Trauma-Informed Certificate Programs

upset female client with female therapist.

Social workers and other human service professionals often serve people who have been exposed to some type of trauma. Our programs and courses provide knowledge to help you to work more effectively with trauma survivors.

What is the difference between a certificate program and 'certification'?

A certificate program is a series of training hours on a topic area or treatment method. It is designed to advance your skills and knowledge. This is a common training format in university continuing education programs. Completion does not represent that you have ‘certification’ or are ‘certified’. You receive a frameable certificate of completion for the program if you meet all requirements. In addition, each course completed will provide a certificate of completion with applicable CEUs. Certificate course work provides resources for additional study and in some cases, pursuit of advanced intervention skills such as EMDR or DBT offered though other training providers.

'Certification' should only be offered by programs that are sufficiently assessing both knowledge acquired and competent implementation of the skills and knowledge taught. Ongoing clinical supervision may be required as part of completion of a certification program.  Practitioners must comply with their professional codes of ethics in how they represent skills and knowledge acquired through continuing education programs. 

Trauma-Informed Care Defined

Trauma-informed care, as defined by the National Center on Trauma-Informed Care, is an approach to engaging people with histories of trauma that recognizes the presence of trauma symptoms and acknowledges the role that trauma has played in their lives. Understanding this approach is one of the most significant steps you can take to improve your skills and positively impact the well-being of your clients.

Trauma and Its Far-reaching Effects

  • Psychological trauma is a hidden epidemic; 90 percent of clients in public behavioral health settings have experienced trauma, according to the SAMHSA-HRSA Center for Integrated Health Solutions.
  • Trauma survivors have had overwhelming life experiences which significantly impact their capacity to function in a healthy manner. Engaging them into services and helping them achieve stabilization are significant, life-changing and often life-saving actions.
  • Research demonstrates that psychological trauma contributes significantly in the development of many problems such as various psychiatric, behavioral and personality disorders; addictions; suicidal behavior, violent behavior and a variety of chronic health problems.
  • Most trauma survivors you will work with have repeated life events resulting in complex Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder rather than PTSD by itself. The methods employed by professionals play a critical role in the resulting effects of trauma on individuals and its enduring consequences.

Guiding Principles of Trauma-Informed Care

Guiding Principles of Trauma-Informed Care: safety; trustworthiness and transparency; peer support and mutual self-help; collaboration and mutuality; empowerment, voice, and choice; and cultural, historical, and gender issues (source: SAMHSA)

Our certificate programs prepare you for offering varying levels of trauma-informed care. Use the title links below to open the details on each program.

Our online certificate program provides a foundational education in clinical trauma work. The coursework, approximately 42 hours, can be applied to our Trauma-Informed Care & Counseling Certificate Program for a more detailed level of study.
Our hybrid certificate program — with in-person courses held in Buffalo, New York, as well as online courses — offers an in-depth clinical look at trauma. The program includes approximately 96 hours of coursework; many participants find the online component allows it to be completed in less time.
Our online certificate program provides an overview for organizations in creating a trauma-informed environment. The coursework can be applied as elective hours to our Trauma-Informed Certificate Programs for a more detailed level of study.

Additional Trauma Resources at UB

UB’s Institute on Trauma and Trauma-Informed Care (ITTIC) provides research and training for organizations through evaluation, trauma-specific treatment interventions, technical assistance and consultation.

Podcasts on trauma and trauma informed topics

Trauma-Informed and Human Rights Resources

MSW degree: trauma-informed human rights focused