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Date of Award


Degree Type

Thesis (On-Campus Access Only)

Degree Name

Master of Science in Psychology

Committee Chair

Lisa R. Christiansen, Psy.D.


For over 5 decades the construct of resiliency has been researched to discover why some children who experience trauma are adversely affected, while others with similar experiences are not. Research on resilience has expanded to inc1udeprevention of the detrimental effects of adversity on children. Research has also studied the ability of people of all ages to experience trauma and remain unaffected. Buffering factors that counter negative effects of adversity have been identified, and ways these factors have been applied have been explored. Factors enabling the ability to recover and even benefit from adversity have also been studied by constructs similar to resiliency: sense of coherence, self-efficacy, hardiness, positive psychology, and posttraumatic growth. This paper explores the literature and research on resiliency, and on the similar constructs. Addressed are ways in which these latter constructs are similar to resiliency, as well as ways in which they are different. This paper assesses the effectiveness of resiliency to help people deal with trauma, and questions how resiliency could be more effectively applied to the field of psychology and to the lay public so that people can better counter adversity and increase life quality.


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