Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Social Work


School of Social Work

First Reader/Committee Chair

Shon, Herbert


Social workers in the field of practice work with clients who share their personal trauma history. By listening to traumatic events vicarious trauma can develop and affect social workers mental health. Vicarious trauma is the consequences of working with clients that have a traumatic past. This trauma impacts social workers' job satisfaction, personal life, and mental health. This paper will focus on the impacts of vicarious trauma and the level of experience in the field of social work. Utilizing interviews and surveys the research intends to understand the level of comprehension of new and experienced social workers in vicarious trauma. Research will explore the barriers in practice on the individual level and interagency level that affects social workers mental health. Findings from the research conducted suggests that there is not a difference between social workers and level of experience when combating the impacts of vicarious trauma. The research displayed a key difference between Caucasian and Hispanic social workers and the impacts of vicarious trauma. Caucasian participants appear to be more vulnerable to the impacts of vicarious trauma compared to their Hispanic counterparts. Further research should be conducted in order to gain a better understand of the true impacts that VT has on social workers of various experience levels, as well as various ethnicities.

Included in

Social Work Commons