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Neurobiology of Implicit Bias and Transgenerational Trauma

Tuesday, September 8th 2020
12:00 PM EDT

Presenter: Nancy Michael, Ph.D

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120 minutes

Learning Objectives:
  1. Define implicit bias.
  2. Describe how social structures (personal experience, culture, geography, etc.) create the social forces that result in implicit bias.
  3. Articulate where in the brain implicit bias arises and generate a working model of how these different brain functions can generate an ‘opinion’ of something without conscious discernment.
  4. Describe threat detection and stress response systems
  5. Integrate US history into the current national dialogue around race
  6. Explain how US history creates implicit social rules that perpetuate transgenerational trauma for Black Americans
Agenda:

Agenda:

Part 1:

Intro - 5 min

Building common language: What is implicit bias?  Establish a common definition - 5 min

Discussion of social/cultural beliefs and experience - 15 min

Introduction of brain function - 15 min

Integration of social experience and brain function to generate working model of implicit bias - 20 min

 

Part 2:

Intro – 5 min

Implicit bias quick review – 5 min

Neurobiology of threat detection and stress physiology – 20 min

Historical perspective of the Black experience in the US – 20 min

Consideration of who else is impacted – 10 min

 

http://kirwaninstitute.osu.edu/research/understanding-implicit-bias/ https://implicit.harvard.edu/implicit/ https://blindspot.fas.harvard.edu/ https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/28249596/ https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/26469668/

This webinar offers 2 NYS ED Contact Hours

Course description:

This course will exist in two parts.  The first part will explore the neural underpinnings of implicit bias and the second will build upon the content of the first to explore racism and transgenerational trauma.  Through this mechanistic understanding, this course will invite participants to consider how normative brain function, combined with individual socialization, generates rapid and implicit judgement we discuss as implicit bias.  The goal of this course is to deepen participants' awareness of normative implicit processes.  As individuals develop a greater body sense of these moments of implicit judgement, we can also develop the to make a different choice.  In the second course, we will explore how implicit biases and stress systems interact to influence the physiological response to social issues of racism that contribute to transgenerational trauma.  Participants will gain insight into what it might be like to live under chronic unpredictable stress that arises out of cultural implicit biases.  It is the hope of the presenter that participants are courageous enough to continue this dialogue within their social and professional networks to continue to raise awareness surrounding these topics.

 

Course outline:

This is a two-hour workshop that take place in two one-hour parts.  In part one, the instructor will ask participants to apply their own experiences to generate a personal framework for building an understanding of implicit bias.  Part one will begin with determining a common definition of implicit bias and then move toward evaluation of how our individual socialization creates the neural underpinnings of implicit bias.  Our conversation will move towards understanding the neurobiological processes of implicit bias with the goal of creating a working model of brain processes.  This model can be used as a guide to aid in articulating how differential brain function can ultimately generate an opinion/strong feeling about an individual or group of people without conscious recognition of the cognitive process. 

 

Part two will build upon the understanding of implicit bias and begin to connect how implicit biases inform racism and transgenerational trauma.  To understand how systemic racism can result in transgenerational trauma, one must have an awareness of the neurobiology of threat detection and stress physiology.  An overview of the threat detection systems and stress physiology will be provided and used as a framework to provide insight how it feels to experience racism or discrimination.  With an understanding of the bodily senses that are associated with being the target of racism or discrimination, the conversation will focus on US history to provide a perspective of how systemic racism in the US continues to give rise to transgenerational trauma for Black Americans.  Given current events in the US, this discussion will focus on issues of Black Americans, however principles of implicit bias, threat detection and stress response are data of human physiology and neurobiology.  Therefore, these principles can be applied to any human of any marginalized identity to help us all have a little more compassion and listen before we automatically judge.  

Learning Objectives:
  1. Define implicit bias.
  2. Describe how social structures (personal experience, culture, geography, etc.) create the social forces that result in implicit bias.
  3. Articulate where in the brain implicit bias arises and generate a working model of how these different brain functions can generate an ‘opinion’ of something without conscious discernment.
  4. Describe threat detection and stress response systems
  5. Integrate US history into the current national dialogue around race
  6. Explain how US history creates implicit social rules that perpetuate transgenerational trauma for Black Americans
Agenda:

Agenda:

Part 1:

Intro - 5 min

Building common language: What is implicit bias?  Establish a common definition - 5 min

Discussion of social/cultural beliefs and experience - 15 min

Introduction of brain function - 15 min

Integration of social experience and brain function to generate working model of implicit bias - 20 min

 

Part 2:

Intro – 5 min

Implicit bias quick review – 5 min

Neurobiology of threat detection and stress physiology – 20 min

Historical perspective of the Black experience in the US – 20 min

Consideration of who else is impacted – 10 min

 

http://kirwaninstitute.osu.edu/research/understanding-implicit-bias/ https://implicit.harvard.edu/implicit/ https://blindspot.fas.harvard.edu/ https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/28249596/ https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/26469668/

  • NEFESH International is recognized by the New York State Education Department’s State Board for Social Work as an Approved Provider of Continuing Education for Licensed Social Workers (#SW-0048), and by the NYSED’s State Board for Mental Health Practitioners as an Approved Provider of Continuing Education for Licensed Marriage and Family Therapists (#MFT-0046) and Licensed Mental Health Counselors (#MHC-0082).