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University of Oklahoma

[H R 5623] Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder - 491

Chad Johnson

Course Description

Post Traumatic Stress Disorder


From the course catalogue: “Concentrates on what constitutes post-traumatic stress, its assessment, diagnosis, and therapeutic intervention. Cover different sources of post-traumatic stress, as well as different methods of evidence- based treatment modalities. Special populations are also addressed.”

This course is designed to expose students to an in-depth examination of post-traumatic stress.  Specifically, this course concentrates on what constitutes post-traumatic stress, its assessment, diagnosis, and therapeutic intervention. The course will cover different sources of post-traumatic stress, as well as different methods of evidence-based treatment modalities. Special populations are also addressed.

Course Dates

DatesMay 1 - August 31, 2022
Last day to enroll or drop without penaltyApril 2, 2022

Site Director

This is a three-credit hour online course. Please see your local Site Director or email our online site coordinator at

Professor Contact Information

Course ProfessorChad V. Johnson, PhD
Mailing AddressOU, Schusterman Center, 4502 E 41st St, Tulsa, OK 74135
Telephone Number(918) 660-3377
Professor availabilityThe professor will be available via email to students before and after the class sessions. On-site office hours are half an hour before and after each class session, by appointment.

Textbook(s) and Instructional Materials

Student materials are available at the OU Bookstore Website at The website has book selling, renting, buying, returning, and order tracking capabilities. If you need help with an order, or if you have any questions contact the toll-free phone at 1-(855)-790-6637, agents are available from 9a – 5p (EST) Monday – Friday. Text prices are available online

The Body Keeps the Score : Brain, Mind, and Body in the Healing of Trauma
The Body Keeps the Score : Brain, Mind, and Body in the Healing of Trauma
by van der Kolk, Bessel
Published by Penguin Group (USA) Incorporated
ISBN: 9780143127741
The Body Remembers Casebook Unifying Methods and Models in the Treatment of Trauma and Ptsd
The Body Remembers Casebook Unifying Methods and Models in the Treatment of Trauma and Ptsd
by Babette Rothschild
Published by W W Norton & Co Inc
ISBN: 9780393704006
Trauma and Recovery : The Aftermath of Violence--From Domestic Abuse to Political Terror
Trauma and Recovery : The Aftermath of Violence--From Domestic Abuse to Political Terror
by Herman, Judith L.
Published by Basic Books
ISBN: 9780465061716
Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association
Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association
Published by American Psychological Association
ISBN: 9781433832154
Acceptance and Commitment Therapy for the Treatment of Post-Traumatic Strss Disorder and Trauma-Related Problems : A Practitioner's Guide to Using Min
Acceptance and Commitment Therapy for the Treatment of Post-Traumatic Strss Disorder and Trauma-Related Problems : A Practitioner's Guide to Using Min
by Walser, Robyn D., Westrup, Darrah
Published by New Harbinger Publications
ISBN: 9781608823338
The PTSD Workbook : Simple, Effective Techniques for Overcoming Traumatic Stress Symptoms
The PTSD Workbook : Simple, Effective Techniques for Overcoming Traumatic Stress Symptoms
by Williams, Mary Beth, Poijula, Soili
Published by New Harbinger Publications
ISBN: 9781626253704

OU Email

All official correspondence from instructors will be sent only to students’ address.


Email Account and Canvas: Students are expected to check their OU email accounts and the course site on Canvas daily for updates from the instructor


Course Objectives

  • To understand the presentation, symptomology, and experience of trauma.
  • To understand the neurobiology of trauma and its affects on the body.
  • To develop knowledge and skills in a number of treatment modalities used with individuals suffering from trauma and PTSD.
  • To develop a knowledge base for working with special populations.


Instructional Strategies:

A variety of methods will be utilized in this course. Students will be assigned outside reading related to the topic for discussion in class. Students will be expected to come to class prepared to discuss information and ideas presented in the assigned readings and to integrate supplemental information offered by the instructor. This course will be taught primarily in a seminar-style format, with emphasis on discussion of the readings and their applicability to work as a counselor. Students will also be asked to apply the readings through discussion of case material and diagnostic situations. The primary mode of learning will be reading/reflection, discussion, presentations, written assignments, and group activities.

