Social Workers And The Social Work

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Theory is defined as “…”. In the social work profession, it is not enough to just understand the definition of theory, but rather be able to integrate theory into practice when working to plan interventions at multiple practice levels. This integration of theory into the social work practice is an emphasis of the profession as noted in the profession’s core competencies. Core competency 2.1.6 “engage in research-informed practice and practice-informed research” (NASW code of ethics) is the basis for theory integration within the social work profession. The profession’s practice behaviors state that social workers must “use research evidence to inform practice” (NASW code of ethics). In other words, social workers should “attend to findings of outcome studies that have been validated and sufficiently replicated” (Gitterman & Knight, 2013). However, social workers must also be innovative when said validated studies prove ineffective due to a client’s circumstances (Gitterman & Knight, 2013). This is why social workers must also be critical thinkers. Critical thinking applied to the social work profession involves “the ability to define an issue, stressor, or problem; to distinguish, appraise, and integrate multiple sources of knowledge to formulate a tentative practice direction” (Gitterman & Knight, 2013). Theories, as well as research, “about phases of individual, family and group development; about ethical, racial, religious, spiritual, and sexual identity development; and about individual, family, and group development” provide social workers with a basic starting point for a more complex and situational-based intervention plan that will later be developed. In social work practice, intervention plans and assessments are not bli... ... middle of paper ... ...e, and ultimate reality, however one understands it, which may or may not be expressed through religious forms or institutions” (Sheridan, 2004). Within the social work profession, spirituality “orients individuals’ and communities’ most significant concerns, primary motivations, developmental goals, moral standards, ideas about well-being and justice, and ways of making connection between self, other people, the larger world, and universe” (Cheon & Canda, 2010). All in all, the biopsychosocial spiritual framework is used in the social work profession because of its superior ability to “guide careful decision making regarding sequencing and choices of practice interventions” (Basham & Miehls, 2002). In addition, the biopsychosocial spiritual framework “asserts that an individual’s problems in living must be understood within a larger social context” (Levine, 2000).

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