Introduction to Social Work Practice orients the students to the role of the professional social worker. The first chapter delineates the differences between being a good friend and being a good clinician in terms of social/emotional factors, professionalism, and self-disclosure. The second chapter covers techniques for building a trusting working environment that is conducive to processing sensitive issues along with an overview of key therapeutic communication skills. The remaining five chapters detail an easy-to-remember five-step problem-solving model to guide the clinical process: 1. Assessment, 2. Goal, 3. Objectives, 4. Activation, 5. Termination.

Key features include:

role-play exercises; brief essay and response questions to build and test key communication skills; discussion points; glossary of terms; diagrams and charts that graphically represent the flow of the helping process.

The workbook presumes no prior clinical experience and uses no technical psychological jargon. It teaches fundamental communication skills while emphasizing key social work values, ethics, and issues of multicultural populations and diversity throughout.

What Does a Social Worker Do … and Not Do?
What does a social worker do … and not do?

The role of the social worker is in many ways different from the role as the helpful friend, offering aid in a well-meaning, informal manner. This chapter details key differences between being a good friend and being a competent social worker in three domains: (1) social/emotional factors, (2) professionalism, and (3) self-disclosure.

Social Work Diversity

Social work may concisely be defined as “efforts to understand and improve the quality of people's lives.” This broad definition aptly entails the rich diversity of social work capacities, such as child welfare caseworker, family counselor, social service caseworker, eligibility worker, casework supervisor, social service administrator/director, psychiatric social worker, clinical social worker, private ...

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