Course Outline

Assignment 1: History, Clinical Picture, Justice, and Cultural Issues

Points: 60       Due: June 12, 2022

This is an integrative paper that references the assigned readings (texts and articles) for the course. You should also include other scholarly references (e.g., professional journal articles and texts) to support your work. It should be 8-10 pages (not including cover page and references), Times New Roman 12-point font, double-spaced, and 1-inch margins. 

Include the following three sections:

a.       Broadly describe your personal experience or relationship with trauma—e.g., personal, professional, in your family or otherwise (students do NOT need to disclose specific details for any personal trauma, be safe and appropriate) and how these experiences or knowledge may inform your understanding about trauma (include any biases or preconceived ideas you may have because of these experiences as well). First person acceptable for this section.

b.       Describe Post Traumatic Stress Disorder including etiology, neurobiology, symptoms, and diagnostic criteria.  Consider: How does this knowledge contribute to working with PTSD? What differential diagnoses are there? How does the current research in the neuroscience of trauma affecting counseling practice? Do NOT use first person.

c.       Discuss historical, cultural, and justice (e.g., issues of power, privilege, and oppression related to trauma) issues related to trauma and PTSD. Also, discuss how they are important for counseling practice. Do NOT use first person.


Assignment 2: Final Paper

Points: 60       Due: August 14, 2022

Your paper should be in APA-style, typed, 12+ pages, double-spaced, 12-point font, and 1-inch margins and cite at least 4 other scholarly references apart from your primary texts

Part 1: The Body Keeps the Score

Outline your top 5 themes from The Body Keeps The Score and how they will influence your work with trauma survivors.  Include a critical analysis (e.g., pros, cons, strengths, weaknesses) to the material/themes. Questions to consider: What new insights have you learned about trauma? Strengths/Limitations of text? How does the neurobiology of trauma inform counseling/helping?

Part 2: The Body Remembers Casebook

Describe your top-5 themes/principles from the book and how they will inform your work with trauma.  What new insights have you learned about trauma? Strengths/Limitations of text? Also, describe your reactions to the emphasis on body-oriented approaches to trauma. Compare and contrast somatic-focused (or “bottoms-up”) approaches (e.g. Somatic Experiencing, Sensorimotor, EMDR, yoga/meditation, etc.) with conventional therapy approaches (e.g., CBT, Exposure therapy, psychodynamic, “top-down” approaches). What advantages do body-oriented approaches have over strictly “top-down” approaches to counseling? 

Part 3: Case Study

Describe a case study (real or imagined) in which you apply the approaches and strategies learned from this class to a case of trauma. Be creative.  Come up with a case of someone suffering from PTSD and propose a strategy for healing and treatment. What steps would you follow and what reactions and outcomes would you expect?


Assignment 3: Weekly Discussion Board, Participation, & Quizzes

120 points total

Every other week, you can earn 10 points for both the discussion board and the quiz. 


Part I – Reflection/Reactions

Due Date: Thursday (11:59 PM) each week

Your initial discussion post should be two to three paragraphs in length, with each paragraph consisting of eight to ten substantive sentences. Please demonstrate to me that you have read, studied, and critically thought about the readings and lesson materials (chapters, articles, lectures/powerpoints, videos, etc.). Make sure to provide references to the course material in your discussion. You should also consider responding to any questions posed by the instructor in the Discussion section. Do not summarize what you read, but share your reactions: thoughts, ideas, emotions, and critical analysis.

Part II-Responses

Due Date: Sunday (11:59 PM) each week

Respond to at least 2 of your classmates' Initial Posts. Your two response posts should consist of at least one paragraph 5+ sentences in length. After completing two response posts you may respond to as many other posts as you like and they do not need to be any particular length.  

Important: Students should read all discussion posts by their classmates. The response to other students should be equally thoughtful and should include references to the readings, concepts, theories, or practices relevant to the weekly topic. Canvas has a feature for checking how many posts students have read. I will review this to monitor that students are reading all discussion posts and answering the Quizzes honestly.

