Paper Type

Master's Thesis


College of Arts and Sciences

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)



NACO controlled Corporate Body

University of North Florida. Department of Psychology

First Advisor

Dr. Tracy Alloway

Second Advisor

Dr. Dawn Witherspoon

Department Chair

Dr. Lori Lange


The majority of individuals in the United States experience at least one type of traumatic during childhood (“Understanding Child Trauma”, 2017). Individuals with childhood adversity have an increased incidence of depression, anxiety, and alcohol abuse during adulthood (Rehan et al., 2017). However, the consequences of early adversity are not limited to mental health and extend to areas of cognitive functioning (e.g., working memory). The present research study addresses the long-term consequences of childhood adversity on psychological and cognitive functioning. Data collection took place online from February 2019 - April 2019 in Iceland and the United States. The survey assessed outcomes including anxiety, depression, resilience, PTSD, trauma, and working memory. The results indicate that Iceland and the United States did not show differences in PTSD symptomology or adversity. There was a significant difference in the scores for depression between the two countries, conditions; t(192.96)= 1.71, p=.04. Additionally, resilience differed between the United States and Iceland, t(146.537)= 1.21, p=.02. The individuals with moderate trauma from both countries reported higher anxiety and depression compared to the participants without trauma. In addition, Individuals showing higher levels of PTSD symptomology had greater depression, anxiety, and lower resilience compared to individuals without PTSD symptomology. The research study compared the types of reported traumas between the United States and Iceland and the differences in mental health functioning between the two countries. This study provides evidence that individuals from both countries who report more PTSD symptomology and higher trauma show differences in the following areas of anxiety, depression, and resilience.