Hosted by SISP student committee, McGill University

Department of Educational and Counselling Psychology

May 25th - May 28th

Friday, May 28th: 1pm - 4pm

Helping child sexual abuse victims in the school context

Rachel Langevin, Ph.D.

Summer Institute for School Psychology

Dr. Langevin completed her Ph.D./Psy.D. in psychology at Université du Québec à Montréal. Her doctoral dissertation and research explored attachment representations, emotion regulation, and behavior problems young sexual abuse victims. Her post-doctoral fellowship took place in the Psychology Department of Concordia University (and Centre for Research in Human Development), where she conducted research on the intergenerational transfer of risk using data from the Concordia Longitudinal Risk Project. Dr. Langevin’s clinical training involved a specialization in cognitive-behavioral therapy for anxiety and trauma-related disorders in adults and she is still working with these populations in her private practice. Her main research interests are in child development and understanding trauma-related risk and protective factors for psychopathology, as well as mechanisms for the intergenerational continuity of trauma and violence.

​Brief Synopsis

Child sexual abuse is a prevalent social problem with enduring consequences for the victims. According to a meta-analysis, 18% of women and 7.6% of men worldwide have been sexually abused before the age of 18 (Stoltenberg et al., 2011). These rates are similar to those reported in a representative sample of Quebecers (22.1% of women and 9.7% of men; Hébert et al., 2009). Consequences associated with child sexual abuse have been documented in all domains of functioning: behavioral, sexual, emotional, relational, and physical and mental health domains (Hillberg et al., 2011). Consequently, difficulties stemming from child sexual abuse might transpire in the school context and affect children’s ability to succeed academically and socially throughout their academic career. This workshop will cover various topics on how school and school personnel can help child sexual abuse victims. General information on the prevalence and documented consequences associated with child sexual abuse will be presented. Issues related to polyvictimization and its implications will be discussed. Then, we will present key aspects of how a disclosure of child sexual abuse should be handled. Finally, we will discuss the notion of trauma-informed schools, individual and group interventions for sexual abuse victims that are supported by research, and the role that schools can play in prevention efforts. This workshop will include practical exercises and group discussions.

​Learning Objectives

1) Recognize common consequences associated with child sexual abuse.
2) Understand how to handle a disclosure of child sexual abuse.
3) Recognize evidence-based approaches to intervention with child sexual abuse victims.
4) Understand the role schools can play in the recovery of child sexual abuse victims and in the prevention of child sexual abuse.