Trauma-Informed Practice and Self-Efficacy of Early Interventionists in Tennessee

Authors' Affiliations

Josie Smith, undergraduate at East Tennessee State University, Raven Armintrout, undergraduate at East Tennessee State University, & Jada Beal, Graduate at East Tennessee State University.

Location

D.P. Culp Center Ballroom

Start Date

4-5-2024 9:00 AM

End Date

4-5-2024 11:30 AM

Poster Number

161

Name of Project's Faculty Sponsor

Alyson Chroust

Faculty Sponsor's Department

Psychology

Classification of First Author

Undergraduate Student

Competition Type

Competitive

Type

Poster Presentation

Presentation Category

Social Sciences

Abstract or Artist's Statement

Introduction: There is a growing recognition of the need to develop early interventionists’ (EIs) knowledge and attitudes surrounding trauma-informed practices to enable them to deliver effective care for families of infants with early adversity. Exposure to adversity is a prevalent issue; therefore, when affected individuals attempt to seek help, it is essential for EIs to apply trauma-informed practices to minimize retraumatization. Previous literature provides insight on how effects of adverse experiences can be mitigated through proper trauma-informed interventions (Champine, R. B., et al., 2022). Given the regularity in which EIs in Tennessee are expected to be working with infants and their families experiencing early adversity, it is important to understand whether EIs are familiar with trauma-informed practices. Purpose: The purpose of the current study was to understand the knowledge and attitudes of EIs surrounding trauma-informed practices and examine whether it was related to EIs self-efficacy. Methods: An online survey was developed and distributed to the target population of all credentialed EIs (excluding SLPs, OTs and PTs) who deliver services across the state of Tennessee, United States. The finalized survey included several items developed by the research team but also several standardized surveys. This abstract focuses on an 11-item survey on Trauma-Informed Practices and Self Reflections (TIPSR) and a 15-item survey of self-efficacy (Lamorey & Wilcox, 2005). Eighty-four EIs completed the survey. Participants were mainly female (96.7%), on average, 41 years old, with 0-2 years of involvement with EI services. Most respondents worked in community-based EI programs for young children with disabilities (71.4%), were employed by a non-profit organization (58.2%). The highest degree for most respondents was a bachelor’s degree (59.3%). On average, participants had 20 families on their caseload. Results: On average, EIs reported moderate knowledge of trauma-informed practices and self-reflection (M = 13.55, SD = 6.32). EIs’ self-efficacy scores on the general subscale (M = 1.48, SD = 3.92) were lower than their self-efficacy scores on the personal subscale (M = 14.32, SD = 4.46). There was a statistically significant correlation between EIs reported knowledge of TIPSR and personal self-efficacy, r = 0.33, p = .002, but not EIs reported knowledge of TIPSR and general self-efficacy, r = 0.03, p = .78. Conclusion: Given the high prevalence of early childhood adversity in the United States and specifically in Appalachia it will be important to develop trainings targeting trauma-informed practices and self-reflection for early interventionists across the State of Tennessee. Our data indicates that EIs are familiar with these terms and trauma-informed practices but maybe are not comfortable enough with implementing these practices within their early intervention or Individualized Family Service Plan. This additional education will further empower and increase the confidence of EIs when working with infants and children with early adversity and their families. While the current study is limited to developmental therapists within the state of Tennessee, it is our hope that future research will extend to other states and other professionals working within the EI setting.

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Apr 5th, 9:00 AM Apr 5th, 11:30 AM

Trauma-Informed Practice and Self-Efficacy of Early Interventionists in Tennessee

D.P. Culp Center Ballroom

Introduction: There is a growing recognition of the need to develop early interventionists’ (EIs) knowledge and attitudes surrounding trauma-informed practices to enable them to deliver effective care for families of infants with early adversity. Exposure to adversity is a prevalent issue; therefore, when affected individuals attempt to seek help, it is essential for EIs to apply trauma-informed practices to minimize retraumatization. Previous literature provides insight on how effects of adverse experiences can be mitigated through proper trauma-informed interventions (Champine, R. B., et al., 2022). Given the regularity in which EIs in Tennessee are expected to be working with infants and their families experiencing early adversity, it is important to understand whether EIs are familiar with trauma-informed practices. Purpose: The purpose of the current study was to understand the knowledge and attitudes of EIs surrounding trauma-informed practices and examine whether it was related to EIs self-efficacy. Methods: An online survey was developed and distributed to the target population of all credentialed EIs (excluding SLPs, OTs and PTs) who deliver services across the state of Tennessee, United States. The finalized survey included several items developed by the research team but also several standardized surveys. This abstract focuses on an 11-item survey on Trauma-Informed Practices and Self Reflections (TIPSR) and a 15-item survey of self-efficacy (Lamorey & Wilcox, 2005). Eighty-four EIs completed the survey. Participants were mainly female (96.7%), on average, 41 years old, with 0-2 years of involvement with EI services. Most respondents worked in community-based EI programs for young children with disabilities (71.4%), were employed by a non-profit organization (58.2%). The highest degree for most respondents was a bachelor’s degree (59.3%). On average, participants had 20 families on their caseload. Results: On average, EIs reported moderate knowledge of trauma-informed practices and self-reflection (M = 13.55, SD = 6.32). EIs’ self-efficacy scores on the general subscale (M = 1.48, SD = 3.92) were lower than their self-efficacy scores on the personal subscale (M = 14.32, SD = 4.46). There was a statistically significant correlation between EIs reported knowledge of TIPSR and personal self-efficacy, r = 0.33, p = .002, but not EIs reported knowledge of TIPSR and general self-efficacy, r = 0.03, p = .78. Conclusion: Given the high prevalence of early childhood adversity in the United States and specifically in Appalachia it will be important to develop trainings targeting trauma-informed practices and self-reflection for early interventionists across the State of Tennessee. Our data indicates that EIs are familiar with these terms and trauma-informed practices but maybe are not comfortable enough with implementing these practices within their early intervention or Individualized Family Service Plan. This additional education will further empower and increase the confidence of EIs when working with infants and children with early adversity and their families. While the current study is limited to developmental therapists within the state of Tennessee, it is our hope that future research will extend to other states and other professionals working within the EI setting.