How do children overcome hazardous experiences to succeed in life? What can be done to protect young people at risk from trauma, war, disasters, and other adversities? Learn about the importance of fostering resilience in children at risk.
During this course, participants will: learn how trauma can affect children and the systems they depend on, gain insight into core concepts, research methods and lessons learned in last 50 years of resilience research, learn how research is being applied in the real world through interventions that promote resilience, and engage in discussions with others who are working with children at risk around the world.
- Week 1 - Origins and Landmark Studies in the Science of Resilience in Children : The first module of this course provides an introduction to the course and to the science of resilience. Video lectures discuss the meaning of resilience and the origins of resilience science. Participants will begin to think about case examples of resilience from their own experience and plan for a resilience interview. In the forum discussions, participants will introduce themselves, discuss the meaning of resilience and its importance in their work. Participants also will nominate favorite films and books about true stories of resilience.
- Week 2 - Methods and Models of Research on Resilience (including case studies) : This module highlights the models and methods used in resilience science, including person-focused methods and variable-focused methods. The case study of Dr. Maddaus continues and the case of resilience in early childhood is presented.
- Week 3 - Effects on Children of Natural and Technological Disasters : This module focuses on what has been learned from research on children who experience disasters, including the effects on children and patterns of recovery. Participants will watch a video interview with an expert on children in disaster and additional videos on damage and recovery following the F5 Joplin tornado. Participants will also complete a survey on disaster experiences.
- Week 4 - Resilience in Children Exposed to War and Political Violence : This module highlights what has been learned about the effects of war, terror, and political violence on children and youth. What are the effects of these violent experiences on young people? What has been learned about resilience? We will examine the provocative literature on youth who voluntarily get involved in political conflicts or war. The concluding lecture considers new approaches to peace-building and what might be done to promote peace through interventions with children. This week also features 4 special topics on resilience in young people who experienced the trauma of war and conflict. Choose one or more of the special topics and watch these moving stories of survival. Post your thoughts in the special topics discussion forums on each of these options. If you have time, watch them all. These accounts of resilience are very compelling.
- Week 5 - Roles of Families, Schools, Culture, and Community in Promoting Resilience of Children : This module summarizes the findings on protective factors for resilience in children. Professor Masten presents her ideas about the adaptive systems that account for most of the capacity for resilience in children, what she has called “ordinary magic.” The roles of families, schools, and culture in resilience are discussed.
- Week 6 - A Resilience Framework for Action, Enduring Controversies, and New Horizons in the Study of Resilience : In video lectures this final week of the course, Professor Masten presents a general resilience framework for designing interventions and programs to promote resilience. She also discusses enduring controversies in the study of resilience and new frontiers, including the neurobiology of resilience and growing research on the role of culture in resilience. The course concludes with highlights about growing global work on resilience and final “take home” messages from the course.
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