This chapter demonstrates how social work ethics apply to ethical and legal decision making in forensic social work practice. It discusses the context of social work practice in legal systems. The chapter also details the basic structures of the United States (U.S.) civil and criminal legal systems. It lays the foundation for the criminal and civil court processes in the United States and introduces basic terminology and a description of associated activities and progression through these systems. The chapter focuses on providing an introductory, and overarching, picture of both civil and criminal law in the U.S. and introduces the roles social workers play in these systems. It focuses on the ETHICA model of ethical decision making as a resource and tool that can be used to help forensic social workers process difficult and complex situations across multiple systems.
Your search for all content returned 237 results
- Go to chapter: Social Work and the Law: An Overview of Ethics, Social Work, and Civil and Criminal Law
This chapter examines the Older Americans Act (OAA) through the prism of the coming nexus of aging and ethnic/racial diversity. It explains that the OAA can serve as a foundation for building a home- and community-based set of services for all older adults and persons with disabilities and for addressing aging in the 2lst century. The OAA is the primary federal program providing a host of services that enable older persons and their families to live in their homes and communities with a measure of dignity and independence. The OAA, Administration on Aging (AOA), and aging network today provide five major categories of services: access to social and legal services, nutrition, home- and community-based long-term social and supportive services, disease prevention and health promotion, and vulnerable elder rights protections. The OAA and the AOA remain secondary players in national agenda setting for an aging population.
- Go to chapter: Structural and Cultural Issues in Long-Term Services and Supports for Minority Populations
This chapter examines the history of long-term services and supports (LTSS) programs to document their racially and ethnically disparate impact, and explain the current research on the access and quality of LTSS used by older adults in communities of color. LTSS are a set of health and social services delivered over a sustained period to people who have lost or never acquired some capacity for personal care. The high costs of LTSS have led a smaller number of low-income older adults to consume a large share of Medicaid expenditures. Cultural beliefs about family responsibility to care for older adults as well as attitudes toward the use of formal and/or public health and long-term care services can shape older adults’ use of LTSS. The coming sociodemographic shift of older minority adults calls attention to other structural and cultural issues that facilitate or inhibit the appropriate use of LTSS.
This book provides the foundations and training that social workers need to master cognitive behavior therapy (CBT). CBT is based on several principles namely cognitions affect behavior and emotion; certain experiences can evoke cognitions, explanation, and attributions about that situation; cognitions may be made aware, monitored, and altered; desired emotional and behavioral change can be achieved through cognitive change. CBT employs a number of distinct and unique therapeutic strategies in its practice. As the human services increasingly develop robust evidence regarding the effectiveness of various psychosocial treatments for various clinical disorders and life problems, it becomes increasingly incumbent upon individual practitioners to become proficient in, and to provide, as first choice treatments, these various forms of evidence-based practice. It is also increasingly evident that CBT and practice represents a strongly supported approach to social work education and practice. The book covers the most common disorders encountered when working with adults, children, families, and couples including: anxiety disorders, depression, personality disorder, sexual and physical abuse, substance misuse, grief and bereavement, and eating disorders. Clinical social workers have an opportunity to position themselves at the forefront of historic, philosophical change in 21st-century medicine. While studies using the most advanced medical technology show the impact of emotional suffering on physical disease, other studies using the same technology are demonstrating CBT’s effectiveness in relieving not just emotional suffering but physical suffering among medically ill patients.
- Go to chapter: The Role of Neurobiology in Social Work Practice With Youth Transitioning From Foster Care
This chapter presents advances in the understanding of adolescent brain development that can inform and improve social work practice with youth leaving foster care. Foster care populations have a high rate of mental health disorders, and the association of types of child maltreatment with elevated risk for such disorders is well known; discussion of specific mental health problems and their treatment can be found elsewhere. Conventional mental health approaches have often targeted the innervated cortical or limbic neural systems, rather than the innervating source of the dysregulation. Psychotherapy, whether psychodynamic or cognitive, acts on and has measurable effects on the brain, its functions, and metabolism in specific brain areas. The ethical response is a sharing of the dilemma, and of information about the neurobiology of the client’s struggle, to enable the client to make as informed a decision as possible. In addition, neuroimaging techniques themselves lead to other ethical dilemmas.
This chapter provides a summary of the social-cognitive neuroscience conceptualization of empathy. It discusses the application of neuroscience research to social work education, practice, and research. Empathy activates neural networks, groups of nerve cells that are connected by synaptic junctions. These three cognitive abilities, self-other awareness, perspective-taking, and emotion regulation, are critical components in the inductive process that results in the experience of affective empathy. Without these three cognitive abilities, people are more likely to be overwhelmed by the effects of the Shared representation System (SRS) and experience emotional contagion rather than affective empathy. Underlying the cognitive empathy appraisal process is the concept known as theory of mind (ToM). The affective empathy induction process relies heavily on a part of the brain known as the limbic system, which is near the center of the brain and evolved first in early mammals.
