Walden University Social Work Field Education Blog Entry Response

Respond to the blog posts of three colleagues in one or more of the following ways:

  • Expand on your colleague’s posting.
  • Validate an idea in your colleague’s post with your own experience.

Veronica—

Assessment is the main feature of social work field education and allows both ongoing formative procedures of monitoring and feedback as well as a summative assessment of a student’s competence at the conclusion of a fieldwork placement. (Hay & O’Donoghue, 2009). The the difference in social work field education curriculum, mainly in assessment Hay & O’Donoghue (2009) argues, can establish confusion for employers and does not permit a modernized process regarding provisional registration as a social worker. The purpose of assessment Hay & O’Donoghue (2009) opine, are diverse as well as comprise enhancing and promoting student learning, certifying completing, monitoring student work, and development, initiating changes in policy, curriculum and practice, conferring qualification as well as identifying further educational and practice need.

Assessing child well-being is at the center of a child protective services (CPS) workers’ decision to leave a child in the home or place in substitute care, in addition, can be utilized as the foundation for assessing program effectiveness (Nasuti, 1999). Evidently according to Nasuti (1999), a variation of procedural challenges demand to be deal with before CPS agencies can start placing faith in the models they develop with the aim of measuring child well-being. These challenges Nasuti (1999) suggest, comprise selecting measuring methods carefully, assessing the validity and interrater reliability, as well as the use of similar control groups that include an equal group of abused and non-abused subject.

To address assessment, I will need written documentation for summative assessment reason at the completion of the fieldwork placement (Hay & O’Donoghue, 2009). These documents Hay & O’Donoghue (2009) suggest, largely referred to as the assessment document addressed the accomplishment of the identified learning outcomes, the areas of strength as well as the future development of the student. Other approaches of assessment according to Hay & O’Donoghue (2009), comprised profound journals, essays or written assignments, mandatory tutorials, workbooks, presentations, field observations, a supervision log, a closure interview as well as involvement, in a social service expo. The evaluative assessment the process happened at the end of the placement with written documentation, workbooks and any extra written requirements required that time Hay & O’Donoghue (2009) opine

References

Hay, K., & O’Donoghue, K. (2009). Assessing social work field education: Towards standardizing field assessment in New Zealand. Social Work Education: The International Journal, 28(1), 42-53.

Nasuti, J. P. (1999). Risk assessment in child protective services: Challenges in measuring child well-being. Journal of Family Social Work, 3(1), 55-70.

Lynn—

  • An explanation of potential challenges for assessment during your field education experience

As I continue to work with clients with co-occurring disorders I find it somewhat difficult to receive information that is crucial for their recovery process. Client with co-occurring disorders in practice with individual and family client systems, the client may experience more than one condition that brings him or her into the social service or health system, when multiple conditions occur at the same time that impacts their ability to participate effectively in interventions (Birkenmaier & Berg-Weger 2018). The challenge here that I see is time, as we continue to do our work it is imperative that things get done in a timely manner making sure this person is in the system along with making sure the person gets the help they need with mental health.

An explanation of personal action plans you might take to address assessment in your field education experience

This has been the action plan with the agency when clients come into the agency using the needs assessment, more importantly, to ask about the client’s mental health status. Your systems-based social work training enables you to develop an assessment and intervention strategy that encompasses all aspects of a client’s life and situation (Birkenmaier & Berg-Weger 2018). This tool would be the Matrix which takes no more than 3 to 5 minutes at most, ask the pacific questions have you ever been diagnosed with mental health, can you tell me how your mental health is at the present “reoccurring, mild, or minimal.” Asking these questions allows the worker to seek outside treatment for the client.

Reference

Birkenmaier, J., & Berg-Weger, M. (2018). The practicum companion for social work: Integrating class and fieldwork (4th ed.). New York, NY: Pearson.

  • Chapter 6, “Social Work Practice in the Field: Working with Individuals and Families” (pp. 117-154)

Latonja—

Potential Challenges for Assessment During Your Field Education Experience

Savaya and Gardner (2012) state that “personal values, preferences, attitudes, beliefs…” affect social workers’ practice and decisions. This may pose a challenge if one’s personal biases implicate their professional identity. Social workers have an ethical mandate to utilize their professional skills to provide high-quality services to their clients and broader society. Personal elements integrated into social work practice may lead to bias and errors in professional judgment and decision-making that weaken intervention effectiveness (Savaya & Gardner, 2012). Personal biases may also affect how social workers utilize assessments in practice. For instance, a social worker who believes in the assumption that “children should be seen and not heard” may fail to assess a child’s emotional wellbeing in family therapy. The worker may view the child’s disruptive behavior as disrespect instead of possible emotional or psychological distress and therefore have a lapse in professional judgment. Our internalized theories can drive our behaviors and actions and cause “unintended or undesired outcomes” (Savaya & Gardner, 2012).

Personal Action Plans to Address Assessment in Your Field Education Experience

Critical awareness is a process that helps one to identify the biases governing their actions (Savaya & Gardner, 2012). Critical awareness requires the individual to identify their assumptions, examine them, and develop alternative ways of acting (Savaya & Gardner, 2012). This technique addresses the implication of personal biases because it paves the way for new understandings about self, increases awareness, and enhances professional development. While every human being has a set of beliefs and values, anytime our belief system negatively impacts our delivery or quality of services or our clients’ well-being, a critical self-assessment must be conducted.

My personal action plan is to engage in critical awareness to ensure that my personal values do not hinder my ability to effectively assess and intervene on my client’s behalf.

Savaya, R., & Gardner, F. (2012). Critical reflection to identify gaps between espoused theory and theory-in-use. Social Work, 57(2), 145–154.

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