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. Originally published by River Smith and Elana Newman in January, 2009; Updated by Susan Drevo in May, 2016, and by Autumn Slaughter in March, 2019.
Resources for Tip Sheets, Classroom Resources
Tips for journalism educators seeking to bring crisis/trauma training into the classroom from Associate Professor of Journalism at San Diego State University and 2011 Dart Center Academic Fellow Amy Schmitz Weiss.
Sacramento State Hornet student journalists were among the first to arrive at the scene where a California State University, Sacramento, student was beaten to death and his alleged assailant was shot by police. In this video produced by photojournalist Brian Feulner, four editors recall their actions and reactions in covering the tragic event.
Whether clinicians like it or not, children and families affected by trauma are routinely covered by the media. When that happens, clinicians often face difficult choices.
Note: Available as PDF download only.
An overview of current scholarship regarding how different, contextual approaches to reporting news influence consumers’ knowledge, perceptions and opinions, and the implications for researchers and for journalists.
An overview of current research on the short- and long-term impacts of media coverage of tragedy on children, as well as aggravating risk factors and suggestions for future research.