This chapter focuses on mirror neurons, which were discovered in the 1990s in Italy. It describes the relevance of mirror neurons for social work practice and addresses some research implications of this topic. The chapter explains the functions of the mirror neuron system (MNS), which includes a discussion of imitation, action understanding, intention understanding, theory of mind (ToM), and empathy. It includes sections on the neuroscience contributions to attachment theory, the concept of the social brain, micro-practice and policy implications, and research implications. Mirror neurons are a specialized kind of brain cells that form a network located in the temporal, occipital, and parietal visual areas, and two additional brain regions that are mainly involved with motor actions. The auditory motor neurons found in the high vocal center (HVC) of swamp sparrows are considered to be very similar to the visual motor mirror neurons that have been discovered in primates.
This introduction presents an overview of key concepts discussed in the subsequent chapters of this book. The book serves as a practice resource for social workers by making accessible the vast territory covered by the social, cognitive, and affective neurosciences over the past 20 years, helping the reader actively apply scientific findings to practice settings, populations, and cases. It helps readers gain a deeper understanding of how neuroscience should and can help the design, development, and expansion of therapeutic interventions, social programs, and policies for working with our most vulnerable populations. The book considers the neuroscientific implications for social work practice in child welfare and educational settings across system levels. It highlights the neuroscientific literature that can inform social work practice in health and mental health. The book concludes by discussing the neuroscientific implication of social work practice in the criminal justice system.
This chapter provides definitions and scope of the problem of eliminating disparities in end-of-life (EOL) care. It provides a translation of the theories and research that can be used to guide social work practice with minority older adults. The chapter suggests that when working with minority elderly, the psychosocial needs of the patient and family become even more critical in decisions that may affect the timing of death. The term end-of-life care traditionally refers to the last phases of an illness before death; however, experiences across the earlier course of the illness are critical to shaping the anticipation, expectations, and preparedness for care during the terminal phases of illness. In terms of EOL care decision making and the disparity in hospice utilization across racial groups, Critical Race Theory (CRT) offers insight for looking at race relations in a broader context than the traditional perspective.
This book provides a multidisciplinary compendium of research pertaining to aging among diverse racial and ethnic populations in the United States. It focuses on paramount public health, social, behavioral, and biological concerns as they relate to the needs of older minorities. The book is divided into four parts covering psychology, public health/biology, social work, and sociology of minority gang. The book focuses on the needs of four major race and ethnic groups: Asian/Pacific Islander, Hispanic/Latino, black/African American, and Native American. It also includes both inter- and intra-race and ethnic group research for insights regarding minority aging. The chapters focus on an array of subject areas that are recognized as being critical to understanding the well-being of minority elders. These include psychology (cognition, stress, mental health, personality, sexuality, religion, neuroscience, discrimination); medicine/nursing/public health (mortality and morbidity, disability, health disparities, long-term care, genetics, nutritional status, health interventions, physical functioning); social work (aging, caregiving, housing, social services, end-of-life care); and sociology (Medicare, socioeconomic status (SES), work and retirement, social networks, context/neighborhood, ethnography, gender, demographics).
Social workers are committed to the protection and empowerment of weak populations, of those people who are least powerful. Gradually, social work started to rely more on problem-solving methods, client-focused therapy, family theories, and, more recently, cognitive behavior theories, constructivist theories, and positive psychology developments. Clinical social work today operates in a variety of settings in the statutory, voluntary, and private sectors. Clinical social workers have always been interested in helping clients change effectively. The importance of empirical study, valid information, and intervention effectiveness has always been accentuated by the social work field’s central objectives of increasing accountability, maintaining exemplary ethics and norms, and establishing clear definitions and goals. Cognitive behavior theory emphasizes several components. First and foremost, human learning involves cognitive mediational processes. Social workers need to look for effective methods for change, and CBT methods are very promising in this respect.
Research on brain structure and function in white-collar criminals is a notable gap in the neurolaw literature, a gap that was addressed for the first time in one recent research report. Neuroscience is suggesting a link between brain abnormalities and some types of criminal behavior, but it is not yet clear exactly what those abnormalities are. Research on brain function and criminality focuses primarily on levels of hormones and neurotransmitters involved in neuronal communication. The findings regarding connections between the brain and adult criminal behavior, preliminary as they are, have implications for social work practice, including prevention of criminal behavior as well as intervention with offenders. The consistent finding that the likelihood of antisocial behavior is greatest when genetically based brain abnormalities encounter harsh environments has implications for social policy beyond the criminal justice system.
