How can families overcome the effects of PTSD?

March 01, 2016

ERIE, Pa. — When it comes to post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), there is no shortage of casualties. Husbands, wives and children often suffer while the PTSD victim tries to combat the disorder.

Families coping with PTSD do have prevention and intervention options, however. Amy Marshall, an associate professor of psychology at Penn State’s University Park campus, will discuss those methods when the Colloquium Series in Psychological Sciences and Human Behavior returns to Penn State Behrend.

Marshall’s talk, “Trauma, Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, and Aggression: A Focus on the Family,” will begin at 6 p.m. on Wednesday, March 16, in Room 180 of the campus' Jack Burke Research and Economic Development Center located at 5101 Jordan Road. Admission is free and open to the public.

Marshall will review existing research on the prevalence and links among trauma, PTSD and problems in couple and family relationships. She will discuss her own research, which investigates the ways in which trauma and PTSD can lead a family to function poorly. Marshall will also touch on prevention and intervention efforts.

Marshall currently directs a stress lab designed to determine causal factors that contribute to the occurrence of psychological and physical aggression in close relationships. Her research interests include family violence, PTSD, intimate relationships and cognitive and neuroendocrine factors that contribute to the sex difference in PTSD and perpetration of family violence.

“Trauma, Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, and Aggression: A Focus on the Family” is hosted by Penn State Behrend’s bachelor of arts and bachelor of science in psychology degree programs, the undergraduate certificate program in crime, psychology, and public policy (CRMPPP), and by the student Psychology Coalition with support from the School of Humanities and Social Sciences and the student activity fee. For additional information, contact Carol Wilson, associate professor of psychology, at 814-898-6082 or

(Media Contacts)

Last Updated March 02, 2016