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Social workers make decisions in practice settings based on different sources of knowledge, including their intuitionpersonal experiencestraditionauthority, and theories and research evidence. These sources of knowledge can be used together to contribute to decisions. Which source(s) of knowledge do you rely on? What are the strengths and limitations of each source of knowledge, and how will they affect your social work practice? For example, think about the sources of knowledge you used when you made decisions in your field experience. In this Discussion, you consider the sources of knowledge that inform your practice decisions.

To prepare: Complete the “Situations 1 and 2: Making Decisions About Interventions” handout. (Note: You do not need to upload the handout to the Discussion forum. The handout is intended to assist you in writing your Discussion post.)

By Day 4

  • Explain how and why your choices differed in Situations 1 and 2.
  • Evaluate when using intuition or personal experiences is advantageous in making clinical decisions. Provide an illustration of this from your fieldwork experience.
  • Analyze when using theories and research evidence is advantageous in making clinical decisions. Provide an illustration of this from your fieldwork experience.

 

Required Readings

Dean, R. G. (1989). Ways of knowing in clinical practice. Clinical Social Work Journal, 17(2), 116–127. https://doi.org/10.1007/BF00756139

Note: You will access this article from the Walden Library databases.

Simon, B. L. (1994). Are theories for practice necessary? Yes! Journal of Social Work Education, 30(2), 144–147. doi:10.1080/10437797.1994.10672224

Note: You will access this article from the Walden Library databases.

Thyer, B. A. (1994). Are theories for practice necessary? No! Journal of Social Work Education, 30(2),148–151. Retrieved from http://www.tandfonline.com/loi/uswe20

Note: You will access this article from the Walden Library databases.

Turner, F. (2011). Theory and social work treatment. In Social work treatment: Interlocking theoretical approaches (5th ed., pp. 3–13). New York, NY: Oxford University Press.

Social Work Treatment: Interlocking Theoretical Approaches, 5th Edition by Turner, F. Copyright 2011 by Oxford University Press – Books (US & UK). Reprinted by permission of Oxford University Press – Books (US & UK) via the Copyright Clearance Center.

Document: Situations 1 and 2: Making Decisions About Interventions (Word document)

Optional Resources

Teater, B. (2010). Introduction to applying social work theories and methods. New York, NY: Open University Press.
Chapter 1: Introduction to Theories and Methods (pp. 1–15)Note: You will access this e-book from the Walden Library databases.

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