Staying Inside Our “Window of Tolerance”: Strategies for Managing Secondary Trauma and Distress

About the Webcast

This presentation uses the latest research on secondary traumatic stress, burnout and compassion satisfaction to provide evidence-informed strategies to understand and respond to workplace stressors, with particular focus on those that teams may experience as they engage in research with communities that have experienced trauma. Central to this discussion is the “Window of Tolerance” framework, which will guide discussions of regulation, dysregulation, and effective coping strategies that can be used in real time to manage distress. Attendees can expect to leave the webinar with a solid working knowledge of various types of stress that researchers might experience, and evidence-informed ways to improve their well-being.

View the Archive

  1. This webcast aired live via the Zoom platform on January 18, 2023.
    The archive is available on YouTube at

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  3. Presentation Materials

    • Download a 508-compliant file of the slides used during the session:

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      • Download a PDF transcript of the video (PDF - 147 KB)

  4. Resources

    • Free, anonymous screeners from UK Center on Trauma and Children: (Well@Work: Tier 3 Screening and Resource Linkage offers screeners for Secondary Traumatic Stress, Moral Distress, Stress, Burnout, Compassion Satisfaction.)

    • The Secondary Traumatic Stress Informed Organization Assessment (STSI-OA):

    • TEDX Talk – Beyond the Cliff: (Laura van Dernoot Lipsky offers a window into the cumulative toll that can occur when we are exposed to the suffering, crisis or trauma of humans, other living beings, or the planet itself. Held within the larger context of systematic oppression and liberation theory. TEDX Washington Corrections Center for Women.)

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About the Presenter

Ginny Sprang

Ginny Sprang, Ph.D., is a professor in the College of Medicine, Department of Psychiatry at the University of Kentucky, and executive director of the UK Center on Trauma and Children. Dr. Sprang is a principal investigator of a CDC funded randomized control trial to prevent child sex trafficking in middle schools. She is the Principal Investigator of the SAMHSA funded Category II Secondary Traumatic Stress Innovations and Solutions Center, the Category III Child and former chair of the International Society of Traumatic Stress Studies Disaster and Terrorism Special Interest Group. She is member of the College of Medicine’s executive committee, and serves as a member of the Appointment, Promotion and Tenure Council for the Department of Psychiatry. Dr. Sprang has published extensively on topics such as child trauma, trauma informed care, the commercial sexual exploitation of minors, implementation and sustainability, disaster response and secondary traumatic stress. Her work involves the creation of translational tools, and the development, testing and implementation of evidence-based treatments and practices to treat those exposed to these traumatic experiences.

About the Discussant

Allison Taylor

Dr. Allison B. Taylor is a Senior Research Associate at the Institute for Community Inclusion (ICI) at the University of Massachusetts Boston, with expertise in qualitative and mixed methods research and evaluation. She holds a PhD in sociocultural anthropology from Brandeis University and an MSW from Boston University. She was awarded a 2020 NIDILRR Switzer Fellowship to study trauma-informed approaches at centers for independent living and has worked on a number of other federally-funded projects in disability, rehabilitation, and research capacity-building in underresourced settings. Her previous work includes community-based research and evaluation, teaching, and direct service.