Upon completion of this course, students will be able to:

  • Recognize and Identify trauma-based behaviours and stages of trauma

  • Increase self-awareness and trauma competency

  • Scrutinize literature associated with various types of trauma affected behaviors displayed by students and approaches to support students experiencing trauma by redesigning the current learning environment

  • Discuss pedagogical, administrative, and domain-specific challenges - and opportunities - associated with the creating a trauma responsive classroom

  • Critically Assess impact of trauma and Establish social and emotional safety in the classroom

  • Create a behavior management plan for a trauma responsive learning environment by using implementing trauma-informed teaching strategies

Trauma Informed Teaching Strategies

  • Once registration is complete, you will receive a welcome letter from the instructor within 48 hours with access codes and instructions for the course. If you do NOT hear from the instructor, please email

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