Note: As always, be respectful of others' reflections and ideas. A respectful debate can be an avenue for deeper reflection and learning. However, this can also be accomplished through staying focused on your own experience, speaking your "truth," and maintaining a conversational tone versus an adversarial one. That is, this is an exercise in sharing your experience/ideas and learning from others' reactions and perspectives. It is a practice of seeing the multiple perspectives and "truths" that exist in others, not proving which version of "truth" is the right one. Disrespectful or inappropriate discussion posts may result in grade penalties, removal from the course, or academic discipline.


Part III-Self-Reporting Quizzes

Due Date: Sunday by 11:59 pm following a Discussion post week 

You are required to complete a five-question True/False quiz every other lesson (2 points per question). You will be asked to honestly testify whether you completed:

·         all the readings (texts, articles, videos)

·         discussion entries

·         discussion responses

·         read all discussion posts


Be honest. I will attempt to read everyone's responses or select a random sample each week to verify that your quiz responses are accurate. If they are not you will lose credit for the quiz and may incur academic integrity sanctions.

Quizzes will close at 11:59 PM on Sunday night. If you fail to complete a quiz within the time frame, you will not receive credit for it. Points will be deducted from the quizzes if your responses do not demonstrate adequate quality and knowledge of the course material. Dishonest responses to the quizzes will result in losing all points for the quiz and possibly further penalties. 

Assignments, Grading and Due Dates

Requirements for Assignments:

All assignments should be written using the 7th edition of the APA Publication Manual (APA, 2019) including a cover page and reference list (but no abstract is necessary) using Times New Roman 12-point font. Grading will be based upon the substantive content and the quality of the student's writing in all assignments, including discussion board postings (see Grading Rubric below). Substantive content includes following instructions for the content of the assignment. Quality of writing covers clarity of expression and organization, appropriate use of and citation of references within the text and in reference lists at the end of the paper using APA format.  Academic writing style, use of inclusive language, and correct grammar, spelling, and punctuation will be included in the grade determination.  Do not rely exclusively on the spell check feature of your word processor, which will not pick up errors such as homonyms, such as “principle” and “principal,” or homophones such as the correct use of “its” and “it’s.”  Spelling, grammar, and punctuation will be taken into consideration in grading.


I have included a handout of APA essentials on Canvas, but it is not a substitute for reading and following the publication manual--particularly chapters 1 "Writing for Behavioral and Social Sciences" and 3 "Writing Clearly and Concisely." Discussion board assignments should be clearly and concisely written, but APA-style is not essential (do reference properly, however).


A note on plagiarism: Be aware that all your papers when put in the Assignment box are automatically submitted to, a plagiarism database that scans your paper and adds it to the database to be used for future searches. The scan gives a percentage for how much of a paper is found in other sources and gives links to those other sources as evidence. Please cite and paraphrase your material appropriately (see Writing Resources).


Grading Rubric for Papers:

