Understanding the Effects of Maltreatment on Early Brain Development

About the Course:

The In Focus report used as the basis of this course provides an overview of early brain development and examines how child abuse can impair cognitive and emotional functioning. The specific effects of stress, persistent fear response, hyperarousal, dissociation, disrupted attachment process, and neglect are discussed. The briefing reviews the implications of research findings for the child welfare system, practitioners, and caregivers. Early intervention and prevention strategies are suggested.

Publication Date:

October 2001


Child Welfare Information Gateway staff

Recommended For:

This course is recommended for health care professionals, especially psychologists, counselors, social workers, and nurses who seek knowledge about the effects of maltreatment on early brain development and ways to help prevent it. It is appropriate for all levels of participants’ knowledge.

Course Objectives:

  1. Describe how the young brain develops and what it needs to develop appropriately.

  2. Identify and differentiate between the negative effects of maltreatment on early brain development

  3. Analyze and critique information presented regarding practice and policy implications, as well as research recommendations presented.

Exam Questions

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