This chapter reviews the basic tenets of evidence-based practice (EBP), and discusses the potential applications of this model of practice and training for the field of clinical social work. It also presents some actual illustrations of its use. The chapter describes the major forms of clinical outcome studies: Anecdotal Case Reports, Single-System Designs With Weak Internal Validity, Quasi-Experimental Group Outcome Studies, Single, Randomized Controlled Trial, Multisite Randomized Controlled Trials and Metaanalyses that comprise the priority sources of information underpinning EBP. As the human services increasingly develop robust evidence regarding the effectiveness of various psychosocial treatments for various clinical disorders and life problems, it becomes increasingly incumbent upon individual practitioners to become proficient in, and to provide, as first choice treatments, these various forms of evidence-based practice. It is also increasingly evident that cognitive behavior therapy (CBT) and practice represents a strongly supported approach to social work education and practice.
Over the years, cognitive behavior therapy (CBT) has been applied to a variety of client populations in a range of treatment settings and to the range of clinical problems. This chapter provides a general overview of the cognitive behavior history, model, and techniques and their application to clinical social work practice. It begins with a brief history and description, provides a basic conceptual framework for the approach, highlights the empirical base of the model, and then discusses the use of cognitive, behavior, and emotive/affective interventions. Cognitive behavior therapy is based on several principles namely cognitions affect behavior and emotion; certain experiences can evoke cognitions, explanation, and attributions about that situation; cognitions may be made aware, monitored, and altered; desired emotional and behavioral change can be achieved through cognitive change. CBT employs a number of distinct and unique therapeutic strategies in its practice.
Social work is an applied discipline with a long tradition of using the theories and methods of social sciences to enhance practice, policy, and research. In their professional roles, social workers practice work with minority older adults and their families in diverse community-based and institutional settings that encompass social and health services. The conduct of social work practitioners and researchers in working with human populations is guided by the Code of Ethics of the National Association of Social Workers. A more sustained and concerted effort is required to ensure that there is a sufficient supply of gerontologically trained social workers to meet the growing demands of a more aged and diverse society. Social work researchers and practitioners will need to be responsive to the impact of government social spending cuts on the availability and delivery of services to their elderly clients who are most in need.
This chapter discusses some of the critical issues surrounding culture and cognitive behavioral methods in order to better inform the advancement of culturally responsive social work practice. It focuses on one such treatment modality, cognitive behavior therapy (CBT). The chapter reviews relevant theoretical frameworks, existent empirical studies on CBT with diverse cultural groups, strengths and limitations of this modality across cultures, and suggestions for culturally responsive CBT practice, in order to better inform social work practice. While cognitive behavior therapy was developed with universal assumptions and without consideration to the diversity of the cultural contexts of consumers, it is grounded in theory that is likely to have “some universal basis across populations”. Several studies have described the use of cognitive behavior methods with gay and lesbian clients, particularly the use of rational emotive therapy, cognitive restructuring, and behavior experiments.
This book serves as a practice resource for social workers by making accessible the vast territory covered by the social, cognitive, and affective neurosciences over the past 20 years, helping the reader actively apply scientific findings to practice settings, populations, and cases. It features contributions from social work experts in four key areas of practice: generalist social work practice; social work in the schools and the child welfare system; in health and mental health; and in the criminal justice system. Each of the chapters is organized around practice, policy, and research implications, and includes case studies to enhance practice application. The impact the environment has on neural mechanisms and human life course trajectories is of particular focus. It is divided into four sections. Section A includes chapters devoted to social-cognitive neuroscience conceptualization of empathy, mirror neurons, complex childhood trauma, the impact of trauma and its treatment through discussion of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Section B covers child maltreatment and brain development, transition of youth from foster care, social work practices in schools for children with disabilities, and managing violence and aggression in school settings. Section C deals with several issues such as substance abuse, toxic stress and brain development in young homeless children and traumatic brain injuries. Neuroscientific implications for the juvenile justice and adult criminal justice systems are explained in Section D.
This chapter discusses the concepts, underlying principles, benefits, and challenges of using “whole-family” approaches in social work. It articulates the theory and skills associated with family engagement as part of a human rights and social justice framework for social work practice in forensic settings. The chapter describes the ethical imperatives and evidence base supporting the use of family group decision making (FGDM) in regulatory settings. It engages whole families as partners in the use of FGDM in child protection and youth justice. The chapter also describes the theory, empirical support, and skills in use of FGDM, or family group conferencing (FGC). It concluded with an example of how alert forensic social workers must be to the potential for their best intentions to collide with the tenants of responsive practice and a quote from a child protection social worker who worked closely with the author on a pilot project using FGC.
