Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) have become an integral part of social and working lives. Within social work ICTs play a vital role, helping professionals to store and share information and contributing to new forms of practice. This book goes a step further than simply describing ICT skills, but asks why ICT is used and how this affects practice and the experience of people who use services.

The book has a practical focus and includes guidance on:

  • Best Practice for Social Work and ICT
  • ICT Use in Social Work
  • Service Users, Carers and ICT
  • Technology and Professional Practice
  • ICT and Social Work Agencies
  • Social Work Programs in the Virtual World
  • ICT and Practice Based Learning

Written in a student-friendly style, Social Work and ICT is interspersed with activities and exercises to enable students to develop their skills and knowledge. Each chapter also includes a ‘Taking it Further’ section with useful websites, suggestions for further reading and ideas to improve practice. The book has been designed to enhance professional practice and it will be essential reading for all undergraduate programs in social work.

ICT Use in Social Work

ICT use in social work

This chapter considers how and why a whole range of ICTs are currently being used within social work. In Chapter 1 we argued for the importance of an approach that is led by practice considerations rather than by the ICTs themselves. In line with that position, the main body of this chapter looks at various common components of social work practice (assessment, recording, reviewing and so on) and considers how ICT is being used in the practice of social work itself. Of course, this is a rapidly developing scene. So in order to make sense of it, the chapter first takes a brief look at the development of ICTs themselves, and at changes in UK government ...

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