• University of Glasgow

Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) in the Global Context

Learn how to identify, assess the risk for, prevent and treat PTSD in a range of contexts.

5,442 enrolled on this course

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Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) in the Global Context

5,442 enrolled on this course

  • 4 weeks

  • 4 hours per week

  • Digital certificate when eligible

  • Intermediate level

Find out more about how to join this course

Learn about PTSD - its symptoms, prevalence, causes and treatment

Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) is the mental disorder most commonly associated with exposure to trauma. PTSD results from exposure to traumas which pose a threat of serious harm or death to an individual or people close to that individual. This includes conflict-related traumas, interpersonal traumas such as sexual assault, and exposure to serious accidents, such as a car accident or a house fire.

Learn about PTSD in a global context

In the global context, the prevalence of PTSD is thought to be on the rise, as the number of individuals displaced by conflict and violence increases. The United Nations estimates that there are currently close to 80 million people who have been forcibly displaced worldwide. As the displacement process is often fraught with potentially traumatic events, awareness of PTSD is vital now more than ever to be able to ensure the wellbeing of these displaced populations.

Recognise the effects of trauma on mental health

In this four-week course, you will be introduced to PTSD and its symptoms. You will learn about PTSD in the global context, and risk and protective factors will be discussed. Diagnostic and help-seeking challenges will be explored, and the role of culture critically appraised. Treatment options for PTSD, including psychological therapies, will be explored.

This course hopes to raise awareness of PTSD, inform practice, inspire and encourage further independent study, and open up conversations about this important topic.

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Skip to 0 minutes and 21 seconds In a world where close to 80 million people have been forcibly displaced from their homes, were hundreds of thousands of lives are lost, natural disasters and a global pandemic, and where conflict and violence are widespread, it should come as no surprise to learn that cases of post traumatic stress disorder or - PTSD - are believed to be on the rise. This distressing mental health condition - caused by exposure to traumas which threatened serious harm or death - can leave people suffering from flashbacks, nightmares, anxiety, depressed mood and insomnia. It can have a devastating impact on the individuals quality of life, especially as they are often withdrawn and difficult to engage in care.

Skip to 0 minutes and 55 seconds Conflict related traumas, interpersonal trauma, such as sexual assault and exposure to serious accidents, can all lead to PTSD. But with conflict forcing millions of traumatised individuals to flee their homes all over the world, awareness of PTSD is more vital than ever to ensure the wellbeing of displaced populations. That is why the University of Glasgow has created this online course, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder in the Global Context. Our short program explores the definition of trauma and PTSD the prevalence of PTSD across the globe; barriers to diagnosing and treating PTSD; and Prevention strategies for PTSD.

Skip to 1 minute and 27 seconds The course has been put together by diverse team of academics and psychiatrists with a background in global mental health, psychology, psychiatry and public health from one of the prestigious Russell Group Universities, renowned for its research excellence and global reach. So if you want to expand your knowledge of trauma and psychological well being, this course is a perfect introduction.

What topics will you cover?

  • Defining trauma and PTSD
  • Prevalence of PTSD across the lifespan and across the globe
  • Barriers to diagnosing, treating, and seeking help for PTSD
  • Culture and PTSD
  • Resilience after psychological trauma
  • Protective and vulnerability factors for PTSD
  • Treatment and prevention strategies for PTSD

When would you like to start?

Start straight away and join a global classroom of learners. If the course hasn’t started yet you’ll see the future date listed below.

  • Available now

Learning on this course

On every step of the course you can meet other learners, share your ideas and join in with active discussions in the comments.

What will you achieve?

By the end of the course, you‘ll be able to...

  • Define trauma and PTSD, and identify core PTSD symptomatology
  • Understand variations in PTSD rates and presentation across the lifespan and across the globe
  • Explain the role of biological, socio-cultural and psychological factors in PTSD
  • Explain pertinent diagnostic challenges in PTSD, and articulate approaches for facilitating help-seeking and recovery
  • Describe and critically assess evidence-based strategies for treatment and prevention of PTSD

Who is the course for?

This course is for individuals working in healthcare, including medical and allied health professionals, and social workers seeking to learn about PTSD as a global mental health issue.

This course will appeal to anyone with an interest in mental health, including psychotherapy or counselling, mental health promotion and global mental health. The course has been designed to be accessible to a broad community of learners, including those without prior qualifications or work experience in mental health.

The Certificate of Achievement for this course may be useful for providing evidence of continuing professional development (CPD), or commitment to your career.

This course is an educational resource; it is not a therapeutic tool. Self-care resources have been embedded into the course materials. If you are feeling distressed, it is important to seek professional help to receive the support you need.

Who will you learn with?

I am a TA on the Digital Health Interventions MSc and the Global Mental Health MSc at the University of Glasgow. My research interests include post-traumatic growth and gender-based violence.

PhD in Public Health and Health Policy. Graduate Teaching Assistant at the Global Mental Health MSc programme, University of Glasgow. Lead Educator of PTSD in the Global Context MOOC.

Who developed the course?

The University of Glasgow

Founded in 1451, the University of Glasgow is the fourth oldest university in the English-speaking world. It is a member of the prestigious Russell Group of leading UK research universities.

  • Established

  • Location

    Glasgow, Scotland, UK
  • World ranking

    Top 70Source: QS World University Rankings 2020

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Develop skills to further your career

  • Access to this course
  • Access to 1,000+ courses
  • Learn at your own pace
  • Discuss your learning in comments
  • Digital certificate when you're eligible

Cancel for free anytime

Buy this course

$134/one-off payment

Fulfill your current learning need

  • Access to this course
  • Learn at your own pace
  • Discuss your learning in comments
  • Printed and digital certificate when you’re eligible

Limited access


Sample the course materials

  • Access expires 18 May 2024

Find out more about certificates, Unlimited or buying a course (Upgrades)

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