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Child/Adolescent Training

Assessment and Treatment of Traumatized Children and Adolescents with Dissociative Symptoms and Disorders – The Child & Adolescent Course


Course Description:

This course begins with a brief historical perspective of childhood dissociation, an explanation of the effect trauma can have on infant/child neurobiology, and an introduction to theories of dissociation. The course then covers dissociative warning signs, differential diagnosis, methods of assessment, assessment tools, dissociative pathology across the spectrum. Psycho-education about trauma and dissociation to children and parents that illuminates an understanding of child’s confusing behaviors will be explained. Family dynamics that contribute to dissociative pathology in children and ways to work effectively with the family while building positive attachment between child and parents will be highlighted. Creative techniques that promote internal awareness/communication between self-states, stabilization, emotional regulation, somatic awareness, and management of triggers will be described.  Special attention will be given to working with the varied societal systems (schools, social services, legal system) with which the family is involved. A variety of treatment modalities and innovative techniques will be presented for processing trauma safely and furthering integration of the dissociative child.  Extensive case studies and specific examples will be used throughout the course to enrich the leaning. Participants can present case studies from their own practices to enhance discussion.

Participants finishing this course will have a comprehensive understanding of how to intervene with the traumatized child with dissociation to promote resolution of trauma, integration and healing.

Course Objectives:

Upon completion, students will be able to:

  • Identify theoretical models with special emphasis on disruptive and disorganized attachment that create a vulnerability for dissociation.
  • Describe dissociative symptoms in children covering the spectrum from dissociative processes to a disorder.
  • Identify techniques to help caregivers provide soothing and structure, build attachment, and defeat dissociative barriers with their dissociative children 
  • Explain stabilization techniques that enable the child to feel empowered, grounded, and safe.
  • Identify techniques to help child to awaken bodily sensations and encourage mindful across self-states.
  • Explain how to use common language to interface with professionals who may be skeptical of trauma-based pathology.
  • Apply the use of variety of techniques to encourage internal cooperation between dissociative states for effective processing of traumatic memories.
  • Identify specific techniques to achieve integration.

For full list of session objectives, click here.

Intended Participants:

Licensed mental health professionals (psychiatrists, psychologists, clinical social workers, mental health counselors) who are personally treating a child or adolescent with Complex PTSD, a significant trauma history, or dissociative symptoms; educators in human services.  

Required Textbooks:

  1. Silberg, J. L. (2013). The child survivor: Healing developmental trauma and dissociation.  New York: Routledge.
  2. Waters, F. S. (2016). Healing the fractured child: Diagnosis and treatment of youth with dissociation. New York: Springer Publishing Company, LCC.

For full course bibliography, click here.

Course Format:

For in-person and teleseminar courses: Once monthly 2.5 hour sessions for 9 months.  For online: 4 months (based on schedule and holidays) taught via online discussion boards

Continuing Education & ISSTD Certificate Program Credits:

Continuing Education: This course has been approved for up to 24.5 CE credits through our continuing education co-sponsor, CE Learning System.
ISSTD Certificate Program: This course has been approved for credits towards the ISSTD Certificate of Advanced Studies in Trauma & Dissociation

Upcoming Course Offerings:

London - Cross   Salisbury UK - Cross  ONLINE - WATERS/MARKS/SILBERG/BAITA

Continuing Education Credits

Continuing Education Sponsor:
CE Learning Systems is a co-sponsor of this event. To earn continuing education credits, participants must purchase credits separately. Participants will need to complete an evaluation and a post-test (online courses only). CE credits are available in the U.S. and Canada.

ASWB - CE Learning Systems, (Provider #1020), is approved as a provider for social work continuing education by the Association of State Social Work Boards (ASWB) www.aswb.org, through the Approved Continuing Education ACE program.  ASWB Approval Period: 02/23/2016 - 02/23/2019.  Social workers should contact their regulatory board to determine course approval. Social workers participating in this course will receive continuing education clock hours.

