• Fact Sheet

    Jan 1 2009

    Covering Trauma: Impact on Journalists

    An overview of current research on the occupational hazards for journalists covering traumatic events, the risk factors that aggravate those effects and some suggestions for mitigating those factors.

  • Tip Sheet

    Jul 14 2011

    Reporting on Sexual Violence

    Quick tips on covering sexual violence, from preparation to writing the story.

  • Online Learning

    Self-Study Unit 3: Photography & Trauma

    IV. Traumatic Stress and the News Audience

    The field of mass communication study is largely build upon “effects research,” the study of how media content (e.g., movies, newspaper articles, propaganda, television programs, etc.) affects some segment of the population. This research goes back about three-quarters of a century and has yielded a wide range of useful findings.

  • Online Learning

    Self-Study Unit 2: Covering Terrorism

    V. Telling Stories

    The stories journalists tell, visually and verbally, help the public make sense of confusing, threatening times. In fact there is evidence that putting language to traumatic experiences helps individuals cope. Although it is not a stated mission of the press to heal, articulating the event for others may have a therapeutic effect on the larger community.

  • Fact Sheet

    Covering Children & Trauma

    IV. Children & PTSD

    Children encounter many types of violence, from collective events like war and natural disasters to individual tragedies like accidental shootings, interpersonal violence, car accidents and illnesses. Research has found that just like adults, kids’ reactions vary widely. Most kids are frightened and anxious at first but those feelings fade with time and support. Others suffer longer-term problems, like re-experiencing the event, depression, withdrawal and anger, that are signs of post-traumatic stress.

  • In Depth

    PTSD 101

    Other Responses

    There are psychiatric disorders other than PTSD and ASD that follow traumatic events. Most commonly, the diagnosis is an Adjustment Disorder.

  • Online Learning

    Self-Study Unit 1: Journalism & Trauma

    II. Effects of Traumatic Stress

    In recent years, thanks to a number of researchers, educators and organizations, the role of traumatic stress and journalism has come under closer scrutiny.

  • Print Publication

    Tragedies & Journalists

    VII. Journalist as First Responder

    HazMat officer Mike Hagen affirmed a 21st century reality: Police, firefighters - and now journalists - are considered among the first responders to a terrorist act.

  • Journal Library


    A list of academic publications that address trauma, violence, and criminal justice.

  • Booklet

    Breaking Bad News

    V. Things to Say and Not to Say

    Be open and honest; don't try to shield the family from the circumstances of the death. They may well find out the details through other channels.