Performance element 






1. Absence of literature support for ideas and topics.

2. Lacks knowledge of counter evidence and literature.

3. Argumentative, reactionary, defensive; limited awareness of audience and purpose.

1. Refers to few literary sources to support ideas.

2. Minimal knowledge of counter evidence.

3. Attempts to establish purpose.

1. Writing supported by scholarly literature.

2. Displays substantive knowledge of alternative views and counter evidence to ideas.

3. Maintains clear focus; evidence of distinctive voice and/or appropriate professional tone.


Of argument

1. Ideas not supported by details.

2. No evidence of analytical thinking, reflection or insight.

3. Only one perspective presented on the issue.

1. Ideas loosely supported.

2. Minimal idea development; repetitious details.

3. Dichotomous, two-part, “either-or” thinking.

1. Ideas supported by details.

2. Evidence of analysis, reflection and insight.

3. Multiple perspectives on the issues. 


Structure; language

1. Several errors in grammar, spelling, punctuation, capitalization.

2. Incorrect and/or ineffective word usage and phrasing, lack of sentence structure.

3. No paragraph development or transitions.

1. Few grammatical errors.

2. Some simplistic language, awkward sentence structure.

3. Some paragraph development.

1. No grammatical errors.

2. Precise, rich language, variety of sentence structure & length.

3. Well-developed paragraphs; clear transitions and logical flow.

APA style


1. Numerous errors in citations within text body and reference list.

2. Lack of citations (plagiarism).

3. No cover; no running head.

4. No attempt at APA style formatting. 

1. Few errors in citations.

2. Cover page, running head, numbering with few errors.

3. Attempts APA style formatting.

1. Proper citation within text body and reference list.

2. Proper cover page and running head.

3. Scholarly writing in APA-style. 







This is a letter-graded course: A, B, C, D, or F. Assignments are expected by the due date and reflect professionalism responsibility and accountability. Final grades will be assigned by the percentage of total points:

A         100-90%

B         89-80%

C         79-70%

D         69-60%

F          59-00%



Due Date



All Class Sessions


History/Culture/Justice Paper

June 12, 2022


Final Paper

August 14, 2022


Incomplete Grade Policy

Notice: Failure to meet assignment due dates could result in a grade of I (Incomplete) and may adversely impact Tuition Assistance and/or Financial Aid.

Technical Support Information

If you experience technical problems, contact Information Technology by visiting their website at: or contacting them by telephone at: (405) 325-HELP (4357).


Materials posted on the OU CANVAS system:

Access CANVAS at; enter your OU NetID (4+4) and password, and select course to access the material.


Procedures for Completion of Course Evaluation: 

Upon completion of the course students should go to the Advanced Programs Online Learning Information webpage and click on the applicable semester link under “Online Course Evaluation” which will direct them to the evaluation.  The evaluation will take approximately five minutes to complete.  Completion of the online evaluation is an important tool allowing Advanced Programs to gain information and student feedback for improvement of courses.

Your responses will be kept confidential.  They will be reviewed by the department and only supplied to the professor once grades for the course have been submitted.


Materials posted on the OU CANVAS system:

Access CANVAS at; enter your OU NetID (4+4) and password, and select course to access material. Please contact your local the IT Help desk at 405-325-HELP if you require assistance.  IT is available 24/7

Statement about the MHR Program Planner and Human Relations Website

Students should become familiar with the MHR Program Planner that was sent to each student upon admission into the program.  The planner has a description of the HR program objectives and requirements, suggestions for graduate study, financial assistance, and graduation information. Of particular interest is the information on the comprehensive exams and the internship.  For further information please visit the Department of Human Relations Website at:

Reasonable Accommodation Statement

The University of Oklahoma is committed to providing reasonable accommodation for all students with disabilities.  Any student in this course who has a disability that may prevent him or her from fully demonstrating his or her abilities should contact me personally as soon as possible so we can discuss accommodations necessary to ensure full participation and facilitate your educational opportunities.  Students with disabilities must be registered with the Office of Disability Services prior to receiving accommodations in this course.  The Office of Disability Services is located in Goddard Health Center, Suite 166, phone 405-325-3852 or TDD only 405-325-4173. For more information please see the Disability Resource Center website


Civility/Inclusivity Statement:

We understand our members represent a rich variety of backgrounds and perspectives. The Human Relations Department is committed to providing an atmosphere for learning that respects diversity. While working together to build this community we ask all members to:

  • share their unique experiences, values and beliefs
  • be open to the views of others
  • honor the uniqueness of their colleagues
  • appreciate the opportunity we have to learn from each other in this community
  • value each other’s opinions and communicate in a respectful manner
  • keep confidential discussions the community has of a personal (or professional) nature
  • use this opportunity together to discuss ways in which we can create an inclusive environment in this course and across the University of Oklahoma community.

Religious Holidays

It is the policy of the University to excuse absences of students that result from religious observances and to provide without a penalty for the rescheduling of examinations and additional required class work that may fall on religious holidays, without penalty.


Attendance/Grade Policy

Attendance and participation in interaction, individual assignments, group exercises, simulations, role playing, etc. are valuable aspects of any course because much of the learning comes from discussions in class with other students. It is expected that you attend all classes and be on time except for excused emergencies.