APA - CE Learning Systems, LLC is approved by American Psychological Association to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. CE Learning Systems maintains responsibility for this program and its content.

Prior to 2010 Continuing Education (CE) credits were provided by the Institute for Continuing Education.

Course Fees
This fee includes copyright fees and course materials. You will receive course materials when registration is complete. All fees are in U.S. Dollars. CE credits are available for purchase through our CE co-sponsor, CE Learning System, Inc. Students will receive an email directly from the CE co-sponsor with information on the cost of credits and the process to obtain them.

Registration Requirements and Registration
Receiving Approval to Register: ISSTD is interested in the success of this program. To ensure the highest standards in our profession, we require each potential participant to call and speak with the instructor in your area (if two instructors, speak with at least one, if registering for the online program, contact ISSTD Staff

If your instructor agrees with your participation in this program, they will tell you to register. If you register without prior consent of an instructor, we cannot guarantee your instructors approval and your registration fee may be refunded to you, minus an administrative fee of $45 for handling of improperly submitted registration materials. Applicants must be licensed clinicians, or if you are a graduate student, a letter from your Department Chairperson giving permission for your participation in this program must be sent to your faculty person.

Course sites which have two faculty listed will have one course co-taught by both faculty. To begin the registration process, use the information on the Faculty Page to contact the faculty member in your area for permission to register. Calendar of Programs with Instructors Contact Information


Registration is limited to no more than 14 persons per in person and teleseminar course. Registration limits for online classes may vary. Participants must be licensed professionals, and students must also receive the approval of the local faculty to attend. Clinicians in training may attend with the written recommendation of the chairperson of their training program/department. Familiarity with treating a person with a major dissociative disorder is preferred in the Advanced and Master's level courses. Progression from Intro I to Intro II, through Standard I and Standard II is highly recommended prior to attempting the upper level courses. It is recommended that participants have contextual experience of dissociative processes to be able to take in more advanced course material in a meaningful way.

Students must take Part I of a two-part course to continue on to Part II. Students who wish to enroll in the Standard Course without taking the Intro Course must be approved by the PTP Chair and Standard Course Directors. To obtain this approval, please submit a copy of your current CV via email to professionaltraining@isst-d.org. An interview with the Chair and Directors may be required before permission is given to enroll.

Remember, if you register without the prior approval of a faculty member, your registration may be refunded to you less a $45 administrative fee. When you click to register you are indicating that you have read the preceding paragraphs about the details of this program, and the rules surrounding the processing of registration fees.

Members please remember to log in to receive your member discount. Contact Program Manager by email at mailto:professionaltraining@isst-d.orgorg or call 703-610-9037 if you need your username and password or any additional registration assistance.

If you have a problem or a concern about the course, please contact the ISSTD Professional Training Chair, Su Baker, MEd

Cancellation Policy
If you withdraw from any course , there is a $45 non-refundable charge. If you are sent course materials, prior to your notification of withdrawal from the course, regardless of the date of your notice, your refund will also be less the copyright fees. Once the course starts no new students can be accepted more than one week after the course begins. The course fee is not refundable if you withdraw from the course after the start of the course. Refund of fees, and acceptance at that time, is the decision of the Course Directors. All materials used for this course are subject to copyright laws and are not for duplication or distribution by course participants. Fees must be submitted with registration, and must be submitted in US dollars.

Thank You
ISSTD is thankful to the original course directors, Richard Chefetz, MD; A. Steven Frankel, PhD, JD; Donald Fridley, PhD; Elizabeth Howell, PhD; Annita Jones, PsyD; and Eli Somer, PhD as well as the many distinguished faculty members who have contributed and continue to give their energy and talents tirelessly to make this training program successful.

© 2018 ISSTD  This course syllabus and bibliography are the copyrighted property of the International Society for the Study of Trauma and Dissociation (ISSTD).  Use of this material is prohibited without written permission from the ISSTD.



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