COURSE DESCRIPTION:The purpose of this course is to provide the student with generalist practice and theoretical knowledge and skills necessary for field placement, entry level generalist practice in social work, and enrollment in a graduate social work program. Social work skills of engaging the client in a professional relationship, interviewing, assessment and planning interventions at the individual and family level will be taught didactically and experientially from a generalist framework. The application of ethics and the use of self and personal family history in working with individuals and families will be addressed. The application of social science theories to working with individuals, and families will be included. Evaluation of the students own practice effectiveness based upon social work knowledge and theory will be demonstrated in this class.
LEARNING OBJECTIVES: 1. Apply critical thinking skills within the context of professional social work practice. 2. Understand the value base of the profession and its ethical standards and principles; demonstrate the ability to apply ethics in practice. 3. Practice without discrimination and with respect, knowledge, and skills related to clients’ age class, color, culture, disability, ethnicity, family structure, gender, marital status, national origin, race, religion, sex and sexual orientation. 4. Apply the knowledge and skills of a generalist social work perspective to practice with systems of all sizes. 5. Evaluate research studies, apply research findings to practice, and evaluate their own practice interventions. 6. Use communication skills differentially across client populations, colleagues, and communities.
1. Demonstrate knowledge of basic interviewing skills useful in multicultural contexts with individuals, groups, families and organizational systems
2. Develop an awareness of self and personal family history and diversity in the intervention process.
3. Assess situations and plan empirical interventions at the individual, family, group, organizational and societal levels based upon contemporary counseling theories.
4. Demonstrate an understanding of social work ethics as they are applied to assessment and intervention with client systems of all sizes.
5. Acquire and express a sensitivity to racial, ethnic, gender, sexual orientation, and value differences, as these affect practice with systems of all sizes.
6. To assess person-environment and person-person transactions as well as strengths and needs, and to set measurable goals for interventions to produce more functional transactions.
7. Assess family functioning along various dimensions while taking into consideration diversity.
Shulman, L., The Skills of Helping Individuals, Families, Groups and Communities, 7th, ISBN-13: 9780495509639
A. Professional relationships, interviewing and ethics.
In class, the professor will teach professional relationship and interviewing skills by demonstrating these skills in class. Students will be required to role-play clients so the professor can demonstrate interviewing, relationship skills, and the application of ethics. After each role-play the “client” will share his reaction to the interview. Observing students will discuss how the application of skills and ethics affected the interview. Skills taught will include empathy, attending, being non-judgmental, genuineness, open and closed ended questions, non-verbal communication, reflection of content and feelings, confrontation, refocusing, sharing information, self-disclosure, changing clients perspectives, interpretation, and reframing. The impact of culture, gender, race and other forms of diversity on the interviewers will be discussed. Students will assess the strengths and weaknesses demonstrated by the role-played clients. After assessing, they will discuss problem solving, setting goals for the client and partializing goals into objectives that can be accomplished. Ethics demonstrated will include client right to self determination, confidentiality, importance of relationship, social justice, dignity and worth of the person, boundaries and cultural competence.
B. Interviewing skills assignment: In class students will form pairs and interview each other. Students will demonstrate interviewing skills in role play. Students will jointly decide which interviewing skills each other demonstrated.
C. Family Assessment and Genogram: In this 2-3 page, typed, double-spaced paper, assess your family in interaction with external and internal environments over at least three (3) generations. You may use the following outline for your paper. (20 points)
. Family Description: Using the following headings, describe your nuclear family in terms of:
1.Membership - Names of the persons who live with the index person.
3.Occupations or school situation - How well are people doing?
4. Ethnic background - How does it influence family life?
5. Religious background - How does it influence family life?
6. Income/finances - How is the family affected by this?
b. Family Structure
1. What are the major family values and rules?
2. Describe the patterns of behavior and norms?
3. What are the communication patterns between members, and between members and the outside? Are people open or closed about feelings and facts? Does your family have secrets?
4. What are the role assignments of family members--formal, informal, achieved, ascribed, etc.? Who are nurtures, rescuers, providers, identified patients, etc.?
c. Evaluation of Genogram as an Interview
Briefly, discuss what it felt like to trace the family history. How did your family respond to it? Did you learn anything new or unexpected about your family? Did you see trends or patterns with which you were previously unfamiliar? Did you find connections that provoked new assessments of relationships in your family? As an intervention, how effective was this genogram exercise in changing your thoughts, feelings or behavior?
This will be Figure 1 of your paper and is a pictorial family tree and family history. Include at least three generations (your children, if any, parents before you, and grandparents. You will create the genogram using the DVD Genogram Analytics. The genogram must be very detailed in visually presenting your family environment over multiple generations. On the Genogram include facts such as name, date of birth, country emigrated from, occupation, marriages, divorce, death, special problems or issues (abuse, addictions, mental illness etc.), strengths, and relationships. Use the Genogram Analytics DVD to create your genogram. Print with a color printer.
D. Needs Assessment:
Students will be assigned to groups during a class meeting to assess a case using a strengths and needs perspective and Maslow’s hierarchy of needs. (10 points). You must be present to earn credit.
E. Behavioral Treatment Plan:
A behavioral treatment plan will be developed, written up, and presented to the class as part of an in class group exercise. Specific guidelines will be given in class for developing the treatment plan based upon a case history. Student groups will assess strengths and weaknesses, set objectives, and specify behavioral interventions (15 points). You must be present to earn credit.
F. Ethical dilemma in contracting objectives with a client:
Students will be given a case study of two siblings available for adoption. Meeting in groups students will consider the ethical dilemmas involved in meeting the needs of both children and decide on a treatment plan to meet the needs of both siblings.You must be present to earn the credit.
Evaluation and Grading
Exam One 100
Role playing and Discussing Interviewing
(extra credit given for attendance) varies
Interviewing skills assignment 15
Ethical Dilemma in Contracting 10
Exam 2 over genogram, family and community 100
Social Assessment from genogram (in class) 10
Family Assessment and Genogram 30
Behavioral Treatment Plan 15
Assessment using Maslow’s Hierarchy 10
Final Exam 100____________
Total possible 390
Exam 1will be given about October 15th in the fall or February 25th in the spring. The exam will cover chapters 1,2,3,4,5 and 6 of the text and all lectures given before the exam.
Exam 2will be given about November 20th in the fall or March 15th in the spring. The exam will cover chapters 7, 8 and 9, genograms and all lectures given after exam 1 and before exam 2.
Final examwill be given December 7th, Tuesday at 10:30 am and will cover all lectures following exam 2.
Point based grading scale
Students may bring ONE page of notes to the exams. The exams will not be open book.
Acquiring interviewing skills is crucial to effective practice. Therefore, prior to exam one, on random days, I will take attendance. Those in attendance will receive extra credit points.
ABSENCES AND MAKE-UP EXAMS: Missed examinations may be made up without penalty if the absence is officially excused. An absence is considered excused if the student:
a. Present a written excuse from the Office of Student Affairs.
b. Present a written excuse from a physician (or the Midwestern State University Infirmary).
c. Present evidence of attending a mandatory university function (e.g., Basketball Team, Band, field trip, etc.).
d. Obtain permission from the instructor in advance of the test.
Missed exams may be made up without an excused absence, but the student will be penalized one letter grade (10%) on the exam for each week late. Students not in attendance when the class does the assessment and behavioral treatment plans will receive zeros for those assignments.