- Go to chapter: Thinking Outside the Box: Tackling Health Inequities Through Forensic Social Work Practice
This chapter emphasizes the importance of improving health literacy. It describes the incorporation of cultural competence standards in forensic social work practice perspectives. The chapter also explains how to promote engagement of informal support networks in promoting health and well-being among diverse groups. Disadvantaged racial and ethnic minorities in the United States have long been overrepresented in the criminal justice systems. The elimination of health care disparities and ensuring the health care delivery system is responsive to minority groups is a social justice issue. The roles and function of forensic social workers that provide services to persons with these cultural norms can be expanded using a broader ecological framework and the applied social care model to develop intervention strategies and care plans with incarceration persons. Identifying and incorporating culturally appropriate practice approaches are challenging, yet necessary undertakings for forensic social workers.
This chapter aims to disseminate theoretical and practical knowledge of practice using an empowerment and feminist perspective specifically when working with marginalized and oppressed forensic populations and in forensic settings. Forensic social work focuses on both victims and offenders, and strives to integrate the skills and knowledge of empowerment and feminist theory and practice with principles of social justice and human rights. The chapter discusses empowerment and feminist theories and their relevance to practice with forensic populations. It highlights a case example of group work with women, who were sexually abused, that was first presented in the 1990s and told from a strengths-based approach, but could very much be considered both a feminist and empowerment process of working. The chapter also highlights applying an empowerment approach to working with female and male prisoners in London.
This chapter defines restorative justice and discusses the various forms that this approach to wrongdoing and offending may take. It reveals the relevance of restorative interventions to social work practice. The chapter recognizes pioneers in the field of restorative justice with special emphasis on social work theorists. It describes the various forms of restorative justice from micro level victim-offender conferencing to community-level healing circles to macro level reparative justice. The chapter argues for greater social work involvement in shaping policies that include restorative justice options in situations of wrongdoing and social work involvement in facilitating victim–offender and anti bullying conferencing. The chapter also describes aspects of restorative justice that address competencies related to advocacy for human rights and issues of spirituality.
- Go to chapter: The Criminal Justice System: A History of Mass Incarceration With Implications for Forensic Social Work
The Criminal Justice System: A History of Mass Incarceration With Implications for Forensic Social Work
This chapter aims to provide social workers with a historical and contemporary understanding of mass incarceration in the United States. The goal is to facilitate informed forensic social work practice and advocacy with individuals, families, and communities impacted by this destructive phenomenon. The chapter examines the prevalence of jails and prisons, as well as an overview of the people who inhabit them. It discusses the core roles and functions of forensic social work. Restorative justice is often hailed as a prevention, and/or intervention, in justice settings. High levels of suspensions have seen schools become feeders not for college, but for the juvenile, and adult criminal justice systems. This phenomenon has been titled the school to prison pipeline; its impact can be felt predominantly among poor students of color. Research has demonstrated the effectiveness of restorative justice in both juvenile justice and school settings.
Forensic Social Work, 2nd Edition:Psychosocial and Legal Issues Across Diverse Populations and Settings
The growing public awareness of bias and discrimination and the disproportionate involvement of minority populations, especially based on race, class, and gender, have affected the social work profession with a call to fulfill its long-forgotten mission to respond and advocate for justice reform and health and public safety. Forensic social workers practice far and wide where issues of justice and fairness are found. This book emphasizes on the diversity of populations and settings, social workers would best serve their clients adding a forensic or legal lens to their practice. It targets the important and emerging practice specialization of forensic social work, a practice specialization that speaks to the heart, head, and hands (i.e., knowledge, values, and skills) of social work using a human rights and social justice approach integrated with a forensic lens. The book defines forensic social work to include not only a narrow group of people who are victims or convicted of crimes and subsequently involved in the juvenile justice and criminal justice settings, but broadly all the individuals and families involved with family and social services, education, child welfare, mental health, and behavioral health or other programs, in which they are affected by human rights and social justice issues, or federal and state laws and policies. Practitioners who read this book will learn and apply a human rights legal framework and social justice and empowerment theories to guide multilevel prevention, psychosocial assessments, and interventions with historically underserved individuals, families, and communities, especially using the life course systems power analysis strategy and family televisiting. The book fills a critical gap in the knowledge, values, and skills for human rights and social justice–focused social work education and training.
