Posts Tagged With: PTG

Posttraumatic Growth Lab Members Prepare for APA in August 2014


  • A very exciting time for Dr. Taku, Sharell Elam, and Kellie McGuire.  Lab members and Dr. Taku’s study abstracts were accepted into American Psychological Association Conference in August. They are presenting their research, Effects of Priming the Shared Traumatic Experiences on Posttraumatic Growth.  Their research stemmed from the curiosity to find out if people report higher PTG when they know that their listener has also experienced PTG. The purpose was to test this hypothesis using a randomized priming experimental method focusing on two types of highly stressful life events: death and romantic relationships. Their results show that PTG was affected for individuals who experienced a romantic issue by priming the imaginary listener’s traumatic experiences, but not for people who lost their loved ones. Results may indicate that the effect of the individual to relate to the listener’s experience may vary depending on the  circumstances. These findings may have positive and negative implications when applied in real world scenarios.
  • Taku, K., McGuire, K., & Elam, S. G. (2014, August planned). Effects of priming the shared traumatic experiences on posttraumatic growth. Study abstract has been accepted for poster session to be presented at the 122nd annual convention of the American Psychological Association (APA), 1 – General Psychology Division, Washington, DC.
  • Taku, K., Tedeschi, R. G., Cann, A., & Calhoun, L. G. (2014, August planned). Core beliefs, rumination, and posttraumatic growth resulting from earthquake in Japan. Study abstract has been accepted for poster session to be presented at the 122nd annual convention of the American Psychological Association (APA), 56 – Trauma Division, Washington, DC.
  • Tedeschi, R. G., Taku, K., Cann, A., & Calhoun, L. G. (2014, August planned). Spiritual and existential posttraumatic growth in Japan and in the United States. Study abstract has been accepted for poster session to be presented at the 122nd annual convention of the American Psychological Association (APA), 67 – Religion Division, Washington, DC.
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New York Times Magazine Features Article on PTG!

Post-Traumatic Stress’s Surprisingly Positive Flip Side 

By JIM RENDON (Published: March 22, 2012)

Stephanie Sinclair/VII, for The New York Times

Sgt. Jeffrey Beltran pulled a heavily creased Post-it note from the pocket of his fatigues, unfolded it and looked over a list he jotted down earlier that day: pick up an order of beef lo mein, take his dress uniform to work (jacket, pants and boots), do schoolwork. Beltran’s Army-issue organizer is also filled with these reminders, and he checks them every so often to jog his memory — folding and unfolding them throughout the day. Beltran’s life is filled with sticky notes because his short-term memory is no longer reliable, a result of what the Army calls a mild traumatic brain injury that he suffered in an I.E.D. attack in Iraq in 2005….

…The blast broke Beltran’s knee and leg, fractured his lower spine and buried shrapnel in his thigh; the violent jolt caused his brain injury. He suffered so many wounds that he had to pause in the retelling to make sure he hadn’t left anything out. He underwent 14 operations over the next year. “I was dealing with post-traumatic stress, anger, all the emotions, the ups and downs, the physical, emotional, psychological pain,” he told me. “I was really angry. I wanted to get healed and get back into the fight…”

…Beltran spent years in therapy and read many books about people who surmounted adversity, all of which, he says, helped him change. More recently, through classes and group therapy at Fort Sill in Oklahoma, he was introduced to the science and thinking behind this psychological change. “It’s given it a name,” Beltran said, “and has enhanced my personal development.” The name for Beltran’s change is post-traumatic growth….

…The idea that people grow in positive ways from hardship is so embedded in our culture that few researchers even noticed that it was there to be studied. Richard Tedeschi, a psychologist at the University of North Carolina, Charlotte, who is both a researcher and a clinician, discovered it in a roundabout way, while he was looking for a new research project. “I thought, Who do I want to know the most about, distressed or violent or crazy people?” he told me. “Instead, I think I want to know about wise people. Perhaps I’ll learn something myself.” He and Lawrence Calhoun, who is also a psychologist at U.N.C., started their research by interviewing survivors of severe injuries. He then went on to survey older people who had lost their spouses. Person after person told them the same thing: they wished deeply that they had not lost a spouse or been paralyzed, but nonetheless, the experience changed them for the better….

…Patterns began to emerge in a follow-up study of more than 600 trauma survivors. People reported positive change in five areas: they had a renewed appreciation for life; they found new possibilities for themselves; they felt more personal strength; their relationships improved; and they felt spiritually more satisfied. Tedeschi developed an inventory to track and measure the phenomenon, and in 1995, he and Calhoun coined the term “post-traumatic growth.” Experiencing growth in the wake of trauma, Tedeschi asserts, is far more common than P.T.S.D. and can even coexist with it….

Read the full article in its entirety and learn more about PTG from this story at The New York Times Magazine here.

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Upcoming Presentations

Valarie Pierson, Melissa Sawa, and Dr. Kanako Taku will present a research, entitled

“Subjective Definitions of Growth and Religions Correlate with Posttraumatic Growth”

at the 120th annual convention of the American Psychological Association (APA) – 56, Division of Trauma Psychology.

The conference will be held in Orlando, Florida, from August 2nd to 5th, 2012.

 Upcoming Symposium Presentation

With Dr. Richard Tedeschi as a chairperson, Drs. Jenifer Gregory, Cengiz Kilic, and Kanako Taku will present the symposium, entitled

“Similarities and differences in post traumatic growth across cultures”

at the 120th annual convention of the American Psychological Association (APA) – 56, Division of Trauma Psychology.

The conference will be held in Orlando, Florida, from August 2nd to 5th, 2012.

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PTG Radio Interview with Dr. Richard Tedeschi

From WHYY’s “Voices In The Family”

With soldiers returning from Iraq and Afghanistan, we hear a lot about Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. Psychologists are also interested in a different response to trauma; post-traumatic growth. Many survivors report personal growth and development in the aftermath of trauma – and say they have found happiness and fulfillment they wouldn’t have known otherwise. Dan Gottlieb will discuss this newly emerging field, and explore what we can learn from it. Joining Dr. Gottlieb will be Dr. Richard Tedeschi, who coined the term “Post Traumatic Growth.” He is a professor of Psychology at UNC Charlotte.

Listen on WHYY’s website here. 

Visit Dr. Tedeschi’s website here. 

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PTG Lab Featured in OU Magazine

6-12-29Dr. Taku and the PTG Lab were featured in the OU Magazine last spring. Check it out below! 

Source: OU Magazine

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