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Trauma and Criminal Behavior

(3 cr.) - Session(s): Fall, Summer | Course Every Year

This course will focus on understanding how mental health varies over the lifespan. This course introduces students to the physical, cognitive and psychological aspects of human development from birth through advanced old age and how mental illness and trauma affect behavior which may lead to contact with the criminal justice system. Content in this course will focus on a practical understanding of trauma and mental illness in general criminal justice settings. There will be a focus on Crisis Intervention Training/Team (CIT) where there is a holistic approach in addressing the role of addiction and behavioral health concerns in the management of people, including offenders and detainees.  The course will cover material on how to improve communication skills, learn how to make an initial assessment and determine an appropriate response, and how to identify a crisis and response. The course will utilize case studies or real situations for discussion.

Students completing this course will be able to: 

  • Describe mental illness issues over the lifespan and how trauma may affect criminal behavior
  • Explain the interplay between mental illness, trauma and addiction
  • Describe Crisis Intervention Training/Team and how this approach is used in criminal justice
  • Describe the management of people in criminal justice settings who have mental illness or have experienced trauma which affects their behavior or who may have addiction or substance abuse issues
  • Understanding trauma informed and trauma responsive behavior within Criminal Justice environments

Contact Information
141 Johnson Hall
(919) 760-8593