September 30 Trigger Warnings: Preventing Harm or Causing Damage

Statements in videos or lectures alerting the audience that the content may be distressing are known as trigger warnings. They are usually intended to forewarn people with trauma histories or mental health issues that the material may be difficult. But some view trigger warnings as excuses for people who are easily offended or want to avoid challenging information. Taking a trauma-informed perspective, we will discuss the initial purpose and impact of trigger warnings, the current research on their outcomes, and how trigger warnings may prime distress.
Melanie is Professor of Psychology at Penn State Behrend and program coordinator of Behrend’s newest graduate degree, the Master of Arts in Applied Clinical Psychology. Musician: Jackson Froman.