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Postgraduate study

Trauma-Informed Practice MA

The MA Trauma-Informed Practice is a unique qualification in the field. You develop the professional skills and knowledge of trauma and the implications it has upon mental, physical, emotional and relational health to continue your professional, educational and personal development by consolidating, enhancing and extending your disciplinary expertise, experience and abilities.


Course overview

High levels of personal responsibility and self-direction are required as you work with complex knowledge, theory and concepts in relation to trauma and adversity appropriate to postgraduate study.

Awareness of trauma and the impact it has on physical and mental health has increased considerably and affects us all, directly or indirectly. This qualification gives you a comprehensive understanding of this topic which can be applied in practice to a variety of workplaces and settings, and makes you makes you a confident, critical, creative, adaptable, articulate and aspiring professional.

The course takes a strengths based approach that is grounded in an understanding of and responsiveness to the impact of trauma, which emphasises physical, psychological and emotional safety for everyone, and that creates opportunities for survivors to rebuild a sense of control and empowerment.

Content includes early childhood development and how this is impacted by adversity and trauma, ways in which we can mitigate and ameliorate this, and opportunities to apply this knowledge through topical and relevant practice-focused assessments. You focus on a particular aspect of trauma-related practice that will be of value to your own professional development

Top reasons to study this course
> Study this course and you may be eligible for a £2,500 Sir Keith Skeoch postgraduate scholarship.
> Your teaching team include experts currently working on the front line with children, young people and adults experiencing trauma who are ‘experts by experience’.
> The Trauma Informed Research Methods module offers a broad range of innovative qualitative approaches, including photo elicitation, collage and enhanced ethics content.
> Specialist routes for education and social work professionals and a broader option for other participants.

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Course details

Course structure

Core modules

Supporting Frontline Workers and Carers

You consider what it means to be working with, or caring for, children and young people who have experienced adversity and trauma. The impact on teachers, social workers, youth workers, foster carers and adoptive parents, police, health care workers, those working in mental health, the criminal justice system and with the homeless is discussed. How we can support people with their own trauma histories who are working on the front line and how workplaces can support people who have experienced trauma is also examined. Strategies to help people in these challenging circumstances will be considered, for individuals, groups, organisations and communities.

Trauma-informed Practice Dissertation

This is your opportunity to complete a research project in a specialist area related to trauma-informed practice or within a social science discipline. Through individual supervisory consultation and building on knowledge, interests and skills from other modules on the course, you will think reflexively about your project’s development to further its progression and towards the creation of an independent research report.

Trauma-informed Research Methods

You gain a diverse understanding of trauma-informed research methods, philosophies and procedures. Through continuous review and self-evaluation, you will critically explore the nature of enquiry to inform your own ideas for research. You also consider the broader ethical parameters required in research planning and development. This module enables you to explore research ideas and methods located within a trauma-informed and/or social science specialism and will form the basis of a research plan for the development of your dissertation.

Understanding Childhood Trauma

You consider how adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) impact children and young people with regards to their physical and mental health, educational outcomes and life chances. Theories of typical and atypical child development will be discussed, types of trauma will be examined and related to the impact they have on children and young people's social and emotional development and behaviour. There will be a focus on relational and developmental trauma, the stress response system, toxic stress, the damage this causes and the life-long repercussions.

Working with Traumatised Children

You consider what steps need to be taken to help children and young people cope with adverse childhood experiences, manage their emotions and behaviours, improve their physical and mental health and well-being, develop resilience and other strategies to survive and thrive both in their education and future. Various approaches (psychological, physical and educational) to working with traumatised children will be examined and applied to the community, school and home.


Modules offered may vary.


How you learn

A range of learning and teaching methods are offered in the course so that the learning outcomes can be explored in-depth in a variety of ways. Lectures will provide the information that will be built on in workshops and seminars where a more interactive and exploratory approach will be taken. You consider your own practice and reflect in groups and individually to apply theory to practice. Tutorials will be available with a member of the programme team for each module. You engage in independent study and are supported to investigate aspects of your practice. There will be the opportunity for you to work together outside of the face-to-face sessions through the virtual learning environment, where there will be additional information and guidance and discussion boards for synchronous and asynchronous dialogue.

Class sizes will be a maximum size of 25, each 30-credit module requires 300 hours of study – much of which is guided but independent at this level. Lectures and seminar will be provided by the course team, visiting experts and local practitioners. High levels of student support are embedded into the course because of the sensitive nature of the content.

How you are assessed

A range of assessment methods allow you to take different approaches to exploring the learning outcomes and demonstrate your knowledge and understanding and postgraduate skills, including written assignments, for which feedback will be provided.

Ongoing formative assessment is built into each module; skills are introduced, revisited and consolidated and assessed at the end of each semester. Detailed information about assessments will be provided at the beginning of each module.


Entry requirements

A minimum of a 2:2 at undergraduate degree and experience of working with children, young people and/or adults in a variety of settings.

For non-standard entry, if you can demonstrate suitable significant experience and/or further study you may be considered for the programme, and asked to attend an informal interview. A written record of the informal interview will be kept to provide evidence of particular recommendations.

For general information please see our overview of entry requirements

International applicants can find out what qualifications they need by visiting Your Country



Career opportunities

You develop a comprehensive knowledge and understanding of the subject matter and a range of new skills which will enable you to apply what you have learnt effectively in the workplace. This expertise could lead to greater specialisation and more senior roles with the profession.

Successful completion could lead to Doctorate of Education and PhD study


Information for international applicants


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2024/25 entry

Fee for UK applicants
£6,710 a year

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Fee for international applicants
£17,000 a year

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2024/25 entry

Fee for UK applicants
£750 for each 20 credits

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  • Length: 2 years
  • Attendance: Tuesdays 5.00pm - 9.00pm
    Alternate Thursdays 6.00pm - 8.00pm
  • Start date: September
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