Illustration by Boyoun Kim
Millions of people have had adverse childhood experiences and/or survived "childhood trauma." According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), 1 in 7 children have experienced abuse or neglect this year, and that is likely an underestimate. It also doesn't account for everything. Childhood trauma can be the result of violence, abuse, neglect, terrorism, illness, and/or other family stressors. But can understanding your childhood be helpful? Maybe. One online test, by BetterMe, aims to do just that—with a questionnaire and personalized healing plan.
Here's everything you need to know about one (very popular) online childhood trauma test.
Made popular on TikTok, the childhood trauma test—by BetterMe—asks questions about issues you might grapple with, like guilt, abandonment, and mistrust. Some of these questions are broad. "Do you remember yourself in childhood," for example, or "what did your family look like?" Others are more pointed. They ask about punishment methods, and if you've ever been slapped or spanked. But each aims to better understand your experiences and how they affected (and still affect) you.
All you need to do to take BetterMe's childhood trauma test is to go to their website. Once there, you'll be guided through a series of questions which take approximately one minute to answer. After completing the questionnaire, you'll be given your results and a suggested 28-day healing plan. That said, the latter comes at an additional expense. Plan costs vary.
While an online test cannot resolve trauma or heal pain, having a basic understanding of your childhood can help you be a better person—and parent. "The most significant benefit of this test is that it can help you identify whether some of the experiences you've had and/or are having are tied to a difficult childhood," says Danielle McGraw, a licensed clinical psychologist and the owner of Flourish Mental Wellness in Scottsdale, Arizona. "This may motivate some to seek treatment." And said treatment can Improve your mood and quality of life.
Questionnaires like these also get people to reflect on and identify negative experiences and consider how it affects them now, says McGraw, especially when it comes to parenting. "It is helpful to be aware of how trauma impacts our personality, thoughts, emotions, and behaviors and how it impacts how we are as parents." Awareness is key.
"The are benefits to taking these online questionnaires or surveys because it brings about awareness and directives on acquiring professional evaluation and help," adds Nichole Monahan, LISW-S, LICDC, from The University of Toledo Medical Center in Toledo, Ohio. "Assistance with early detection of symptoms or issues has greater outcomes. Also, they can assist individuals in creating a conversation or discussion point with her health providers."
It's important to note that while BetterMe's online questionnaire can be beneficial, it is just that: a questionnaire. It is not a diagnostic tool and should not be used as such. It also cannot—and should not—replace formal therapy.
"Trauma is often complex and difficult to diagnose based on a 10 to 20 question online questionnaire," says McGraw. "The results page is also geared more towards marketing a product than towards treating a human being. While it seems like it may be a complement to therapy, it does not result in therapy. What's more, people may perceive that they have post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) after taking this quiz, but a PTSD diagnosis is not as simple as answering online questionnaire." In short, while this quiz can be insightful, it should be used in tandem with treatment or therapy, not in place of it.
Lorea Martinez- Perez
Pro Seminar in Education Leadership: SAT and Social Emotional Leadership
Lorea is a researcher and consultant, supporting schools to implement Social Emotional Learning (SEL) programs and practices, by teaching educators and administrators the principles of emotional intelligence. She is a faculty member of the Principals Academy at
Teachers College, Columbia University. Past and current clients include Aspire Public Schools, New Schools Venture Fund, Learning Policy Institute, Hispanic Information Telecommunications Network
(HITN), Facebook, Nearpod, LEEP Dual Language Academies, as well as a number of public, private and charter schools. Her favorite emotions are curiosity, courage and serenity.
Lorea approaches the implementation of SEL programs with the expertise of a practitioner and the rigor of a researcher. Her most recent case study, conducted with the Learning Policy Institute (LPI), investigates how pre-service and in-service teacher training can support good teaching practices and SEL integration into the school day. Using Six Seconds assessment tools, Lorea has studied how principals’ emotional intelligence support their leadership effectiveness, and has partnered with school districts to develop the capacity of their leadership teams. Her doctoral dissertation received
highest honors from the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona, and won the 2014 Graduate Student Award for Excellence in SEL Research from the American Association of Educational Research (AERA). A testimony of the impact SEL can have on students and teachers, her research identifies the conditions that make SEL implementation successful in schools. She is part of the leadership committee at AERA’s SEL Special Interest Group, currently serving as the Program Chair.