Excused absences are given for professor mandated activities or legally required activities such as emergencies or military assignments. It is the policy of the University to excuse absences of students that result from religious observances and to provide without penalty for the rescheduling of examinations and additional required class work that may fall on religious holidays. Unavoidable personal emergencies, including (but not limited to) serious illness; delays in getting to class because of accidents, etc.; deaths and funerals, and hazardous road conditions will be excused.

If you are obtaining financial assistance (TA, STAP, FA, VA, Scholarship, etc.) to pay all or part of your tuition cost, you must follow your funding agency/institution’s policy regarding “I” (Incomplete) grades unless the timeline is longer than what the University policy allows then you must adhere to the University policy. Students who receive Financial Aid must resolve/complete any “I” (Incomplete) grades by the end of the term or he/she may be placed on “financial aid probation.” If the “I” grade is not resolved/completed by the end of the following term, the student’s Financial Aid may be suspended make the student ineligible for further Financial Aid.

Students are responsible for meeting the guidelines of Tuition Assistance and Veterans Assistance. See the education counselor at your local education center for a complete description of your TA or VA requirements.

OU faculty will submit grades online through ONE not later than 30 days after the course end date. Course end dates are approximately one calendar month after the final seminar date on this syllabus and are provided on the official scheduling website for reference.

Academic Integrity and Student Conduct 

Academic integrity means honesty and responsibility in scholarship. Academic assignments exist to help students learn; grades exist to show how fully this goal is attained. Therefore all work and all grades should result from the student's own understanding and effort.

Academic misconduct is any act which improperly affects the evaluation of a student’s academic performance or achievement. Misconduct occurs when the student either knows or reasonably should know that the act constitutes misconduct. Academic misconduct includes: cheating and using unauthorized materials on examinations and other assignments; improper collaboration, submitting the same assignment for different classes (self-plagiarism); fabrication, forgery, alteration of documents, lying, etc…in order to obtain an academic advantage; assisting others in academic misconduct; attempting to commit academic misconduct; destruction of property, hacking, etc…; intimidation and interference with integrity process; and plagiarism. All students should review the Student’s Guide to Academic Integrity at 

Students and faculty each have responsibility for maintaining an appropriate learning environment. All students should review policies regarding student conduct at 

Accommodation Statement

The University of Oklahoma is committed to making its activities as accessible as possible. For accommodations on the basis of disability, please contact your local OU Site Director.

Adjustment for Pregnancy/Childbirth-Related Issues

Should you need modifications or adjustments to your course requirements because of documented pregnancy-related or childbirth-related issues, please contact the professor as soon as possible to discuss. Generally, modifications will be made where medically necessary and similar in scope to accommodations based on temporary disability. Please see

Title IX Resources

For any concerns regarding gender-based discrimination, sexual harassment, sexual misconduct, stalking, or intimate partner violence, the University offers a variety of resources, including advocates on-call 24/7, counseling services, mutual no-contact orders, scheduling adjustments, and disciplinary sanctions against the perpetrator. Please contact the Sexual Misconduct Office at or (405) 325-2215 (8-5), or the Sexual Assault Response Team at (405) 615 -0013 (24/7) to report an incident. To learn more about Title IX, please visit the Institutional Equity Office’s website at 

Course Policies

Extended Campus (also and formerly known as Advanced Programs) policy is to order books in paperback if available. Courses, dates, and professors are subject to change. Please check with your OU Site Director. Students should retain a copy of any assignments that are e/mailed to the professor for the course. Neither duplicating services nor office supplies are provided.

Any and all course materials, syllabus, lessons, lectures, etc. are the property of professor teaching the course and the Board of Regents of the University of Oklahoma and are protected under applicable copyright.

For more information about OU Extended Campus, visit our website at:

Statement on Respect

The classroom should provide a safe learning environment where students can express their views without fear of reprisal. That freedom of expression must be balanced by demonstrated respect for other’s viewpoints and appropriate and reasonable sensitivity, especially within the context of scholarly disagreement.  Disrespectful or uncivil dialogue (including, but not limited to, personal attacks, insults, or harassment) will not be tolerated.

