Post a composite review
Unpost a composite review
Search all MERLOT
Click here to go to your profile
Select to go to your workspace
Click here to go to your Dashboard Report
Click here to go to your Content Builder
Click here to log out
Search Terms
Enter username
Enter password
Please give at least one keyword of at least three characters for the search to work with. The more keywords you give, the better the search will work for you.
select OK to launch help window
cancel help

MERLOT II


    

Peer Review


The ChildTrauma Academy

 

Ratings

Overall Rating:

4.8 stars
Content Quality: 4.8 stars
Effectiveness: 4.5 stars
Ease of Use: 5 stars
Reviewed: Feb 15, 2005 by Health Sciences
Overview:

The Child Trauma Academy provides continuing education
online courses related to child trauma.  The website currently has three
courses:  The Amazing Human Brain and Human Development; Surviving
Childhood:  An Introduction to the Impact of trauma; and The Cost of
Caring:  Secondary Traumatic Stress and the Impact of Working with
High-Risk Children and Families.  The online course are written in
conversational tone, include graphics to support key concepts, include
assignments and quizzes, and are supported with a message board.  The site
is supported with FAQs and classroom help links.  Selected therapists and
counselors in Texas and California can pay to obtain CEU credits or a
certificate of completion; the courses are all free if education credit is not
required.

Learning Goals:

The learning goals for The Amazing Human Brain and Human Development are:




1.  Provide an overview of key
principles of neurodevelopment crucial for understanding the role of experience
in defining functional and physical organization of the brain.



2.  Describe the emerging
clinical and research findings in maltreated children that suggest the negative
impact of abuse, neglect and trauma on brain development.



3. Outline the clinical
implications of a neurodevelopmental approach to child maltreatment. 



4. Discuss the role of public
policy and preventative practices in context of the impact of maltreatment on
children's emotional, behavioral, cognitive, social and physical health


The
learning goals for Surviving Childhood:  An Introduction to the Impact of
Trauma are:



1.  Provide an overview of key principles of
neurodevelopment crucial for understanding the role of experience in defining
functional and physical organization of the brain



2. 
Describe the emerging clinical and research findings in maltreated children that
suggest the negative impact of abuse, neglect and trauma on brain development


3.
Outline the clinical implications of a neurodevelopmental approach to child
maltreatment


4.
Discuss the role of public policy and preventative practices in context of the
impact of maltreatment on children's emotional, behavioral, cognitive, social
and physical health


The
learning goals for The Cost of Caring:  Secondary Traumatic Stress and the
Impact of Working with High-Risk Children and Families are:


1.
 
To introduce and discuss the concepts of burnout and
secondary traumatic stress.


2.  To review how unpredictable stress and trauma can
negatively impact emotional, cognitive and physical functioning.


3.  To describe individual, event-related and systemic
factors which increase or decrease risk for developing trauma-related symptoms.


4.  To help individuals understand the value of developing
individualized ?protective? strategies when they work in conditions likely to
cause secondary traumatic stress


5.  To direct individuals to additional resources that can
further assist in meeting objectives.

Target Student Population:

The state target student population includes licensed
professional counselors, licensed social workers, licensed marriage and family
therapists, and educators.  The target student population could easily
include healthcare pre-professionals, psychology students, nurses, physicians,
and CASA workers.

Prerequisite Knowledge or Skills:

The introduction to Course 1 clearly states that no
biology or neuroscience background is necessary.  The authors go on to say
that a basic understanding of human brain function and brain development is
helpful.

Type of Material:

The learning material is organized in tutorial formatting
with lessons, graphics, learning assignments, and quizzes.

Recommended Uses:

The learning materials can be used in many ways.  For
example, the resources can be used as stand-alone courses, homework assignments,
group discussion assignmen

Technical Requirements:

There are no special technical requirements for these
learning resources other than a computer, web-browser and an Internet
connection. RealPlayer is needed to view the narrated presentation, although this link was not operational at the time of this review.
There is no requirement for sound, video, nor special plug-in
applications.


Evaluation and Observation

Content Quality

Rating: 4.8 stars
Strengths:

The content is accurate, pertinent, and complete.Content is presented primarily as text which may not be appropriate for all learning styles. 



  • Although brain neuroscience is complex, the authors
    write in a very conversational tone and explain the brain functions with
    real-life terminology. 

  • There are course objectives for each online course.

  • The learning material is consistently broken down 
    into lessons and learning assignments. 

  • There is a message board.

  • There is information on how to subscribe to surviving
    childhood listserv and surviving childhood Yahoo groups.

Concerns:

 Additional graphics,animations interactive assignments & quizzes could enhance learning and interest of this complex subject.However,the lack of these features does not indicate diminished quality of the content.


Potential Effectiveness as a Teaching Tool

Rating: 4.5 stars
Strengths:

The learning materials are effective teaching tools:



  • The learning material is an exploration of factors associated with child
    trauma that educators, therapists and counselors deal with on a daily basis. 

  • Each online course builds upon the concepts in the previous courses.

  • Summary statements provide a bridge to demonstrate relationships of
    concepts.

  • The conversational tone is engaging.

  • The learning materials are consistently well-organized in the same manner.


Concerns:

The concerns are very minimal:



  • The link to Brain
    Organization and Function: A Brief Overview,
    a narrated slide presentation
    using RealPlayer did not work.

  • The three "special comments"
    links were also broken at the time of this review.


  • The neuroscience material is very complex and would benefit from the use
    of additional graphics and animations.



Ease of Use for Both Students and Faculty

Rating: 5 stars
Strengths:

  • The  site is easy to navigate.

  • There are FAQs and instructions related to classroom help.

  • There is a message board.

  • The one link requiring the use of RealPlayer had a link to download the
    software for users that needed the application.


Concerns:
No concerns

Other Issues and Comments: The three online courses were thoughtfully designed with the
interest of the child and the learner in mind.  The lessons addressed an
extremely important subject.