Lorea published her first book for teachers, the EQ Educator, in 2018, and she is currently working on a second book, Teaching with the HEART in Mind. She has published several peer-reviewed articles in the Journal of Character Education, the Journal of Advanced Developmental Psychology, the International Journal of Emotional Education, the Advances in SEL Research, the Manual de Orientación y Tutoría, and the well-known educational website Edutopia. She frequently blogs about how to incorporate SEL in teaching practices. Prior to her research and consulting work, Lorea was a special education teacher and administrator, serving students and adults in Spain, Nicaragua, Peru and California where she led several successful innovative initiatives. She developed the first Special Education Program for 8 charter schools in the San Francisco-Bay Area and created a training-of-trainers program to enable 500+ school data leaders to interpret student achievement results
to make instructional decisions.
NEW YORK – As new SARS-CoV-2 variants and subvariants keep appearing, creating new challenges for testing and trying to manage the COVID-19 pandemic, a team of researchers from multiple universities in China has developed a rapid paper-based test to detect mutations to the virus.
The team, which includes academics from Tsinghua University in Beijing, Zhengzhou University in Zhengzhou, and Sichuan University in Chengdu, laid out the development of its low-cost assay in a paper published in Nature Biomedical Engineering last week.
The underlying principle of the test dubbed MARVE relies on a double-stranded DNA probe designed to recognize the mutation markers that indicate a specific variant, according to Ruijie Deng, one of the authors of the paper and an associate professor in the college of biomass science and engineering at Sichuan University.
When RNA from the virus that contains one of those markers is present in a sample, the interaction between the RNA and the DNA probe, combined with an enzyme, releases silver and produces ammonium, which changes the pH of the entire solution. The change in pH is measured by phenol red, a pH indicator that is red when the pH of a solution is below seven but turns yellow when the pH increases to eight, Deng said.
All of the tools for the test, besides a heat block and reagents to quickly extract the viral RNA, are included on a piece of origami paper. One section contains the sample's nucleic acids, one has the probes, one has a urease enzyme, and one has urea and phenol red. The demo section folds to apply the demo to the probes and is incubated for 20 minutes to release the silver. The combined section is folded again to apply the urease enzyme, then folded a final time to apply the urea and phenol red. Combining urease and urea forms ammonium, which results in the pH change that is picked up by phenol red and indicates the result.
Deng said the researchers designed the DNA probes to be stable and a perfect match with a specific variant, so only the presence of that variant can cause the reaction. The test can be designed to detect any number of variants, as multiple detection sites with the variant-specific probes can be printed onto one piece of paper. The user would know which variant is present in the demo depending on which section of the paper changes color.
While a user can detect the color change using the naked eye, the team developed a phone app that uses the cellphone camera to ensure a more precise result. A user can take a picture of the result and upload it to the app, where an analyzer processes the image's color to determine the variant. Including the working time of the app and the RNA extraction step, the process takes about 30 minutes, Deng said. It's a little longer than a lateral flow antigen test, but significantly shorter than sequencing, and "very cheap" compared to PCR — it costs about $.30 for a test that covers the N and E gene of SARS-CoV-2 and five variants.
In the Nature paper, the team tested 50 throat swab samples and found the assay detected the presence of SARS-CoV-2, along with mutations specific to the Alpha, Beta, and Gamma variants, with 100 percent concordance with PCR and sequencing. Although the team didn't include Omicron in the paper, because it was not as widespread when submitting the data, the test works with the variant and "will be workable" for subvariants of Omicron, Deng said.
The test may also be able to detect new variants. Because it "can be programmable to detect multiple mutations," he said, "if we design probes to detect genome sites that are likely to be mutated," new variants could be discovered. That ability is "dependent on the multiplexing capacity of the assay, and its improvement can be achieved by printing more detection sites."
Even though the researchers have tested some clinical samples, more clinical validation is needed before the assay could be launched commercially, he said, but that validation is being done. A commercial launch would likely require collaboration with a diagnostics company, Deng said.
He noted that the test might be "very promising" for use at home since "the operation … is very simple." The biggest advantage is the ability to delineate between different variants, which could help governments or public health organizations monitor outbreaks before they spread. The tests could be used to "investigate which and how frequently the SARS-CoV-2 variants spread," as well as the distribution of the variants across a population.
Because different variants "show a different capacity to infect" people, having a test that determines which variant is present in a demo can allow for "more precise interventions for controlling the spread" and "more efficient ways" to address infections and incidence rates, he added.