This book is a guide to understanding core restorative justice values and practices and what we have learned from research on the impact of this emerging social movement in the global community. The first three chapters provide an overview of the restorative justice movement and its connection with core social work values and spirituality (not religion). Restorative justice dialogue and its most widespread applications are then presented in Chapters four through eight. Each chapter on a specific application of restorative justice dialogue includes a thorough description of the process, including case examples, followed by a review of empirical research that is available. These chapters describe the most widely used applications, namely victim-offender mediation (VOM), family group conferencing (FGC), peacemaking circles, and victim-offender dialogue (VOD) in crimes of severe violence. The concluding three chapters, nine through eleven, focus on broader issues related to restorative justice dialogue. The crucial role of the facilitator in restorative justice dialogue is highlighted, followed by identifying the dimensions of culture in the restorative justice movement and the very real possibility of unintended negative consequences if we are not mindful of these dimensions. Finally, emerging areas of practice that go beyond the juvenile and criminal justice system are addressed.
This chapter describes a forensic practice framework using a human rights and social justice systems approach. It articulates the definition and theme-based strategies that distinguish forensic social work from social work practice as usual. The chapter then proposes an integrated theoretical perspective that the authors refer to as a human rights and social justice systems (HR-SJS) approach. This approach helps to visualize forensic social work practice in any practice setting. The chapter also reviews the history of forensic social work using the United States as the case example to illustrate how a two-pronged approached to practice was integrated throughout this specialized arena of practice. A review of forensic social work history shows that well over 100 years ago, social workers understood that government, as author and institutor of policy, can and should be an arena for reform.
This chapter promotes understanding of the intersection of social work case level practice skills and social welfare programs and policy. It describes the social work advocacy process, and explores how social and political values impact accessibility to social welfare programs. It assists social workers in developing competence in policy practice and in case and policy advocacy. The chapter also helps social workers recognize when social welfare and economic policies are not fairly distributed, and to become skilled in taking action at the micro-, mezzo, and/or macro level. It discusses the interaction of direct practice with case advocacy to underscore the critical need to understand and interpret policy to achieve social justice. The chapter further highlights the importance of social workers engaging in case and policy advocacy to achieve a socially just outcome for any individual or group, especially those impacted by involvement in the criminal justice system.
This chapter examines the significance for vulnerable groups of social welfare policies and advocacy to meet basic human needs. It identifies key policies and programs established to meet needs of income, food, and shelter. The chapter encourages students to begin using research and statistical data to assess needs and adequacy of programs. It also identifies social work’s role and skills in addressing needs of vulnerable groups. The chapter focuses on the key role of social work professionals in establishing, maintaining, and improving programs needed to ensure a basic level of income for families with children (i.e., income security), access to adequate nutrition (i.e., food security), and access to adequate shelter (i.e., housing security). It also discusses the challenges faced by social workers who serve populations with the basic human needs, including offenders and victims of crime.
This chapter articulates a basic understanding of human rights and how they relate to social work. It describes some of the changes that are needed in social work practice in the United States in order to adhere to human rights principles. The chapter then addresses the implication of human rights for social workers. It offers some background on the concept of human rights, with emphasis on the relationship between human rights and social work and human rights and the law. The chapter further discussed the implication of human rights for social work education and social work practice, with a focus on building community. It discusses obstacles to social work practice from a human rights perspective, and concludes with a discussion on how social work needs to change to have consistency between discourse and action.
This chapter describes the importance and need for interdisciplinary collaboration in forensic settings. It discusses how the evidence-based principles of risk, need, and responsivity (RNR) model can guide interdisciplinary collaboration with justice-involved individuals. The chapter highlights a treatment program for high-risk justice-involved males demonstrating interdisciplinary collaboration and specifically the role of the forensic social worker. Interdisciplinary collaboration is an essential core skill in evidence-based forensic social work practice. Interdisciplinary collaboration can be multidimensional, interactional, and developmental, and the following strategies have been identified as most important in achieving a best practice: preplanning, commitment, communication, strong leadership, understanding the cultures of collaborating agencies, and structural supports and adequate resources for collaboration.
This chapter helps forensic social workers (FSWs) understand how to incorporate research into their practices. It clarifies the terms associated with evidence-based practice (EBP), and demonstrates three different approaches that FSWs can use in their practice settings. The chapter focuses on clinical interventions within forensic settings. It provides a brief summary and overview of some of the intervention models used in forensic settings with established empirical support, along with a discussion of their strengths and limitations. The chapter highlights commonly used forensic intervention models such as risk-needs-responsivity models, motivational interviewing, trauma-informed care, trauma-focused cognitive behavioral therapy, schema-focused therapy, and dialectical behavioral therapy. It concludes with a case example to illustrate how to use EBP in order to ensure that FSWs are providing interventions that are the best combination of art and science.
