Graduation Year


Document Type

Campus Only Senior Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts



Reader 1

Theodore Bartholomew

Reader 2

Lahnna Catalino


Sexual assault survivors are at a higher risk of needing serious medical attention than the general population. However, current primary healthcare practices do not cater to their trauma-sensitive needs, leading to retraumatization and fear amongst patients with histories of sexual violence. This study aims to address the insufficient practices that are present in routine medical care by examining the efficacy of a trauma-informed care (TIC) training program that was developed at UC Davis for healthcare professionals. Participants will include survivors of sexual trauma who utilize primary care clinics. A group of physicians will be trained using the TIC model, while another group will not receive TIC training. Participants will be randomly assigned to a physician and undergo a routine visit. Immediately after the visit, participants’ cortisol levels will be measured via saliva, and 2 weeks post-visit the participants will complete surveys measuring their posttraumatic growth and coping flexibility. It is expected that participants who receive TIC will show lower levels of salivary cortisol and higher levels of posttraumatic growth and coping flexibility in comparison to participants who did not receive TIC. These data will provide insight into how TIC training may transform the experience of survivorship in primary care and may provide a route through which healthcare can adapt to create a safer space for sexual trauma survivors.

This thesis is restricted to the Claremont Colleges current faculty, students, and staff.