Trauma Informed Care Certificate shows Nurse meeting with patient and student

The certificate in trauma informed care will expose graduate students in several helping professions to the theory and practice of trauma-related service delivery.

This is a multidisciplinary program that integrates knowledge from the social, behavioral and health sciences. The primary goal of the program is to train graduate students from the helping professions in specialized knowledge and skills related to psychological trauma.

Program Type

Graduate Certificate

Program Format

On Campus

Request Information

UWM’s Trauma Informed Care Certificate program serves students from multiple disciplines, including social work, counseling psychology, nursing, occupational therapy, and sustainable peacebuilding. Since its inception, nearly 250 students from multiple fields have graduated from the program. 

The program has three essential objectives:

  1. To familiarize participants with the phenomenon of trauma in all its varied manifestations.
  2. To introduce students to the prevalence and consequences of trauma, illuminating the myriad ways in which trauma exposure affects development and functioning.
  3. To teach students effective means by which they can mitigate the effects of trauma, facilitate healing, promote post-traumatic growth, and interrupt intergenerational trauma transmission.

Gainful Employment

This certificate program is subject to federal gainful employment regulations.

Due to new federal financial aid regulations, beginning with the summer 2017 term, students who had not previously been awarded federal financial aid at UWM and are enrolled in a standalone certificate program will no longer be eligible for federal Title IV aid. Students in a standalone certificate program who are seeking financial assistance may be eligible for private loans. Private loans are not guaranteed as they are subject to lender approval including a credit check.

FastChoice is a tool that will help you learn what to look for when shopping for a private loan. At the end of the short tutorial, it will provide a comparison shopping tool allowing you to sort, filter, and compare up to five lenders at one time.

Upon applying for the loan of your choice and being approved, the UWM Financial Aid Office will be notified by the lender to provide enrollment information. At such time the loan will be added to your financial aid award.

For previously enrolled students who have been awarded federal financial aid, see the Gainful Employment Certificate Disclosure Information: Gainful Employment Certificate Disclosure Information.

The curriculum consists of courses offered through various campus departments. Students will complete 15 graduate-level credits with a grade of B or better to meet the requirements. Students must maintain a cumulative GPA of 3.0 to remain in the certificate program. Students have three years from initial enrollment in the certificate sequence to complete the certificate. The results of this program are reflected on the student’s UWM transcript.

Core Courses (six credits)

CourseCourse NumberCredits
Trauma Counseling ISOC WRK 774
NURS 774
Trauma Counseling IISOC WRK 775
NURS 775

Elective Coursework (nine credits)

CourseCourse NumberCredits
Study Aboad: Bristol or South AfricaSOC WRK 497
Seminar in Social Work Practice
(Qualifying topics: Violent & Traumatized Families
or Motivational Interviewing
SOC WRK 8202
Adult PsychopathologySOC WRK 7533
Psychopathology of Childhood & AdolescentsSOC WRK 7542
Current Topics in Social Work (Topic: Death & Dying)SOC WRK 7912-3
Current Topics in Psychology (Qualifying topics:
Functional Assessment and Intervention
or Neurobiology of Learning & Memory)
PSYCH 7113
Introduction to Cognitive NeurosciencePSYCH 7273
Youth Mental Health Practice for Non-Mental Health ProfessionalsPH 7323
Multicultural Mental Health Guidelines & Ethics OverviewCOUNS 7043
Multicultural Practice*COUNS 704 &
Multicultural CounselingCOUNS 7153
Multicultural Mental Health Guidelines for Working w/First Nations PeopleCOUNS 7443
Clinical Studies in CounselingCOUNS 8123
Counseling Children & AdolescentsCOUNS 8163
Counseling Appraisal & Decision-MakingCOUNS 8203
Family Systems Theory, ResearchCOUNS 9043
Death and DyingSOC WRK 6803
Practice Methods in Social Work: (Topic: Community Building & Mindfulness)SOC WRK 6911-3
Treatment of Co-Occurring DisordersSOC WRK 8183
Therapeutic CommunicationOCCTHPY 519         3
Occupational Therapy in Psychosocial PracticeOCCTHPY 7193
Intervention Strategies for Correctional ClientsCRM JST 830            3
Readings in Criminal Justice ResearchCRM JST 9703
*Couns 704 and 705 must be taken together to fulfill this requirement

Recommended Fieldwork (three-six credits)

Students also have an opportunity to complete anywhere from 3 to 6 additional qualifying program credits through participation in trauma-informed practice field settings, contingent on the respective department’s field credit policy.

CourseCourse NumberCredits
Field Instruction ISOC WRK 7213
Field Instruction IISOC WRK 7223
Field Instruction IIISOC WRK 8214
Field Instruction IVSOC WRK 8224
Field Instruction VSOC WRK 9211-4
Supervised Practicum 1 in School CounselingCOUNS 7643
Supervised Practicum 1 in Clinical Mental Health CounselingCOUNS 7653
Occupational Therapy Field Service IOCCTHPY 7256
Occupational Therapy Field Service IIOCCTHPY 7356
Practicum in Nursing ResearchNURS 8993

Grade Point Average Requirement

A minimum cumulative 3.0 grade point average in certificate courses taken at UWM is required.

Transfer Credit

No more than 20% of the required credits may be taken at an institution other than UWM. These courses are subject to Graduate School transfer policy and must be approved by the director of the certificate program.

Articulation with Degree Programs

  • Credits and courses required for a certificate may double count toward meeting UWM graduate degree requirements subject to the following restrictions:
    • Degree programs must approve the courses from certificates that can double count toward the degree.
    • All credits taken in completion of certificate requirements may count toward a UWM graduate degree as long as they do not contribute more than 90% of the total credits needed to obtain the degree. (Note: Students in PhD programs must still complete the minimum residency requirements.)
    • Certificate courses used toward meeting degree requirements must be completed within the time limit for transfer credit.
  • Courses completed for a degree may be counted toward a subsequent certificate, subject to all certificate policy requirements.
  • A course may count toward no more than one certificate and one degree.
  • Students may not earn a certificate subsequent to a concentration in the same area.

Time Limit

Certificate program time limits shall be established as follows:

  • 18 or fewer credits/Three years from initial enrollment in the certificate sequence.
  • 19 or more credits/Four years from initial enrollment in the certificate sequence.
  • For certificates that are designed as add-ons to degree programs and are awarded concurrent with the degree, the time limit shall be the same as that of the degree program.

Eligibility and Admission

Students in good standing currently in a graduate program or those who have already completed a graduate degree are eligible for the certificate.

Graduate degree and previously admitted graduate nondegree students who decide to pursue a certificate program must submit the Panthera application before completing six credits in the certificate sequence.

Students who are pursuing this certificate as an add-on to a degree program are awarded concurrent with the degree; the time limit shall be the same as that of the degree program.


Students wishing to obtain this certificate must declare their intention by applying to the program office or director.

All graduate certificate applicants- even those already enrolled in a UWM graduate program- must apply to the Graduate School via the Panthera admission application.

Graduate degree and previously admitted graduate nondegree students who decide to pursue a certificate program must submit the Panthera application before completing six credits in the certificate sequence.

Applicants must possess a baccalaureate degree and have a minimum 2.75 cumulative undergraduate grade point average to be admitted in to a certificate program.

Jennifer Daood
  • Graduate Program Manager