Although the test has clear potential uses in low- and middle-income countries as well, the researchers don't have the resources to distribute it but are open to working with companies that have the interest and experience to bring the test to that market, Deng said.
Dr. Johnna Weller, Chief Academic Officer - Learning Care Group
NOVI, Mich., Aug. 03, 2022 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Learning Care Group, Inc. announces today that Johnna Weller, Ed.D. is joining the organization as Chief Academic Officer. Learning Care Group is the second largest for-profit early education and child care provider in North America.
Weller will lead all aspects of Learning Care Group’s educational mission – including refining curricula, instruction, pedagogy, learning, and the policies and practices that address academic achievement. Reporting to Learning Care Group Chief Operating Officer Nick Strange, she will work closely with the company's directors and teachers to maximize support for further enhancing the innovative educational resources and best practices that nurture whole child development, ensure school readiness, and deliver great experiences for students and teachers alike.
“We’re honored to welcome Dr. Johnna Weller to the LCG team,” said Mark Bierley, CEO at Learning Care Group. “As a distinguished authority across various aspects of education, Dr. Weller brings a desparate understanding of how a high-quality preschool experience influences other stages of life. With her depth of knowledge, innovative mindset, and unwavering commitment to ensuring outstanding outcomes for teachers as well as students, she will be invaluable in guiding our mission to provide children with a strong foundation for future success and a lifelong love of learning.”
Weller’s background encompasses more than 25 years of experience as a classroom teacher, special education teacher, memorizing specialist, literacy coach, supervisor of curriculum and instruction, and Assistant Superintendent. Prior to joining Learning Care Group, she was Director of Early Childhood Programs for Goddard Systems. Her previous experience includes serving as Director of Professional Learning for Discovery Education. She has taught graduate courses and served as a consultant in several school districts, as well as participating on various state and national committees related to the Common Core State Standards.
Weller holds an Ed.D. in Educational Leadership from Immaculata University. She has a B.S. in Education and a M.Ed. in memorizing from Kutztown University of Pennsylvania. She earned a certification in Curriculum Supervision for K-12 from St. Joseph’s University and a certification in Diversity and Inclusion from Cornell University.
“I’m thrilled to join an organization that’s deeply committed to supporting and empowering its teaching professionals to deliver excellence in early childhood education,” said Weller. “This is a wonderful opportunity to make a profound positive difference in the lives of thousands of children and prepare our next generation for a bright future.”
About Learning Care Group, Inc.
Learning Care Group is a leader in early childhood education, with more than 50 years of experience in inspiring children to love learning. Headquartered in Novi, Mich., the company is the second largest for-profit early education and care provider in North America. Learning Care Group provides early education and care for children ages 6 weeks to 12 years through 11 unique brands: AppleTree & Gilden Woods, Childtime Learning Centers, The Children’s Courtyard, Creative Kids Learning Centers, Everbrook Academy, La Petite Academy, Montessori Unlimited, Pathways Learning Academy, Tutor Time Child Care/Learning Centers, U-GRO Learning Centres and Young School. It operates more than 1,050 schools (corporate and franchise) across 39 states, the District of Columbia and internationally, and has a capacity to serve more than 156,000 children. Learning Care Group supports child development for infants to school-agers through a comprehensive, research-based curriculum in a safe, nurturing, and fun school environment. It empowers children to be ready for school, instills a lifelong love of learning, and provides a foundation for the future. Learning Care Group also offers early education and child care programs for organizations, including onsite locations, as well as corporate partnerships and back-up care programs in its community-based schools. For more information, please visit www.learningcaregroup.com
CONTACT: Lydia Cisaruk Learning Care Group 248.697.9140 email@example.com
Aug. 2—TIFTON — A reception at Tift Hall scheduled for Thursday to welcome Tracy Brundage as the incoming president of Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College has been postponed. Brundage has tested positive for COVID, and all of her activities for the week will be rescheduled.
"On this day, I was hoping to greet you in person as an official member of the ABAC Family," Brundage wrote in an email Monday morning, informing the ABAC campus about the news. "I can't wait to get to my desk in Tift Hall. I'm getting regular updates on what's happening on the campus and being where the action is dominates my every thought. I will see you very soon, and together, we'll begin this fall semester on a high note."
Brundage was scheduled to take office Monday morning as the 11th president in the history of ABAC after serving as the president of Keystone (Pa.) College since 2018.
Fall semester classes begin at ABAC on Aug. 15.