Date of Award

Spring 5-19-2018

Document Type


Degree Name

MA - Master of Arts


Expressive Therapies


Jason D. Butler, PhD, RDT-BCT


It has been suggested that adults with learning differences (LD) may be more susceptible to occurrences of violence, abuse, and neglect. However, there is presently limited research examining posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) in adults with LD. Within this paper, existing literature of PTSD in adults with LD is reviewed. This review includes how symptoms of PTSD in adults with LD manifest, and what treatment approaches are currently being used with the population. According to the literature, it was determined that exposure therapy is frequently used to treat PTSD in adults with LD. This result is compared with exposure elements present in drama therapy, and subsequently a discussion on how drama therapy may benefit the treatment of PTSD in adults with LD is offered. A discussion of using drama therapy with this population is then presented, focusing on the specific benefits including accessibility, safety, autonomy, and empowerment. Finally, with consideration of the unique needs of adults with LD, treatment recommendations and suggestions for future research are provided.

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Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.




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