Neuroscience of Trauma


The Neurobiology of Trauma, Webinar
Jane Doe Inc.
The webinar provides an overview of neurobiology to increase an understanding of the impact of sexual assault and domestic violence on brain functioning, memory and cognition. This information helps us consider how survivors are affected by trauma, and how the neurobiological effects influence how they cope with and heal from violence.


Shifting the Paradigm for Investigating Trauma Victimization
Battered Women’s Justice Project
The Forensic Experiential Interview Technique used primarily by law enforcement that helps to elicit information from victims or witnesses of crime. The training of this technique includes overview of the impact of trauma on the brain.

Can Understanding Neurobiology Provide a Better Approach Working with Abuse Survivors?
This article provides trauma perspectives on domestic violence, and outlines best practices when working with survivors to ensure the highest quality of care that includes an understanding of neurobiology.

Domestic Violence, Developing Brains, and the Lifespan: New Knowledge of Neuroscience
By Lynn Hecht Schafran, Legal Momentum
The effect of domestic violence on the brain and lifespan of survivors has physiological and mental health implications. In addition to exploring this topic, this paper offers various outside resources, such as videos and other articles, for researchers and practitioners.

Understanding the Neurobiology of Trauma and Implications for Interviewing Victims
End Violence Against Women International
Geared toward law enforcement and forensic interviewers in responding to sexual assault, this paper delves into the intricacies of traumatic experiences and effects on the brain.

Neurobiology of the Sexual Assault Seminar
Dr. Rebecca Campbell, Michigan State University
In this three part series, Dr. Campbell responds to a series of questions to describe the value of understanding the neurobiology of trauma and strategies for law enforcement professionals in responding to survivors.

Neurobiology of the Sexual Assault: Interview 1
watch video
Trauma versus lying: How can law enforcement tell the difference? How did you become interested in this type of work? What is the impact of this training on law enforcement?

Neurobiology of the Sexual Assault: Interview 2
watch video
What is secondary victimization? What are the differences between victims who report and those who don’t? Benefits of understanding traumatic memory and victim behavior.

Neurobiology of the Sexual Assault: Interview 3
watch video
What changes can improve the investigation and strengthen the case? Who benefits from learning about the neurobiology of trauma? What are the next steps in this field of research?

Preventing Secondary Victimization by Educating Systems About the Neurobiology of the Brain
Research Consortium on Gender-based Violence from the University of Michigan
Understanding the neurobiology of trauma has helped to explain how victims of sexual assault present in the aftermath of trauma and may not be able to accurately recall all of the details of the assault.

Trauma and the Brain

September 2015 8 minute presentation outlines areas of brain and how they function as it relates to trauma.
NHS Lanarkshire EVA Services produced an accessible, animated video for law enforcement that can help any professional to understand the impact of trauma on survivors of gender-based violence.

Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) Resources
The following articles provide information about the impact of traumatic brain injury on survivors:
Brown, Jerrod, Brooke Luckhardt, Laura Cooney Koss and Marisela Cantu,
Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) and Domestic Violence: a Beginner’s Guide for Professionals. J Forensic Sci & Criminal Invest. 2018; 8(2): 555735. DOI: 10.19080/JFSCI.2018.08.555735
Valera, E. & Kucyi, A. Brain Imaging and Behavior (2017) 11: 1664. DOI: 10.1007/s11682-016-9643-1

What Judges Need to Know About the Neurobiology of Sexual Assault
By Deborah Smith, National Center for State Courts
This brief summarizes the traumatic impact of sexual assault and how understanding the neurobiology helps to decode survivors’ behaviors and responses.

Invisible Injuries: Traumatic Brain Injury, Strangulation and Domestic Violence
Futures Without Violence
This webinar is designed to educate about the complex relationships between domestic v
iolence, traumatic brain injury, and strangulation and how domestic violence organizations and health care providers are beginning to incorporate this awareness into their services.