Working with Offenders Who May have PTSD

Working with Offenders Who May have PTSD 

Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) impacts individuals who have experienced traumatic events either directly as a victim or witness or indirectly by hearing about traumatic events. People often associate (PTSD) with individuals who serve in combat positions in the military. However, PTSD can affect anyone at any point in their life, from childhood to adults. Research has shown that individuals who are involved in the criminal justice system display symptoms of PTSD at higher rates than individuals in the population at large. You will likely encounter individuals in your facility or on your caseload who are impacted by this disorder. This course is designed to provide a general overview of PTSD to corrections professionals working in adult jails, prisons, community confinement facilities, or probation and parole agencies. You will learn symptoms and behaviors to look for to identify individuals who may be struggling with this disorder. You also will learn about what to do when you suspect someone is suffering from PTSD and strategies you can use when supervising or monitoring individuals who you suspect may have, or who have been diagnosed with, PTSD. You will have several opportunities to apply what you have learned through interactive exercises and review questions.


Hours: 1.50


Certificates provided by accrediting body (2 Match)

California Board of State and Community Corrections


This activity is approved for 1.50 STC credit hours.

American Jail Association Certification


This activity is approved for 1.50 contact hours.

Course Details

Course Code: REL-PS-0-WOWMP
Hours: 1.5
Type: Online Course
Content Expiration Date: 1/31/2024
Learning Objectives:
Define PTSD.
List up to 20 risk and protective factors that influence the likelihood of someone developing PTSD.
Identify at least 10 common symptoms of PTSD among individuals in the justice-involved population.
Discuss 3 strategies for responding and supervising justice-involved individuals with PTSD more effectively.

Section 1: Introduction A. About This Course B. Learning Objectives Section 2: Overview of PTSD A. Meet Jose B. PTSD Defined C. How Common Is PTSD? D. PTSD and Corrections E. Review F. Summary Section 3: Risk Factors, Symptoms, and Triggers A. Important Note B. Risk and Protective Factors C. Identifying Risk and Protective Factors D. Case Scenario Revisited E. Symptoms of PTSD F. Triggers within the Correctional Environment G. Reactions to PTSD Vary H. Review I. Summary Section 4: The Role of the Corrections Professional A. Strategies for Responding and Supervising B. Refer for Assessment and Treatment C. Understand Treatment Interventions: D. Use Trauma-Informed Approaches E. Review F. Summary Section 4: Conclusion A. Summary B. Course Contributor C. References D. Congratulations! E. Exam: F. Brain Sparks

Staff Writer: Kimberly Cobb, M.S.
Mrs. Cobb is a Content Writer for Public Safety and Health and Human Services at Relias. She has a Bachelor of Science Degree in Correctional and Juvenile Justice Studies and a Master of Science Degree in Criminal Justice. Mrs. Cobb has 24 years of experience working in criminal and juvenile justice. She has worked in direct service positions as well as in research, training, and technical assistance capacities. She was the statewide evaluator for the Commonwealth of Kentucky for adult, juvenile, and family drug courts; a Research Associate for the American Probation & Parole Association providing training and technical assistance to Native American Nations/Alaska Native Villages on systemic criminal and juvenile justice initiatives; and a Research Administrator for the University of Kentucky managing federal, state, and foundation grants awarded to the College of Medicine, Behavioral Science department, Center for Drug and Alcohol Research, and Kentucky Rural Medical Centers.


Disclosure: Kimberly Cobb, M.S. has declared that no conflict of interest, Relevant Financial Relationship or Relevant Non-Financial Relationship exists.
Expert Reviewer: Malinda Lamb
Malinda Lamb received her PhD in Social Work from the University of Missouri-Columbia in May 2005, with the emphasis in mental health. She is a Licensed Independent Social Worker (LISW), a Certified Criminal Justice Professional (CCJP), an International Advanced Alcohol and Drug Counselor (IAADC) and a Sex Offender Treatment Professional (SOTPI). She has worked in a variety of settings in the Midwest including a forensic psychiatric hospital, county jail and community based corrections judicial district. She has provided direct clinical care and treatment to individuals with mental health, substance use and/or sexually based offenses, however she is now in more of an administrative/oversight capacity. Disclosure: Malinda Lamb has declared that no conflict of interest, Relevant Financial Relationship or Relevant Non-Financial Relationship exists.
Target Audience:
The target audience for this course is: Correctional Officers; in the following settings: Adult Corrections, Juvenile Corrections.
Relias will be transparent in disclosing if any commercial support, sponsorship or co-providership is present prior to the learner completing the course.
Course Delivery Method and Format
Asynchronous/Online Distance Learning; please see certificate details for specifics on delivery format.
Relias has a grievance policy in place to facilitate reports of dissatisfaction. Relias will make every effort to resolve each grievance in a mutually satisfactory manner. In order to report a complaint or grievance please contact Relias.
If you require special accommodations to complete this module, please contact Relias Support by completing the web form ( or by using the chat functionality.
All courses offered by Relias, LLC are developed from a foundation of diversity, inclusiveness, and a multicultural perspective. Knowledge, values and awareness related to cultural competency are infused throughout the course content.
Reference herein to any specific commercial product, process, or service by trade name, trademark, service mark, manufacturer or otherwise does not constitute or imply any endorsement, recommendation, or favoring of, or affiliation with, Relias, LLC.
All characteristics and organizations referenced in the following training are fictional. Any resemblance to any actual organizations or persons living or dead, is purely coincidental.
To earn continuing education credit for this course you must achieve a passing score of 80% on the post-test and complete the course evaluation.
If you require special accommodations to complete this module, please contact Relias Customer Support here.