Recording Devices/Phones/Computers

It is important for students to be fully present during class to fully benefit from lectures, discussions, and experiential assignments. Class sessions may not be tape-recorded. All telephones and pagers should be turned off or placed on silent mode. Computers may not be used during class. Students who require an exception to this policy should discuss exceptional circumstances with the professor.


Chad V. Johnson, PhD


  • D. Pennsylvania State University; Major: Counseling Psychology (APA-accredited);
  • A. Trinity University; Major: School Psychology (NASP-approved)
  • A. Magna Cum Laude, Texas A&M University; Major: Psychology; Double Minor: Classical Studies and Philosophy

Supplemental Education/Study Abroad:

  • Minzu University, Beijing, China -Language and Cultural Studies, Summer 1992
  • Lanzhou University, Lanzhou, China - Language and Cultural Studies, Summer 1994

Current Positions

  • July 2011 – present Associate Professor, University of Oklahoma, Department of Human Relations, Schusterman Center, Tulsa, OK. Tenured.
  • Jan 2009 – present Clinical Assistant Professor, University of Oklahoma-College of Medicine, Department of Psychiatry, Schusterman Center, Tulsa, OK
  • Dec 2006 – present Instructor, Advanced Programs/Extended Campus, University of Oklahoma, OUTREACH, Tulsa, OK
  • Dec 2008 – Present Private Practice, Tulsa, OK.

Frequently Taught Extended Campus (Advanced Programs) Courses

  • HR 5463 Counseling Skills in Human Relations
  • HR 5100 Post-Traumatic Disorder
  • HR 5003 Theoretical Foundations of Human Relations
  • HR 5453 Ethical Issues in HR Counseling

Research Specialty Areas

  • Social Justice and Community Based Participatory Research
  • Psychology and Religion/Spirituality—Buddhist Psychology/Mindfulness
  • Group Psychotherapy
  • Humanistic, Existential, and Transpersonal Studies

Representative Publications and Presentations

REFEREED PUBLICATIONS (* = student author)


Robbins, B.D., Friedman, H., Johnson, C.V., & Franco, Z. (2018). Subjectivity is no object: Can subject-object dualism be reconciled through phenomenology? International Journal of Transpersonal Studies 37(2), pp. 144-167.

Arias, B.J.,* & Johnson, C.V. (2013). Voices of healing and recovery from childhood sexual abuse. Journal of Child Sexual Abuse, 22(7), 822-841.

Friedman, H., Krippner, S., Riebel, L., & Johnson, C.V. (2010). Transpersonal and other models of spiritual development. International Journal for Transpersonal Studies, 29(1), 79-94.

Johnson, C.V., Bartgis, J., Worley, J.A., Hellman, C.M., & Burkhart, R. (2010). Urban Indian Voices: A Community Based Participatory Research Project. American Indian and Alaska Native Mental Health Research: The Journal of the National Center, 17(1), 49-70.



Johnson, C.V., Friedman, H.L., Diaz, J., Franco, Z., & Nastasi, B.K. (Eds.) (2014). The Praeger handbook for social justice and psychology: Vol. 1. Fundamental Issues and special populations. Santa Barbara, CA: Praeger.

Johnson, C.V., Friedman, H.L., Diaz, J., Franco, Z., & Nastasi, B.K. (Eds.) (2014). The Praeger handbook for social justice and psychology: Vol. 2. Well-being and professional issues.  Santa Barbara, CA: Praeger.

Johnson, C.V., Friedman, H.L., Diaz, J., Franco, Z., & Nastasi, B.K. (Eds.) (2014). The Praeger handbook for social justice and psychology: Vol. 3. Youth and Disciplines in Psychology. Santa Barbara, CA: Praeger.


Licensure and Certification

  • Licensed Health Service Psychologist. State of Oklahoma (Lic. No: 1070)
  • Licensed Psychologist. State of Iowa (Lic. No: 00996, Inactive)
  • Nationally Certified School Psychologist. (Cert. No: 31402, 1999-2005, expired)

Major Professional Affiliations

  • Psychologists for Social Responsibility
  • Oklahoma Counseling Association