This monograph details the significant challenges that states overcame in responding to 9/11 victims’ needs, the lessons they learned, and promising practices.
This report addresses victims’ immediate and long-term needs that emerged as a result of the Oklahoma City bombing, legal issues pertaining to victims of terrorism involving mass casualties, lessons learned from the Oklahoma City bombing and subsequent acts of terrorism, and policy recommendations that promote preparedness.
Norris. 2007. PTSD Research Quarterly 18(3):1–7
This article reviews studies of 15 mass shooting events to determine the prevalence, persistence, and predictors of posttraumatic stress disorder after the event; the nature of survivor and community concerns; and lessons learned.
A psychological crisis counseling team located at Montgomery Regional Hospital provided mental health services to victims of the Virginia Tech shootings, their loved ones, and hospital staff and affiliates. This report highlights the lessons they learned: the necessity of having a safe haven, prompt and accurate information, media boundaries, strong partnerships, and services for caretakers; the potency of imagery; and the importance of resolution.
Fallahi et al. 2009. Journal of School Violence 8(2):120–135
The authors of this article surveyed students, faculty, and staff to determine how they felt about the Virginia Tech shootings, media coverage, and school violence. Mental illness and social isolation were thought to be likely factors in the shootings.
Fallahi and Lesik. 2009. Psychological Trauma: Theory, Research, Practice, and Policy 1(3):220–230
This article examined students at a university other than Virginia Tech to determine whether their stress-related symptoms increased as a result of following the shootings through the media. They found that as TV viewing increased, so did the probability of moderate or acute stress symptoms.
Kaminski et al. 2010. Journal of Criminal Justice 38(1):88–98
This study surveyed students at the University of South Carolina before and after the shootings at Virginia Tech and Northern Illinois University to determine whether levels of student fear increased after a mass shooting. Findings indicate a modest increase in various measures of fear.
Hawdon and Ryan. 2012. Traumatology 18:3–12
This article reviews whether virtual interactions (e.g., sending e-mails, texting) are as effective as face-to-face interactions after an incident of mass violence. Results of the study, which surveyed Virginia Tech students 5 months after the shootings, indicate that face-to-face interactions improved well-being, whereas virtual interactions were unrelated to well-being.
Palus et al. 2012. Traumatology 18(4):13–26
This article reviews how gender and time played roles in the use of coping strategies after the 2008 mass shootings at Northern Illinois University. Findings indicate that women and men use different coping strategies and that the passage of time affects which coping strategies are used.
Grills-Taquechel et al. 2011. Journal of Anxiety Disorders 25(4):498–506
This article examines how the Virginia Tech shootings influenced anxiety symptoms and quality of life and the potential roles that world assumptions (e.g., self-worth, benevolence of people) and social support played.
Fergus et al. 2011. Journal of Traumatic Stress 24(5):596–600
This article examines the reactions of 58 women, recently exposed to a campus shooting, to participating in trauma-related research. Most participants reported that they would agree to participate in the study again, a finding that supports “the appropriateness of conducting experimental-based studies in the short-term aftermath of a large scale traumatic event. Such research is critical for preventing long term adjustment problems and reducing mental health care costs.”
Karlsson and Christianson. 2006. Policing 29(3):524–540
This article focuses on police officers’ reactions to and memories of their involvement in a mass shooting investigation 10 months, 5 years, and 9 years after the incident. Memories remained vivid long after the mass shooting, although they began to fade after 9 years.