SAGE Journal Articles
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Article 1 Cnaan, R. A. & Dichter, M. E. (2008). Thoughts on the use of knowledge in social work practice. Research on Social Work Practice, 18(4), 278-284. Published online before print June 12, 2007, doi: 10.1177/1049731506296165
The quest for making social work a discipline based entirely on empirical research findings is not new. In this article, the authors briefly review the field of social work in the United States during the past 100 years and discuss how the quest for the status of a profession forced the emphasis on empirical research. However, the authors claim that now and in the past, social work is a most complex field and that many of its basic ingredients are inherently difficult to study. They conclude this article, with a call for social work to continue stressing the “science” side by enhancing careful evidence-based practice, does not hamper the field from evolving and from practitioners using the “art” side of social care.
Questions to Consider:
What was the significance of Abraham Flexner's report on the status of social work as a profession? Why was this a pivotal moment for the profession?
Summarize the barriers that prevent social work from being viewed as a scientific practice.
Discuss why social work is viewed as both an art and a science. Which social science theories have contributed to social work as an art as well as a science?
How do practice, education, and research intersect in their contributions to social work as a science?
Article 2 Howard, M. O., Allen-Meares, P., & Ruffolo, M. C. (2007). Teaching evidence-based practice: Strategic and pedagogical recommendations for schools of social work. Research on Social Work Practice, 17(5), 561-568. doi: 10.1177/1049731507300191
Widespread adoption of pedagogical methods promoting evidence-based practice (EBP) could enhance the effectiveness of social work practice education. Schools of social work should ensure that faculty are trained in the methods of EBP; establish a committee responsible for tracking and implementing demonstrably effective instructional innovations related to EBP; provide continuing education courses that promote scientifically supported practices and that include a course devoted specifically to teaching the methods of EBP per se.
Questions to consider:
How is evidence-based practice taught in social work curriculum? Are prepared to teach empirically supported interventions?
What contextual factors contribute to the paucity of social work research in theory or practice?
Provide a rationale for training students to develop EB research skills. How can social work students be assessed for EBP knowledge and skills in the classroom or in the field?