Division 56 → Member - $15 CE Option

Psychological Treatment of Trauma in Black American Adults

This webinar will briefly review salient historical trauma that created the backdrop for our contemporary racial reckoning as it pertains to the psychology of African American adults. It will review evidence of disparities in lifetime trauma exposure and lifetime prevalence of PTSD facing African Americans. It will also discuss racial differences in utilization of professional mental health services and explanations for those differences. Finally, it will explore recommendations for modifying psychotherapy practice to better meet the need of Black trauma survivors.

Presenter: Nnamdi Pole, PhD is a Chaired Professor, Chair of the Smith College Psychology Department, and a licensed psychologist. He is also an elected representative from APA Division 56 to the APA Council of Representatives, a member of the APA Guideline Update Panel for the treatment of adult PTSD, and an Associate Editor of Psychological Bulletin. His original research has focused on the areas of psychotherapy process, psychophysiology of emotion, psychological trauma, and ethnic minority mental health.

Learning Objectives:
1. Attendees will be able to describe key traumatic and stressful events in United States history that seem to be salient in the psychology of contemporary Black Americans.
2. Attendees will recognize disparities in the prevalence of lifetime trauma exposure, PTSD diagnoses, and professional mental health service utilization among Black American trauma survivors.
3. Attendees will be able to identify strategies for adapting empirically supported trauma therapies to increase acceptability to adult Black clients.

Barnes et al. (2014). Assessing and exploring racial identity development in therapy: Strategies to use with Black consumers. Journal of Applied Rehabilitation Counseling, 45, 11-17.
Day-Vines et al. (2007). Broaching the subjects of race, ethnicity, and culture during the counseling process. Journal of Counseling and Development, 85, 401-409.

Pole, N. (2018). Race and ethnicity. In C. B. Nemeroff & C. R. Marmar (Eds.), Post-traumatic stress disorder. Oxford University Press. https://doi.org/10.1093/med/9780190259440.003.0029

Pole, N., Fields, L., & D’Andrea, W. (2016). Stress and trauma disorders. In J. C. Norcross, G. R. VandenBos, D. K. Freedheim, & N. Pole (Eds.), APA handbook of clinical psychology: Psychopathology and health (pp. 97–133). American Psychological Association.

Pole, N. & Rasco, L. (2024). Traumac disorders. In F. T. L. Leong (Editor-in-Chief), APA handbook of psychotherapy: Vol. 1. Theory-Driven Practice and Disorder-Driven
Practice. (p. 429–451). American Psychological Association.

Williams, M. T., Malcoun, E., Sawyer, B. A., Davis, D. M., Nouri, L. B., & Bruce, S. L. (2014). Cultural adaptations of prolonged exposure therapy for treatment and prevention of posttraumatic stress disorder in African Americans. Behavioral Sciences, 4(2), 102–124. https://doi.org/10.3390/bs4020102
  • Section 1
  • Home Study Session Test
  • Webinar Viewing
Completion rules
  • All units must be completed
  • Leads to a certificate with a duration: Forever