- Go to chapter: Forensic Research and Evaluation: Program and Policy Interventions That Promote Human Rights and Social Justice
Forensic Research and Evaluation: Program and Policy Interventions That Promote Human Rights and Social Justice
This chapter describes how forensic social workers can use the knowledge and skills of intervention development to design or evaluate existing interventions with forensic populations or settings, and about funding for their cause. It articulates the language of program and proposal development to prepare forensic social workers to be the creators of programs needed for forensic populations. The chapter enables preparing forensic social workers to possess basic competencies for understanding the language and practice of program development and evaluation of forensic social work interventions. The chapter provides an overview of the different parts of the logic model and how it can be linked to program development and evaluation. It provides questions related to the common types of evaluation, which include a needs assessment and process, outcome, or efficiency evaluations. The chapter also reviews forensic intervention development using a human rights and social justice systems approach.
This chapter reviews the historic relationship between social work and the criminal justice system and the significance of restorative justice to the social work profession. It demonstrates the strong implicit relationship between social work and restorative justice by reviewing the core social work values and how those values are manifest in restorative justice philosophy and practices. As long as rehabilitation was the guiding retributive philosophy, there was a natural affinity between social work and criminal justice. Social work is unique among the mental health professions because it is the only one built on a fundamental set of values. Social workers respect the inherent dignity and worth of the person. Self-determination is an extension of human worth and holds that individuals ought to take part in the decisions that affect their lives. Social workers recognize the central importance of human relationships.
Working with justice-involved youth and employment-related services requires a wide range of social work and systems knowledge, skills, and expertise. This chapter enhances understanding of the role employment services play in forensic social work with youth. It presents relevant findings from recent research on employment services for justice-involved youth and their effects on recidivism. The chapter discusses the targeted programs and services for justice-involved youth, providing case examples and discussion of how social workers assist this population, and the skills required for effective intervention. It also provides a basic understanding for how employment services fit within the system. The chapter aims to connect research with real-life examples. It outlines two of the ways inequality and oppression impact juvenile justice and employment. The chapter also discusses two evidence-based employment intervention strategies that are available to justice-involved youth in New York.
This chapter discusses the complexity of the role of the school social worker. It describes how to respond collaboratively and effectively to the variety of issues presented within public schools. The chapter provides a brief history of social work services in schools. It addresses recent demographics and trends and the scope of the problems in this specialty area. Specific legal and ethical issues of concern in the practice of school social work, and issues of assessment, prevention, and intervention are also discussed. The chapter describes the types of services provided through social work in schools, ranging from traditional child study team work to reentry services for students returning from correctional and/or treatment facilities. The chapter further examines the origin and development of school social work services in the United States.
Student learning in college and university settings has changed over the years as more and more emphasis has been placed on learning competencies and learning outcomes. The student learning agenda, sometimes called a learning contract, is the universal tool that all social work students use to integrate the competencies within their field placement. A learning agenda’s main purpose is to provide a framework for student identification of needed learning, and for the evaluation of the demonstrable competencies and behaviors shown by the student at the field site. The learning agenda is a tool to identify what learning experiences the agency has to offer and what skills and abilities the student brings. The CSWE requires field instructors who have degrees from accredited social work programs for at least part of field instruction and supervision because of the unique perspective and educational model of social work education.
According to the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE), the field practicum is the signature pedagogy of the student’s social work education. Students are evaluated on their performance in the field practicum. This chapter focuses on the use of field evaluation measures to characterize the student’s readiness for social work practice, and focuses on the literature review, the purpose of evaluation, the timeline for the practicum and the tasks that students perform at the field agency which serves as evidence of the student’s mastery on the content of the field placement. Studies have named the merits of the fieldwork experience in social work education. Reflective practice is an important skill for any social worker. At all points of all levels of social work practicum experiences, field instructors should ask themselves and their students whether the learning that is happening is appropriate for the specific stage of professional development.
Serving as a field instructor is usually a delightful and rewarding experience. Most of our students are bright, motivated, and eager to develop into skilled professionals. However, there are times when a practicum student may be ill-suited to the internship. Field supervision is both a process and a relationship. Several frameworks have been discussed in the social work literature about the nature of the field instructor-student relationship. These include the developmental model, attachment-based approaches to supervision, and the relational approach. Program faculty can also work with you to help in the process of integrating classroom knowledge and theory with interventions in the practicum setting. Some areas where students may particularly struggle are the following: emotional self-care, professionalism, setting appropriate professional boundaries, integrating classroom knowledge with fieldwork, professional writing skills, accepting constructive feedback, and asking for help.
Nearly all social work professionals remember their field instructors. Field instructors clearly play a critical role in social work education. This chapter is for those field instructors who would like to broaden their repertoire of tools for helping students become more adept at integrating theory, models, and skills in a coherent manner. It briefly reviews the literature, then identifies barriers, and makes recommendations about strategies for theory and practice integration. The literature suggests that students have appreciated the systematic integration of theory and practice by field instructors. The literature about how to foster integration in field education has a different focus when comparing academic field faculty and agency-based field instructors. For more experienced field instructors, the literature recommended training centered on topics such as enhancing students’ critical thinking, group work, and communication skills, as well as conflict resolution skills.
This chapter provides an overview of ways in which people can work to ensure a positive experience for their and thier social work practicum student. It offers some helpful, practical advice to guide the field instructor-student relationship. The chapter presents a checklist of “dos and don’ts”, and the chapter provides a great deal of practice-based wisdom for the field instructor. Many students choose to or must meet enormous responsibilities, and they balance complex schedules. Knowing about these circumstances from the beginning of the internship can dramatically decrease conflicts, stress, and unmet goals. Establishing open lines of communication so students will be proactive in seeking our input, guidance, or permission to meet changes and challenges can decrease anxiety, which will help ensure their maximum learning, growth, and performance in the practicum.
When social work practitioners agree to take on interns from a social work degree program, they are agreeing to work hand in hand with the students to ensure that the students meet the learning requirements, often expressed as competencies, of the social work program. An important element of ensuring a good experience for the practicum student is to engage actively with the student’s social work school or department. Effective communication between the academic institution and the field instructor/agency setting is indispensable to the social work practicum process. One of the biggest responsibilities in the implementation of "signature pedagogy" is ensuring that practicum students can successfully integrate the knowledge they gain in the classroom with the real-world practice of social work. In some social work programs, faculty advisors conduct site visits for their students’ practicum placements.
Mentors are used at all educational levels, with the broad intent of the mentor supporting students’ school work, personal issues, and, at later ages, being a guide in the area of careers. Informal mentoring has long been seen as common and beneficial in social service organizations. For students, some of the barriers to participating in mentorship included timing, compatibility, and knowing how to appropriately interact with one’s mentor. Mentorship is a form of relationship building that involves a certain level of commitment from both the mentor and the mentee. Generally, mentorship as a component in the Master of Science in the Nonprofit Leadership degree program has been a successful experience from both the mentor and mentee viewpoint. Despite the challenges, which for the most part are found across many different relationship types, mentees and mentors are able to come together to contribute to the formation of this successful relationship.
Community engagement is a dynamic multi-facilitated, multi-stakeholder endeavor that makes impact measurements allusive. This chapter discusses the role of critical service learning as a backdrop for ethical engagement; and aims to graft existing professional frameworks and theory as tools for guiding and reflecting practice in community engagement with the aim of minimizing ethics violations in the community. Community-engaged learning models, such as service learning, have been shown to impact students in several areas, including self-efficacy, deeper learning of course material, reducing stereotypes, and fostering critical thinking. Students entering resource-poor communities have preconceived notions about why residents currently occupy their socioeconomic status. Ethical community engagement must emphasize the inherent capacity of individuals and communities to understand and respond to social issues. Community engagement presents a difficult duality; many students will participate in it to develop professional skills particularly within education, social work, and health professions.
The primary objective of this book is to describe how a relationship-building approach can be used in the delivery of child welfare services to kinship caregivers and the children who reside with them. To accomplish this objective, the book entails a review and evaluation of the three major child welfare goals: protection, permanency, and well-being. Specifically, it explores how these three goals can be better achieved when informed by a relationship-building approach. The book assists child welfare practitioners in framing how they view kinship caregivers and acquiring knowledge and skills about the use of relationship-building models (emanating from social work practice perspectives) and is designed to increase positive outcomes for maltreated children. The multifaceted issue of relative caregiving is in dire need of attention from virtually every social work service domain level. Specifically, micro-level practice interventions are needed, as well as mezzo-level programming for particular groups and macro-level policy redesigns that support services to relative caregivers are also warranted. The book integrates practice, policy, and research, and includes study tools and resources (a glossary, discussion questions, and activities for ongoing learning) and thus can be easily incorporated into such courses as child welfare, family practice, social work and the law, social work practice, cultural diversity, policy, child welfare integrative seminars, and special topic electives.
This chapter discusses the state of the nonprofit social sector in the 21st century, provides a historical perspective of the sector’s development in the United States, and considers its size and the legal framework in which it operates. It explores overview of the health, status, and contributions of nonprofits in the United States and discusses how the sector going forward must be more open to and adept at strategic partnerships if it hopes to maintain and expand its impact on social services in America. The nonprofit world is changing, and the future success of the more than 1.6 million nonprofits will be defined and dominated by strategic alignments and partnerships. The online journal edition and launch event were a huge success, with more than 300 nonprofit leaders in the room who all wanted to understand the spectrum of partnerships, how to do partnerships themselves, and what lessons others had learned.
This book provides leaders and managers of nonprofit organizations with theoretical and conceptual frameworks, approaches, and strategies that will enable them to manage organizations that are financially sustainable. The book aims to equip students and nonprofit leaders with the information and conceptual frameworks needed to do financial analyses, manage budgets, and conduct various operations for organizational and financial sustainability. People have a tendency to think of financial sustainability almost exclusively in financial terms. The book argues that financial sustainability involves both financial and nonfinancial facets. To that end it provides a systemic conceptual framework. The chapters are articulated around four sections. The first part introduces the concepts of nonprofit organizations and financial sustainability. The second part is about key aspects of organization and planning for sustainability in a nonprofit organization. The third part discusses issues that are vital to the financial sustainability of a nonprofit organization. The last part emphasizes the contributions of management and leadership practices to the financial sustainability of nonprofit organizations. The book may serve as an introductory textbook for future leaders of nonprofit organizations, as well as students in schools or programs of nonprofit leadership, human service leadership, social work, public and community health, organization management, public administration, education, and other similar fields.
This chapter introduces the reader to the signs and symptoms of people who suffer from mood episodes highlighting the medications and treatment for the most common types of bipolar disorder. To highlight the primary disorders, information related to the following diagnostic categories in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (5th ed.; DSM-5) is presented: Bipolar I Disorder, Bipolar II Disorder, Cyclothymic Disorder, Substance/Medication-Induced Bipolar and Related Disorder, Bipolar and Related Disorder Due to Another Medical Condition, Other Specified Bipolar and Related Disorders, and Unspecified Bipolar and Related Disorder. The chapter reviews the basics of these diagnoses and the medications and supportive treatments used to assist clients. This awareness is used to help empower clients to become active participants in their own treatment. Social work can play an important role in treating and assisting clients who suffer from these disorders, along with helping their support systems.
Effective communication skills, both oral and written, are considered to be important proficiencies in the social work field. Successful leaders understand how vital it is to master the art of communication. Communication that is well paced, worded, toned, and delivered to the intended audience increases the likelihood that the message can be well received, understood, and perhaps even appreciated. This chapter explores the various effects of engaging in effective interpersonal communication skills and identifies ways to enhance communication, particularly when faced with conflict. Effective communication is needed to motivate staff, to resolve conflict, to manage crisis situations, and successfully navigate press coverage. It is also necessary for being able to successfully market organizational programs and foster public relations. The chapter provides tips for recognizing conflicts, taking action to manage conflicts, establishing rules for productive disagreements, communicating goals and expectations, and establishing healthy work environments.
This book can be used by social work professionals both as a textbook and as a clinical resource. Considering that most social workers receive limited training in medication during their social work program, it provides an excellent practice resource for clinicians in the field. The book provides general information that will prepare social workers to address the needs of clients taking medication. The use of medication is viewed as part of social work practice, and strategies for understanding its use are highlighted. Each chapter focuses on the basic information a social worker should know, from understanding the human brain, to tips for helping the client to terminate use, to how to support the medical team with tips for taking a medication history. The book explains the difference between generic and brand names, presented along with medical terminology used in prescribing medications. It provides the basic rules for monitoring medication and compliance, along with tips for treatment planning and documentation. The book also outlines prescription and nonprescription medications, including herbal preparations, and includes a section on special populations. It addresses specific mental health conditions such as schizophrenia, mood disorders, depression, bipolar disorders, and specific anxiety disorders.
This chapter discusses the benefits and use of management information systems (
MIS) and linking organizational mission, goals, and objectives to MISoutcomes. It considers the ways organizations and academic institutions can make the most of organizing and managing MISprograms to maximize efficiency and productivity. The chapter helps one to assess the quality of information and identify the types of data and information needed in various departments of the organization. It outlines four phases related to implementing an MISthat can aid organizations in identifying technology resources and launching an MISprogram. Additionally, it explores the utility of technology resources and discusses how technology aids administrative and clinical decisions. Finally, the chapter examines the ways that MISimproves efficiency in planning, billing, and compliance monitoring.
This chapter reviews and discusses best human resource practices aligned with the Network for Social Work Management (
NSWM) and Council on Social Work Education ( CSWE) practice behaviors. It discusses human resource functions, including job designs and processes of recruitment, hiring, and promoting staff. The chapter provides examples of rubrics that modifies to fit academic and service agencies to create an objective scoring card for candidates based on the job description and requirements. The chapter also examines critical employment relation policies and delineated the laws that organizations must adhere to. Organizations that understand, respect, and live by nondiscriminatory practices can create a workplace environment that is free of harassment, racism, and microaggressions. It is vital that leaders and managers understand the labor laws, affirmative action rules, and equal employment opportunity rules and promote an atmosphere that values inclusion of diverse people.