This TIP (“Toward Inclusive Practices”) message from the Office for Institutional Equity and Diversity provides best practices for instructors for creating trauma-informed spaces for students who may have experienced interpersonal violence.
Building a Trauma-Informed Practice in the Classroom and Beyond
According to the Rape, Abuse and Incest National Network, 13% of all college students (graduate and undergraduate) experience rape or sexual assault during their college years. This does not account for other forms of interpersonal violence (IPV), such as stalking or sexual harassment, that a student might experience. It also does not account for any experiences of IPV that a student may have had prior to attending college. Statistically speaking, this means there is a good chance you currently have at least one student in all your classes who has experienced IPV in their lifetime or who may even be experiencing it right now.
Here are just a few of the ways faculty and staff members can show support for survivors of IPV in the classroom and beyond:
- Include a supportive statement in your syllabus.
- Use content warnings and offer academic accommodations.
- Create a supportive environment.
- Educate yourself and show up.
- Access resources and take care of yourself.
- Read the full article with detailed tips and considerations for each of these steps.
These tips are ways that you can be the advocate that your students need. Remember, if a student discloses that they are experiencing IPV, make sure to respond in a supportive and affirming manner and connect them with the appropriate support and resources. If you want to learn more about IPV and what you can do to support students who might be experiencing it, you can do the following: